What is the Perfume Project?

This blog is a constantly evolving forum for thoughts on perfume, perfume-making, plants (especially orchids and flora of the Pacific Northwest) and life in general. It started out chronicling the adventures of Olympic Orchids Perfumes, established in July 2010, and has expanded in other directions. A big part of the blog is thinking about the ongoing process of learning and experimentation that leads to new perfumes, the exploration of perfumery materials, the theory and practice of perfume making, the challenges of marketing perfumes and other fragrance products, and random observations on philosophy and society. Spam comments will be marked as such and deleted; any comments that go beyond the boundaries of civil discourse will also be deleted. I am grateful to all of you, the readers, who contribute to the blog by commenting and making this a truly interactive perfume project.

Sunday, February 27, 2011


As La Bonne Vivante observed some time ago before she disappeared, academic life has its cycles of frenzied work followed by “normal” work. This past week has been one of the frenzied ones, with several grant proposals all due around the end of February. To top it off, I’ve had a lot of perfume orders to pack and ship, which is a very good thing, but it’s been keeping me busy. I’m looking forward to getting back to normal for a little while.

I’ve neglected the blog, but hope to get back into posting regularly this coming week, especially since I just received a very unusual e-mail complete with a perfume brief that is going to make for an exciting and challenging journey in perfume making. Stay tuned for details.

For now, though, I’m just going to post a review of a perfume that led me to some thoughts on questionable practices of online perfume “stores”.

Creed Bois de Santal
For quite a while now I’ve had a sample of Bois de Santal that was kindly sent to me by someone, a forum member I think. A couple of days ago I finally tried it and guess what? It starts out with sandalwood! It’s an excellent synthetic sandalwood that almost manages to smell like the Mysore variety, surrounded by green herbal notes and citrus at first. Then the green reveals itself as lavender, which, together with tonka in the base, produces a light fougere-like note, but it’s not so strong that it detracts from the sandalwood. Overall, it’s a very nice scent that I’m now hoarding in my sample collection.

I have read that Bois de Santal has been discontinued since 2008, even though Basenotes lists it as still in production. If you Google it, it shows up on several of the discounters’ websites, presumably as one of their many bait-and-switch items, since it invariably is “temporarily out of stock”. How about “permanently out of stock”? How about deleting it from the website, since it never will be in stock? What if I actually fell for the “Notify me when available” ploy? Would I be on this outfit’s spam list for the rest of my life? Is anyone else annoyed by all of the “out of stock” items in online perfume sales outlets?

1 comment:

  1. I have few words for how much I hate, hate, hate that. Getting all excited over...hot air, unscented? I do think you're right - they should wipe any mention of things they no longer have, will never carry again, have sold out and will not be seen by man nor beast in any unnatural lifespan! ;)

    I can't wait to hear about your new project! And I hope that the insanity - not just in academic circles, alas - stops - very soon!