Tag Archives: Paris

The Jicky issue

If you remember, some time ago I asked for help with opening the golden Jicky casing. I finished my bottle and wanted to remove it from the gold in order to be able to get a new one.

Optimist that I am, I thought that would be easy.

A friend of mine went to Paris this week, and of course I asked her to check the Champs-Elysees Guerlain store in order to purchase a bottle of Jicky.

Turns out there is no Jicky to be had for my golden cage. 😔

I mean, I certainly hope that is what the sales assistant meant when she told my friend that the series is discontinued. Because the other possibility is unfathomable. Right?

So, does anyone know if it’s only the Jicky in gold casing that is being discontinued? I’m still being optimistic. 😉

And if so, where could I possibly find a bottle before they are all gone?

Traveling in France – Paris

In December I finally had a chance to visit Paris again, even if it was only for two and a half days. It was a quick getaway that happened at exactly the right time to re-charge my batteries before work hit me hard for the rest of the month.

I arrived on the first Sunday of the month and the optimist in me thought to visit museums for free. 🙂 This is the closest I got to a museum – this is Rodin’s. Louvre and Musee d’Orsay were out of the question, the queues were unbelievable! Still, just walking in the gardens of Musee Rodin was a beautiful experience.

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So, since my free entrance to Louvre was out of the question, I decided to pay for it and used most of my Monday to stroll around it. I seem to have been fascinated with staircases this time around but I’ll post just one picture of them (ok, maybe two). 🙂

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There are so many beautiful things to see in Louvre. I’ve been there once already, my first time in Paris, but I really wanted to visit it again.

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The jewelry on display is “magnifique”!DSC_1394[1]

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This time I was actually able to snap a rather ok photo of Mona Lisa.

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It is not a worthy trip to Paris if you don’t visit a perfume shop and this time, my perfume wanderings took me to Jovoy (no pictures from there but a perfume did come back 😉 ) and to Caron which had an amazing Christmas display in their window. I didn’t buy anything there but the SA was amazingly nice and cooperative and explained everything. I went away with arms smelling of many perfumes and a sample of Poivre.

Honestly, I feel old French perfumery is calling me back to its folds. I seem to enjoy it more and more.

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Of course that no trip to Paris would be complete without a visit to Guerlain. This time a friend and I decided to visit the famous tea room (Le 68 Guy Martin) at Guerlain and it was the first time I discovered what the French insolence feels like. You see, you need a reservation for the place and we didn’t have one. But as it wasn’t really full we somehow managed to convince them to let us in for tea and cake.

That was misstep number 2. You see, you cannot come around 2 for tea and cake. 😀 Because that is lunch time. As we were very haughtily informed. Still, they obviously made an exception in our case.

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And since I didn’t know if taking a photo of my dessert would be misstep 3, I took it quickly so it’s not the best one.

That said, once we started eating our dessert and being so obviously appreciative of it, the chief waiter (one being frenchly mean to us) actually appeared with a smile on his lips. Honestly though, this was I believe the best dessert I ever had in my life. And I can’t even remember its name and can’t find it on the restaurant’s menu either (some kind of chocolate profiterole).

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My Guerlain visit ended with a purchase of Shalimar tea. Again the optimist in me thought I’d buy more than just Shalimar tea, but once I saw the prices, additional tins were out of the question. 🙂 Oh well, at least I tried one of them with my dessert. 😉

I’m not gone just a bit MIA

Dear readers, I feel like last couple of years all I do is plan on writing more and it always seems like I write less. 🙂

I don’t really have a good explanation why that happens as I have many perfumes in my queue I would love to write about, it just seems that life has some other plans that unfortunately intervene in the meantime. Life is usually unpredictable like that. 😉nev1

The last few months have been rather tumultuous when it comes to my life, what with the quantity of work I had to do, what with separation from my long-term boyfriend, and then finally with enrolling to get my driver’s licence. And that is just the three largest things that come to mind.

As none of that is finished yet, I am sincerely hoping I organize my time and mind in a manner that allows me to write (and smell) more.

That said, I will be finally getting some well deserved peace of mind and rest when my vacation starts on the 30th (of July). Luckily, that is not far away.

In the meantime, I’ll leave you with some general perfume thoughts I’ve been having lately:

  • I’m not really happy with the new L’Artisans even though they are Duchafour’s work
  • I am rather happy though with Cologne du Maghreb and finally understand Andy’s idea of spraying your body with a lot of cologne, works like magic! 🙂
  • The Scented Hound sent some amazing perfumes for me to try (and I did), now all I need is to give them more time and write about them
  • The longer I’m in this perfume world, the more I am starting to lean towards old style perfumery – French classics are taking over my heart
  • Helped by the new Coco Chanel biography I’m reading (well, I just started) – I have a feeling it will be a good one
  • Also, I really, really want to find an old version of Chanel 5 (see previous bullet) 🙂
  • And Paris has been on my mind lately for several reasons, perfumes, Coco Chanel and I’m re-reading Angelique, La Marquise des Anges after I saw the new movie (beats me why it got such bad reviews…)

 

P.S. The picture is of the weather we have once a week here (give or take a few days). It’s also a bit what my life has been like lately. Which is why I loved this Portia’s post where she hid a little gem of a sentence in about loving yourself.

Life is about to get better and more fragrant!

Voyage à Paris

By Asali

Being slow to start writing about our recent trip to Paris, has meant that it’s now a bit difficult not to just be repeating what you already know… But wait, there was a wish from Tara, and maybe a little bit of this and that that I can add along the way, and not just feel like an imitator, but hopefully add something new to the mix as well.

Starting on this very blog only 6 months ago was a conversation to follow the last trip to Paris that Ines and I went on, individually, but none the less to meet up. I copied the exchange because it was what ignited it all; it went like this:

Suzanne; Oh boy, that could be a problem — or do they let saucy little redheads run wild and loose in Paris these days? 😉
Love you, Ines, you lucky duck!

Ines; Suzanne, of course they let redheads roam the streets of Paris.
Paris actually makes them feel quite welcome. 😀
I should get a picture of this redhead roaming the streets – one just for you (as proof of course). 😉


Suzanne; I like your response, Ines! And I would love to have a picture of you roaming the streets (especially with Asali in tow – I’ve enjoyed reading her guest posts here).

Me; <3Thanks Suzanne <3, I’ll make sure that Ines makes no mischief- without me that is 😉 About the not so lucky ducks, I plan for us to eat their livers and wash it down with champagne 😀

Suzanne; LOL! That’s a very good plan, Asali. If I’m ever in Paris, I think I’ll call you up to see if you might be available to meet me there as a tour guide. (Or at least to point the way to a good foie gras.) ❤

You can imagine that with this conversation, we had to go… And there we were 6 months later, Suzanne, Ines and I, plus a special guest star Mark, Suzanne’s husband, meeting up in the city of lights at a small but (as Suzanne aptly named it) ‘serviceable’ hotel in the old and lively Marais quarter of Paris.

Meeting Ines again was lovely, it was just like a further conversation of our mails and letters, and although this was only the second time we met, it already felt so familiar, catching on where we last left. I love meeting new people, and through our e-mails and her authoritative and deeply personal style at her perfume journal, I never doubted that I would like Suzanne very much, but I think I could never have anticipated what a magnificent time we would spend together, the four of us.  We spent almost all wake time in each other’s company, only to part shortly before passing out in our beds from sensory overload. Like Ines, I kept thinking ‘have we talked too much perfume now?’ Or a bit guilty every time we passed (on) Louvre to go and sniff perfumes.

‘Popsicle trees at Champs Elyssees for Suzanne’
It’s true that with Suzanne’s fragrant writing and sniffing skills and her generous and wise spirit I did imagine her taller, but she’s in fact rather delicate but with these strong eyes that make you at once seen and seen through, in that friendly way which makes you feel that you don’t have to explain everything, because she already knows. She had brought along her husband Mark, who not only patiently came with us to every perfume shop, but enthusiastically threw himself into full perfumista mode, with a playful and open mind, and ready to jump any fences or provide extra skin space where needed, he was a bonus to the already wonderful company. 
Also, I feel obliged to report that we did get to eat quite a few of those unlucky ducks’ livers and wash them down with a kir royale or two. One place the Kir royale was particularly interesting and was served with fig liquor instead of cassis, very memorable stuff. And since I was so lucky as to be gifted by Ines with a Croatian fig liquor I am now in the fortunate position of being able to recreate this little bit of Paris in Copenhagen.
Yes, I praised Jovoy before, and I cannot say it enough times; if you go to just one place- go there! For all the reasons already mentioned by Ines and Suzanne (and me last year), and because I’m sure afterwards you’ll have your very own Jovoy story to tell, it’s that kind of a magical space. Time stops, new spaces are created and the rest is perfume…
But perhaps you did want to hear a bit more than that? Since I last wrote about Jovoy, they got the opportunity of opening a second shop in a superb location, between the Tuillerie Gardens and the Place Vendome, a prominent position, neighbour to the most expensive hotels in Paris. This was where we went. It’s a much larger shop than the first in Rue de Danielle Casanova, with an even bigger selection, yet the shop is made to seem inviting and cosier through its crimson walls, the sofas at the back of the shop, and not least because of the very warm and welcoming spirit of M. Hénin which embraces the space. Yes, he’s a grand host; he makes everyone seem special and always has time to spare and a perfumed story to tell.
 (This one’s with Tara in mind)
It was a must to go visit Maison Guerlain at the Champs Élysées. First catching my eye, were all the gorgeous extraits. I had a serious struggle to not just pour Vol de Nuit all over me, and forget all about saving skin space, or concern for other peoples perfume space tolerance or lack of same, but since even Mark’s knees had been spoken for that day, much to a concerned bar owner, with newly reupholstered chairs‘s dismay, I restrained. The restraining exercise was due to the new and much talked about release of orientals; Les Déserts d’Orient.
As it turned out, they had only just got them in the day we arrived, which was great luck; I would have been guttered to miss them. They are really so deep and interesting, and as a literally red thread though all three runs one of my most beloved perfume notes; saffron. Merci, M. Wasser.
An incense in name ‘Encens Mythique’ is something as unusual as an aldehydic oriental, or the beautifully deep and dark rose oud; Rose Nacrée. My main attention was instantly focused on the woody dry Songe d’un Bois d’Éte though, and it was sprayed for a test drive. After Suzanne and Mark had left (to go looking for an obscure perfume wish from Undina) I had Ines ask for some help at the Guerlain make-up counter, since she seemed very interested, but equally because I had high hopes that I could rest on some very inviting sofas in the meantime. For Ines the make-up artist chose a gorgeous copper colour to match her hair, and did a pretty wonderful make up on her.

So a lot of words to get to my Guerlain point; On my last day in Paris, Ines had left the night before and Suzanne and Mark had left early that morning, so I was on my own and the weather had once again turned; it was now cold and rainy and it was sad to be alone after the days spent in such loving company. In that way I suppose the weather quite mirrored my state of mind, which is sometimes better than feeling mocked by bright sunshine on an introvert day. A lot of thought had already gone into deciding and thinking about what perfumes to potentially buy – I had suffered severe perfume stress – and I had narrowed it down, through as extensive a wearing as you can do when you go perfume sniffing. I’m just not very good at deciding which ones are truly mine, it’s like the perfumes take a bit of time to reveal their true self to me, or maybe that’s just me not asking the right questions?
Anyway, I decided to see if they would have the orientals at the Place Vendôme Guerlain shop. And not only did they have them, I also met the wonderful SA Patricia, who turned out to be exceptionally knowledgeable and helpful, chatting IFRA and lamenting discontinuations. She just knew it all, and – hold your breath – she even admitted to reading perfume blogs when she had the time!
Mostly we met truly dedicated and wonderful SAs. However, I think some were a cut above the rest. I’m happy to say that between us we must have mentioned them all. And Patricia should get on that list too. So Guerlainistas, now you know your next G-stop in Paris when it sizzles.
I’ll end with the text of G. Apollinaire, which Poulenc sat into music.

Voyage à Paris

Ah! la charmante chose
Quitter un pays morose
Pour Paris
Paris joli
Qu’un jour dût créer l’Amour.

Translates approximately into:

Going to Paris
Ah, how delightful it is

to leave a dismal place
and head for Paris!
Beautiful Paris,
which one day Love had to create!

Paris perfume highlights

Even though we managed to visit and sniff our way through many perfume shops (Serge Lutens, Costes/Iunx, Colette, Rosine, Guerlain, JAR, several stands at Printemps) there are two places that stand out in my mind as the highlights of the trip.

I knew Asali was disappointed we didn’t get to visit Jovoy together in December and we decided this time around, it was one of the non-negotiable stops.
And I now understand completely why someone who’s been there would be disappointed if another perfumista in Paris skipped the store and the experience.

I don’t think my words will do justice to the whole experience. I believe we spent over 2 hours there, taking some time to rest on the couch and sofas located in the back for just that purpose.
Even the espresso we all received upon arrival couldn’t keep us on our feet after the sniff-a-thon we had there.

As Asali is already known there, she was the one discussing perfumes with Monsieur Hénin the most while we slowly worked our way through the store, coming together to check who tried what and sniff each other’s arms and then went on our own again to discover new fragrant wonders.

At some point we all converged on the oud range by Xerjoff and had a lively discussion with Monsieur Hénin there over oud while smelling the Oud Stars. And when I say lively, I mean we all had fun and laughed a lot as Monsieur Hénin is this charming, smiling, elegant man with a slightly wicked sense of humor which he wields as part of his charm. And he even burned oud chips for us. 🙂

If I remember correctly, the whole Xerjoff oud series is very good – there is something to be found for every taste (possibly not wallet). 😉

I will let the girls tell you their side of the story – I just know I’d go to Paris just so I could go and have fun at Jovoy again.
The bottles  I came out with were Mona di Orio Vetyver (which I knew I would finally buy in Paris) and Brecourt’s Haram – another oriental for my ever growing collection.
(I should also mention a bag full of samples of everything I wanted to get to know better)

Mark’s photo of the three of us outside Jovoy


The other place that stands out in my mind as a great smelling experience was a stand at Printemps which holds several collections, among others: Nez a Nez, SoOud, Boadicea and Nasomatto.
Asali is also known there, and she recommended the place as there is a great SA working there who, lucky for us, was there when we arrived.
His name is Alexi(s) (we didn’t get to hear it right) and he also remembered Asali (like Suzanne said, men love her).
So he proceeded to familiarize us with the ranges and we smelled our way through many of the perfumes on display there. At the end of the session I fell madly in love with Nez a Nez Bal Musqué and promptly took the bottle home with me.

In the end, an honorable mention goes to the nice man at the JAR boutique who was very generous with his time since we entered the boutique after its closing time (the doors weren’t locked) and we asked if it would be ok to smell the perfumes even though it was after closing time, and he was very nice and said we had enough time for a quick tour (only it didn’t seem quite that quick and he was displaying the perfumes for the four of us rather elegantly, without any hurry).
The one I fell for is the Bolt of Lightning. It is THE perfume I imagined in my post here. It has that metallic smell of lightning in the warm air and the smell of wet asphalt is in the mix. The fact that all this is possible through white flowers never ceases to amaze me. (I knew the price would amaze me too, so I didn’t even ask) 😉

The pic of all of us in front of Jovoy is Mark’s and Suzanne’s.

Paris – the place to meet perfumistas

Some of you might know, and for those who don’t, this Sunday I returned from a 4-day trip to Paris where I got to spend time with perfumista friends, one of which I only knew virtually, one I already met in Paris a few months ago, and a new one. 🙂

Suzanne, Asali, Mark (Suzanne’s husband) and I met on Thursday afternoon and from that point on, we went together on a perfume journey through the streets of Paris – and on a culinary one as well, through the numerous possible choices of bistros, cafes and restaurants (and many other names the French like to call similar establishments).
You already know I met Asali in December, and now I met a pair of perfumistas from across the Atlantic Ocean, I cannot but think that the perfumistas of the world are the most wonderful bunch of people one could ever meet.
In case you were wondering about Suzanne, she is this wonderfully nice, petite and delicate (bossy if you ask Mark) lady.
I still feel ashamed that my first words to her were that I thought she would be taller. It’s just that through her blog and some of the photos there, her strength and character came through so obviously so I somehow added height to that.
And once you meet her, the quiet strength she has is obvious (well, she also doesn’t lack physical strength what with her regular running routine).
Also, her love of the sun, perfumes, reading and writing and her gently inquisitive nature makes talking with her (or just hearing her explain something) a great experience.
Btw, I believe the fact that in my mind I added height to Suzanne has more  to do with the fact I wish I didn’t feel big when compared to other women (so I like to refer to my build as Amazonian, that sounds much better). 😉

Mark on the other hand is rather tall, with an inquiring mind, capable hands and teasing personality (it seems he always tries to learn how to do things himself – and he succeeds as well).
We didn’t get to talk much about Harry Potter and The Lord of the Rings (we got a little in during one dinner) but he’s obviously as much of a fan of HP as I am since while walking around the city he also noticed an interesting street (this photo is for him). 🙂
So when I say Paris is a place to meet perfumistas, I am including Mark in that as well. He fits the picture perfectly (for the three of us girls you already know we fit the definition).

We had lots of fun sniffing perfumes and each other (for perfumes each of us decided to try) and keeping track of who was wafting what and how come it smelled like this or that. Then we would find a bistro and have a break for something to eat and drink.
Asali called it “nerding” about perfume and I admit, I kept waiting for someone to say, OK, enough of the perfume talk already, but that never happened. 🙂
Some people might not think it, but I found it extremely refreshing not having to curb my perfume enthusiasm and being able to indulge in talking about perfumes to my heart’s content.

Where we went, who we met, and the perfumes we bought, to come in following installments.

Stuck in perfume limbo

I’m blaming it on the weather (and possibly fatigue and stress, but mainly weather).

The spring started here even before the calendar said so, and then went back-tracking into something resembling more autumn and now  we’re finally getting the sun and warmth, and now we’re hitting almost summer temperatures which is coming as quite a shock to many people (the instant rise from cold into summer).

I had started contemplating spring perfumes sometime in March when the spring first showed its face and then I got stuck, as the temperatures fell and I needed to wear my coat again in order to feel warm enough.

So now it’s very warm, I’ve skipped my spring perfumes and I’m at a loss what to apply each day (like I’ve been for the last month and a half).
I’ve sort of lost my perfume (wearing) thread.

Not to mention the fact that most of my summer perfumes are hidden somewhere in the depths of my closet …

If not sooner, I’m hoping the next trip to Paris will deal with my perfume limbo. After all, Paris helps with any problems you might have. 😉

Spring is here (and hopefully, so am I)

Ok, so spring might not be exactly here, but it’s definitely coming (the sunny day today is rather cold and biting).

We’ve been having sunny days and some rather high temperatures for this time of year but mostly, it’s a slow rise of temperature into real spring.
But spring is definitely here as evidenced by the photo my boyfriend sent me the other day from a large park (partly woods) in Zagreb (Maksimir):

Anyway, I have big plans for this spring and I do hope I make some of them come true (knowing me, some is fine as I tend to plan for more than is actually possible).
One of the plans is another trip to Paris in very late spring (probably summer weather by then) as Suzanne already announced on her site. I cannot tell you how much I am looking forward to meeting Suzanne and having fun with her and Asali in Paris. 🙂

I also hope, now that the hectic period is over at work, I’ll be able to write more regularly and sniff more regularly as for the past few weeks all this was on hold.

Happy spring time everyone!

Sniffing Paris (sans Ines )

By Asali

While Ines is still very preoccupied with her thesis, I’ll sneak in my Paris part two.  

Experience had taught me that deciding one perfume-buy from home, might me a good idea, as to not get perfume- purchase – stress –syndrome, or serious snuffusion, if I wouldn’t be able to choose from the spoils once there.

 My trip to the Mothership (as baptized by Tara) at 68 Champs Elyssées, was therefore obligatory since my home choice was going to be bought here. It was Cuir Beluga, which stems from the Guerlain L’Art et la Matiere line, and is the fragrant equivalent of wrapping up in a decadent finely woven cashmere shawl. While at the store many other things had to be tested, and had I not been a bit stingy with my available skin space, I’d probably have poured Vol de Nuit Extrait all over myself, as it was, I put some on the right wrist, the right hand being most likely to waft the most fragrance.  Give me a moment to gush to myself… Anyway, apart from Vol de Nuit, I enjoyed sniffing the Les Voyages Olfactifs and had thought that the Christmassy Paris- New York would win me over, but in fact Paris- London was the one that really got me with its grassy and rhubarb notes and a soft woody, vetiver, vanilla dry down (full impressions read here ).
It is a great fragrance when spring lurks, and you try hastening its arrival with an uplifting and delightful perfume.  (I read in the tea leaves of my 5 o’clock cuppa a bottle in the future…) In the end, I was surprised when I reached out to try Le Cologne du Parfumeur, not expecting anything, and loved it from the first sniff.  My non-perfumista friend exclaimed “it radiates”, which is true, it does, a mellow wonderful shine. And even though I normally have problems with discreet transparent fragrances, this one has great longevity and projection for an EdC, and a comforting resinous dry down.

Some nose rest included amongst other things the incredibly beautiful Sante Chapelle.

I have found that of the department stores, I prefer Printemps for perfume shopping; the selection is huge, and the staff overall friendly and knowledgeable. I went there to see if I could get to test the new Lubin EdP version of Idole. I love the original Idole spice fest, and thought what I really wanted was a less fleeting more fixated Idole, but now I am not so sure, maybe the charm of Idole is partly in its volatility. It remains to be sniffed, my sample is still waiting to be tried, I did see that the EdP version has already received rave reviews  here  and here .

The stand which has the Nez a Nez and So Oud amongst others has to be singled out for it’s wonderful SAs. I have on both occasions been helped by a young man (that just made me sound ancient:-/) who, apart from being very pleasant, is also very knowledgeable and clearly loves perfume, and not just the ones from his own brands, the kind of person that makes you feel that you’re his new best friend. He has great ideas for trying new stuff, and so I got away with Marron Chic, which I had not given much thought when I first tried it some time ago, but which now seems like the Christmas/winter party scent. It’s sensuous yet discreet, and yummy without being overly gourmand, all in all just very festive. (It has been on a test drive to the opera with some success, I should add as an afterthought) Definitely my winter hit-hot fragrance.

(Seen at the local Super Market and I simply had to shared it, since a certain fragrance of the same name, now sadly DC, is among my most beloved)

At the Armani Prive stand I was surprised to see a new addition to the Arabian Night line; Cuir Noir.  I hadn’t heard of the release yet, so was of course very excited by this find. Especially since I do find some of these perfumes to be quite extraordinary, I love Bois D’Encens for example. It turned out it was an exclusive release for Printemps at this stage, which will reach broader release in the next month or so.
Unfortunately, there was only the back of my left hand free to spray and there were no samples available, however, what I sniffed I simply adored. Apparently the noir is as in vanilla pods and tobacco, from what I could smell from under the olfactory overload I had suffered; I should say that the cuir was more a soft suede leather as in Cuir Beluga, rather than the spiky Marlboro Man type. Apparently it contained oud too, but I am happy that this particular note really didn’t stick out much on my skin, but was seamlessly blended into the very cozy fragrance. I liked Cuir Noir very much, on the downside is the price of 250€ on the plus is that they will actually carry it at the department store here, so I shall be able to sniff it again as soon as it comes on general release.

I am nearly at the end with talking of my sniffing escapades, but I have still to mention Jovoy– I am very sad that I didn’t get to take Ines there, since this really is a most wonderful boutique, that comes with the highest recommendations possible. The staff as well as the owner are super friendly and welcoming, helpful if you need it, but also happy to let you just sniff on your own for ages, and their selection beautifully picked with a broad palette of classic and more contemporary as well as labels from several countries are at display.
Normally, they will do you samples of the fragrances you want to test, but they had just run out of vials when I visited, this did not lessen the joy of being there. Especially since the owner François Hénin ended up endowing my friend with Parfum D’Empire samples. Personally, I discovered a, to me unfamiliar line called Romea D’Ameor (the perfumer behind those is none other than Pierre Bourdon ) , got to sniff the 3 new HdP, learned that I really like the Rance and the Atelier Flou lines and I got to revisit old suspects like Amouage, MDCI and Vero Profumo. Also, I should give mention to their own range of Jovoy perfumes with several new additions amongst other a very special incense-fragrance in La Liturgie des Heures. But since I kept ah-ing at all the decidedly male fragrances I was aware my nose was probably no longer to be completely trusted, and since this was my last day in Paris I had to leave without buying. I do have a pretty good idea of what needs my further attention though, and they do ship too. If you are visiting Paris, Jovoy is a must, until then, their homepage is the place to go.

Thanks for reading  and au revoir !

Paris part 1 – seen through green eyes

By Asali

I enjoyed Ines’ Paris diary post so much, I had second thoughts about writing anything myself, although I had already promised to do so. I am not a diary person, and find it much easier to concentrate on a single subject; however, I found that once I got started I had a lot to share, in fact so much so, this ended up in a two parter as well. J

Firstly: Ines is indeed every bit as red haired as you would imagine and every bit as lovely, and spotting a bright red winter coat, she lit up the Paris December landscape. Although I might have talked somewhat AT her at times, she did not seem to mind too much, our rather long e-mail correspondences prepared us, and meeting in person was just an extension of our cyber friendship.

My trip with Ines started out at L’Artisan Parfumeur, where we headed straight for the exclusive Mon Numero collection.  I really liked Mon Numero 10, which is basically a very wearable, soft incense fragrance, and I could imagine it would get at lot of wear if I owned it, but all in all, from this line it is still a bottle of Olivia Giacobetti’s Safran Troublant which has my number – in the future at least.

From there on we decided to go to Sens Unique in the Marais. I discovered to my great pleasure and surprise, Sens Unique is situated right opposite my Paris hairdresser in this hip part of town, so I actually had a pre-sniff in there the day before meeting up with Ines. At this first visit I (re-)discovered the perfume line Evody which does hold quite a few gems.  I tested the gorgeous Bois Secret which is just that; lovely secretive wood. As Ines mentioned I also came very close to getting myself a PROPER green fragrance, Parfumerie Generale’s Papyrus de Ciane.  It was definitely green, and yet it had enough vetiver, incense and spice for me to feel on safe and friendly ground. The only reason that it didn’t get to come straight home with me was, that it didn’t feel at all wintery to me, and considering I might have another 4 months of winter to come, I would rather wait a little. Buying a perfume, and then not to wear it for several months, just doesn’t seem quite right. Am I alone feeling that way? Une Crime Exotique was beautiful and very Chrismassy, and I can absolutely see why Ines went home with a bottle. And another vote goes to the lovely Svetlana, who was a wonderful host, and let us sniff to our hearts contend. Our time in the small but very well stocked perfume boutique flew by so fast, that I was very happy that we already had an appointment for the next day meeting up with Denyse to go to Palais Royal. 

What can I say, Palais Royale is wonderful, and I could go home with half the shop, but at this moment I restrained myself.  Denyse next took us to Costes, which are the single distributor of Iunx, Olivia Giacobetti’s brand. At Iunx I fell for the stunning creation L’Ether. Here again it was an resiny Incense scent, one in true Giacobetti style swirling and radiating above and around you, playing hard to get. It is truly ethereal, and a perfume I keep going back to in my mind, thinking this will too find its way into my perfume cupboard.

Denyse I found to be a truly vibrant, passionate and warm woman, and she shared generously of her vast knowledge and time. Spending time with her and Ines was a great pleasure, and I felt grateful yet again over the joys and friendships that this scented community has brought me. 

While we had spent all this lovely time together on a scented tour of Paris, it had gone dark around us, and after having left Denyse at Rue Rivoli, Ines and I walked through the Tuileries Gardens and said our goodbyes by the Pont Royal.  A very worthy place to do so, I find.
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