Friday, May 26, 2006

Friday Night

It started raining here in New York and thankfully, I was indoors right where I want to be, finishing up a new song and enjoying my perfuming experience when--Boom! *Scream* Lightning and thunder struck so hard, it knocked the lights out for a few seconds. Well, thank goodness the power isn't out. Again--Boom! *Throws laptop (onto the bed)* I've got a flashlight on hand and I'm still online. So, here I am trying to calm my nerves and to write about my Fragrance of the Moment.

I'm sampling an interesting new discovery called L'Artisan Parfumeur Orchidée Blanche. It's not my usual type of scent being soft and powdery and yet I find it oddly intruguing. The opening is beyond unappealing; it's actually terribly harsh and medicinal but the dry down is a beautiful balance of true-to-life elegant flowers in purple and white hues on a honeyed, powdery vanillic base that's just sweet enough and not heavy or cloying, just a subdued skin scent of a soft floral. The overall feeling of Orchidée Blanche to me is more Classical than it is Modern and yet it walks a fine line between the two. The soft and powdery part makes it seem more old-fashioned but the minimalism of its composition plus the Gourmand notes of honey and vanilla push the envelope just enough. I have to wear it a little longer to see if it's something I want to invest in a bottle of. So far, I think it's divine but I feel it's far too elegant and refined for me. The level of sweetness is so perfectly right. I like it but this is another discontinued perfume. It makes me a little sad but I don't blame anyone for discontinuing it; if someone didn't tell me to sit through the opening and wait for the beauty to unfold, I might have dismissed it, too.

If I'm to compare it to anything, Serge Lutens Un Lys and L'Instant de Guerlain come to mind as far as elegant white florals on light vanillic bases go. Orchidée Blanche is softer and more powdery than both. I find L'Instant very easy to wear but it's the sweetest (most Gourmand) of the three and also the most modern of the bunch. I was surprised to find out that Orchidee Blanche was created almost 20 years before L'Instant. Here are the notes for comparison:

L'Artisan Parfumeur Orchidée Blanche (1985)
Notes: Bergamot, magnolia, nectarine, iris, honey, vanilla.

L'Instant de Guerlain (2004)
Citrus Honey, Magnolia, and Crystalline Amber

Some sources include:
Top: Mandarin, bergamot
Heart: Magnolia, sambac jasmine, ylang-ylang, iris
Base notes: Vanilla, benzoin