Thoughts on being a frugal perfumista on BoTO

Today on BoTO blog, Dionne posted her thoughts about being a frugal perfumista, and I can relate to many of her observations. I don’t buy very many bottles either, and I don’t buy them unsniffed. As you can imagine, I have far too many aromatic items around here as it is, lol, so I’m quite frugal in my bottle choices. I think I only bought one bottle last year, and that’s typical for me. I do buy some decants/splits because that’s a great way for me to be able to enjoy other lines. I miss seeing the bottles and boxes though and sometimes wish we had a niche perfume store within driving distance partly just to see the packaging!

Dionne came up with a motto for Sonoma Scent Studio that I love and appreciate, “Come for the low prices. Stay for the beauty.” Wow, thanks Dionne! 🙂

Next Letter in Series with Mandy on Nathan’s Blog

Nathan has posted the second exchange in the series of letters between Mandy and me. I’m excited that my first forest mod is about done. It’s earthy and woodsy, and I think it does feel like a forest. I will see what testers think. They may want more needle notes to extend longevity of the green tones, but I don’t want it to veer toward pine-sol. I like how the hemlock adds some green forest notes without that bathroom cleaner vibe, and I’m willing to sacrifice longevity of the green tones in exchange for a prettier overall scent. I could try other green notes to accompany the hemlock, but the hemlock is about as high as i think I can go right now. It has light touches of floral notes (violet and jasmine absolute) along with lots of earth, cedar, and sandalwood. Mandy and I are currently exchanging some ingredient samples and will probably write about our impressions of those in the next post. It’s been a fun project!

Spring is in the Air!

It hit 80 degrees here today and I couldn’t resist spending some time outside this afternoon. My SIL was in town and stopped by for a quick visit, so we sat on the porch for an hour catching spring fever.

Here are a few photos I took in the garden today. The first is a winter iris (iris unguicularis) that is very late. It blooms fall through winter and is usually finished blooming by now, but these blooms with their beautiful markings are welcome anytime.

The next pictures show my plum tree, which is almost at the peak of bloom.

And this next picture shows the iris pallida variegata that are just emerging from the earth (the variegata form has eye-catching stripes on the foliage that provide interest even when the plant is not flowering). They will form pretty blue flowers in a few months. Iris pallida roots are used to make orris for perfume. These fresh shoots in February are among the first promises of spring as the garden starts to grow again. The sights of spring in the garden bring me joy every year. 🙂

Update, and Reviews of Fireside Intense, WW, and Jour Ensoleille

Today Fireside Intense and Winter Woods are reviewed on Bois de Jasmin. Thank you so much, Victoria! Even though signs of spring are emerging, we still have several more months of cool weather to enjoy smoky woods scents.

And on Friday, Jour Ensoleille was reviewed on Fragrant Fanatic. Thanks very much, Sigrun! I’m glad you found it to be a calming scent. It means so much to me when I hear that one of my scents has brought comfort and pleasure to help offset the challenging aspects of life.

I have been working to extend the lasting power of the forest scent. This one will be on the softer side, staying closer to the body because of the high percentage of naturals and the absence of strong sillage notes. I enjoy having a few quiet woodsy scent options though. I’m still testing and adjusting, but I like it very much so far.

Some local finds for cooks, gardeners, and plant lovers

From time to time I post about local artists or nurseries for a little change from fragrance. Thought I’d mention a few places local to me that also offer mail order and might be of interest.

First, McEvoy Ranch in Petaluma (just a little bit south of us) is a great spot for award-winning artisan olive oil. Their oil is certified organic, extra virgin, and is amazingly flavorful compared to most olive oils because it’s so fresh. They also produce organic honey and some olive oil body products.

Another unique spot in Petaluma is Baker Creek Heirloom Seeds, of interest to organic gardeners. They stock 1300 varieties of heirloom non-GMO veggie, herb, and flower seeds. The Petaluma store is huge, but they do mail-order too.

And the third item is something we just recently discovered at a nearby winery — botanical notecards and prints by local artist Victoria Kochergin. Her delicate drawings appeal to plant lovers.

Heads up on Fig Tree

As I mentioned when I released Fig Tree in the fall, I started it in the Exclusives group but planned to move it to the Boutique Group by spring so that I could wholesale it. I thought that plan would give people quite a few months to buy it at a lower price. This post is a heads up that Fig Tree will move to the Boutique Group on March 1st (in two weeks), so you might want to pick up a bottle in the next few weeks if it is on your wish list and you want the Exclusives pricing.

Champagne de Bois will probably not be back before March 1st, but I do have a couple ounces left and can send samples or purse sprays with orders by request, if you want to add a small bit of CdB to a Fig order.

There was a great post on The Non-Blonde today about things learned over the years in perfume blogging. You’ll probably smile in recognition and be able to relate to most or all of the things on the list.

Happy Valentine’s Day!

Wanted to wish everyone a happy Valentine’s Day. The earliest signs of spring are here: the first daffodil buds are forming, the narcissus are almost done for the winter, and buds are starting to appear on the plum tree. It’s been a mild, dry winter compared to last year’s record rainfall.

Many blogs are celebrating Valentine’s Day today. Velvet Rose was included on Carol’s Valentine’s rose bouquet on The Muse In Wooden Shoes. I love a number of her mentions, including L’Arte di Gucci, Francis Kurkdjian Lumiere Noire pour femme, and Caron Parfum Sacre. So many rose scents to love. 🙂

I’m working on the forest scent, and a unisex musky sandalwood rose, and the tweak to Champagne.