Friday, March 22, 2019

Sixteen92: Spring 2019 (The Poison Garden)


This narcotic spring release from Sixteen92 is the last Circle sample set for this run. After being a member of The Circle for the full year I have decided to sign up again. I very much enjoyed sampling all the perfumes from each release and I liked the full bottle exclusive perk. It is a great way for me to wear notes and fragrances that I might not normally reach for. I highly recommend becoming a member of The Circle if you enjoy expanding your scent horizons.

Now onto the Poison Garden Spring 2019 release. Claire derived her inspiration from various toxic plants. I love the botanical placard and the atypical twist on the standard floral offerings of a spring release. These won't smell like a wilting daisy.


Aconitum- Notes: Wolfsbane, tangled roots, wildflower, metal, storm, rock, black fur and wild musk.
Ruins with crumbling gap toothed leers and moss studded stone teeth push up from black loamy soil. The damp earth pools in shadows, the air charged with green electrons and strange perfume from immortal flowers lurk in deep niches. This stony, stormy atmospheric is a foggy dream to wear. No one quite does stone and storm and metal quite like Claire.


Conium Maculatum- Notes: Hemlock flower, citrus blossom, coumarin, lavender spike, tobacco leaf, castoreum, oak, bergamot and dried iris. *premium*
Delicate iris blossoms flutter like a field of purple winged butterflies on their green stalks in the breeze. A subtle sweetness characterizes the aroma, perhaps from the tobacco and coumarin. There is a haunting duality to this scent. Much like a spirit can possess someone else and speak through them but with a hint of their own voice, this perfume smells like it has unfolded from a soul in the past and grafted itself to the skin. Long ago a light sugared iris and soft violet hued perfume graced a lady as her signature scent and melded with her body chemistry, adding a human element, and now that aroma has shifted to you. It is beautiful and airy and easy to wear but with an unexpected animalic breath.


Atropa Belladonna- Notes: Nightshade berry, narcotic flowers, green tomato, green pepper, soil, broomstick and velvet plum.
Tiny white hairs running along the stems and leaves of the tomato plant release microbursts of oils that smell of sharp serrated green leaves, pungent herbs and limonene summer sunshine. These oils snap and bite at the skin until a sandy layer of soil grounds the scent and a flood of sweet alyssum carpets the fragrance. The drydown is gorgeous. A softly verdant aroma of nature in the nighttime with plantlings, vegetal musks and a brown warmth from the trees. 


Datura Metel- Notes: Datura blossom, sweet almond, rosewater, sugar cube, vanilla orchid, moth wing and wild honeycomb.
Sweet cyanide almonds yield to honeyed jasmine petals. The honey drips down into the drydown and lands in a dewy hollow of rosewater. Deceptively simple. I love the heart and drydown of this fragrance. It is alluring and hazy, approachable yet sibylline. 


Nerium Oleander- Notes: White and pink oleander, heliotrope, apple seed, sweet custard, pineapple, thyme and coconut water.
A heady thick mixture of almond and custard, coconut and vanilla leave me licking my lips unexpectedly. Not what I was expecting for a floral perfume, but those gourmand notes are creamy and lush and quiet toothsome. As it sways into the heart the bakery aspects diminish and a little of the cooling coconut water and floral nuances emerge.

My two favorites from this collection are Aconitum and Conium Maculatum with Datura Metel as a very close third. These are beautifully rendered perfumes and I look forward to another year of The Circle. 

Were you are member of The Circle? Do you plan on becoming one this year? Are you a fan of the way tomato plants smell?

Tuesday, March 19, 2019

Melting Basket 138


Wax from the last basket I melted that I would happily add back to my collection includes: Bohemienne Life Bloom, Fraser's Ridge, Heart and Crown, CFTKR White Cedar Forest, Woodland Foliage, and The Bathing Garden Alice in Lavenderland.

Bohemienne Life- Folktale
Rosegirls- Winter Mermaid
Super Tarts- Hades
Vintage Chic Scents- Edelweiss
CFTKR- Fire Roasted Marshmallows
Lasting Scent Candles- Summer Bonfire
Sniff My Tarts- Dragon's Blood/Butter Brickle/Celtic Moonspice/Clove
Beezy- Baked Apples
Beezy- Apple Clove Butter

If you are curious about any of these scents feel free to comment and I will do an individual review of them. 


My sister and I have this oddity store in Tampa, well specifically in Ybor, that we like to go to from time to time called Dysfunctional Grace. I usually end up finding something I just can't leave the store without. 


Previously it was a small glass case and a ring and this last time it was an old hand made wooden shelf. The girls go with us and end up adding dinosaur claws, crystals and knickknacks to their own collections.


Do you enjoy visiting oddity stores?

Hey. I am headed to Washington DC for work in a couple days. Any food or shopping recommendations? Book stores? Cafes? Anything I should see for sure? We need to scout a place for a good lunch for sure. We also have tickets to watch "Into the Woods" at the Ford Theater and one dinner reservation but it is wide open after that. 

Crossing fingers the cherry trees will be blossoming.

Monday, March 18, 2019

CBe Ceramics: Redwoods Tumbler


Cate Be's art really strikes a chord within me. I have one of her goddess mugs and it is a joy to drink coffee from in the mornings. Cate, the maker behind CBe Ceramics, has been having a nice mixture of ready to ship pottery pieces for sale along with a few pre-orders. This redwoods tumbler was part of a pre-order I placed in mid-January. The pre-orders take about 6-8 weeks to be made. 


I also picked up another of Cate's fire cider tonics which I will write about another time (if I don't use it all up before then).


I love this tumbler. It is great for iced coffee, juices, tea and milk. I enjoy the small saying that Cate often includes on the back of her creations. I also love that she changes up small details in the designs so that all her creations morph and flex with her inspiration yet have the same heart and soul.


And her glazes are incredible. Rusted browns and sunset oranges run and pool with turquoise stones and jade hues. 



I was thrilled to place a pre-order for one of Cate's two-sided Totoro mugs. She will probably be having a custom order opening in late April. 

I have yet to see the redwoods but I will be happy to drink from them until I can one day. What plant or tree would you like to see in person one day?

Sunday, March 17, 2019

Birbs


It's funny how this winter we had different birds come to visit and some that were missing. I did't have my regular woodpecker friend. My Tufted Titmice didn't visit nearly as much and a few others stayed away. But I did get some Goldfinches and several other birds, some of which I am having a hard time identifying. 


This past week has been busy. I had an overnight field trip with my 6th graders at the Orlando Science Center. It was fun having a whole museum to ourselves. It was a really great program. We started with a movie in the IMAX Dome, then some CSI experiments like blood typing, computer facial recognition, chromatography and such, then we headed up to the observatory and looked through two massive telescopes. We got the see four baby stars that were "recently" born in Orion's nebula (they are only a million years old compared to our sun which is about 4 billion I think). Then we saw the moon up close and it was incredible. 


This weekend I am alternating between packing, playing in my garden, reading and buying mugs. Good gravy is Adam going to be surprised when they roll in.

Hey. How funny does that yellow and black bird look up there?? Like a missile headed right to the feeder. 


Spring break starts next week on Thursday and lasts until March 31st. I am very much looking forward to it. It will be packed but it will be good. 

How is your mid-March looking? Did you notice any difference in your bird visitors? Does it normally change that much? Wondering what birds I will see when I move. 

Wednesday, March 13, 2019

Solstice Scents: Hidden Lodge


Hidden Lodge was among some of the very first perfumes I encountered from Solstice Scents when Angela was first debuting her EDP format. Back in 2015 I fell hard for it and my love for it has only grown deeper. Hidden Lodge was built around the earthen habitat of a beaver. Angela constructed a scent that evokes that dark dank coziness with a touch of animalic warmth. I don't remember the exact cost of this perfume and it is not currently in stock, but Angela does do seasonal restocks so it will return. I am thinking it was in the $70-$80 range as are most of her EDPs with a few exceptions. 


Hidden Lodge- Notes: Dry wood blend, oud, woodsmoke, spices and castoreum (botanical interpretation). $70-$80 I believe... I forgot exactly how much I spent on this one.

As previously mentioned, Angela built her inspiration for Hidden Lodge from the hard working beaver as he constructs his warm cozy dam of a den. This woody beauty has dark dank undertones and subtle sweetness but it surprisingly wearable and it resonates with me. Pine and cedar kindling, flesh toned and brimming with fuel in their fractured bones ignite into delicate flames sending woodsmoke signals into an unmanned sky. Tufts of lightly charred oud wood plug crevices and tuck into nooks to lay a downy bed of warmth in the perfume while the castoreum is the ghost of the pelt that leaves behind its musky effulvia letting one know that this is a living creature's home. So tread with care and respect. The spices are well blended into the fragrance but play out to my nose as a hint of earthy coriander or camphorous juniper berry, perhaps a small grating of nutmeg or mace for woodsy warmth or even a grounding of tumeric or saffron. Either way the spice is not overt or kitchen cupboard but it shades and highlights the delicate construction of the scent. 


I do adore this perfume. It is beautifully rendered and is one I wear all year through.

Do you have a favorite Solstice Scents perfume? Do you prefer the EDP or oil versions?

Tuesday, March 12, 2019

Perfume Packing


I realized about a month ago that I was going to need some kind of system to pack up all my perfume oils for the move. I usually have them displayed on my wall in my bedroom so I did not have anything on hand in which to safely move my collection. After reading some awesome suggestions in various perfumes groups I decided to try two different options. 


This first was this 54 count essential oil carrying case I picked up from Amazon (here is a link to it - NOT an affiliate link- none of them are) for about $40. It will hold 5 ml bottles perfectly in a precut velvet lined foam tray and the holes stretch to accommodate even larger bottles. It even came with stickers and pens and all sorts of paraphernalia. 


I like that is has extra room on top of the bottles so I could fill it with all the silly little things I have collected over the years that I want to take with me. Yes, that includes lots of feathers from the birds in our backyard. 


After filling up the essential oil carrying case I knew I needed something with a little more capacity. A lady in the groups mentioned that she used a tool box that she filled with smaller padded essential oil cases. So once again I popped over to Amazon and picked up a small steel tool box for about $22 (here). I think I had the most fun just decorating it with all my favorite handmade artisans' stickers. 


The tool box did come with a tray insert but I took it out to make room for the all perfume. There was a small space left on top and I put some special vintage post cards, book plates, incense and perfume on top that I knew would travel safe there.


I was then able to squeeze four thirty bottle carrying cases into the tool box. These essential oil cases are soft and padded and ran about $12 each. They can be found here.


They stack two deep and fit perfectly.


They fit 5 ml bottles easily and up to 15 ml bottles. I can also squeeze two tall 5 mls in one spot, like the bottles that Sixteen92 or Hexennacht use. 

I still have about 25 stragglers on the shelves that I am leaving out so I can wear them. I also need to figure out how to pack my Solstice Scents and Sonoma Scent Studio and Serge Lutens EDPs. But not going to think about that just yet until I get most of the kitchen packed. Any suggestions? Are you adding up how many perfume oils I have? Not too far from one for every day of the year? LOL! I will do a collection post once I move into my new location in a couple months. 

Monday, March 11, 2019

Sea With Botanicals: Quoth the Raven Candle


Though this candle would indeed be perfect for a bleak December, its embers are welcome to glow in my home anytime. Do you remember my Sea Witch Botanicals soap in Quoth the Raven? I decided I wanted to make my first candle purchase from them in the same scent too. It arrived packaged carefully with nary a crack or gouge.


Quoth the Raven- Notes: A spicy blend of orange, cinnamon and clove. $25

This all natural wax blend (soy and rice bran oil) comes scented with essential oils and a wooden wick in an apothecary style glass jar with fitted lid. A raven looks quite handsome on the front of this 8 ounce candle. The wood wick lit beautifully and burns smoothly and easily with minimal noise or need for trimming. The scent wafts out beautifully at about a medium-strong throw in a larger area. The scent of pomanders instills a cozy environment in the home. 


The wax pools deep and amber hued which matches the fragrance perfectly. I look forward to continuing my explorations of Sea Witch Botanicals' candle line. 

Do you have any favorite all natural candles?