Okay, Violette Market. Apparently the order was so huge that many freebies were thrown in, so I got a couple of frimps in addition to the decants I ordered, and they were both perfectly lovely. Hooray for perfumey surprises.

First the frimps:

Rhea. A curiously sharp rose atop a bed of vetiver and cedar shavings, in a smoke-shrouded room.

Bartolomeo Alberti. Woody musk, with grounding undertones of violet and patchouli.

Sun Bear Local Honey Co. Forest Honey. Whoa, was this ever unpromising on the drydown - I smelled like a honey-glazed sapmonster. But then it got interesting. Not beautiful, but interesting. The sap and the honey stopped wrestling for dominance and began working together to become everything I'd hoped it would be: the honey tempered the sharpness of the sap, while the sap prevented the honey from becoming too cloying. In spite of an unpromising start, this wound up being a real winner.

Cherry Bomb. Sadly, my skin does something with black cherry that makes it smell like aftershave. It wasn't quite as pronounced with Cherry Bomb as it was with other black cherry scents I've tried, but it has become sadly apparent that black cherry and I are not friends. Other than the 40 minutes where this smelled like aftershave, this was a really compelling cherry-scented amber with the occasional whiff of acrid paper. I'm just not sure if that 40 minutes is a dealbreaker. I'll need to spend more time on this one.

Old Wooden Coaster. The first thing that hits me is cedar. Cedar, cedar and more cedar. Since I adore cedar, this is not even slightly a problem. Then the other woody notes develop, followed by patchouli, presenting an olfactory portrait of a wood roller coaster. Slowly, other notes waft forward on the breeze - creamy tuberose, elusive bergamot, cardamom - and are carried away again.

Sunset Over the Grandstand. With the strong, dusty vanilla component, I can't help but compare this to BPAL's Tombstone, which happens to be one of my favourite scents. But where Tombstone evokes a strong mental image of an imaginary place, Sunset's leather note gives it the feel of being grounded in gritty reality - there is an actual grandstand, the rodeo is over and the cowboys are going home. And yet the vanilla makes it oddly dreamlike. This is the scent of imaginary cowboys going home.


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