Best of 2017 in Scents and Discoveries

For my Best of 2017 list I wanted to highlight the perfumes that moved me and that accompanied me throughout the year. Some are from big brands, others are from tiny artisanal outfits. The main leitmotif to my list is the pleasure and excitement of discovery. Patricia and Elisa will share their treasures and loves as well.

I wish all of you a Happy New Year and lots of joy and beauty. Thank you for your support and for sharing your thoughts and discoveries with me.

Victoria’s List

Three Jasmines

Sifr Jasmine Revolution

I always enjoy finding interesting perfumes off the beaten department store-luxury boutique path. I especially love discovering how artisans in different countries interpret aromas. Some of these products aren’t easy to find, since marketing and exporting costs are prohibitive to small outfits, and there are numerous other barriers for them to enter the field.  Yet, perfume across different traditions and in different countries has so many forms that it makes searching even more rewarding.

Sifr Aromatics is a perfume house based in Singapore, 42 Arab Street. The boutique and the creative studio is run by Johari Kazura, who follows in the footsteps of his grandfather, Hanifa Kazura, who set up his perfume shop in the Kampong Gelam area of Singapore in 1933. Jasmine Revolution is an explosion of jasmine, framed by sweet, woody notes. As a jasmine lover, I couldn’t be more thrilled to find such a heady and baroque fragrance that evokes all of the jasmine facets, from apricots to leather.

Etherische Vetiver and Jasmine Essences

In the same vein is my discovery of Etherische. Unlike Sifr Aromatics, it’s an essential oil producer based in Indonesia, but having tried their Vetiver and Jasmine essences, I’ve been wearing them as perfumes. The jasmine is buttery and warm, with a spicy finish, while their vetiver starts green and citrusy and goes through many different layers–salty, sweet, woody–before settling on licorice and fresh hazelnuts.

Since both jasmine and vetiver are complex enough to be perfumes, I dab a small amount of essence on my scarf or clothes. If you want to wear essences on skin, you should dilute them in neutral oil or perfumer’s alcohol. Since these are natural essences that have all of their dark colored parts intact, they will stain white clothes. You can also do a Victorian lady trick–scent your handkerchiefs (or less romantically, tissue paper) and hide them in your purse or pocket. A lingering scented soundtrack to your day is guaranteed.

Shalini Jardin Nocturne

Jardin Nocturne, created for the fashion designer Shalini is a sumptuous fragrance. It seems that perfumer Maurice Roucel didn’t count drops when he added an unusually large dose of jasmine absolute into a plush woody-musky accord. He uses so much of it that jasmine even holds its own next to sandalwood and oud. What lights up the night-blooming jasmine is a touch of saffron. On its own, saffron has a medicinal, leathery character, but when in Jardin Nocturne, it becomes bright moonlight that casts a soft glow onto the flowers. Quite an expensive fragrance, but a little goes a long way.

Sicilian Fantasy

Antonio Alessandria’s Gattopardo

Should your fantasy be a Sicilian ballroom instead of an evening garden, Antonio Alessandria’s Gattopardo may present the right key. Alessandria runs a cult perfume boutique in Catania, and his newest fragrance, Gattopardo, takes the theme of The Leopard, a novel written by Giuseppe Tomasi di Lampedusa. Alessandria aimed to capture the scents and impressions of Sicily, a land that was occupied by many and conquered by few, and his composition is built on a series of contrasts. The green freshness of the opening is succeeded by the softness of iris, the bitterness of cocoa powder and the gourmand sweetness of hazelnuts. The amber and beeswax give a rich patina to the drydown that calls to mind baroque palaces, burning candles and the rustling of silks. A rival to Fleurs et Flammes, my other favorite from Alessandria’s collection.

Provence Bottled

L’Artisan Histoire d’Orangers

Histoire d’Orangers is a fairly simple cologne. There are the touches of green leaves and soft woods, but its main story is the orange blossom. Yet, it’s so masterfully executed and all of the elements are in such perfect balance that it quickly became a favorite this year.  The orange blossom appears green and translucent, but as the perfume settles on skin and warms up, it grows darker and sweeter. Unlike most colognes it lingers and lingers.

Coffee and Flowers

Atelier Cologne Café Tuberosa

Coffee notes are notoriously complicated to capture well in a perfume. Either they appear as too bitter or too savory. Atelier Cologne Café Tuberosa, however, is one of the most interesting variations. It pairs bittersweet coffee and creamy tuberose. How does it do it? A hint: an earthy whisper of patchouli.

Lighthearted and Fun

Hermès Twilly

Twilly d’Hermès is charming fragrance with a strong personality. The fragrance was inspired by Hermès’s narrow scarves, and the idea was to create a versatile perfume. Twilly is made up of layers of ginger, tuberose and sandalwood, and on skin it oscillates between creamy and sweet before finally setting into a radiant, abstract floral. Like most of Christine Nagel’s perfumes, it blossoms on skin and has a seductive, coquettish flair. I like when a perfumer’s fingerprint is obvious in a finished fragrance.

Three Green Etudes

Diptyque Vetyverio EdP

The Eau de Parfum concentration is different enough from the original Eau de Toilette that I decided to consider it as a separate launch. It combines the salty grapefruit touches of vetiver with a warm, velvety finish. Simply beautiful.

Tom Ford Vert de Fleur

Capturing the full spectrum of green notes without the finished perfume becoming either too sharp or too aggresive is not easy. Tom Ford Vert de Fleur conjures up a vivid verdant effect, but also preserves the nuance. It smells of dew-covered iris petals, damp earth and vetiver roots.

L’Artisan Parfumeur Violaceum*

L’Artisan Parfumeur Violaceum was launched in 2016, but it was one of my discoveries this year. So it’s on my list. Originally part of the house’s Natura Fabularis series, its green accord is built around violet. Both violet leaf and flower play an important role in perfumery, with the former redolent of cucumber peel and grass and the latter reminiscent of sugared raspberries. In Violaceum all facets of violet are explored, but the accent is on the foliage. The main surprise comes in the drydown where a twist of leather darkens the composition, a storm on a spring day as it were.

Elisa’s List

With the usual disclaimer that I only managed to try a small percentage of the year’s new releases, below are a few of my favorites of the year.

Masque Mandala

I’m not an incense fanatic, but this Christmasy, citrusy incense smells so instantly, radiantly, undeniably good that it temporarily restores my faith in humanity and the fate of the world.

Ineke Idyllwild

With rhubarb, grapefruit, and fir, Idyllwild kind of smells like burning a fruity summer candle and a woodsy winter candle at the same time. I’m surprised how much I like it.

DSH Foxy and Habibi

I liked almost everything Dawn released this year, but to name just a couple: Habibi feels like a cross between a vintage white floral (Caron’s Narcisse Noir, perhaps?) and a modern white floral like Thierry Mugler’s Alien – the jasmine and orange blossom are bright and honey-sweet but the base is dirty. Foxy on the other hand goes full retro; it’s a complex, animalic leather with amber notes and if I had sniffed it blind, I’d swear it was 50 years old. If you’ve never tried anything from DSH, now is a really good time to catch up.

Bruno Fazzolari Ummagumma

I’m a sucker for smoke, and Ummagumma (named for a Pink Floyd album) smells like campfire smoke and dark chocolate – a not-too-sweet comfort scent.

Sonoma Scent Studio Bee’s Bliss

No surprise here as I’m a Laurie Erickson super-fan. Her newest is a mimosa-centric spring floral that smells like one of those overgrown gardens that spill past their borders, buzzing with life.

Chanel No. 5 L’eau

This is a cheat, since it came out at the end of 2016, but I didn’t get my hands on it until this year. A light, lemony, soapy-clean, morning-sunshine version of the original, L’Eau is also the first version of No. 5 I’ve ever wanted to own, and when Sephora released a purse spray I snatched it up. (The packaging, by the way, is impossibly chic.)

Patricia’s List

The only fragrance I purchased that is actually new this year is Concrete by Comme des Garçons. I’ve always enjoyed somewhat offbeat smells such as old books, wet earth, and latex paint and was intrigued by the concept of a perfume smelling of concrete. A deconstructed sandalwood, the sweet and powdery Concrete didn’t actually smell like concrete or plaster, but instead took me back to my teen years of sunbathing on a thin damp towel after swimming, having just spilled a can of syrupy cream soda on the sunbaked concrete pavement. The fragrance lasts a good six hours, perhaps even increasing in intensity, balancing the tightrope between sweet and cloying. The 80-ml. bottle is a handsome oversized (for my small hands, anyhow) flat-laying piece of grey concrete with an understated silver-colored metal cap. I’d wear Concrete in summer, but it would be appropriate in any season for the sweets lovers among you.

The next two perfumes, both originally formulated in 2016, also attracted me with their beautiful bottles. Diptyque’s Essences Insensées Rose de Mai by Fabrice Pellegrin is housed in a gorgeous opaque black glass hexahedron equipped with an old-fashioned bulb atomizer. Although I already own Amouage Lyric, Serge Lutens La Fille de Berlin, and Neela Vermeire Creations Mohur Extrait and don’t need 120 ml. of anything, I’m defenseless against the charms of a dark rich, fruity rose. Rose de Mai is an intoxicating rose soliflore with a touch of honey and lasts on my skin until the next day.

The third perfume is also housed in an architectural black opaque bottle, decorated with a three-dimensional black and gold enameled bee resting near the bottle top. It is of course 2 Violaceum by L’Artisan Parfumeur, with nose Daphné Bugey credited right on the label, as Fredéric Malle does with his line. I had liked and owned several samples of Tom Ford’s Violet Blonde, but never bought a bottle, understanding now that I was waiting for 2 Violaceum. The violet and leather combination is soft, powdery, and as encompassing as the best quality cashmere sweater, a necessity on a crisply cold day in late fall.

My fourth purchase dates from 2006, and I went through many samples of it until I recently bought a full bottle. Jasmin et Cigarette by Etat Libre d’Orange is a weird one. Created by Antoine Maisondieu, it is a lovely jasmine combined with dirty ashtray. A lifelong nonsmoker, I grew up in a family of smokers, with several heavy crystal ashtrays positioned in every room of the house. Although the ashtrays were regularly emptied, the ashy residue clung to the bottoms, and I used to pick them up to smell them. For me, this perfume perfectly captures the paradox of a beautiful, well-dressed and fragrant woman who also smells like the bottom of a dirty ashtray. My 30-ml. bottle will be enough for my lifetime, but it is necessary as a souvenir of my childhood, bringing forth memories both happy and sad.

Of course, please do share your discoveries, whether new or old favorites. Happy New Year!

Also, please take a look at these  lists by Grain de Musc :: Now Smell This :: The Non-Blonde

Photography by Bois de Jasmin

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  • Lucasai: Thank you for this list dear Victoria & the team!
    Wishing you a wonderful 2018 ahead December 29, 2017 at 9:23am Reply

  • spe: Cartier La Panthere, Floris White Rose, Allure Sensuelle, and Lutens Vitriol d’ oeillet are my “new discoveries.” Nothing really new caught my attention this year, but I’ve been busy.

    Thank you for the fabulous lists. I’d like to try Vetyverio edp, the L’Artisans, and the jasmines.

    Happy fifth day of Christmas and Happy New Year! December 29, 2017 at 9:35am Reply

  • JillS: I discovered DSH Chataignes du Bois, a wonderful holiday fragrance, and Gekko Hanami, a breath of Spring. I was also surprised I liked Bvlgari’s the perfumee Vert.
    I love this blog so much. Thank you, Victoria and everyone. December 29, 2017 at 10:14am Reply

    • Elisa: I agree about Gekkou Hanami — it’s such a beautifully done fresh green spring scent. January 1, 2018 at 7:39pm Reply

  • Lynn LaMar: Happy New Year dear Victoria and All!!! I so look forward to all of your blogs and posts. Thank you for enriching my life with knowledge of scent as well as the rest of the good stuff!!! December 29, 2017 at 10:22am Reply

  • Kathleen Smith: Thank you for this interesting list. Wishing you all the best and a fragrant New Year! I’m intrigued to try the jasmines, a note I adore, as well as the Violaceum. I loved Chanel L’eau being a fan of No 5 for years; however, even though I blind purchased Gabrielle because I collect Chanel, I didn’t love it. My favorite 2017 purchases included Areej le dore Flux de Fleur; Auphorie Binturong; Baccarat Rouge; and vintage Shalimar and Coco. December 29, 2017 at 10:25am Reply

  • Katya: This year has been such a whirlwind of discovery for me – not just of new perfumes, but perfumes in general, and largely because of the threads here. But I will try to keep myself restrained:

    The big one was Miller Harris Fleurs de Sel which I bought blind on ebay due to Victoria’s recommendation and it knocked my socks off. I was super-happy to find it in TK Maxx the other day (at a steep discount no less. For shame!) so I snapped it up immediately. So glad to have a back up – this must be the first perfume I buy one of.

    Of course that has made me look at the entire MH range and I am constantly looking for the next one I want to add. I have Eau Magnetic and now I’m flip-flopping between Vetiver Insolent and Tea Tonique…

    I also bought a bottle of Bottega Veneta’s Eau de Velours, which is so far from what I usually wear but I LOOOOOOOOOOVE it so much. It fits my current winter mood to a T.

    One that I hemmed and hawed about was Gri Gri’s “Sideshow”, which is dirty cotton candy overlaid over leather. It is definitely a statement one and I’m not sure if I will ever get a FB but oh, was it a beautiful one to consider.

    Happy holidays and I hope 2018 brings you much beauty and joy! December 29, 2017 at 10:25am Reply

    • Potimarron: I rather like MH Rose Silence too. It feels like a comfort scent to me. January 1, 2018 at 3:16am Reply

  • Jillie: Yum – Violaceum is a must-try for me. Thank you and your esteemed colleagues for all your tips.

    Wishing you all a happy, peaceful and healthy 2018. December 29, 2017 at 11:04am Reply

  • Missyl: Thanks for your blog and the many hours of perfume exploring pleasure it has afforded. And, thanks for this wonderful list! I’m looking forward to exploring it.
    My favorite discovery this year was SSStudio’s Rose Volupte’, out of California. I’ve learned the hard way that I should try a sample before I buy a bottle. I finished a sample in record time, comparing it next to SL Fille de Berlin and AG Rose Cut. While those are not the same, it was the two other perfumes I was considering. I fell for the Rose Volupte’. It’s a beautiful winter Rose, wearable for most occasions, last a reasonable time, comes in smaller sizes, and is not ridiculously overpriced. It lasts all day, is beautifully fragrant the next day on sweaters in fact, and is very affordable! (Thank you Laurie Erickson, for making a beautiful perfume accessible.)
    I’m trying Bee’s Bliss next.
    Wishing your team a Happy New Year!
    Blessings. December 29, 2017 at 11:10am Reply

    • Elisa: Rose Volupte is one of my favorites! January 1, 2018 at 7:40pm Reply

  • OperaFan: I’ve not been actively posting lately but have read just about every post. You’ve all given me even more ideas to explore.
    Totally agree with Elisa on Bee’s Bliss. It is truly a special perfume, and perfectly named.

    I visited a Dyptique shop for the first time this year so am smitten with the line and finally have a bottle each of Eau Rose and Tam Dao.

    Not too many other new acquisitions this year as I’m trying to enjoy and rediscover my already 3 lifetimes worth of collection. I hope to do more exploring in the coming year.

    An early wish for a Happy and Healthy New Year! December 29, 2017 at 11:48am Reply

  • lovestosmellgood: Happy 2018 to you Victoria! Thank you for always opening out eyes to new books, perfumes and culture December 29, 2017 at 12:36pm Reply

  • behemot: Very interesting list, thank you! Unfortunately, I do not think I would be able to smell too many of the fragrances, because of their unavailability here.
    I really liked and bought Cafe Tuberosa after I read the review here. Finally, a coffee perfume that works for me. Would really like to smell Gattopardo, but I do not see it here in the near future.
    Thank you again for an interesting read and Happy New Year! (I know Victoria is going to celebrate it a little later, and maybe she will do it twice) 🙂 December 29, 2017 at 7:09pm Reply

  • Old Herbaceous: Thank you for the many wonderful posts and the education in fragrance! May you and all your readers enjoy a happy and fragrant New Year! December 29, 2017 at 8:29pm Reply

  • Lily: This was a slower year for me, probably Bc I was so intense on exploring the year before. Things I fell in love with this year:
    -Galop d’Hermes
    -Balenciaga Paris (a revisit from 2016 that had not quite worked for me at first)
    -FM Eau de Magnolia
    -Atelier Cologne Sud Magnolia
    -Eau de Givenchy
    -ELDO Noel au Balcon

    I don’t think any of them are new. I think the only new launches I tried were the new Elizabeth and James, which disappointed, and any Killian Black Phantom, which was a lot of fun as a sample but probably not anything I’d truly wear.

    I’m planning to spend 2018 enjoying what I have already found and enjoyed, unless something that just sounds truly irresistible crosses my radar.

    Happy New Year everyone! December 29, 2017 at 8:46pm Reply

    • Neva: Lily, Galop d’Hermes was definitely one of the best perfumes this year for me too. I also like all of the perfumes you mentioned and I’ve tried so far. As we obviously have a similar taste in perfume, I will try also Noel au Balcon that I don’t know yet.
      I’ve discovered this year Tiempe Passate from Antonia’s Flowers which is not new, and there’s one new release that I bought – ELDO’s You or Someone Like You. Maybe you’ll like them too…
      Happy New Year to you! December 30, 2017 at 8:13pm Reply

      • Lily: Tiempe passate sounds wonderful! Will def be trying! The ELDO you mention is one I’d looked at and not felt compelled to try, I will see if I can find a sample of that too. Let me know what you think of NaB! December 31, 2017 at 11:33am Reply

  • Maria: This year I was searching for skin scents, that were also distinguished and contemporary. I’ve find the answer on three Ellena’s creations for Hermes: Eau de narcisse bleu, Eau de néroli doré and Cuir d’ange. I rarely buy a full bottle, but these three are really tempting me. Thanks a lot Victoria and all the readers for the beautiful sensory discoveries! December 29, 2017 at 9:40pm Reply

  • limegreen: Happy new year! Thank you for being “there” for all of us perfume lovers.
    Perfume has been a great stress reliever, and perhaps because of this, I’ve been discovering salty fragrances, Heeley Sel Marin, St Eulalia Marinis, and finally, the cult favorite Eau des Merveilles!
    My favorite 2017 perfume has probably been Armani Prive Iris Celadon though I’m sure there are others I’ve forgotten. December 29, 2017 at 10:51pm Reply

  • Troy: 1. Tauer’s Une Rose Chypre has provided me hours of joy, many compliments, and an appreciation of the old school chypres like Vol de Nuit, which is flawlessly constructed. I don’t like URC any less. It’s just less luxurious and complex.
    2. Penhaligon’s Ostara. Blind bought after a vid review, which I rarely do, but what a treasure from the presentation to the dry down, it is a spring celebration.
    3. TF Jasmine Rouge. I love the heady white flower with the dry base. It’s setting me up for a buy of ELDO’s Jasmin et Cigarettes, which is moody, friendly and sensual. I’ll never understand why people don’t love jasmine. December 30, 2017 at 2:26am Reply

  • OnWingsofSaffron: A lot of the fragrances sound quite enticing. Yet some of the (to me) more interesting scents are completely out of reach: Sifr has no online sale, Etherische sell essential oils from 1 liter onwards; I cannot find an online sale point for Antonio Alessandria’s Gattopardo; I mailed Bruno Fazzolari, and he kindly answered me that there is no Europe sale point (he did offer to send but receiving packets from USA is at times a customs challenge); and I had the impression that a few of the perfumes on Elisa‘s list are more or less US-based.
    Still: the list exemplifies that there is a clear swing in perfume mood: oils/attars are on the rise; artisanal offerings are on the rise; and there is a longing for something new.
    An excellent New Year to everybody!! December 30, 2017 at 7:28am Reply

    • Victoria: Just a quick note (I promise to reply to all comments once I’m back on a good network): Sifr definitely sells via internet. You can contact them via their website. Etherische sells small quantities too. And Antonio Alessandria has a website too:
      Many of these are small outfits, and they don’t have the most sophisticated websites. They’re, however, worth watching.

      Happy New Year! December 30, 2017 at 9:56am Reply

  • Tiffanie: Thank you for the year in review. I am a cologne lover so was glad to be reminded of Histoire d’Orangers. Also very much appreciate the notice given to Sifr. It is good to know there are still uniquely local sources for special things in our globalized society. December 30, 2017 at 5:22pm Reply

  • Neva: Thank you for the lists. I always appreciate them as a reference for my future exploration.
    My newly discovered favourites this year were a new release – You or Someone Like You from ELDO and something older – Tiempe Passate from Antonia’s Flowers. I bought full bottles of both perfumes and enjoy them very much.
    I wish all of you a wonderful New Year! December 30, 2017 at 8:16pm Reply

  • Becky K.: Happy New Year, everyone!
    Year 2017 brought a rediscovery of a perfume. While at an antiques shop, I found a vintage bottle of White Shoulders. As soon as I smelled it, memories of my Grandma Eva came flooding back. Even though it is not my style of perfume, it brought her back to life in a way that nothing else can.
    As others have noted, many thanks to Victoria for providing a beautiful and thoughtful forum for all of us! Best wishes to everyone in 2018! December 30, 2017 at 9:09pm Reply

  • Potimarron: I’ve never smoked but the smell of cigarettes makes me nostalgic too (a large number of my extended family are smokers and the smell reminds me of my grandmother).

    I’ve found that a number of perfumes I’ve tried this year have made me feel a bit nauseous on the dry-down (notably: Gaultier Scandal and Givenchy Dahlia Divin, but I’ve noticed it in perfumes on other people too). I’m not sure what the note is that does this: it could be a heavy hand with the patchouli, but it could be something else (i was very car-sick as a child so I wonder if there’s a note that’s shared with car shampoo). I’m curious to identify what it is, but the experimentation could be unpleasant… December 31, 2017 at 3:53am Reply

    • Maria: I have exactly the same problem! I’m still very car sick and I hate those car shampoos! I think that patchouli on the drydown is one of the things that make me sick, but I also think it is the case with benzoin and maybe benjoin. I love the first notes of Institut très bien Cologne à la russe, for exemple, but the drydown, really heavy in benzoin and without patchouli, makes me sick. December 31, 2017 at 10:05am Reply

      • Potimarron: Poor you (although I’m glad it’s not just me- even now being given a ride in a recently purchased car makes me feel rough). I hadn’t thought of benzoin but did suspect certain sandalwoods and musks.

        Here’s to more enjoyable perfume experiences in 2018! January 1, 2018 at 3:14am Reply

  • Victoria: My best wishes to everyone for 2018! Happy New Year!

    Thank you very much for your lists and mentions of your favorite perfumes. I promise to reply to all comments once I’m back, so please do share. ❤️❤️❤️ December 31, 2017 at 8:55am Reply

  • rickyrebarco: I’m so excited to see that Patricia listed a favorite of mine, Diptyque’s Essences Insensées Rose de Mai by Fabrice Pellegrini. I bought this blind the minute it came out and I adore it. Such a stunning rose.

    I want to try Cafe Tuberosa and Bee’s Bliss. Sonoma Scent Studio doesn’t get enough love internationally I often think. This brand has done a number of gorgeous fragrances. My favorite (before smelling Bee’s Bliss) is Forest Walk, a stunning green forest scent with incense. December 31, 2017 at 2:29pm Reply

  • Edward: Happy New Year, Victoria, Elisa and Patricia! All the best this 2018! December 31, 2017 at 7:10pm Reply

  • Eudora: Happy new year Victoria, Elisa and Patricia. Thanks for your lists. I would love to smell those jasmins. I envy you a little because you have access to all those new perfumes… I tried the new Hermes but was not impressed. I was impressed for the bad with Gabrielle and Mon Guerlain. I find Cafe Tuberosa so appealing and also Jasmin et cigarrettes. I found that Etat Libre d’Oranger offer a samples lot in their web. As I do not have in those days access to new fragances I am thinking about buying it. I think it will make a great self-present. What do you think?
    Wishing you all my best for 2018. January 1, 2018 at 2:06pm Reply

  • Ingeborg: These best of the year lists remind me how little I have sampled in 2017, even less than the year before.

    I will try to get my hands on samples of Violaceum and Gattopardo and will be sure to test Twilly. A tester of Twilly should be easy enough to find,

    Thank you to Victoria and her contributors for a very informative and fun blog. January 1, 2018 at 7:55pm Reply

  • Danaki: Happy New Year Victoria, Elisa and Patricia. I really enjoyed reading about your scent discoveries. This year my discoveries were Eau de Velour by Bottega Veneta (a rose rendition on the original) and All Good Things by Lush (bubblegum smoke), though I’m not sure which year they launched. I also bought, after many samples, Jeux de Peau and found Mauboussin at a discounters for a great price. The best though has been a tola of high grade ambergris from ASAQ, which was a gift! Though this year hasn’t been great generally, and disappointing on a personal level, fragrance-wise it has been rather wonderful. Wishing you all my best for 2018. January 2, 2018 at 7:58am Reply

  • Maria: Best wishes, dear Victoria, and thank you for another year of your high quality blogging!
    Can’t wait to try L’Artisan Violaceum, thank you for bringing it up.

    Bottega Veneta Eau de Velours is one of my big loves. That kind of rare perfumes which don’t have to be all original (whatever that means in perfumery) to be just perfect.

    But Serge Lutens Dent de Lait is what made my year. And I am confused about the reviews it got. Somehow I have the feeling that Serge Lutens genius evolved in a way that left most of us behind. We all still wait for big screamy orientals which he was famous for decades ago. Now he went on to discover other worlds and the public can’t follow. I mean when Jean Claude Ellena goes for subtle watery things we are all in awe. But we can’t take that from Serge Lutens. Dent de Lait is such a fantastic beauty, has something Marilyn Monroesque in it, from innocent to sexy. And just when you think that it disappears, it comes back to overwhelm you.
    If Chanel has created this (instead of Gabrielle or even Chanel L’Eau) we would have been all extatic. January 2, 2018 at 10:04am Reply

  • Susan: When I was trying to find the website for Sifr to find Jasmine Revolution (it says online store coming soon), I stumbled on Sana Jardin, Paris in Google. I clicked on it, and I loved their story so much, I bought a discovery set of their perfume. Have you heard of them? They have a great story. Their founder is Amy Christiansen Si-Ahmed. She is a former social worker turned fragrance entrepreneur. I’m excited to get my sample set. This year I discovered (along with others) L’Artisan Parfumeur Violaceum. Now among my favorites. Happy New Year to everyone and thanks to Victoria and all at Bois de Jasmin for giving me hours of enjoyment learning about and sampling lovely perfumes, books, exhibits, and culture. Here’s to more in 2018! January 6, 2018 at 3:40pm Reply

  • bregje: Hi Patricia,

    I had wanted to comment sooner but just did not have the time.
    Your story of the memory of cigarette ashes really rang true for me. I am also a non-smoker who grew up in an environment with smokers.Mainly my mother.
    Last summer, at the end of a long hot day i was sitting on my terrace with a glass of aperol.The scent in the air was a combination of dry stone, sunscreen and tangerine.Suddenly i smelled a whiff of cigarettesmoke(maybe one of my neighbours) and it just took me back to my childhood,familyvacations.It made me so happy.
    So,thank you for that story and i am going to try to get a hold of Jasmin et cigarettes. January 25, 2018 at 4:58pm Reply

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