Sunday, February 28, 2010

James Rollins: The Doomsday Key

I just love his books - ok, this is for now only valid for Sigma series, but I don't think the rest can be bad. If you're a good writer then whatever you write is just good. :)

One way that I know a writer has really climbed on my list is when his/her hardcover comes out and I don't even bat an eye at the price but can't wait to go and spend the money because it means I will be having it in my hands soon. Like with Mr. Rollins.

I cannot but help wonder how much research goes into each of his books. Even more so because he takes real things and facts and combines them with his characters to fit the story. The really scary part comes at the end of his books, what was real in the book and what wasn't - way too many of those things you wanted to be fiction seem to be fact. Very scary. Especially concerning this one when the facts point to the devastation man has done and keeps doing to this planet we live on. And not only that, but how much of that is actually being hidden and kept away from public. James Rollins always says which books helped him get to know some subject better and I always plan on getting them but still haven't managed to do it (will though eventually).

In Doomsdsay Key we have some GM foods gone real bad, "interesting" views on how to keep the world population in numbers that can actually live off the amount of food the earth can produce, Gray Pierce on a mission with the 2 women who effect his emotional life, Painter also on a mission, some back-stabbing and some not, Celtic history and some even older, Black Madonnas, strange diseases and their cures and a lot of learning to be done. And how would you not love the book?!

It just hit me yesterday that Gray Pierce is a combination of James Bond and Indiana Jones - he can get you out of any life-threatening situation and is really a genius when it comes to deciphering riddles. Plus, he has no lack of women (even though he is not that interested in quantity but quality). :)

And to end this with the best little tidbit - there is going to be at least one more SIgma book (since there is a "war" starting between Sigma and the Guild). I hope it takes a while before it's over. ;)

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Saturday, February 27, 2010

I need some scentful help

A week from now I'll be off to France for a week of skiing. I cannot describe how much I am looking forward to a week of some energetic activity, sun, snow and no work. :) I really think I've earned my vacation this year.

Anyway, I realized I have a bit of a problem. I have no ide what to take with me (perfume-wise). I know I will take Jo Malone Nutmeg and Ginger because that is my light scent for pretty much every occasion and I think will work great during my snow activities.

But, it will be March and it won't be that cold (approximately from -3 to 3 degrees Celsius) so now my winter scents are not going to be appropriate because first, they are not designed for strenuous activity (I don't see most of them in that light anyway) and secondly, they make me feel warm and cuddly and that is not exactly what I will need them to do. I mean, the sun will be shining and it's going to be pretty warm (in ski terms) and the cuddly needs no explanation. :)

But I don't think my summer scents are appropriate either. I don't want citrusy light variants for skiing, they somehow feel like they are going to clash with snow. I would like either something sporty, something cristalline-like or white (ChickenF, are you going to suggest Cristalle? - which btw, I still don't know what it smells like) or something springlike. I'm thinking of taking Santal Blanc as well (it has the white part, besides it's not too wintery so it might work).
Any suggestion will be most welcome. :)

I also plan to take something to seduce my boyfriend in the evening ;) but that is a much easier choice (my Amoureuse and Lyric samples are coming with me - probably some others as well, but I haven't yet decided which).

And while I'm waiting for the week to pass, some pictures from last year (Les 2 Alpes). That's me in light blue.

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

All my efforts are just not good enough

Spring is right around the corner and all my efforts regarding scents are not bearing any fruit. It all started with Roxana's solid chocolate perfume samples. Which are btw really interesting and smell delicious but in my case cannot be put into much words or summed up as what they smell like. I'll give it a try but you shouldn't expect much.

Then this morning, I got dressed and was happy that I can wear lighter clothes since it's getting springish here and the temperatures have risen about 10- 15 degrees Celsius. And I realized I don't know what perfume to put on. In the end I ended up wearing Daim Blonde just because it didn't remind me too much of a winter scent. And it is still not time for summer scents so I'm a bit lost now. What are you all wearing these days when it's too warm for winter scents but it's not really spring yet?

And now when I was starting to write this, I wanted to download the photos I took with my phone and for some reason, it won't work. Like I said, nothing seems to be going right.

My Roxana chocolate samples included the following six:

1. Noir - "Like it's edible counterpart, this chocolate is deep, dark and mysterious with a strong musk note."

Yeah, there's no mistaking the musk part and the fact that of all six, this one lasts the longest. It does smell of dark chocolate with slightly bitter feel but the musk unfortunately makes it not for me.

2. Cerise - "Succulent cherry with a base of rich chocolate."

Now we're getting somewhere. :) I kept thinking, I know this, I know this, what is that fruit in this? And then I read cherry, and it hits me. There is a Croatian chocolate producer that has this perfect chocolate filled with boozy cheeries and this one smells exactly like that little chocolate morcel. And I get the boozy vibe too (have no idea if it's only me because of the chocolate association).

3. La Foret - "A dense conifer forest meets an ocean of chocolate."

This one is my favourite. There is less chocolate vibe in this (even though there's an ocean in the description), it's less sweet and more deeper and darker than the rest. I got some earthy-smoky vibe from it and it reminds me of chocolate forest (more foresty than chocolatey).

4. L'Orangerie - "Mouth watering citrus in a base of rich chocolate."

Roxana also said it is very fleeting although I didn't see it as more fleeting than the rest (they all had some problems with sticking a while on my skin). But boy, is it mouth-watering! All that juiciness you can practically feel in your mouth. You smell it and it feels like a burst of juiciness exploded in your head. How did she do that? Yeah, and the chocolate is there. :)

5. Bois de Chocolat - "Smokey woods and chocolate."

I got more of the wood in number 3, this reminded me more of wood shavings and chocolate. Not bad but since it was a bit sweeter than 3, 3 is still my most wearable favourite.

6. Epices - "Spice, a hint of vanilla and chocolate."

I think I smelled some orange peel and clove, it started juicy and spicy. Reminded me of Christmas cakes (the orange/spice combo) and I thought that there might be some cinammon in it but cannot say for sure. It was stronger than number 5, so that is a great plus for it (coming on top those great spices in the beginning).

I think they would all work great as body lotions because putting these solids (and they go on as an oily mousse de chocolat for a lack of a better description) and feel slightly decadent. Rubbing chocolate and spices on your pulse points and warming them up? Mmmm. I think they would work great as mood enhancers. Just rub some chocolate solid that melts into your skin and relax.
I ordered the samples from Roxana's Etsy shop. There are many more gems hiding there, just waiting for me (or my credit card). :)

Sunday, February 21, 2010

Rick Riordan: Percy Jackson and the Olympians, The Lightning Thief

I think I should have joined a YA book challenge considering the books I'm reading lately. :) The shelf with YA series in my bookstore is getting bigger and bigger, so when I read about this series (and the movie that will be here soon) last week, I went to check if they had it, and of course they did. I only took the first book, just to make sure it was going to be something I will like reading and as you can probably guess from the introduction, I will be heading there as soon as possible for all other installments of Percy Jacskon. :) Who would've guessed?! ;)

It seems that the Greek gods have entered contemporary fiction big time. My first contact was through Sherrilyn Kenyon and there was someone else in the mean time between Sherrilyn and now Rick Rordan but I can't remember who at the moment.

And there is that other movie about to hit the cinemas, also having to do with ancient Greek monsters and stuff. :) I found it - Clash of the Titans.

All these certainly make for an easier learning of the Greek mythology, if nothing else.

On to the young Percy, who is 12 in the book, but looks a bit older in the movie trailer. I wonder what changes will there be in the movie (and there will be, no doubt).

So, he learns he is the son of a god (I'm not going to say which) but his mother has never told him that - he's about to learn it the hard way. He is also dyslexic, which is normal for demi-gods (there is an explanation in the book, quite interesting). In this first book, Percy learns who he is and who his father is, and since his father is in the middle of a dispute that might lead to war, Percy and his 2 friends set out on a quest to settle the matter. The book is fun and easy to read and really full of interesting mythological facts (I mean, it's mythology and cannot be factual, but you know, facts as they appear in the Greek mythology).

I'm not going to say anything more except if you like to read, try this as light reading, and I am going to see the movie, I believe it's going to be a lot of fun.

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Saturday, February 20, 2010

I have a problem

I realized it only today. I know that the Chicken Freak wrote some posts about de-cluttering and how to get rid of stuff, and now it seems I will have to give this some thought. As in how to apply it in my own life. I've been swapping for over a year now and I have so many samples and quite a lot of decants. That wouldn't be a problem usually, but since I really like most of the decants I have, I tend not to use them. Which kind of makes no sense because what's the point in liking them and keeping them on the shelf?! The problem is what if I use them up and decide I need a bottle? I can't buy so many and I like having such a wide choice swapped decants give me. Anyway, today I decided I will no longer keep them so I wore my New Harleem decant 2 days in a row. It is one of my favorite Bond No. 9 scents (along with Chinatown and Lexington avenue).

So I'm going to talk about it today.

Notes: bergamot, cedarwood, coffee, vanilla, patchouli, lavender.

The notes really cannot prepare you for what you smell when you spray New Harleem on. To me, it starts with slightly citrusy burnt coffee caramel feel. I mean that in the best possible way, it does smell like coffee caramel but like the caramel was slightly burnt (I guess that comes from the patchouli). On me this caramel burnt feel is more prominent than on my boyfriend (I told him to try it since it is not listed as a feminine scent).

I'm looking at my notes now and realize that I haven't mentioned cedarwood in them. Hmm, I was focusing more on the coffee/patchouli/lavender idea, cedarwood just went past me. The thing is, whenever I real lavender as one of the notes, I get scared. Lavender is such a strong and distinct smell that I'm scared will take over everything else. It never happens here, after the initial coffe/caramel feel subsides, it takes a while for lavender to become noticeable and it is never too much. Just right to give this relatively rich and sweet concoction and interesting twist. New Harleem lasts quite long and it took some hours before I finally got vanilla (still slightly tempered by coffee). But don't let that coffee fool you - it is never too much. Now i think of it, I don't remember smelling anything similar to this. Does anyone know of anything that comes close to this - I would like to smell some more variants of these notes.
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Thursday, February 18, 2010

It arrived!

Just a short post to share my joy and euphoria with you. The package with samples from Roxana Villa arrived today. It was there waiting for me on my desk when I got home and I was practically jumping from joy anticipating the chocolate goodness waiting inside for me. I still haven't tried any of the wonderfully packaged little samples (I need to take a picture so you can see), I still can't decide with which to start. :) I'll choose soon and will review them as soon as I find the time.

Picture taken from Roxana's Etsy site.

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Some promotion for my own selfish purposes

I don't know how about you, but I'm always ready to either get something for free or get some reward in any manner. So, it turns out today, I'll be doing a little jewelry and book promotion.

There is this interesting jewelry site (LuShae Jewelry) that offers rather great prices for their products (I'm already debating whether I really need this pendant or not) and there is a chance to win a sweepstake or a monthly prize of 200$. If you want to check it out, click here.
I'm still wondering how come they don't have bracelets and necklaces but maybe in the future.

The second thing is, this week is the release of Kresley Cole's Pleasure of a Dark Prince and to enter for a chance to win some books (I can never let such a chance pass me by), I just needed to let you know it's out.
Here you can read my thoughts on Kresley Cole.
Btw, the book is already on its way to me - I'm just waiting for a call from my favourite bookstore (Algoritam) to let me know it arrived. :)

P.S. I promise my next post is a review of a perfume. :)

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Acquired taste

I seem to do more thinking about perfume lately than actual smelling. Yesterday I came home and there was a package from Niche place waiting for me - I ordered without smelling it, just from reading about it, Tommi Sooni, Tarantella.

Of course I had to try it straight away, without thinking about notes or anything regarding a review, all I wanted to see was if I made a mistake or not. :) And it seems sometimes it's ok to risk. I liked it although my initial thought was, this smells real good but it's not what I usually go for. What I usually don't go for are aldehydes, chypre and roses. Well, all I can say is that this seems to be changing. I started giving more wrist space to roses and getting surprised by the results. Aldehydes have just wormed their way into my fragrance wardrobe, now all it takes is for me to start loving the real chypres. That still might take some taste acquiring. Ideas wanted and needed! I mean, I have tried several of the more famous ones, but I'm still waiting for the bells to start ringing when I smell one and my knees going week. You know, all the signs that this is probably the one that will stay with you for the rest of your life. It might leave for a couple of months, but will eventually come back. For now, one that I would like to wear without fighting it would be just fine. Like it just happened with Tarantella. I don't know yet if it's going to be a life long relationship but it will last a bottle. :)

I figured, perfume groups are like food. I seriously didn't like sushi when I first tried it. Then, I got the opportunity to try it again and it was ok, but not something I would ever want to eat. Nowadays, there are days I need to go and get a bite because it is exactly what I crave.

Even though I smelled Tarantella briefly, I know it is going to be one of those bottles that I will crave occasionally and will know exactly when I want to wear it.

Like I know when I would like to wear Amouage Lyric, the only problem is I don't own a bottle of it so that is kind of a hindrance. But that rose went straight for my knees and I didn't even recognize it.

I plan on giving them all a proper review (I still have some Lyric left in my sample - I'm saving it).

Btw, while writing this, I was looking for chypre ideas and found that the Perfumed court has a beginner's list of things to try regarding chypre. :) I think I tried all of those, and none of them made my knees go weak (ok, maybe vintage variants of some of them would, but they are rather hard to find).

P.S. If someone has a bottle of Lyric and doesn't know what to do with it, please, just remember I'm here and I need one. :)

Monday, February 15, 2010 chose...

Rosiegreen congratulations. :) Please contact me with your address so I can send the package.

Saturday, February 13, 2010

I think I kill the roses

This week has been really hectic for me so I didn't have time to smell anything (let alone review it). I decided to remedy that today and since I loved Santal Blanc, I took out of my bag of samples Santal de Mysore by SL.

Notes: sandalwood, spices, cumin, styrac balsam, caramelized Siamese benzoin.

It opens very similarly to Santal Blanc (there's no way you can miss the sandalwood), but since I associate sandalwood after SB with white, the way I smell this is white, woody and vanillic. And warm because there's no way around cumin. But I don't mind, I love the warmth it brings to perfumes.

As always, I dabbed it and tried to guess what I smell, and I got the sandalwood, cumin, and benzoin, but the whole spices thing just went past me. I read the review of this at NST and realized Kevin was able to differentiate all these spices and all I got was cumin. Not that there aren't spices in there, but just I don't really know what they smell like. :( Well, one more thing to add to the list of things to learn...

Even though I enjoyed this very much, I am more happy with Santal Blanc. This one gets too sweet on me and although I like the sandalwood, I prefer the less sweet version of it. This one seems to be the middle ground for me between Santal Blanc and Spiriteuese Double Vanille by Guerlain. And although I do crave a bottle of SDV (and given the price, it's going to remain a craving), and have a bottle of SB, I don't really feel I need a bottle of this. Or want. If I had it, I would use it, but I don't really think at this point I'll be getting one.

Which brings me to the rose. Maybe it was my subconscious working (there have been many postings on roses the last week - Valentine's day being tomorrow) but when I chose Ta'if from my sample bag, I didn't know it was a rose scent.

Well, the initial smell set me straight on that point. :) Before I got interested in perfume, I had a bottle of Very Irresistible by Givenchy (the first and original one). I was totally in love with it and wearing it for some time before I learned it was actually a rose scent. And I always thought I didn't like rose scents...

So, when I smelled Ta'if and it reminded me straight away of Very Irresistible, I knew it was a rose. And what a rose it is! It smelled intoxicating and I realized why rose scents tend to be so loved by some.

Notes: pink pepper, saffron, dates, rose oil, freesia, orange flower absolute, jasmine, amber and broom.

So, after getting my initial, oh, it's a rose, I went in search of notes. What can I say? I didn't get much further than rose. Actually, no further than that. I couldn't smell any of the notes (this doesn't seem to be my day for smelling). It is so well blended, it seems like a fantasy rose story that starts with intoxicating you and then you just enjoy the ride. Unfortunately for me, it didn't last that long. I seem to have killed the rose in the drydown and it went somewhat sour on me. I still can't believe that happened! It was so great and I already say myself ordering a bottle and then this happened. It wasn't terribly bad but it wasn't what it was before. I am definitely going to give it more tries because it might just be a bad day for my skin chemistry (please let it be that).

What I liked about this is that it is much less jarring than Very Irresistible and doesn't feel like it enters the room before you but with you. I would say it is a terribly sexy smell and I wonder is someone going to wear it tomorrow? :) To tease their partner terribly with things to come hinted by the intoxicating rose...

I wish I could.

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Thursday, February 11, 2010

Birthday cake

Some time ago, Carol from WAFT by Carol posted a recipe for a Red velvet cake which I found totally interesting. Here is a link to the recipe.

So, I decided to make it for my birthday and here are the pictures (Carol's looks much better but hey, this was the first time for me):

As you can tell, I'm still not perfect at frosting the cake. :) To put it mildly.

But it looked ok inside and everyone wanted a piece (that was good to hear).

Some guests wanted a second piece as well (yay for me!) so in the end there wasn't really much left.
Although you might not think it by looking at the photos, the cake really tastes wonderful. And I can't wait to do it again in the near future.

P.S. Carol was very helpful - I don't do much baking, so I peppered her with questions. :) Thanks!

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Happy this year

First off, join me for a glass of champagne while I talk about the passing year.

It's been a year since I turned 30 and that birthday wasn't the one I felt the need to celebrate. I was actually quite depressed (even though my friends kept telling me it's the best decade to be in) and I didn't feel happy and didn't really celebrate much.

Consequently, the year was difficult and I am sincerely glad it is behind me. I am looking forward to this year being the starting point of much better things to come so I am celebrating it with everyone, and that will include all my wonderful virtual (blogger) friends.

And since we are here in the middle of the winter, it's snowing and it's going to continue snowing for the next 5 days, I am starting to fantasize of all the warm days to come so I want to give you something to remind you of warmer days to come: a 10 ml decant of PdN Eau Turqoise, 10ml of Kenzo Peace and 5ml of both, The Six scents series 1, No. 1 and Givenchy Organza 2008 Fleurs d'oranger.

Just comment to enter (until end of Sunday, 14). :)

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Rachel Vincent: My Soul to Take

I am no longer a young adult but that doesn't mean I can't enjoy books written for them. :) So, in the last year and a half, I ended up starting more than one YA series. The last in line is Soul Screamers by Rachel Vincent and I only read the first book.

I've heard of Rachel Vincent before but haven't read anything up to now, there is a non YA series in her opus but I can't say the excerpts made me that curious about it. I blame it totally on the person writing them because as much as I can tell, RV writes pretty much the thing I like to read.

I'm a bit busy lately so it took me almost a week to finish this book, even though it's not even remotely long. Good thing about it is that it is easy enough to read and interesting enough that even though a few days pass, you don't lose interest (that happens to me a lot) and just start reading something else, but each time I did have time, I took it up.

The idea is interesting enough - not seen before, that's for sure (in that variant). Bean sidhe (or more familiarly known as banshee) or sidhe characters have been cropping up everywhere. The worlds they inhabit are always different and it seems they might turn out to be the new vampires. There are so many traits that can be attributed to sidhe so they might come handy in the future. We'll just wait and see.

The only problem I had while reading this is with the main female character. Are all teenagers so, well, stupid when it comes to interpersonal communication? Was I like that? Makes me wish never to have children. This is more general when talking about YA fiction than in particular to this novel, although it appears here as well. I guess that means MS. Vincent did a good job portraying teenagers but it's a bit annoying reading through it. :)

All in all, I'm bound for my bookstore for the next book in series.

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Monday, February 8, 2010

My first take on making my own body butter

Let me start by saying it didn't turn out to be a butter. :) More like a buttery body emulsion. :)
I always try to find new body products that make my skin more soft and less dry (and hopefully help I never ever get another stretch mark). So, some time ago I found this great Croatian site that has a really good collection of essential oils (I was trying to find some oils to learn the smell of some of perfume ingredients). Anyway, they have also a good selection of individual butters and plant oils - for Croatian readers, you can find more here.
I ordered before summer some shea butter, sesame oil and some essential oils. I planned on using the butter and oil during summer due to their properties but when it's hot outside, I realized I don't like anything that leaves a fatty residue on my skin.
These days it is very cold outside and I need something strong for my skin and I came up with the idea to liquefy the shea butter since it's solid at room temperature and put some sesame oil in it so it would be more easy to apply. While checking my essential oils to see what am I going to put in for smell, I found some 30ml of marigold oil so I took that as well.
And once the shea butter melted, I put the marigold oil in and some sesame oil and in the end clove leave essential oil. Poured it into plastic holders with caps and put them outside to cool. at first I thought I put too much clove because the smell was strong while the butter was liquid but once it cooled off, the smell was just right. But as soon as I put them at room temperature, it lost the butter strong consistency and somewhat melted into a buttery emulsion. :) But, it feels wonderful on my skin and is absorbed much faster than one other real butter I have which is quite greasy and tends to rub off on my pjs.
You can guess where I'm going with this. :) I plan on buying more raw materials and using them for my own concoctions. This time I won't put that much oil into butter to make it more easy to apply - I think I put almost half of the shea butter weight in oil and that was too much.
I'll let you know if next time I get a real body butter. :)

Friday, February 5, 2010

Almost strangled by tuberose: L'Artisan Tubereuse

The title might sound as if I didn't like what I smelled and that would be very wrong. But it isn't that simple.

I wonder what tuberose fans think of this one? I only dabbed it on my wrist and I got hit by a tuberose wall (for a lack of better description).

Notes: tuberose, ylang-ylang, coconut milk.

As you can see, there aren't really that many notes to decipher but I still didn't smell coconut milk. :) It's camouflaged in all the tuberose.

Anyway, my nose was almost glued to my wrist after putting it on - it actually smelled narcotic to me. And I think this is the first time that my mind instantly associated tuberose with smelling tropical. The smell is actually so strong and saturated that I could feel the imagined tuberose jungle lianas winding around me while I stand there dazed and keep smelling it.

And although I really enjoyed smelling it, I'm not sure I would be able to wear it. I just can't imagine smelling like that (not that that might not happen, who knows what will be my favourite note year from now?).

I guess I did smell ylang-ylang because I got the feeling of tropical lushness. This is the first scent for which I can say that it grabs you by the neck and doesn't let go with its intensity. I'm sure if you're not careful with applying, you are definitely going to give yourself a headache. But you will probably be drugged by the smell, so you might not care. :)

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Thursday, February 4, 2010

R.E. Feist: Rage of a Demon King

I already talked about Feist in my WoW posts but since this year I'm participating in very interesting book challenges, time has come to focus more on books and less on authors. Not that I'll stop writing about them either but obviously in much lesser extent since those are mostly authors I read regularly so the new writers of the week are going to be more spaced.

But let me say a few words about the book.

It's been on my list for a while, it's number 3 in the Serpent War saga (there is one more left and waiting for me). The problem I have with fantasy books is that they are long. I don't mind that at all but I have to take into account the amount of free time I have for reading and therefore if I start on a book I cannot let out of my hands and the time is limited, I tend to get upset. So all fantasy usually waits for better days (like when I'm home sick and can read all day long). :)

All Feist books were lent to me by my colleague (we all share books at work) and I went back to work really upset with him because he didn't warn me about some of the bad things happening in book 3. :) Ok, I wasn't really upset but since we talked about the previous books and had some favorite characters, I was shocked he didn't warn me because the one I'm talking about and trying not to spoil this too much was his favorite. So, I was a bit shocked but fortunately for me, it doesn't detract from the book. Quite the opposite. Feist fantasy world is too real in some cases - people die, get killed and war is as messy as it gets.

And I have a confession to make. I started the book some time ago but I got seriously upset by one of the character's stupidity and I'm sorry to say I doubted Mr. Feist and thought it was going to progress down the wrong way so I didn't want to read anymore. :) I was wrong. There is no part of this book that feels wrong to me and the characters are true to their character. :)

This book finally deals mostly with the problem of the serpent war but there are still some threads that need to be finished in book 4. I have high hopes for that and I know I won't be disappointed. It feels great when you know you can start reading a book and enjoy it from the beginning because you just know that the writer you are reading is not going to disappoint you (one more time, sorry Mr. Feist for doubting you). :)

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Building a Serge Lutens collection: Santal Blanc

More than any other line, Serge Lutens scents are slowly winning over any other line. Well, they actually already won and I'm not even close to owning bottles of all of those I love. That is one of the reasons I am very attached to my credit cards. :)

I swapped some time ago for a small decant of Santal Blanc and I totally fell in love with at first smell but didn't give much thought to actually thinking about what is it that I love so much (probably due to the fact I couldn't at first recognize any note out of it).

So, the other day after feeling so low I decided to visit Martimex (used to be my favourite perfume/skincare store - maybe will be again) and see if they have Douce Amere before the bottles disappear forever. They didn't but I saw Santal Blamc and while discussing some other things with the very helpful SA and buying some of them, I decided I will be going home with SB. :) And since I did, it was time to give it a proper sniff and review.

Notes: white sandalwood, cinammon, fenugreek, pink pepper, rose, jasmine, orris root, musk, benzoin, copaiba balsam.

I'm still struggling a bit with it because to me it is complex and not easily broken down into notes. It starts with this warm sandal feel but it has much more depth than those words imply. The slightly warm feeling reminded me of cumin but it's not exactly that - cumin has a "distinctive" warm smell while this just smells slightly spicy and warm (my guess fenugreek and musk?). Anway, smelling it without notes, I would never have thought of cinammon and then afterward I thought I smelled it through this white sandal spicy warmth but cannot say that for sure. I started to think of it as warm and cuddly but although it comes close to being that, it doesn't actually get into that category. There is a spicy/woody edge that just doesn't let it get there and I appreciate it. It exactly fits with me when I want to smell warm and approachable but strong.

I find it rich and deep, I guess all those bottom notes give it that quality. Honestly though, I don't know where the jasmine and rose are - probably blended so well into the structure that my untrained nose just can't get them. It took me a while (although it shouldn't have) to figure out that the slightly boozy-vanilla hint was coming from benzoin (I know that usually!).

It really isn't an easy perfume for me to get to the bottom of - I got the feeling like it has this quality of its ingredient notes being wet. Not an aquatic note but more like some of the ingredients were wet when getting into the formula. And it gives it even more depth and body. This wetness dissipates later and I'm left with a drydown of benzoin and sandalwood hinting at some saltiness coming from orris (that would be my conclusion).

And since I mentioned my collection, it already has: Cedre, Serge Noir, Chergui and now Santal Blanc (I also have Feminite du Bois but that is a special category). Those that I know I will buy (eventually) are: Douce Amere, Fille en Aiguilles and Fleurs d'Oranger. But since I haven't smelled all of them, you never know what else might come along.

Tuesday, February 2, 2010

No inspiration

I have no inspiration for anything. I hate feeling like this but nevertheless, the feeling hits me couple of times a year. I hate it but since the overriding quality of the feeling is lethargy, I don't really get even terribly upset. I just have no will to do anything (and that includes reading - that is the most serious symptom of all).
Anyway, it usually helps to talk about it so I decided to share my unwillingness to do anything with anyone who wants to read it. I don't think many will be interested in reading about my lethargy though.
I got some wonderful samples from Jessica over at Signature scent but they are resting on my table waiting for better days. I was kind of hoping today would be that day after reading my horoscope which said yesterday was the worst day for me (true so far) but I don't get the feeling that today is much better. And this being my birthday month and my horoscope predicts such lovely things to come, I can't but wonder when exactly are they going to start happening?
The only thing today that I believe is going to help me get back on my usual optimistic track is the NIke rockstar workout starting this evening at my gym. I was so sick lately that my regular exercising routine went from regular to non-existent so my guess is some of that will not only whip me back into some kind of shape but also do wonders for my mood (it really helps - dance workout with great music is probably the best way to make one feel happy).
So with that thought, I'm going to end today and hope for the best. You will know soon enough if it helped...

P.S. I also might do some shopping after work (that is a known recipe for lifting the spirit). :)