Rive Gauche 

Woody, green florals open this exquisite beauty (Yves Saint Laurent 1971).  It’s sharp, a bit bold and yet incredibly complex. While there are certainly aldehydic florals and the pungent geranium and peachy rose in particular is noticeable (to my nose) they all blend together almost magically and there is a layering effect of various moods and ideas. It’d be easy to try to categorize it or compare it to any number of other famous and gorgeous French fragrances but it’s beyond that. Instead it hovers and shifts about and is remarkable for doing so… At once it’s airy, deep, heavy, elegant, demure, loud… and it’s just… well… exquisite. 

Top notes: aldehydes, bergamot, lemon, peach, green notes, and honeysuckle.  Middle notes: ylang ylang, geranium, jasmine, rose, gardenia, iris, magnolia, lily-of-the-valley.  Base notes: musk, Tahitian vetiver, oakmoss, amber, tonka bean, and sandalwood.  

Nose: Michel Hy

First de Van Cleef & Arpels

2015-07-18 17.16.33 (2)After an initial opening of strong green floral aldehydes, First (Van Cleef & Arpels 1976) is a balanced, stunning 70’s floral fragrance.  A crystalline narcissus, warmed by sweet fruity notes and spicy rich base notes is ethereal and sublime.  First de Van Cleef & Arpels is lovely.

Top notes: black current, aldehydes, madarin orange, raspberry, bergamot, and peach.  Middle notes: tuberose, carnation, orris root, orchid, jasmine, narcissus, ylang ylang, lily-of-the-valley, hyacinth, and Turkish rose.  Base notes:  honey, sandalwood, tonka bean, amber, vetiver, musk, oakmoss, vanilla, and civet.


Sometimes I hesitate to be as open as I would like because some people I know personally read this blog and I wonder what they would think if I was as open as I would like to be.  But, I’ve decided I feel better being open than hiding something really weighing on my mind.  As much as I’m a private person I don’t do well not being honest.  And, not sharing anything personal and not blogging often has been due in part to me trying to keep a lid on things that I frankly wasn’t sure some people would take well, if they knew…  But tonight, as I sit here, I’m realizing I’m just “over it” as they say…

After a lot of intense discussion for months and months, some counseling and about a year of thinking it over my husband and I are now separated. We’re still living together, moving across the country together (ahem, our son is super important to both of us) but we’re separated.  How does that work?  Well, we really are great friends and get along quite well as friends so it’s less complicated than it might seem.  I won’t go into the reasons for our separation, but I will say and stress that I’ve been married to a good person and I would like to believe that I am good person too (can I say that without sounding like I’m giving myself a compliment?) and there hasn’t been any recent bad decision, or horrible fight or something that’s happened or whatever, thankfully…  What did cause the separation?  That part is complicated and has been “in the works” for a long while.  But suffice it to say that our plan is to get couples counseling and take it from there. Whatever we decide to do will be done with as much prayer, thought and further consideration as possible.

Sigh.  Sharing this with you has required me to try to summon a good bit of courage (again, it sounds like I’m giving myself a compliment) but, it feels good to be honest.   People can judge, compare, criticize etc. all they want I suppose, but it feels good to be real.  And it’s entirely possible that most or many of you reading this blog don’t really care anyway…  …  🙂 And I find it amusing to think that I’m all worried about sharing this when many of you (other than people I already know in person) mostly might just read for the perfume reviews….  Which isn’t a bad thing necessarily, but then I may be mostly writing this for myself…  And that’s not bad either necessarily… I guess…


Until tomorrow.