Monthly Archives: May 2014

I SMELL GORGEOUS TODAY

 

 

Serge Lutens Datura Noir  +  Coconut Skin Trip  +  D&G Velvet Desire

16 Comments

Filed under Flowers

THE SURF ZOMBIES: : : : : INSENSE ULTRAMARINE by GIVENCHY : : : : (1994 – present, in annual Japanese remixes)

Unbelievably, one of the most popular perfumes of all time in Japan.

The Black Narcissus

Image

Image

Image

Image

Image

Image

Ultramarine, perhaps the most popular scent for men – EVER   – in Japan, is in my opinion, an absolute,  bottled oxymoron : a ‘morbid oceanic’, if you like, and surely the weirdest perfume ever to be a megahit (which it undoubtedly still is here, even two decades after its release: an extremely popular choice for the young surfer about town – so much so that if you smell a perfume on a man in this country it is quite likely to be this surprise hit flanker for Givenchy). Though nowhere on the best seller lists in other countries, in Japan it is considered something of a reference perfume, one that everyone knows will help you pull, a scent that is seen as definitively sekk-u-shi (….er…SEXY). To me, though, having been exposed to its ‘charms’ at close range on countless occasions, this cadaverous wave of nautical chemicals just smells like…

View original post 318 more words

Leave a comment

Filed under Flowers

He drifted off, blissfully, in the sand……………..SUMMER by KENZO (2005)

It has reached that time.
Proper hot, yellow sun.
And so I am CRAVING some more bottles of this.
For me, there is no better work scent once the solar rays start blasting.

The Black Narcissus

 

 

Image

 

 

Image

 

 

Image

 

 

 

Kenzo is a fashion house I can’t help but enjoy: a (privileged, expensive) refuge from reality that combines a precise, childlike Japanese aesthetic with a vivid, jungled, ‘ethnic’ spectrum: an idealized,  Franco-Japponic, rainforest-batik world of colour. On occasion I go to their shop in Aoyama, Tokyo, just for a quick Kenzo fix ( love how they print flowers), and to consider the possibility of buying one of their leafy, kookaburra neckties. Eye-catching, lush, is the way I would describe the brand.

 

 

 

 

There is also something quite artificial about Kenzo: it’s ‘le monde est beau’ mantra, its smooth, plastic, futuristic packaging; those poppies, ubiquitous, trapped in their eye-brimming plastic towers – but somehow, on the whole, it all works. Many of the perfumes in Kenzo’s range, whether discontinued or not (Le Tigre, L’Elephant, Kashâya, Parfum D’Eté) are…

View original post 220 more words

Leave a comment

Filed under Flowers

HONEYSUCKLE

 

 

 

Image

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

It’s near the end of May; the jasmine is fading slowly but the hillside where I live is replenished with swathes of wild honeysuckle trailing down in surprise ruptures of scent as you find yourself passing by in the dark: the nectarous, sweet siren call of honeysuckle. I have always loved it so much. And yet, to my knowledge, this scent has yet to be convincingly captured in a perfume. I have never smelled one that even comes close.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

IMG_2575

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Lyn Lifshin

 

 

 

 

HONEYSUCKLE

 

 

bees, my

skin smells 
of sun, the

insides of
 roses. I want

 

 

to eat that 
light. Every

thing that

grows does.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Image

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

FAIR flower, that dost so comely grow,
Hid in this silent, dull retreat,
Untouch’d thy honey’d blossoms blow,
Unseen thy little branches greet:
  No roving foot shall find thee here,         5
  No busy hand provoke a tear.
 

 

 

 

 

 

From morning suns and evening dews
At first thy little being came:        
If nothing once, you nothing lose,
For when you die you are the same;
  The space between is but an hour,
  The frail duration of a flower.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Image

 

 

 

 

 

(The Wild Honeysuckle
     By Philip Freneau )

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Honeysuckle

 

 

Image

 

 

 

 

 

I PLUCKED a honeysuckle where

The hedge on high is quick with thorn,

And climbing for the prize, was torn,

And fouled my feet in quag-water;

And by the thorns and by the wind

The blossom that I took was thinn’d,

And yet I found it sweet and fair.

 

 

 

 

Thence to a richer growth I came,

Where, nursed in mellow intercourse,

The honeysuckles sprang by scores,

Not harried like my single stem,

All virgin lamps of scent and dew.

So from my hand that first I threw,

Yet plucked not any more of them.

 

 

 

 

 

(Dante Gabriel Rossetti)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Image

32 Comments

Filed under Flowers

SWEET STENCH OF HUMAN

I have just re-watched this upstairs….

Delighted that Julianne Moore won the Best Actress at Cannes for David Cronenberg’s Map To The Stars……….I cannot W A I T to see it.

The Black Narcissus

 

Image

 

 

 

 

 

Two days ago I went to see, for the second time, the new David Cronenberg film Cosmopolis. It is a work, for me, of insidious, glacial beauty matched perfectly to my own visual aesthetic, and it had been surreptiously replaying itself in my mind ever since the first time I saw it in Ginza three weeks ago. It was still on in Shinjuku so I found had to go and see it again.

 

I write about Cosmopolis here because it strikes me as being one of the olfactively sensitive films I have seen. In fact, smell, and the bodied, fleshed realness of the human odour seem to be one of the film’s subcutaneous themes, embedded in its dark, redolent celluloid. It is a cold film, certainly, but sensuous, and one that got under my skin.

 

As the main protagonist, Eric Packer (Robert…

View original post 1,036 more words

Leave a comment

Filed under Flowers

JAPAN, PERFUME

The Black Narcissus

Image

The delighted and envious uproar over my cache of vintage perfume finds the other day (at a run down underground Tokyo arcade),  led more than one reader to ask the obvious question : why? HOW?!  Why is it that a country famed for its attraction to subtlety; barely perceptible scents, and soft, smudged ambiguity in general, should turn up such treasure troves of unwanted, pungent, classic French scent? How did it get there?

It gave me food for thought….

I am no social anthropologist, nor Japanologist. I can speak the language passably (though that is debatable), but cannot read or write it all, and thus do not have the abilities to bore my way properly into the country’s own literature and current thought, to turn up answers from the inside (without this ability, I don’t think you can ever really get to know a society inside out). I am not…

View original post 4,235 more words

1 Comment

Filed under Flowers

” LAST OF THE PEONIES “

 

 

 

 

Image

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Image

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Image

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Image

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Image

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Image

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Image

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

7 Comments

Filed under Flowers