m's sooty tracks|
update, you silly goose
"i don't know, the wounds are too fresh to tell."
ripping pages from the spine, day by day
serial boxes / eat drink and be merry
hide and peek
if you'd like to trade shoes
it's a roll of the dice
18 she found talking in her sleep.
and i promise you, i promise you don't want to
know further than this.
[ 19 lost? ]
[ 19 lost? ]
|Wednesday, February 23rd, 2033 (20330223)|
|Sunday, November 7th, 2032 (20321107)|
|Sunday, August 17th, 2031 (20310817)|
|Monday, August 11th, 2014 (20140811)|
|i wonder what julie doucet and lynda barry would say
otherwise, they included so many of the biggies i'm impressed.
"Comics has been the perfect medium for capturing discomfort that is very real but isn’t visible to others."
"I wanted to depict my bipolar moods in a visceral way — for myself and for the reader — so I drew myself loopy, stark, realistic, cartoony, abstracted, in ink, pencil, polished, sketchy… Embodying and externalizing my feelings in the self-portraits, when I really nailed them, was truly cathartic."
"I want to see women’s bodies portrayed in a non-gratuitous, nonobjectified, honest way… I think it’s important to see women in comics who are not commodities or sex objects, but complex humans with their own desires, hungers, lust, and love."
"What bothers me about women’s bodies I see in many comics is that they seem so removed from the woman herself. Their primary function is to be on display for the reader… This is bad not just from a ‘that’s sexist’ standpoint, but from a storytelling one as well."
"We need women’s bodies in our stories, having sex and getting our periods and eating food and doing whatever bodies do, so that the things our bodies do are normalized and present — so that boys don’t grow up thinking women are gross or whores or pigs or any other horrible epithet."
"I look forward to the time when honest depictions of women’s bodies are a normal thing to look at, instead of some kind of statement."
"It’s challenging to be any kind of female in this world, and it’s challenging to be any kind of cartoonist… Women need to create comics or our realities will be erased, ignored, or distorted."
"You are asking a middle-aged female if an industry, which traditionally supports and advances the ethos of primarily young white males, has presented challenges to her in the almost 40 years she’s been producing comics. Where do I start?"
"There are so few opportunities to see non-heterosexual and female-centered depictions of sex… As a gay person, I know firsthand the despair that comes from believing you’re the only one, of not being able to imagine having a sex life — because you haven’t seen it."
|Friday, August 8th, 2014 (20140808)|
|Saturday, July 19th, 2014 (20140719)|
gosh darn it but do i love me some amouage. i didn't think there was a white floral on earth i could love but you did it--not sweet, almost bitterly green at times, and admittedly initially with a hint of mosquito repellent, but worth it for that big, beefy/meaty fresh dewy rose and animal skankified jasmine. so big, so powerful, and not a whit prissy. warm too, not a cold fragrance, and not at all musty/dusty. floral perfume for a girl with an honest tan and uncombed, knotty sea-wet hair in the heat wave of summer. love love.
|Friday, July 18th, 2014 (20140718)|
| making heritage frosting for the first time ever tonight, to cover a chocolate layer cake filled with raspberry jam (Robert talked me down from going weird/nuts and doing a thin layer of habanero jam instead) and ganache for R's birthday. wish me luck! if it works out (it's been so long since i did anything remotely ambitious when it comes to what i jokingly refer to as "structural baking"--layers and frosting usually have me running, especially now that i'm here in the land of ruthless heat and humidity) i might get weird and do a belated classic golden butter layer cake (shirley corriher's with some minor blogosphere tweaks) with franken-buttercream (cook's illustrated's via chowhound) and sprinkles for my birthday. and that doesn't even include Julie's donut cake (and that new raspberry cake, ooooh), which i almost must make sometime soon, ack. CAKE ON THE BRAIN ALWAYS YES. it's been a while.
|Monday, April 21st, 2014 (20140421)|
|fume: diptyque's philosykos
diptyque philosykos. this write-up's not Anna-fancy (hee), more just rambly personal utilitarian note-taking for future reference, 'cause it's about a perfume type i'm trying to warm to given the climate i live in despite personal indifference (which means it's hard to be rapturous or well informed about, and here i'm not). so i would skip over this if i were you.
so i figured if i just went by what i'm immediately attracted to, all i'd ever try or have would be a vast array of genderqueer night-and-wintertime tobacco-leather-sweet/spicy-oriental scents, ha. i had to push myself to mix it up some...truth is most warm weather daytime profiled scents fail to grab my attention, at least in copy, because they tend to have notes that either i like in general but not with my skin (citrus!, marine, mossy green) or they tend to be girlier, more floral (i will admit to being a rather straightforward, unrefined sort of creature, ha).
anyway, i did grab this to sample though because for god's sake i live in memphis so most months i can't be wearing stuff that's the equivalent of a grandpa cardigan (or worse, the goth teen in a long-sleeve floor-length heavy velvet dress...in july), alas, and because figs still prickle me as a leftover challenge from tea. see i adore fresh figs--they instantly remind me of those 97F early august afternoons down here where you and your partner don't want to do anything because of the heat, including cook, so you just sit around half naked with all the lights off lolling about together and eating fresh fruit for early dinner and the air smells green and hot all the time--but i've yet to find a tea that gets to the wonderful contradiction of a fresh fig, how it can be so jammy, sticky-sweet and intense in a mysterious and voluptuous way and yet so FRESH, almost sour-juicy. in tea it's always either so subtle i can barely taste anything at all, or it's this clobbered-by-a-2-by-4 sweet preserves or leathery dried fruit thing, or worst of all, just a chemical sort of purpleness. even places like american tea room and dammann freres (!) couldn't seem to get it right. so i was afraid of fig in perfume, that it'd be the same way--just jarred jam, dried fruit, or sickly sweet purple.
i am pleased to report this is rather astonishing at being nothing, NOTHING like a sticky sweet disappointment-fig. the opening is so intensely fresh and green it veers into that "too sharply chypre or grapefruit" territory that doesn't agree with my skin. it is quite a lot like some of the extremely fresh green and white teas i've been lucky enough to encounter in the past year (shang's silver needle king with all its banana blossom glory represent!), as well as crushed bright green leaves and the cut grass of a mowed lawn or field. it isn't remotely sugary though it does have a wet sappy quality; if anything it's kind of sour, tangy. i shouldn't love the top so much given my proclivities and part of me wonders if my apprehension it'd be sugary jam is clouding things, that without my relief and surprise about encountering nearly the opposite i'd be like "this is one of those sour-fresh perfumes i can't wear!" hm.
the amped up top also lasts beyond what's usual for me; typically i don't much like most first impression notes but don't care 'cause then they never seem to last intensely past 10 or 20 minutes. but this one stayed bright and vital for at least half an hour without being room-clearingly powerful (or maybe the freshness of it makes it feel lighter?). towards the end of it i get some powder (my skin seems to turn nearly everything to powder), but it's not off-putting because it's a nice counter to the over-the-top greenness, softening it a little (and the greenness keeps the powder from feeling dry or talc-like, more just clean).
then the coconut. i have a complicated attitude about coconut in general--i tend to hate cocktails that combine coconut with any other fruit because my mind automatically translates it into "pina colada plastic fruit bomb" (murky memory associations of the first godawful cheap bottled mixers you encounter in college at parties, i think?), and scents like that make my nose wrinkle for the same reason. and i think the whole beachy "suntan lotion" element that includes it that's found in some cosmetics and fragrances is way overused. on the other hand, i like coconut when it makes me think of canned coconut milk used for weeknight thai curries, that rich sweet sort. and Robert's been loyal to a certain shampoo for about as long as we've been together that smells of sweet milky coconut and only coconut (and other than the shaving soap he started using a couple years ago 'cause i gave it to him as a christmas present, he avoids scent altogether in all of his other toiletries), and it's the same kind as what's in this perfume, the sweet creamy sort. so when i smell it in this perfume, it reminds me of putting my face to his hair, which is obviously a happy thought. it does tend to make one think of a warm seaside when connected to that strong wet green opening, but it's not cheesy beach crowded with bikinis so much as our time in valencia in the off season, early morning just us, the sun, and the mediterranean. i don't mind it at all. the sweet middle part doesn't last terribly long though. the powder keeps dropping in and out, right through to the last note, which is wood.
a couple hours in, i finally get some of the smoky, spicy woodiness people talk about, and i love it. it isn't heady or musty; it's an "outdoors" sort of wood. but not mossy, not deciduous forest--more like warm bark from a tree that gets a ton of sun, or the logs and lightweight driftwood one uses to build a beach bonfire. as it mellows it gets even lovelier.
so far, this is not a very complicated scent--nothing like some of the old-fashioned orientals i've been loving nor the weirder niche things as captivating and dynamic as an excellent stage performance--but that's also what makes it easy to wear. it'd be a decent "don't have to think about it, don't have to worry" option for warm weather mornings before heading out for the day (come to think of it, it's kind of like a counterpoint to amouage's stuff which is appallingly beautiful to experience but hard to wear, better as a painting or a movie). i only wish it lasted longer. i can't expect a fragrance i'm hoping to wear for summer in the daytime to have the staying power of some intense evening winter one, but i do wish this was at least a little more long-lasting and strong. i may have to revise later; sometimes scents disappear and then reappear with surprise encore performances (what we do in paris is secret!). but right now less than 3 hours in it's lovely but very faded.
so! philosykos: surprised me with its none-too-saccharine, bright green opening, then mellowed out into a sweet coconut and driftwood softness. not a ton of muted or dancing, interactive notes, rather straightforward (people keep mentioning everywhere they like to layer this with other perfumes for more interest and i can see why), but on the other hand that makes it easier to just enjoy the small handful for what they are. i'm not dizzy in love, but maybe that's impossible for anything i'm trying as a contender for "mindlessly easy to wear at 9am in july" as unobtrusiveness is key (the only other warm weather scent i've tried that was at all a hit was the old 2002 version of very sexy for her i got as a gift, which is yeah...not really an option if you don't want to be noticed, ha). better than i was expecting, impressive for a fig 'fume given how hard figs are to do right, but i'm not seeing stars.
oh, and trying this one reminds me--i think i might start paying a little more attention to perfume noses. i'm beginning to notice some patterns. i have been floored by every dominique ropion and maurice roucel i've tried so far--within well established favorite categories, of course--and been this weird mix of underwhelmed-by-the-delicacy but nonetheless impressed-at-the-craft-involved with olivia giacobetti and another famous nose too, i forget her name. that said, i've yet to try dzing! which is giacobetti's, so maybe i'll be impressed yet.
|fume: serge lutens' fumerie turque
serge lutens' fumerie turque: it was fun to see how this one contrasts with tobacco vanille and the lion cupboard. right away at the top it's more SMOKE than unlit pipe tobacco. feels more like you're in a huge catholic church or something monastic with stone walls and candle tapers. it's "gray" and stony (mustier, ashier, but not unpleasantly so) while the tom ford is a warm blond-brown, polished wood and leather. it comes off as this hard to describe thing where it's subtler and more complicated, less immediately sweetly pleasing. and in the middle there are moments here and there where it's downright weird (at the end of the top there's a strange smell i can't pinpoint that i wouldn't name "urine" like other reviewers mention, but can tell is what they're talking about...given my exposure to tea and tisanes i would guess it's the chamomile reacting with something else, maybe the patchouli and redcurrant, so you get this thing that's sort of like hay/straw which to me has always had something in common with urine, plus a tanginess + body smell...it is a little surprising and odd for sure, but it wasn't a dealbreaker to me perhaps because it's so abrupt and then fleeting, as if those components click together like legos for a moment to form that synthesized aroma then break apart just as quickly). i would say it's edgier, but i don't think it's really that hard to wear, and in many ways it's more interesting, cooler in the hip sense of the word (especially the top compared to the tom ford, which is such a wonderful perfume but again the top didn't do anything for me, just smells like perfume alcohol clangor). a lot of reviewers talk of how "dry" it feels, how dusty, and that's part of what makes it seem hipper to me i think--it's not plush or exuberant at all, it's sort of subdued and aloof, complex and standoffish. the drydown is lovely and while not as much of an insane endurance beast as the TF i'm still enjoying it, albeit in a softer, slightly powdery (actually yeah, more like dusty) form, a good 8 hours later.
i would happily wear either one; tom ford's for when you want to be more straightforwardly attractive, this is for when you want to be interesting and completely yourself edges n' all, a little different from others regardless of whether that makes you friendly to everybody or not. naturally they're both hard to obtain (the TF seems to involve shelling out well over $200 no matter where you look, and it turns out the serge is a paris-only thing that was temporarily allowed stateside release but that was 2 years ago, d'oh). i was lamenting to R the mixed blessing of how smashingly well this bout of sampling's been for me--i've never experienced such a parade of "oh my god i would love to be able to look at my dresser and see a bottle of this lying in wait just for me" fragrances before, but that means i've never experienced such heartache at realizing how near-impossible fulfilling that hope really is...had always been pretty content with just my little sample vials and moving on. but this week i've realized i could see myself becoming one of those 'fume fiends who feels naked without some favorite perfume on at will. hmmm.
|fumes (hasty logging): guerlain's shalimar, guerlain's vol de nuit, and robert piguet's fracas
hasty perfume logging.
what prompted me to get right out of bed at 1am and do some logging after all (i'm a little behind). love at first sniff. another good example of how reading copy and reviews makes me feel like i have three heads (citrusy cool? bergamot blast? i get insta-leather in the most delicious way…i've been heavy on the leather notes lately and this one takes the cake for the NON soft-library-pipe-tobacco sort) and also like i may never be a proper lady if perfume has anything to tell me (so far, the scents that have loved my skin immediately and stayed the course have been the ones others think of as intense, funky-dirty-heavy…exhibit a: musc ravageur). this feels rather old school but not in the prim powdery way vol de nuit does, but in a heavy, sensual-and-proud-of-it hip-swaying way. a little like incense without actually smelling like incense per se--heady, smoky in an old world sense. someone in my family must've worn this at some point--i'm guessing my gilt lion grandmother. there is an intense rush of memory of being up in my parents' second bedroom, with its annexed off open closet full of old rifles, gold lipstick cases, oily-shiny vintage purses, and lingerie. it has that vaguely lipstick waxy undercurrent to it le baiser du dragon had, and in the middle of the top phase there is some powder. i love this. mentioning it reminds me of my grandmother might make it sound like i'm saying it's old ladyish which generally might give off "old bag" connotations, but dude, y'all didn't know my grandmother! and unlike the cartier, it's warm and yeah, sleepy-eyed in a way that makes it seem easier to wear on my skin from the get-go (i want some of the cartier, but in that way where i know i won't need much and it'll be the kind of thing i save for like, a night at the opera…which in memphis doesn't happen too often!). i could see myself wanting to wear this regularly in the evening. love at first drop. we'll see what happens as the hours march on...a lemony thing is creeping in now, but i don't hate it yet 'cause the warmth and headiness at the top relaxes it. ETA: so much later, half asleep, i notice this becomes delicious and a bit foody--it was like being wrapped in vanilla gauze. very soothing and sweet. there was a mild hit of bergamot-y citrus flitting in and out long into the middle (what is it with top notes showing up much later to me while base notes come out immediately? weirdo). i definitely want some of this. and thank the perfume gods, for once it's not nearly impossible to procure in the states nor insanely expensive as these things go. hurrah!
guerlain's vol de nuit
i put this one on midday hoping i'd like it but more and more getting the impression it'd be too "proper" and powdery for me--what works for diana rigg i'll always admire, but i know i'm not her. (: and, well, yep. way too powdery and "classy dame" for me. it feels british (but maybe that's just 'cause i know about the rigg thing, ha)--my other grandmother, the one with an attic full of handsewn dolls for charity and little porcelain soap dishes full of powdery smelling mini soaps, would've been at home with this. different worlds. i would love to give the evasion version a try, but i'm having trouble finding a source for sampling it. ah well.
robert piguet's fracas
to be fair, i didn't give this my undivided attention--i applied a little before went out to see twelfth night and the evening was so delightful i lost track of it. that said, the beginning was awful on me. i forget sometimes that my wariness with floral scents isn't just because often i find them too femme and "boring" to my nose but also because sometimes they oddly clash in the worst way with my chemistry for reasons i don't really understand. le labo's best reviewed offerings all smelled godawful on me, like so bad i remember one time in particular we went out to see some of R's friends last minute at a bar down the street from us and i was self-conscious the whole time because the floral le labo i had on reeked of what i can only describe as a bright orange melted plastic note. i got the same note here! i don't know what's with that. eventually it settled down, but a dry powder took its place and ehhh. a good example of "i must be from some other planet" if ever there was one, as this is revered as a classic. it's not you, fracas, it's me. aww.
|fume: tom ford's tobacco vanille
don't have time to do a proper write up just yet for it, but my goodness the hype about tom ford's tobacco vanille is pretty darn warranted. the top wasn't great for me--just a generic alcohol-y "department store perfume!" thing, where i can't really even distinguish what's what it just smells like...perfume--but once it starts drying down it is one of the best of those "comforting vanilla pipe tobacco" scents i've tried, and that's one of my favorite perfume types. and the projection and longevity is very impressive, strong and enduring but not unbearably so. i have to note i don't think R agrees with any of this--he did the same thing he did when i tried fahrenheit, instinctively tried to get away from me as much as possible--but i think i've figured out he's just going to be like that when i try stuff that his limbic system registers as "masculine" or whatnot. (and i can live with it--they're some of my favorite smells, and we're not together during the day usually.) it smells like something Ryan would be all about. the super dried down base note phase, a zillion hours in, has a subtle but on me clear funk to it that's a little odd, almost civet-y. that and the top are my only hesitations (but i've learned to ignore the top of most "true perfumes"...i almost never like or appreciate them and they don't last very long anyway). i tried 4160 tuesdays the lion cupboard earlier and while they share some similarities on drydown--a comforting "what my nicest, most old school grandpa's study would smell like" feeling--the lion cupboard starts off muuuuuch more incense-y. i really like both. i was afraid the tom ford'd be too vanilla sweet but it's not at all, it's a good, not at all gourmand thing (there is indeed a chocolate note in the middle that is rather mouthwatering gourmandish, but it's like brick chocolate, not too sugary). the tobacco is in perfect balance with the vanilla (and the chocolate), keeping it from being cloying while the sweetness keeps the tobacco from being too musty or earthy or pungent. i didn't get any strong sense of smoke until a good 8 or so hours in, and when it comes, it's a delicious, unmusty, precise kind that evokes good pipe smoke and nothing else. honestly in the winter months i could see myself making it my everyday "don't think too hard about it" perfume. and it has ruined me for most all of the others like it i've tried before.
tl;dr: i share Erin's pain now. great perfume.
must edit to add at some point for my final review that this thing's longevity is even more insane than i first realized--i put it on last night, woke up with it going strong, and then showered at like 2:30pm AND I COULD STILL SMELL IT after my shower. whoa.
|Wednesday, April 16th, 2014 (20140416)|
|fume: cartier's le baiser du dragon
This is another one courtesy Kate's recommendation. The copy for it doesn't sound quite my style--kinda old school classical and a little romantic/medieval--but let's give this a whirl!
Immediately it smells "perfume"-y, the way when you're very little and you go in to hug your grandma at an evening holiday party, when she's clad in a mink stole because that was still cool then and waxy lipstick and powder and hairspray and real pearls or gold jewelry, you get a whiff of her perfume. It's like that. Classic older lady who likes to have fun perfume. There's flowers and make up powder, lots of powder. But there's this edge of smoke and citrus too, even at the top, that keeps it from being boring or too prissy. It smells like her make up drawer, the tubes of lipstick encased in gold--waxy and a little warm, woody in a cedar chest way. Definitely smell the amber, musk, and benzoin that structures it all, feels like a very classic base composition. The amaretto and bitter almond aren't as strong as I was afraid they'd be, and the alcohol aspect of the amaretto isn't a burning fume type, which is a relief. I feel like I'm back in a wood-paneled '60s basement bar and the grown up relatives are all dolled up and smoking and drinking while I play with my toys on the retro carpet. And the old school oriental profile makes me think of my paternal grandmother's living room, how opulent and over-the-top to the point of cheesy it was, with floor to ceiling mirrorerd panel walls and gold lion statues and big Asian vases and gilt everywhere. This is made of good fuzzy faraway memories of women in my family who have been long gone.
ETA: the drydown on this is superb with my chemistry, sexy and intense but sitting closer to the skin, animalic without becoming full on boudoirish. My cat, who seems obsessed with smells of any kind (she oughta become a perfume nose!), was rather fond of this one. And the longevity is one of the most impressive I've tried of late--I put it on at 2pm yesterday and can still smell it now, 23 hours later. It did give my bedsheets a faint BO odor early this morning, but everything that came before made it worth it, and by the time that starts in it's almost time to shower anyway...
|fume: versace's dreamer
This one came about 'cause Kate mentioned a friend went through an obsessive phase with it, and then reading about it on Fragrantica it seemed like it might be up my alley.
I think it's interesting how skin chemistry seems to affect the order in which notes come out, as the progression never seems to quite match the common one noted in copy, review stats, etc. for me. I can't even remember what this smelled like upon application--all I remember is it felt a litte too retro and femmy for my tastes, but it wasn't mega overpowering so I didn't give it much thought--and then there was a brief dormant period where I didn't notice much of anything as I went about my morning business. Eventually though, perhaps an hour in, it started to warm up and smell good, and there was a fleeting brightness too--the orange I'm guessing--that worked very well with the gradual warm up. Masculine, but nowhere near as intensely so as something like Fahrenheit. The earthy woody tobacco note is there, but it's subtle, not flashy, wafting in the background quietly. There's a kind of...not exactly leather, but similar note that makes up the spine that I really like. And I get that luscious alluring vetiver, yum. And a hint of something cool and fresh and green, pine-y, just a titch to keep things from being overtly heated or bedroom-y. Vanilla was nowhere to be seen for over two hours, so the predominance of it described on Fragrantica confused me, but then when it did arrive (just out of the usual order I guess) with that oh-so-commonly-found-as-to-be-comforting tonka, I was pleasantly surprised by its dry woodiness, the way it's not a kitchen vanilla (I love that it's not that sweet).
To me this really does feel more balanced, more unisex than most of the other stuff I've been trying (granted, I probably lean more toward "masculine" notes in general). It's warm but clean--I can see why so many reviewers mention dryer sheets--with pine needle coolness, dry woody vanilla, bright (but not too sharp!) orange, and hints of old fashioned herbs and flowers (that sage and lavender, yes), plus the woody tobacco and that mysterious early middle part with the vetiver and not-quite-leather. It's never overpowering--I like the sillage once the middle kicks in quite a lot; it's just right to be something you can enjoy but it doesn't scream out to strangers in the room--and the longevity, while not the most impressive of my samples so far (but granted, I've chosen some total marathon runners!), is respectable--I'm sure this could get you through most of a work day. This is a perfume that manages to be signature-scent-viable I think by being just right at being interesting/compelling, a hint of tough, but not TOO obtrusive. It makes me think of a '90s lass clad in white cotton, leather boots or belt, a jean jacket, and one of those lacy or earthy floral print accessories (maybe even fingerless gloves, ha!) or maybe a linen hat with a cotton flower adornment. And big silver hoop earrings, that bit of cold metal detailing. She keeps a pack of Dunhills in her pocket. I sort of see Rayanne from My So-Called Life wearing this.
|Tuesday, April 15th, 2014 (20140415)|
|fume: a lab on fire's what we do in paris is secret
This one's extremely clever and deceiving. I was fooled at first, disappointed by what seemed to me to be a rather ho-hum boring retrograde '90s-evocative creamy vanilla bomb with a dash of warm sandalwood, albeit perhaps done more elegantly and softly than those notorious old drugstore labels. Given that, the name seemed like careless, breathless but empty copy hype. But then...!
Here's excerpts from what I wrote of it at first:
"perfume of the evening: what we do in paris is secret. apparently what we do in paris is secretly go to lots of ice cream and pie shops (i'm sorry, tarte tatin shops) and gorge on vanilla ice cream and apple pie or fritters maybe (i get a saucy cinnamon-y cooked apple thing at first big-time with this, no lychee as described by many fragrantica posters...though it is a little juice-jammy which i could see relating to lychees sort of), and then go into a food coma and wake up a few hours later with only the faintest trace of evidence on our breath. it's sweet and creamy with bakery spice. there is a hint of powder, like compact mirror face powder, but it's mostly just rich creamy sweet gourmand vanilla and spices. i am surprised at the "dirty sexy" notes people mention, but eh, one thing you learn immediately reading comments on perfumes is how crazily polar opposite people's experiences can be due to skin chemistry and nose-memory connections. it's like a nicer somewhat more spiffed up '90s dessert-y vanilla cologne. not bad, but not, to me, interesting enough. it did make me want to eat way too much cold leftover pineapple bread pudding after dinner, though. the vanilla sandalwood toadstoolsoaps body wash i got a while back i like better; it's more sandalwood, less vanilla, fresher and zingier, less sweet. (maybe surprising thing about me: i actually don't like food-focused perfumes much; when demeter became pretty much a dessert shop library i checked out...i have this weird grudge against women's beauty products marketed as sinfully dessertish in this way that reads as "you can't eat any of this shit amirite so live vicariously through your makeup smelling like bon bons!"...it's not really logical, but i still don't care for it. i'd much rather just eat really good food and smell like memories or moods. plus i've always been more of a savory than sweet person anyway with food.)
this is a relatively "safe" choice for wearing out. but i suspect anything i think is neutral or popularly pleasing enough to be safe that way is also not going to really interest me, which means i probably will never find a perfume i am wild for and also want to wear all the time everywhere. mm."
thennn, a couple hours in i added:
"hours later, this does get better, less one dimensionally warm dessert sweet, but it's still a little too sweet and ladylike for me."
and THEN, over four hours later:
"oh, i spoke too soon! a good 4 hours in--after a long subdued period where the sweet vanilla finally backed off but there wasn't much of anything left, period, and i shrugged and figured that was that, time to close the pie shop and go home with nothing but some faint "ladyish flowers" smell for my trouble--i start getting all the wonderful things people describe, particularly a relatively clean [i want to say musk but it's not listed--not sure what it is, but to me it reads sexy, like skin and intimacy, the face of your favorite person smashed up against yours, or their neck maybe...i don't know if this is ambergris or tolu balsam which i'm not familiar with or amber] accented with powder (which, on paper if you listed that i'd wrinkle my nose but it works really well here--the powder keeps the "body" note from being too funky, and gives it this feminine softness, and the "body" note keeps the powder from being the musty dowdy sort i dislike), and the honey and sweetness flit gently as backdrop. it's really quite nice actually, and while yes a femmy warm skin smell, it's not froufrou because of the "clean" aspect and the hints towards heat/sexiness. i like how it's not outright funky bedroom, more like the trying-to-maintain-lady-like-composure intimation of it--the small but unmistakable tilt of one's head to imply that's what happened in the past, or that you'd be up for blowing this popsicle stand (which, by the way, now i can finally see as the picture someone on fragrantica described as the banks of the seine with people at little tables, pipe tobacco and little vanilla iced cakes and earl grey tea, not that you're drinking but someone at a table nearby is, river water and flowers and grass and warm skin) and checking into a nice hotel for the rest of the afternoon (the cheerful clatter of that seine scene comes in first, with just the right fresh intensity, not too overwhelming but colorfully welcome after that long dormant period, then the demure hints at something more private creep in and deepen as the fanfare recedes). it's strange to me it starts out so child id bakery neutered and soft and stays that way for so long, only to then turn so vivid and delicately adult (the projection at first bored me too, because while never heavy it was pillowy soft surrounding you, to match that neutered sleepy feel...then it felt like it nearly disappeared altogether for a while only to much later sharpen but also sit closer to the skin once the powder and musk comes in, which i rather like). this is a much better crafted, more interesting scent than it lets on initially! i agree with a bunch of fragrantica reviews talking about this, the initial "this is nothing new or impressive" disappointment followed by hours-later astonishment. wish i could bypass the first part somehow, 'cause all it makes me want to do is eat pie on the couch and take a nap.
i have egg (no, perfume) on my face! i also just realized this transformation makes the name of it much less silly seeming and actually makes me appreciate how cleverly layered it is to match the name's story ("oh, we just ate dessert...tarte tatin a la mode. that's all."). it also almost kind of explains/forgives how innocent and sweet it is for the first few hours. huh!
well frickin' played, i must say."
Really love how clever it is, and how it does tell the story of a secret (and also love how it implies the contents of the secret without being sexysex explicit, to match the wry smile of the story), but I'm not sure I'd love to wear it and tell myself this story over and over again. But hats off for the craftmanship.
|fume: frederic malle's musc ravageur
quick perfume notes today. frederic malle's musc ravageur is interesting because looking the morning after going to bed with it on, i found myself agreeing with what seems like conflicting opinions on fragrantica: it is both a soft, creamy sweet, "cashmere"-evocative vanilla, yes, with that tonka bean doing a lot of the initial heavy lifting, but it also DOES, if you pay close attention in the middle, have this sort of "nursing home hallway"/bandaid-plastic antiseptic smell to it too, with a hint of powder, that reminds me of my maternal grandparents' home. weirdly though, i don't find that bad--it would be definitely if it was any stronger, but it's just enough to keep you on your toes. thennn it does become animalic. i didn't get that at all at first, but an hour or so in i do. but not like, disgustingly so. all together it is this strange thing where it's complex, comforting, strange, prim-memory-laden but then all dirty-sexy at turns. i wouldn't wear it out. but i enjoyed the heck out of the ride it took me on last night. very good longevity and good-to-veering-on-too-strong sillage. also, i don't see civet listed but i'm wondering if it has some civet-like component because my cat desperately wanted to do it with me when i put it on, haha. and then when i opened up my sample bag after dinner tonight she came running (even dinner didn't make her do that and she almost always does; she's been sleepy today...must be all the lust she had yesterday keeping her up) as if hoping to smell it again. ee.
|fume: dior's fahrenheit
digging today's perfume, dior's fahrenheit. i don't get the infamous gasoline at all (might not mind if i did, by the way); the opening's all leather and rubber and vetiver to me but quickly a surprisingly cheerful mandarin orange comes out which tickles me to no end as mandarin oranges are one of those proustian smells for me (my mother used to feed me canned mandarins all winter long; i'd sit at the dining room table facing the picture window out to a pitch black sky at 6am before daycare and snowy woods, still remember how dim and gauzy the light in the room was at that early hour, how everything moves in slow motion first thing in the morning). but i don't think R wants his ladyfriend smelling like leather and bright orange; he's been squirreled away in a back room from the moment he got home, only venturing out for a cup of tea and then supper and then scuttling back. hm, i'm trying to decide.
one thing i realized a day or so later is that this feels like the yang to victoria's secret's very sexy for her's yin. that vetiver and skin focus and the fresh clean summer-friendly tone, with hints of cheerful fruit.
|fume: amouage's library collection opus vii
have resumed perfume journaling after a few years of avoiding scent thanks to weightlifting. going to start posting my public perfume sampling notes here so boychik can read them. (: the first few are cut n' pastes from facebook...
Sunday, April 13 at 11:28pm
i did try a perfume i love today. it's definitely not femmy, especially in the first couple hours, to the point i doubt i could pull it off in public...but oh god, i am wild for it in the privacy of home. amouage's opus vii. at first it opens so green i was wary because it almost veered into that "daytime bright, nearly citrus-like" sort of profile that smells off kilter on my skin (it's the galbanum apparently, which is a note i'm not versed in yet), but almost immediately it then turns into this strange, "masculine" thing full of leather (and i love that someone on fragrantica noted it's not smoky moto jacket/cheesy bachelor pad leather, it's old classic furniture upholstered leather) and smoke and ambroxan (of which i am usually a fan) and ambergris that together give off a sort of modern weird, almost metal vibe, but it's soothed by the peppery green opening (the fenugreek adds a sweet rich warmth that keeps it from being too robotic or cool too, and the cardamom is just the cherry on top for me). the middle is oud, and it's the kind of oud i like--a little funky in a good way, and dry, not _too_ manky. then a fresh sort of sandalwood and some amber, sexy, and many many hours later, it has softened to where it is almost feminine, a bit sweet but still warm. it layers and transitions so wonderfully, more and more atmospheric and floating as the hours go by. that's the other thing--it's crazy long lasting but the sillage isn't totally stinkbomb insane, especially as it goes on--definitely quite noticeable at first if you're sitting next to me at a table (but that's as far as it goes), and then in the middle and after you have to be hugging me or put your nose up to where the perfume was applied (if you do, though, the scent is wonderfully still alive, not at all powdery evaporated like so many quickly become). most perfumes i've tried so far--granted, not as fancy usually--if they have good longevity at all (and most don't; this is my biggest problem with demeter and brosius and many starter/intro niche companies) then it comes with unbearable "oh hi to the whole room" opaque one-note sillage as well, too obvious and showy, not intimate and layered enough. but this is long lasting in an excellent, ever-more-intimate way. love this. it's moody in a good way--it's like first it's chipper and bright for half a second, that bright smile you flash instinctively when meeting someone, then it warms up a little, but thennn quickly it's sort of like back off, i'm a little weird and prickly, you best know what you're getting into if you want to get to know me, and it stays that way intensely for a while, long enough to see if company really means it about wanting to stick around, and only thennn does it slump and become warm and comfy, beautiful and ultimately intimate and a little sweet. balances modern genderbending with natural feeling, old world middle eastern elements so well. as someone on one of the scent review sites said, "it makes me feel like the person i want to be when i wear it." yep.
ETA: reading more reviews now, and it's funny because one says: "I suspect one’s experience of Opus VII will depend on one’s mood – it is not a perfume to be worn lightly. If busy and rushed, it is likely the spices, of which there is a hefty dose, will predominate and raise anxiety levels. If relaxed, this will seem like a summer’s walk through parched greenery that is crying out for rain, the scents of bark and roots and drying leaves mixing with the more herbal and vegetal aspects. Strangely, the mood Opus VII seems to suit best is introspection bordering on melancholy, when all its layers and layers of notes rise and fall in one’s perception offering their own counterpoint to the thought process." and that was pretty much exactly what i was thinking when i was sitting at the table writing in my perfume journal about it this afternoon--today was a rollercoaster of emotions and at one point i cried so damn much i spent an hour after crying with this voice in my head punching out "GODDAMNIT STOP CRYING! STOP! CRYING! (PUNCH, PUNCH)"...this happened after i was writing by hours, before all that i was just in full on brooding greta garbo mode but i knew it was coming like a dry airy premonition of a thunderstorm, the ground crackling so to speak, and in the journal entry i got carried away with details of anxiety and upset because i knew somehow the perfume was suited for it, it could handle it and i wouldn't feel fake, it'd let me fall apart and work with it.
PPS i am fine, i'll be fine, i'm slowly feeling better already thanks to R and everything, don't worry. i just found it interesting i happened to be lucky enough to pick a sample today that was ideal for my very unattractive, messy mood.
|Thursday, June 13th, 2013 (20130613)|
|more sloppy notes of our Pacific Northwest trip, stuff by day
schedule/events by day
Monday June 3rd (fly into Seattle late, get car rental and hotel squared away by midnightish):
Tuesday June 4th:
-Portage Bay Cafe
-Pike Market/Pioneer Square/Wall of Sound shopping etc.
-university area, book store
-Maritime Pacific Brewing Company’s Jolly Roger Taproom
-Alki Beach Park
-Ma’Ono Fried Chicken and Whiskey
Wednesday June 5th:
-Macrina Bakery (breakfast as well as park food)
-ferry to Bainbridge Island
-Sequim (pick berries for park food), Port Angeles, Forks en route to Olympic National Park: Hoh Rainforest, Mora (Rialto Beach)
Thursday June 6th:
-Olympic National Park: Kalaloch (Ruby Beach, the numbered coastline beaches), Lake Quinault Rainforest
-first Thursday Art Walk, Museum of Contemporary Craft, strolling Pearl District, Chinatown, and Downtown
-live band karaoke Mefi meetup at Tiger Bar
Friday June 7th:
-Tasty n Sons, strolling Williams neighborhood
-shop (The Meadow, comic shop, music shop, Control Voltage, Powell’s, etc.)
-Lan Su Chinese Garden
-tried to do Tanuki and did Country Cat instead
-Mount Tabor neighborhood, Mount Tabor Park cinder cone at dusk
Saturday June 8th (possibly my favorite day just because I couldn’t get over how perfectly everything went and what a full day it was):
-Veritable Quandary early al fresco brunch, city getting ready for Rose Festival Parade
-PSU Saturday Farmers Market for picnic provisions
-Washington Park (International Rose Test Garden with afternoon picnic, Japanese Garden, Hoyt Arboretum, glimpsed some of the 4T trail)
-Laurelhurst neighborhood, Millennium Music
-attempt at walking Eastbank Esplanade, attempt at visiting abruptly shut down Beaker and Flask, Green Dragon
-Potato Champion, Whiffie’s Pies
-naked bike night!
Sunday June 9th:
-Broder Cafe for Scandinavian breakfast before a day of nature stuff...initially tried to go to Screen Door but the wait looked too long (and had me thinking of Portlandia of course). I’m actually glad it worked out this way instead--we can get Southern-y breakfast any time but not delicious aebleskiver, lingonberry jam, and smoked trout hash with beets. And yeah, the bloody mary was the best ever. Also let us see yet another cool neighborhood, felt more like older more established folks with some visible gay presence.
-attempt at Larch Mountain, Columbia River Gorge including the various waterfalls via the Old Historic Highway
-peeped into Branch and decided it wasn’t our thing, Salt and Straw ice cream, Alberta neighborhood
-Ground Kontrol redux!
Monday June 10th:
-Jam on Hawthorne
-Oregon Pacific coastline from Astoria to Arcadia Beach to Manzanita
-White Eagle Saloon and Hotel
Tuesday June 11th:
-Portland Penny Diner
-Blue Star and Coco Donuts packed to go for the island
-Cathedral Park and Sauvie Island
-attempt at Tanuki, peep-ins at Laurelhurst Market and Ox before deciding we were done with hip dinners, Grain and Gristle
-R visited his high school band friend and I packed and planned our return home, a relatively relaxing evening
Wednesday June 12th:
-Pine State Biscuits
-Bunk Sandwiches packed to go for the flight
-layover in Salt Lake City which made for an incredible view, a little late getting in, home around 11pm, unable to sleep until nearly 4am!
she's going up to the top floor,
to see all the cars wash up on the shore
livejournal, smothered in hugs