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Thursday, May 04, 2006

Perfumes for First Dates, Weddings and Future Queens

Yesterday Patty from the sassy, classy and wonderful Perfume Posse blog asked herself a profound, heartfelt question that only a true Parfumista would ponder upon: “If I had lost everything in my life, my family, my position, my dignity, and was about to lose my head and there was nothing left, what bottle would bring back the memories of how sweet my life had been, even as it was ending?” Searching for the answer she came up with a poll. I have a weakness for making lists and answering polls, so here are my answers.

Perfume for a first date. That would depend on what image I would want to convey. Most probably I would opt for Elegant Gentle Femininity, and nothing expresses that better than Climat by Lancôme. In case I wanted to step up my game a little bit and leave an impression of a woman who is Intellectual, Sophisticated And Sexy In A Not Too Obvious Way, I would reach for Le Parfum de Therese by Frederic Malle (Edmond Roudnitska). And finally, if I were in a mood for Getting Straight To The Point, for seducing, conquering, enslaving and having a breakfast together on the very next day, Musc Ravageur by Frederic Malle (Maurice Roucel) would be my weapon of choice.

Perfume for my wedding. If I had to do it all over again, I would walk down the aisle wearing Songes by Annick Goutal. That is truly one of the most weddingy fragrances I know, so very feminine, so very beautiful, so full of warmth, sensuality and promise.

Perfume for my honeymoon. Again, it would be Songes. The honeymoon would take place in an exotic, tropical location and Songes, that luscious bouquet of frangipane, ylang ylang and jasmine, would fit right in. Besides, wearing the same scent for so many days in a row I will surely leave in my new husband’s subconsciousness the indelible memory of our happy days as a newly wedded couple, conditioning him like Pavlov’s dog…one whiff of my Songes and he is unable to resist me and refuse me anything.

Perfume for begging for forgiveness for something really horrible I have done. Should I ever feel a need to punish myself and to express how truly sorry I am for my terrible sins, I would reach for the scent that is a torture for me to wear. It’s name is Luctor et Emergo by People of the Labyrinths, a.k.a POTL. Oh, POTL, how I hate thee. I particularly hate you, because your notes make you sound as if you were a custom scent, created especially for me. In reality you were made to torment and eventually kill me, the cloying, sweet, ambery mess, you!

Perfume for a long lunch with my best girlfriends where there will be liquor and gossip. Some time (too long!) ago, when I was visiting home (now that is a contradiction in terms), I had a dinner at a Chinese restaurant with my best friend, T. There was great food, there was plum wine and there was jasmine tea…Ever since, I have been associating the smell of jasmine tea and jasmine tea perfumes with my friend. When I finally get another chance to dine and chat with her I will be wearing The Pour Un Été by L’Artisan, my favorite jasmine tea scent.

Perfume for my coronation as Queen of the F*&^ing World. My favorite question. I gave it a lot of thought and still I cannot choose. It would have to be either Muscs Koublai Khan by Serge Lutens or Ambre Russe by Parfum d’Empire. These might not seem like obvious choices, so here is my reasoning. When I finally get to rule the world, I intend to do so by taking inspiration from such worthy examples as Elizabeth I, Catherine the Great and Marie Antoinette. That means that I will be ruthless, devious, extravagant and have lots and lots of lovers. If that does not spell Muscs Koublai Khan with its pseudo-refined perfumey veneer and its hungry, insatiable, brutal smell of a beast, then I don’t know what will. However, Ambre Russe is a strong contender. It was inspired by Tsarist Russia, it has vodka, leather, incense and all sorts of other fun and sinful notes, and has Excess and Imperialism written all over it in golden Cyrillic letters. What is a Queen to do? I might just wear both and never mind the terrifying sillage. I am the Queen of the World and I do as I please.

Perfume to take to the Guillotine. It’s not hard to imagine reading the above paragraph that I will not be the most popular Monarch. My reign (tyranny, rather) will be overthrown and my head will be cut off. To taunt and further infuriate my frugal, prudent executioners, I will wear a scent that is very expensive and very sensual. It would also have to be something deep and soulful, something that would leave a profound impression on the masses and the historians who would be undoubtedly present to witness the momentous event. I might have been a cruel, loose-living dictator in my life, but I will die as a beautiful, tragic martyr. With that goal in mind, I will be wearing Parfum Sacre by Caron, in pure perfume form, naturellement.

The first image, Top Date, is by Al Buel. Let the Games Begin is by Anne Tainor ( as is They Completely Redefined “Made For Each Other”. The image from the movie Elizabeth is from Marie Antoinette on The Way to The Guillotine is from


Blogger AngelTea said...

What a nice poll you filled! Am flattered with my person mentioned:-) When, WHEN will we have that another chance finally?! Jasmine tea - not bad resemblance at all. I used to like green tea scents some time ago, but got tired of that. JT would be a good substitution.
Somehow, I don't have any frag resemblances of the best periods of my life - simply can't remember what perfume was on me or on someone else connected... Probably, everything was in such a harmony that nothing stands out now:-))) Instead I can recollect very well all the bad frag reminders:-( Obviously, can't stand them now...

4:01 AM EDT  
Blogger Sexy Sadie said...

Great list!

6:31 AM EDT  
Blogger lilybp said...

What a wonderful poll! Brilliant, Patty! And brilliant answers, M!
So I will try too:
1st date: Angelique Encens (because it smells both beautiful and mysterious, which is a good way to appear on a first date)
wedding: Carnal Flower (though Songes would be my runner-up)
honeymoon: Musc Ravageur and Rose de Nuit
Begging Forgiveness: Apres l'Ondee parfum; 2nd choice: En Passant (both remind me of rain and tears)
Ladies who Lunch: Encens et Lavande or Fumerie Turque, depending on the season (just b/c I like them and want to get them in--and what better place to do that than among friends:)
Queen of the f-ing world: Chanel Cuir de Russie (benign queen) or Tabac Blond (more dictatorial)
Perfume to take to the Guillotine: Mitsouko (which I am wearing today, but I hope not to the guillotine:)
That was fun! Thanks to you both!

7:33 AM EDT  
Blogger Christina H. said...

that's a fantastic list but I think my own would more resemble lilybp's especially with the mention of Carnal Flower(which I know you detest :P) and the MR for a honeymoon.I love reading these!

8:56 AM EDT  
Blogger Marina said...

AngelTea --> jasmine tea... obviously we are on the same wavelength as usual :-)

9:02 AM EDT  
Blogger Marina said...

Thank you, Sadie!

9:02 AM EDT  
Blogger Marina said...

What a wonderful list. I wouldn't kick any of those scents out of my list too...well, except En Passant :-) I could totally see myself ruling the world in Cuir de Russie. I should have thought of that myself! :-) Mitsouko for some reason seems especially perfect for the No 5.

9:05 AM EDT  
Blogger Marina said...

I could live with Carnal Flower if I had to :-) It is En Passant I cannot bear. Lilac is my enemy.

9:07 AM EDT  
Blogger marchlion said...

Hey, I tried to guess these for you! I want you to know I got Ambre Russe right... but WHERE is MdeBourbon?!?!

I am the Queen when I wear Mitsouko.

I am the QOTFW When I wear Jicky.

9:33 AM EDT  
Blogger Patty said...

That was fun! so now that we have decided on our perfumes, we just need to get our kingdom restored to us so we can take turns ruling.

I think I'll have another poll on Friday related to this. :)

9:50 AM EDT  
Blogger Marina said...

That obvious, huh? (me and Ambre Russe?) :-)
I am saving MdeB for those occasions when I am very, very mad at my vassals; then I subject them to those 'rubber boots dipped in amber'. :-)

10:23 AM EDT  
Blogger Marina said...

Can't wait for the new poll!!

Do you think we can co-rule the world? In peace, with no clashes of egos and sillages? Ok, then! :-)

10:25 AM EDT  
Blogger Caitlin Shortell said...

Hooray! I like your answers. Particularly amused by your POTL answer. HEHEH.

10:55 AM EDT  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

OMG! Even my husband was laughing at this list. The fragrances are perfect but the missed your calling as a romance novelist. Not that I would know, the Smithsonian on my coffee table sets me firmly in the intellectual category.

12:03 PM EDT  
Blogger boisdejasmin said...

Great post! I especially love the selections for the first date. I would probably have picked the same ones.

12:28 PM EDT  
Blogger Marina said...

I realize POTL has a huge and devoted following. I would love to smell what the people who love ti are smelling. On me it is ...evil :-(

12:52 PM EDT  
Blogger Marina said...

That is a great compliment, that I made your husband laugh. Husbands are tough audience. Mine hardly ever thinks my jokes are funny :-)

12:53 PM EDT  
Blogger Marina said...

Thank you! Whenever I wear Climat I fall a little bit more in love with it. It is just perfect in every possible way :-)

12:54 PM EDT  
Blogger NowSmellThis said...

M, just want to make it clear that if we ever go on a date, it will not be an overnighter: MR is a deal-breaker. But do feel free to come begging for forgiveness any time you like, doused in my old buddy POTL. LOL!

1:34 PM EDT  
Blogger Marina said...

I promise to wear Therese then.
You like POTL?? Am I the only person in the whole wide world on whom it is too sweet? And you know that I don't mind sweetness usually... Hrmph.

2:29 PM EDT  
Blogger tmp00 said...

For the first date, I'd wear Chene. The oak and tonka is nicely masculine, but not overpowering.

Wedding: eau de Hadrien, because I want to smell fresh and pure.

Honeymoon: Musc Kublai Khan, because I don't want to smell fresh and pure.

Begging forgiveness: eau de Camille; who could stay angry at someone who smells so very innocent?

Ladies who lunch? Borneo 1823. The cocao says foodie, the patchouly says sonething a little naughtier.

QotFW? For me, Ambre Sultan, and since I am QotFW, I will bathe in it...

a la guillotine? I think Gris Clair. Just because it's icy lavender would let the executioner know that I am not even the least bit perturbed by the peasants uprising..

5:32 PM EDT  
Blogger Marina said...

Great list! I especially love your choice for the guillotine. Icy, imperturbable..perfect for when one is being executed :-)

5:47 PM EDT  
Blogger katiedid said...

Oh this is a great list, too! What an unusual and fun concept P came up with, and you did so well and interesting with it yourself :)

8:30 PM EDT  
Blogger Marina said...

Thank you, Katie! Patty always has some fun ideas :-)

9:59 PM EDT  

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