this scented week in review


This scented week in review:

CALENDAR – so I finally took the bull by the horns, sat down and planned out 13 months in advance, of course in pencil because shit happens. Now that’s done.

ASPIRINA C – actually, I should have put the Aspirin C beside the calendar because that exercise in itself was enough to give me a headache!  Not only, but I’m battling a cold. Again.  My own damn fault because I could be eating better and getting more exercise. Thank goodness for all the tomorrows of our lives.

ACCORDS – two are a Fougere and three are based on Black Spruce absolute and they’ve been maturing since August. Have I narrowed them down yet? Right! Think again. Some of them are fabulous all on their own and I am always hesitant to compound them. This is why I think I’m more inclined to follow a building block approach to composing, one drop at a ponderous time.

UNDILUTED – black spruce and tiare absolute undiluted. Divine!  I’ve been sniffing these together to get a sense of a possible fit. Also because I’m still not sure at all about the heart.  I think I’m aiming too high. Maybe I just need to build a heart that simply (there’s a charged word!) reflects my initial intention.

NOTEBOOK – I’ve been furiously accumulating thoughts, ideas and insights for the blog for 2015. Lots of interesting things to come!

CALLIGRAPHY PEN – for as long as I can remember I have been in love with calligraphy. I honestly think I will never own enough pens. Ever. Ink is something that gives me goosebumps. Writing is part of my DNA. For years my friend and I would be on the lookout for calligraphy workshops in Toronto but never were able to find any. Imagine my joy when I rediscovered it online! I found tools, and templates and everything and have begun practicing drills – circles and lines, lines and circles.  I feel the rush of love and it’s a wonderful compliment to my perfume making – thoughtful, flowing, introspective.  Perfumery and calligraphy.  A match made in heaven, I’d say.  This pen I bought about five years ago in Amalfi during our very first vacation together.

NIBS – found a whole load of nibs stashed away and thoroughly enjoyed pulling them out and playing with them again!

FOUNTAIN PEN INK – this I bought for my fountain pen but it’s a great ink for the calligraphy pen too.  Let the love affair begin!





what’s a new olfactive experience worth?


You wouldn’t believe the paper work, documentation and customs forms that are needed to get a few bottles of stuff from suppliers outside of the EU.

On the left is the final FedEx document I had to sign for — after paying €40 that is — to get my little box of goodies.  Before that I had to fill out 5 pages of forms for the customs clearance agent (read: middle man) to send it to another government department in order for it to be declared as safe — this after sending them €40 for their service.

On the right is the prize: Copaiba Balsam, Black Spruce Absolute, Agarwood Attar, Frangipani Absolute, Pink Lotus Absolute, Bergamot Mint and — drum roll please — some 5 year old Patchouli!

It was Black Spruce Absolute that drove me to purchase the bunch.  My olfactive exchange partner shared a sample with me and I literally went bonkers because the scent haunted me for days!  It was nothing less than mesmerising and I knew that before I hunkered down over trial vials and test formulations in the coming fall and winter months I wanted Black Spruce with me — need it — as material I know in my bones will be an important element in my final perfume project.

So I guess in the end the answer is just like any other experience, it’s worth what you’re willing to pay for it.

I literally went to bed with the scents in my head and their memories were like a lullaby.

Yes, definitely worth it.