A Rose by Any Other Name

Stella, Nirvana Rose, Florence, Tea Rose, Petale Noir, Jessica – those are the other names for rose. At least in my perfume collection. I love perfume. LOVE it. I have 40 different perfumes right now and 40 others as samples.


My very favorite perfume in the world is KL by Karl Lagerfeld. kl-women-by-karl-lagerfeld-2

It is no longer made, and hasn’t been for a really long time. About five years ago I hauled everything out of my linen closet in the hallway in order to redo the unholy mess that it had become. Wonder of wonders, I found a sealed bottle of this precious elixir in the morass. I was over the moon. I’ve seen sealed bottles of this go for $300 on eBay, so precious indeed. It’s a warm spicy scent, all cinnamon and amber and yes civet , back when they still used the real thing. And oh so sensual. It epitomizes the perfumes of the 80’s, which is, of course, when I bought it. It made me feel mature and sophisticated at a time when I still looked like I was in high school. It made me feel like I had a place in the world. Wearing it now still transports me to a time when I was young and feeling powerful. I am now less young, but more powerful and still love the way it makes me feel.


My current avenue to new fragrances is a subscription service called Scentbird. For me, it’s perfect because I can try many different (and rather pricey) perfumes at a much lower cost. My test tube rack is filled with the ones I have gotten already (and the scent Spicebomb by Viktor + Rolf is in the black holder.) For just $15 I get my pick of over 400 fragrances. It’s rebottled from originals so while the 8 ml per vial is more expensive per ounce than buying a full bottle, there are not many places where you can buy a partial bottle! This way I can get six different perfumes for the cost of a single $90 full bottle. If, for any reason, this seems like a cool idea to you, you can get a free perfume by using my link. The hitch is that you have to buy the first month and then your second month is free. Still, that’s $15 for two perfumes!

You can see that I have some men’s fragrances – Polo Supreme Oud and Spicebomb from Scentbird and a full sized Tom Ford Noir. Because I like dark, spicy, woody scents sometimes the ones designed for men are perfect for me. In general the broad category “oriental” is the one that appeals to me the most. Recently, I nabbed myself two drugstore perfumes that have been around FOREVER. The first is Tabu (1932) a sweet, amber, and clove concoction that smells like a burgundy velvet tapestry in a dark paneled study. I think I paid $10 for the full bottle and I love it so very much. The second is a replacement from high school called Toujour Moi (1921) – got it at Walgreens! This one is sandalwood and white florals and smells like a cashmere shawl feels.

Picking out a perfume each morning gives me such joy. I spent a solid decade not wearing scents at all because Evan couldn’t handle it. I am now happily back to indulging my spice nose (haha – I made that up as a corollary to “sweet tooth” 😃 ). Let me know if you want to sniff my neck.


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