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.

Friday, May 16, 2014


This report is very late, but that’s what happens when you try to juggle four or five jobs at once.

The day of the Second Annual Seattle Artisan Fragrance Salon on May 4 wasn’t especially promising as everyone braved the cold and pouring rain to load in their exhibits. Once inside, though, the perfumers had a cozy spot in the space that everyone had to walk through on their way to and from the chocolate salon, which was concurrent with the fragrance salon, making for a lively day.

Traffic was nearly constant from opening to closing, with a mix of familiar and new faces from the perfumista community, familiar customers that I had an opportunity to meet in person for the first time, and many chocolate fans, most of whom were open to experiencing and learning about perfume. Just as I expected, Sakura was a hands-down favorite among the entry-level crowd, so I sold out before the day was over.

Stacey Gilbert provided expert help at my table, so I actually got to take a few minutes and check out some of the other exhibitors and trade samples with them. Here are a few photos I managed to snap on my phone.

Jen Siems of Sweet Tea Apothecary.

Karyn Gold-Reineke of Pirouette 

Kenneth Cory of On the Nose Fragrances

The fact that we now have an annual fragrance event in Seattle underscores the emergence of the Pacific Northwest as a center for innovation in perfume.  I look forward to many more such events in future.

[All photos are mine except for the beautiful photo of Sakura, which was taken by Virginia Blanco for her blog Té de Violetas]. 


  1. Apparently people are having trouble posting comments (thank you, Blogger, for this new bug!). I'm trying this to see if I, as blog owner can post anything.

    1. Looks like it worked, so I'm not sure what's going on.

  2. Dear Ellen

    It was nice to see you again. I've enjoyed your new creations, especially Sakura; it's very unique.
    Thanks for linking!

    1. Hi Virginia, Thanks for stopping by here! I always enjoy your reviews.

  3. Just found your blog today. It's great to see someone talk about perfume from our beautiful yet rainy area of the world!

    1. Thank you for leaving a comment. If you're in our rainy area of the world, you might want to check out the Seattle Sniff Facebook group: https://www.facebook.com/groups/176820552450496/ It hasn't been very active lately, but now that summer's here I'll try to organize something.