London in spring is cold and windy but the blossom delicate and beautiful : we are staying at an apartment in Pimlico near the Thames; quite odd but enjoyable being tourists in our own capital city, if necessary for the week’s engagements – we have just come back from an interview on Monocle Radio London which will air on the Sunday Brunch show from 10am tomorrow.
We co-ordinated our scents somewhat : me in vintage 19; D in Suede De Suede, a sample of which we picked up from Les Senteurs on a rushed trip there after arriving at the nearby Victoria Station from Norwich just before closing time ( many, many perfumes I didn’t know : I will have to go back – the whole place has been completely refurbished since the last time I was there ). I am quite intrigued by the Atelier Des Ors range, and liked Heeley’s Vetiver Veritas (2014), a very earthy vetiver that develops gorgeously on the skin but is essentially just the essential oil just slightly embellished with lavender and mint and thus, it has to be said, a total rip off ( I could easily make it myself).
Suede De Suede, on the other hand, is quite original. I tend to prefer suede scents over leather ( as in the original pre-reformulation Daim Blond ), and this Mona Di Orio take on the material is quite an odd beast – suavely tiered with deeper wood notes underneath in the usual oudhish contemporary vein, but fluffed and honeyed up with unexpected notes of osmanthus, strawberry leaf and Norwegian cloudberry – you get all the tactile strata all at once, in a smooth, yet not predictable formula that smells quite gentlemanly on the D (and the radio interviewer, Georgina, loved the combined smell when she entered the room at the Monocle offices where we were waiting – I told her the connecting factor between our two perfumes was leather).
The interview went quite well I think -this was my first time ever having this kind of experience, though Duncan was on Radio Norfolk once as a kid after winning a helicopter ride for scholastic achievement ; we talked about the genesis of the book, and we tested it out on air ( so annoying, though, that my Histoires De Parfums Noir Patchouli was in the wrong bag to be whipped out at exactly the right time on air, as it would have been a perfect match in her request for something musky and hippyish – —- she found the Fragonard Reve Indien – a gorgeous patchouli-laden amber I instead selected too sweet and overbearing, though interestingly did seem to be drawn towards my musty old box of vintage Vol De Nuit which she applied to her wrist; on the other a blast of Sana Jardin’s Savage Jasmine, carnivalesque and brazen, which smelled heady to say the least).
The studio ponged afterwards with all the airlocked, coalesced odors, D also taking part in the interview and the bag rummaging and talking about the female pioneers of flight in the 1930’s and the indoles at the heart of white flowers. Georgina thought it was charming we had coordinated our scents as we leaned into our mics, a deliberation that could, I imagine, come across as Gilbert & George eccentric, but to me it is necessary. Sometimes I think couples don’t actually think enough about their confused miasmas when they go out and swirl together :::: two great perfumes have the possibility of smelling vile when malcombined…….like tomato ketchup and vanilla ice cream, or horseradish, roast beef, and violet.