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.

Monday, January 2, 2017


I have way more perfumes than I can ever wear, and probably more than I can ever even test. Many items are ones that I acquired back in my swapping days, things that were given to me as gifts, freebies that I received along with something else, or stuff that was ridiculously cheap and tempting even though I didn’t really want or need it. Sound familiar?

In an attempt to slowly reduce the clutter, what I’ll be doing this year is having a giveaway every Monday until further notice. The plan is that there will be some sort of question or prompt that you can write a comment on, and then a drawing to determine the winner of the goods.

This week’s question is what you were most disappointed by in 2016 and what you most look forward to in 2017. It doesn’t have to be about perfume, it’s just a chance to vent a little about anything last year and fantasize about something you’d like to see this coming year.

The prize this week is a small spray bottle of NauticaBermuda Blue (unused, no box) along with some random samples. Comment away!

The drawing will be on Tuesday of next week, January 10.

[Top photo is from Wikimedia, not my much more cluttered collection. Bottom photo is from Fragrantica]


  1. That I frittered away 2016 looking for love outside while my own family had an endless supply of it, if only I had bothered to stop when they wanted my attention.

    In 2017, I hope I can bury the bitter memories of how I hurt my little boys by being the kind and patient mom I had thought I'd be when I first found out I was pregnant. I hope I stop being critical of my husband and actively support him in his dreams. That I can love him.

  2. That was so cathartic..typing it out on a whim to a stranger..thank you! Even if I dont ever get that bottle, I hope someone there knows Im making effort.

    1. Becky, sometimes it's cathartic just to type things out, whether it's for your own eyes only of to a stranger! You are in the drawing for the bottle, and it's very clear that you are making a big effort to make yourself the person you want to be. Congratulations on that!

  3. Happy new year Ellen! Already you putting in place the good resolutions.
    The worst in 2016? Between the terrorist attacks, the civil wars, the death of the former stars, the Brexit and the election of Trump ... my choice is wide. I would say the advent of Trump, even as a European, I find the consequences of this election quite terrifying on a lot of things.
    Then,for this year 2017, as Miss America said: "I wish peace in the world".

    1. Frederic, I agree with your choice of worst event of 2016 and am apprehensive about how things are going to play out over the next year(s). Peace in the world would be the best, and probably most unrealistic, outcome possible.

  4. Hey Ellen,
    DNEM I am trying to winnow my own herd.
    2016? The political world in general disappointed me. So many poor choices made by powerful people who don't care one iota for the people. It drives me to despair.
    Looking forward in 2017 to continued peace and prosperity among my friend family, loads of travel and another great year with Jin.
    That's enough for me.
    Portia xx

    1. Portia, You're probably right that the best we can hope for is peace and prosperity among our own friends and family.