Day 1750 – BPAL’s The Lady on the Grey

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Scent Name:  The Lady on the Grey

Manufacturer:  Black Phoenix Alchemy Lab – Neil Gaiman: The Graveyard Book

Scent Description and Notes:A huge white horse, of the kind that the people who know horses would call a “grey”, came ambling up the side of the hill. The pounding of its hooves could be heard before it was seen, along with the crashing it made as it pushed through the little bushes and thickets, through the brambles and the ivy and the gorse that had grown up on the side of the hill. The size of a Shire horse it was, a full nineteen hands or more. It was a horse that could have carried a knight in full armour into combat, but all it carried on its naked back was a woman, clothed from head to foot in grey. Her long skirt and her shawl might have been spun out of old cobwebs.

Her face was serene, and peaceful.

They knew her, the graveyard folk, for each of us encounters the lady on the grey at the end of our days, and there is no forgetting her.

The horse paused beside the obelisk. In the east the sky was lightening gently, a pearlish, pre-dawn luminescence that made the people of the graveyard uneasy and made them think about returning to their comfortable homes. Even so, not a one of them moved. They were watching the lady on the grey, each of them half-excited, half-scared. The dead are not superstitious, not as a rule, but they watched her as a Roman Augur might have watched the sacred crows circle, seeking wisdom, seeking a clue.

And she spoke to them.

In a voice like the chiming of a hundred tiny silver bells she said only, “The dead should have charity.” And she smiled.

Ethereal, opalescent, and radiant: pearly sandalwood, white amber, tobacco flower, orris, castoreum bouquet, soft resins, and pale petals.” -BPAL.org

Oil Color: A thinned peach wine color.

Bottle Design and Artwork: This is a standard 1/32 ml imp that has been decanted for me, although I’m not sure by whom. The label just contains the scent name written in pink pen. The label art that appeals on the bottle is as follows:

Scent:

  • ITI: Oh no, that’s glorious -coolly moonlit tobacco flower and pale evening-blooming flowers, scent-rich and haunting, threaded with thin strands of fruity castoreum and ghostly resin.  Dang it!  I wish this hadn’t been discontinued.
  • Wet: The amber peaks through the opalescent tobacco and pale flowers, while still maintaining that fruity and ever so pleasingly musky castoreum and gently wafting resins.
  • Dry:  After an 18 hour day, I’m honestly surprised that any scent is left. What lingers is just an impression of tobacco flower. I re-applied and let it settle for 4 hours.  Even after washing my hands, the scent of pale resin musks tinted with amber and tobacco flower still lingers.  

Other Impressions: “Hmm, it’s almost like a clove-y rose.  Dark red rose.” -Tony

Day 1749 – BPAL’s The Waltz

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Scent Name:  The Waltz

Manufacturer:  Black Phoenix Alchemy Lab – Crimson Peak: In Memoriam

Scent Description and Notes:The Waltz – Not a complicated dance, really – The lady takes her place slightly to the left of the leading gentleman. Six basic steps – that is all.

However – It is said that the true test of a perfect waltz is for it to be so swift, delicate and so smooth, that a candle flame will not be extinguished in the hand of the lead dancer… Now that requires the perfect partner.

So swift, so delicate, so smooth: champagne musk, ambergris accord, white rose, rosewood, and vanilla amber.” -BPAL.org

Oil Color: Colorless on my skin.

Bottle Design and Artwork: This is a standard 5ml brown apothecary bottle.  The label extends just under halfway around the bottom.  The label features the name of the company along the bottom in a thin white block font along the bottom.  The name of the scent takes up the largest portion of the label in tall Crimson-Peak stylized aged amber block font.  Just over the scent name is a different font, white, block, and more spaced out that displays the name of the collection.  Above that is a smaller bold bock font featuring the phrase “Indulge Your Dark Side.”  All of this is set against a black and smoke Crimson Peak logo. 

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Image courtesy of Tiah Schindelheim Rodriguez.

Scent:

  • ITB: Pale white rose is followed by vanilla amber fluff threaded with a subtle champagne undertone (minus the fizz).  It brings up images of gilded Victorian mirrors framed by a vase full of delicate roses.
  • Wet: Oh, I was not expecting this beauty!  It very much reminds me of swirling rose chiffon gowns swirling atop polished wood, the atmosphere fizzy with champagne and ambered musk.  Wow!
  • Dry:  Yes!  This still has decent silage even after 6 hours! What a delightful combination of rose-tinted vanilla amber musk. A faded undertone of rosewood grounds the scent, keeping it from being too cloyingly sweet. Delicate, feminine, and just delightful, The Waltz shines.

Other Impressions: “Playdough.  It’s definitely playdough.” -Tony 

Day 1748 – BPAL’s All That I Possess

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Scent Name:  All That I Possess

Manufacturer:  Black Phoenix Alchemy Lab – Crimson Peak: In Memoriam

Scent Description and Notes:I am here with all that I possess, Sir – A name, a patch of land and the will to make it yield. The least you can grant me is the courtesy of your time and the chance to prove it to you, and these fine gentlemen, that my will, dear Sir, is at the very least, as strong as yours.

Amber, clove and leather takes shape through the scent of raw determination; a fortitude born of having nothing left to lose. In the background, guiac wood, white sandalwood, and myrrh forms the dust of long-forgotten aspirations and hope on the verge of being forever relinquished.” -BPAL.org

Oil Color: Colorless on my skin.

Bottle Design and Artwork: This is a standard 5ml brown apothecary bottle.  The label extends just under halfway around the bottom.  The label features the name of the company along the bottom in a thin white block font along the bottom.  The name of the scent takes up the largest portion of the label in tall Crimson-Peak stylized block font.  Just over the scent name is a different font, white, block, and more spaced out that displays the name of the collection.  Above that is a smaller bold bock font featuring the phrase “Indulge Your Dark Side.”  All of this is set against a black and smoke Crimson Peak logo. 

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Image courtesy of Tiah Schindelheim Rodriguez.

Scent:

  • ITB: Black leather, dust, and  ground clove meet my nose.  There’s  something in here that reminds  me of polish with cool undertones, but I’m not sure where I’m getting that from.
  • Wet: On first application, it’s leather first then  a dusty clove, but given a few minutes, the scent deeps and develops some lovely complexity. Woods and heavy spice dusted over dark leather.  The clove note is dark and aromatic akin to Clove Cigarettes, but the guiac wood and resins and a strangely cavernous or vaulting depth to the scent, like Gothic vaulted ceilings.
  • Dry:  A soft, almost mulling-spice clove  perfumed with a hint of myrrh and amber are the only notes that I can discern with some effort after 6 hours of wear.  I wish it had a bit more staying power, but I am enjoying it even if I must reapply. 

Other Impressions: None.

Day 1747 – BPAL’s A Specific Aberration

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Scent Name:  A Specific Aberration

Manufacturer:  Black Phoenix Alchemy Lab – Crimson Peak: In Memoriam

Scent Description and Notes:These… spectres – may be all around us and only the “developing agent” – those with the specific aberration can see them…

Or perhaps we only notice things when the time comes for us to pay attention to them. When they need us to see them…

The scent of a pierced veil: misty white petals drifting through ambergris and frankincense.” -BPAL.org

Oil Color: A faint yellow oil on my skin.

Bottle Design and Artwork: This is a standard 5ml brown apothecary bottle.  The label extends just under halfway around the bottom.  The label features the name of the company along the bottom in a thin white block font along the bottom.  The name of the scent takes up the largest portion of the label in tall Crimson-Peak stylized block font.  Just over the scent name is a different font, white, block, and more spaced out that displays the name of the collection.  Above that is a smaller bold bock font featuring the phrase “Indulge Your Dark Side.”  All of this is set against a navy and denim Crimson Peak logo. 

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Image courtesy of Tiah Schindelheim Rodriguez.

Scent:

  • ITB: Pale, soft flowers delicately dance over gentle frankincense  tendrils.  I’m not sure which flower it is, but there’s something that reads as pale purple to me, like wisteria, bell flower, or lunaria annua.
  • Wet: Refreshingly early spring pale flowers and trimmed stems shadowed by the mist mingle with a warm heart of subdued ambergris under trails of white frankincense smoke.
  • Dry:  After an hour and half dry-down, the scent is mostly soft, pale flowers perfumed with a gentle frankincense and ambergris-tinted musk.  The ambergris adds a roundness to the middle notes that is warming rather than animalistic. 4 hours after application, pale, delicately incense-powdered florals still dance delightfully on my skin.  Airy, soft, and gentle.  I like this much more than anticipated!

Other Impressions: Powdery.  There’s something familiar about this one, but I can’t place it.  Familiar, for sure. It’s the smell of a feeling – clean and pleasant. It’s nice!” -Tony

Day 1746 – BPAL’s Black Moths

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Scent Name:  Black Moths

Manufacturer:  Black Phoenix Alchemy Lab – Crimson Peak: In Memoriam

Scent Description and Notes:Back home we only have black moths. Formidable creatures. They thrive on the dark and cold.

…What do they feed on?

Butterflies, I’m afraid.

A flutter in the darkness: wild plum and blackcurrant with aged black patchouli, vetiver, red rose petal, tonka absolute, and opoponax.” -BPAL.org

Oil Color: The color of new motor oil.

Bottle Design and Artwork: This is a standard 1/32 ml imp that has been decanted for me, although I’m not sure by whom. The label just contains the scent name written in pink pen. The label art that appeals on the bottle is as follows:

Scent:

  • ITI: Wow, that is richly soil-laden patchouli right there laced with inky vetiver and a thread of deep, wild plum.  It reminds me of thick black velvet, aged and slightly moldered.
  • Wet: While the patchouli and vetiver still reign supreme, the soil has been subsumed under thick wild plum and blackcurrant, shifting the scent more toward purple, dark fruits than soil and smoke.  Red rose petals, drying underneath, are scattered far below the plummed patchouli, laced with a brooding resin deep below.
  • Dry:  After two hours, the patchouli has taken on its damp soil tone lined with dark red rose and subtle undertones of deep purple plum and smoky vetiver and opoponax incense. It only seems to last about 5 hours on me before fading away completely.  Pleasant.

Other Impressions: “It’s like spicy flowers and something old and pleasant, like an old house.” -Tony

Day 1745 – BPAL’s Edith Cushing

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Scent Name:  Edith Cushing

Manufacturer:  Black Phoenix Alchemy Lab – Crimson Peak: In Memoriam

Scent Description and Notes:Love looks not with the eyes, but with the mind: pearlescent vanilla musk with white sandalwood, grey amber, white patchouli, ambrette seed, and oudh.” -BPAL.org

Oil Color: A crystalline white wine color, thin and delicate.

Bottle Design and Artwork: This is a standard 1/32 ml imp that has been decanted for me, although I’m not sure by whom. The label just contains the scent name written in pink pen. The label art that appeals on the bottle is as follows:

Scent:

  • ITI: Dusky, aged vanilla musk, a ghost of pale amber, and softly resinous sandalwood and crumbling patchouli remind me of decaying lace curtains and gently swaying cobwebs.
  • Wet: Soft, delicate, and etheral, for sure.  The vanilla musk and fragile patchouli are threaded together with ghostly grey amber, bone-white sandalwood, and a hint of ambrette and oudh.  As it starts to settle, the amber and vanilla warm and take on a creamier undertone underneath the lacy pale resins, which bloom, porcelain perfumed.
  • Dry:  After an hour, the scent still tends heavily toward grey amber and pale vanilla musk tinted with sandalwood and a hint of frail patchouli and oudh.  The ambrette ads a touch of sweetness, but the scent is still heavily one of perfumed gauzy resins. Hauntingly beautifully and sophisticated. 

Other Impressions: “I can’t pick out anything in particular, but it smells purple.  That’s the best way I can describe it, like there’s something in there that should be purple.” -Tony

Day 1744- BPAL’s Sir Thomas Sharpe

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Scent Name:  Sir Thomas Sharpe

Manufacturer:  Black Phoenix Alchemy Lab – Crimson Peak: In Memoriam

Scent Description and Notes:Give in to temptation: black amber darkens a pale fougere.” -BPAL.org

Oil Color: A fiery red oil akin to liquid dragon’s blood resin.

Bottle Design and Artwork: This is a standard 1/32 ml imp that has been decanted for me, although I’m not sure by whom. The label just contains the scent name written in pink pen. The label art that appeals on the bottle is as follows:

Scent:

  • ITI: What a beautifully warm resin-spiced fougere with what smells like a dash of fiery musk that smacks of ambergris! Smooth, dark, and deeply seductive, Thomas Sharpe is one dashing scent.
  • Wet: Smoldering oakmoss and lavender-tinted fougere is wrapped in thickly dark amber resin with a pleasantly powdery undertone.
  • Dry:  Darkly intoxicating warm amber over a lavender-forward but subdued fougere. I regret not getting a bottle. I imagine that this will age phenomenally. 

Other Impressions: “Butter and satisfying workout sweat.” -Tony

Day 1743 – BPAL’s Grief

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Scent Name: Grief

Manufacturer:  Black Phoenix Alchemy Lab – Marchen:

Scent Description and Notes: It is not well, therefore, to mourn long for the departed; else Grief, whose sole pleasure is in such mourning, will be quick to send fresh cause for tears.

Inconsolable: lily of the valley, hyacinth, calamus, muguet, hydrangea, and elemi. -https://blackphoenixalchemylab.com/shop/general-catalog-perfume-oils/marchen/grief/

Oil Color: A very thin, dilute yellow oil on my skin.

Bottle Design and Artwork:  This is a standard 5ml brown apothecary bottle.  The label extends just under halfway around the bottom.  The label features the name of the company along with the phrase “hand blended perfume oil” framing the BPAL symbol along the bottom.  The name of the scent takes up the largest portion of the label in tall block font.  All of this is set against a parchment colored background and framed by an ornate iron-work border.

Scent:

  • ITB: White and pale florals, the lily of the valley  and hydrangea being more discernible, atop a slightly medicinal astringency that might be from the calamus.
  • Wet: Screechy, soapy floral, I’m looking at you lily  and muguet, take over most of the scent with a subtle thread of slightly bitter, medicinal calamus running just underneath (although as it dries, the calamus takes on a lemon grass undertone to which I’m warming). Ooh, I was hoping for a more elemi-forward scent.  This is too sharp for me at the moment.
  • Dry: An hour and a half after application, the scent has moved into the powdered dish detergent floral category. I’m certainly getting come of the hyacinth and hydrangea, but this doesn’t save it from its own soapiness.

Other Impressions: “It’s like a powdery rose with, like, pomello rind in the background.” -Tony

Day 1742 – BPAL’s Death of the Grave Digger

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Scent Name: Death of the Grave Digger

Manufacturer: Black Phoenix Alchemy Lab – The Salon: Exhibit I – In Memoriam

Scent Description and Notes: Death of the Grave Digger, Carlos Schwabe.

Snow, soil, opoponax and myrrh.” -BPAL.org

Oil Color: A gorgeous honeyed brandy colored oil.

Bottle Design and Artwork: This is a standard vial / imp size (1/32 oz).  The label wrapped around the bottle features an Art-Deco inspired phoenix with name of the company next to the phoenix. On the other side, the title of the scent written in large, clear black font outlined with red on the front. The label on the bottle is as follows:

Scent: 

  • ITI: Frozen water and an astringently pleasant dark opoponax reminds me of frozen ground and rooty soil, deep in winter.
  • Wet: The frozen soil is a bit more forward, but the snow it crisp and cold while the opoponax feels like a biting breeze whistling through a dense frozen forest. This isn’t the sweet blueberry snow note that has been characteristic of the Lab’s Yules, but a deeply crystalline, shockingly cold now that is hauntingly evocative.
  • Dry: Faded vague flower musk with a hint of dark opoponax hunkers down, closer to the skin, and fades to nothingness after 7 hours.

Other Impressions:”It smells like fresh laundry, like fresh from a laundraunt with all that steam.” -Tony

Day 1741 – BPAL’s Schrodinger’s Cat

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Scent Name: Schrodinger’s Cat

Manufacturer: Black Phoenix Alchemy Lab –

Scent Description and Notes: One can even set up quite ridiculous cases. A cat is penned up in a steel chamber, along with the following diabolical device (which must be secured against direct interference by the cat): in a Geiger counter there is a tiny bit of radioactive substance, so small that perhaps in the course of one hour one of the atoms decays, but also, with equal probability, perhaps none; if it happens, the counter tube discharges and through a relay releases a hammer which shatters a small flask of hydrocyanic acid. If one has left this entire system to itself for an hour, one would say that the cat still lives if meanwhile no atom has decayed. The first atomic decay would have poisoned it. The Psi function for the entire system would express this by having in it the living and the dead cat (pardon the expression) mixed or smeared out in equal parts. It is typical of these cases that an indeterminacy originally restricted to the atomic domain becomes transformed into macroscopic indeterminacy, which can then be resolved by direct observation. That prevents us from so naively accepting as valid a “blurred model” for representing reality. In itself it would not embody anything unclear or contradictory. There is a difference between a shaky or out-of-focus photograph and a snapshot of clouds and fog banks.

A paradoxical scent experiment! – tangerine, sugared lime, pink grapefruit, oakmoss, lavender, zdravetz, and chocolate peppermint.

No cats were mistreated during the formulation of this paradox, or in the process of creating this perfume.” -https://blackphoenixalchemylab.com/shop/general-catalog-perfume-oils/bewitching-brews/schrodingers-cat/

Oil Color: Colorless.

Bottle Design and Artwork: This is a standard vial / imp size (1/32 oz). The label wrapped around the bottle features an Art-Deco inspired phoenix with name of the company next to the phoenix. On the other side, the title of the scent written in large, clear black font outlined with red on the front. The label on the bottle is as follows:

Scent:

  • ITI: Okay, I was expecting the chocolate peppermint to be more forward, but instead I’m getting a fizzy limed grapefruit with green oakmoss and zdravetz undertones. It’s like citrus sunshine beaming down on springtime back yards.
  • Wet: There’s that same fizzy, tart lime and grapefruit/tangerine followed by the zdravetz and oakmoss, but there’s something about this combination that reminds me of a white wine, but I can’t put my finger on it. Herbal lavender peaks through from time to time, but quickly hides behind the top notes like a shy house pet.
  • Dry: 5 hours after application, a zdravetz-infused lime and grapefruit musk remains, but it’s very close to the skin. After 7 hours, I can’t really smell it at all. I didn’t pick up any chocolate or peppermint at all, sadly. While I like the scent, I think I prefer my citrus less herbal and more obnoxiously bright or musky.

Other Impressions: None.

Day 1740 – BPAL’s Wild Woman with Unicorn

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Scent Name: Wild Woman with Unicorn

Manufacturer: Black Phoenix Alchemy Lab – Art of the Unicorn Part 2

Scent Description and Notes: Patchouli and wildflowers.” – https://blackphoenixalchemylab.tumblr.com/post/148865664973/art-of-the-unicorn-part-ii-scents-sprays-hair

Oil Color: Colorless on my skin.

Bottle Design and Artwork: This is a standard brown apothecary bottle. The company name is located along in the bottom of the label in small white block font, while the scent name is in a much clearer, larger white calligraphy-inspired block font. The original label art is as follows:

 

Scent:

  • ITB: Mmm!  Warm, honeyed and earthy patchouli akin to Ritvalcravt’s House Blend patchouli bursts forth and delights my senses while wildflowers, small, dewy, and delicate, dance around the outside.
  • Wet: The patchouli is earthier and rootier on my skin, less honeyed, for a few seconds before the honeyed aspect warms 10 seconds in.  Wildflowers and green stems, lightly sweet, wreath the patchouli like a flower crown.
  • Dry: After 4 hours, the scent has settled into a subdued wildflower with a hint of patchouli, but there’s not a great deal of throw at this point.

Other: None.

 

Day 1739 – BPAL’s Bitches Love Unicorns

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Scent Name: Bitches Love Unicorns

Manufacturer: Black Phoenix Alchemy Lab – Art of the Unicorn: Forum Exclusive

Scent Description and Notes: We have a bpal.org unicorn-inspired forum scent, available exclusively to bpal.org forum members. See our announcements section there for details and the link to purchase! Please add your forum name to the notes when ordering.

BITCHES LOVE UNICORNS
BPAL.org Exclusive
A sugared rainbow: strawberry, blood orange, lemon peel, lime, blueberry, raspberry, and blackcurrant.” – https://blackphoenixalchemylab.com/unicorns-pt-ii-unicorns-at-bptp-and-living-deliciously-for-emilys-list/

Oil Color: Colorless.

Bottle Design and Artwork: This is a standard brown apothecary bottle.  The label wrapped around the bottle features the name of the collection (forum exclusive) in small white block font along the top of the image.  The company name is located along in the bottom of the label in similar white block font to the collection information, while the scent name is in a much clearer, larger white calligraphy-inspired block font. The original label art is as follows:

Scent:

  • ITB: I tucked this one away intentionally to age because when it arrived, it was like over sugared fruity pebbles, daiquiris, and sugar.  It was just too sweet for me. While it still is a sweet, tropical fruit-fest, the lemon, raspberry, blueberry, and lime make me think of sparkling Jello flavors layered one on top of the other. Traces of strawberry, sugar-sweetened, linger far underneath the other fruit notes, but the strawberry isn’t enough to make the scent sickeningly sweet, thankfully.
  • Wet: Skittles. It smells like I’ve doused my skin in skittles or even Nerds.  Images of my childhood and movie theater confections come rushing in.  Yes, the lime, lemon, blueberry, raspberry sparkling concoction is still there at first, but the orange and strawberry move forward, making me think this what Richard Sherman’s dream woman would smell like.
  • Dry: After 12 hours, I’m left with a raspberry blueberry fruit musk that stays very close to the skin.  Aging has helped this one, I think.

Other: “It smells like spearmint fruit-stripe gum. Or fruit-stripe gum with mint, definitely fruity, but there’s something cold there, too.”-Tony

Day 1738 – BPAL’s The Virgin and the Unicorn

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Scent Name:  The Virgin and the Unicorn

Manufacturer: Black Phoenix Alchemy Lab – Art of the Unicorn Part 2: Domenico Zampieri

Scent Description and Notes: “Domenico Zampieri, probably?
The palest of green mosses, mist rose, white pear, white incense, white sandalwood, and a hint of vanilla.” 
–https://blackphoenixalchemylab.tumblr.com/post/148865664973/art-of-the-unicorn-part-ii-scents-sprays-hair

Oil Color: A slightly greened dandelion yellow colored oil.

Bottle Design and Artwork: This is a standard vial / imp size (1/32 oz).  This is a sample from Mystery213.  The label features the name of the company and the name of the scent.  I can’t seem to find the original label art anymore.

Scent:

  • ITI: Drying moss casts a slightly bitter, almost dew-touched spell over the scent, while dim outlines of distant pear and a hint of fading white incense are teased though the mossy canopy.
  • Wet: It’s much the same on my skin, moss heavy with tones of damp soapiness just over skeletal white incense and a hint of pear.  As it starts to settle (30 seconds in), I think I’m picking up a shadow of pale rose through the mist.  So far, the scene reminds me of early mornings in the south just before dawn – cool, lonesome but serene, and ever so slightly gloomy.
  • Dry: Paper.  It smells like dewy paper with a very subdued rose powder.  It’s not what I was expecting.  Hmm, swap pile you go.

Other: “No lie, it smells like how my great aunt’s used to smell.  It’s very comforting, but it’s like an older, kind lady.  Whoa, it’s way more soapy fresh.  A lot stronger fresh.” -Tony

Day 1737 – BPAL’s The Union of Adam and Eve

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Scent Name:  The Union of Adam and Eve

Manufacturer: Black Phoenix Alchemy Lab – Art of the Unicorn Part 2: Joseph Flavius

Scent Description and Notes: “Joseph Flavius
Dew-touched grass and tulsi, gleaming with muguet des bois, fir balsam, ti leaf, and violet leaf.” 
–https://blackphoenixalchemylab.tumblr.com/post/148865664973/art-of-the-unicorn-part-ii-scents-sprays-hair

Oil Color: A faintly green-tinted pollen colored oil.

Bottle Design and Artwork: This is a standard vial / imp size (1/32 oz).  This is a sample from Mystery213.  The label features the name of the company and the name of the scent.  I can’t seem to find the original label art anymore.

Scent:

  • ITI: The epitome of spring – sweet grasses, dew-tipped, perfumed with muguet, clover-like tulsi, and tender violet leaves. Wow!
  • Wet: It’s exactly the same on my skin, which I’m so happy about because it is just spring-like perfection.  I’m missing the ti leaf and the balsam, but I don’t mind at all.  As someone who loves the smell of  fresh-cut grass, this is a more refined, floral sweet-grass scent.
  • Dry: After 6 hours, much of the grasses fade away, revealing a violet and muguet base warmed with a hint of ti leaf. Lovely.

Other: “It smells like powder and grapefruit rind.” -Tony

Day 1736 – BPAL’s The Creation

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Scent Name:  The Creation

Manufacturer: Black Phoenix Alchemy Lab – Art of the Unicorn Part 2: Paulus Orosius’s Histoire Ancienne

Scent Description and Notes: “Gilded amber saffron, indigo chypre, pearled gardenia, blackcurrant, ylang ylang, frankincense, fir needle, and white patchouli.” –https://blackphoenixalchemylab.tumblr.com/post/148865664973/art-of-the-unicorn-part-ii-scents-sprays-hair

Oil Color: A rich fireweed honey-colored oil.

Bottle Design and Artwork: This is a standard vial / imp size (1/32 oz).  This is a sample from Mystery213.  The label features the name of the company and the name of the scent.  I can’t seem to find the original label art anymore.

Scent:

  • ITI: It reminds me of twilight-lit glade set by indigo chypre, frankincense, and white patchouli, which create a sense of serene earthy contemplation.
  • Wet: Smokey indigo chypre and patchouli, deepened with cool dark fir needles and an almost spiced ambered patchouli that skews much drier than I had anticipated.  It honestly reminds me of twilight in the Arizona desert. There’s a hint of blackcurrant just under that adds a sliver of sweetness, but not enough to overcome the dry woody resins.
  • Dry:  That really is lovely.  Cistus labdanum-smoked chypre is made golden warm with amber saffron and gardenia sweetness.  A breath of frankincense and a sliver of patchouli drift gently underneath, creating a well balanced and gorgeous scent.

Other: “Is that tulip?  It’s like tulip black pepper, or black pepper and something like that.” -Tony

Day 1735 – BPAL’s After the Winter

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Scent Name:  After the Winter

Manufacturer:  Black Phoenix Alchemy Lab –

Scent Description and Notes:

Some day, when trees have shed their leaves
And against the morning’s white
The shivering birds beneath the eaves
Have sheltered for the night,
We’ll turn our faces southward, love,
Toward the summer isle
Where bamboos spire the shafted grove
And wide-mouthed orchids smile.

And we will seek the quiet hill
Where towers the cotton tree,
And leaps the laughing crystal rill,
And works the droning bee.
And we will build a cottage there
Beside an open glade,
With black-ribbed blue-bells blowing near,
And ferns that never fade.

– Claude McKay

Turn your face southward toward the summer isle: rolling green grasses, Taitian vanilla, white coconut, fig, orange blossom, baobab leaf, and golden amber.” –https://blackphoenixalchemylab.com/shop/limited-edition/dum-spiro-spero-spring-2020/after-the-winter-perfume-oil/

Oil Color: The color of clarified butter.

Bottle Design and Artwork: This is a standard 1/32 ml imp that has been decanted for me by Dizzystardust. The label just contains the scent name and company name, and the collection information. The Lab image, which is different than the bottle art, is as follows:

Scent:

  • ITI: Oh yes, there is grass here, almost verdantly bitter just over orange blossom water, thin yet tart.  Underneath all of this a hint of coconut flesh and vanilla, but it’s far at the bottom.  Hopefully, they will have a chance to warm and balance out the top notes some.
  • Wet: That’s so much nicer on the skin!  The bitterness of the grass fades away, leaving only its fresh, verdant tones under clouds of Taitian vanilla and amber coconut clouds.  Earthy, sweet fig swirls along the middle, adorned in soft orange blossom.  I’m not sure what the baobab leaf smells like, honestly, but there is a green but woody stem quality that seems to support the bottom of the tropically sweet, late spring-like top tones.
  • Dry:  Ooooh, I like that.  Nearly 6 hours in, the scent wafts gentle Taitian vanilla and white coconut flesh warmed with golden amber and hints of orange blossom and dry grass far in the distance.  That is simply gorgeous now that it has dried.” -Tony

Other Impressions: “Powder, basil, and peach nectar.” -Tony

Day 1734 – BPAL’s Instinct of Hope

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Scent Name:  The Instinct of Hope

Manufacturer:  Black Phoenix Alchemy Lab –

Scent Description and Notes:

Is there another world for this frail dust
To warm with life and be itself again?
Something about me daily speaks there must,
And why should instinct nourish hopes in vain?
‘Tis nature’s prophesy that such will be,
And everything seems struggling to explain
The close sealed volume of its mystery.
Time wandering onward keeps its usual pace
As seeming anxious of eternity,
To meet that calm and find a resting place.
E’en the small violet feels a future power
And waits each year renewing blooms to bring,
And surely man is no inferior flower
To die unworthy of a second spring?

– Hohn Clare

A melancholy violet oud with dry cedarwood, cognac, and tolu balsam.” –https://blackphoenixalchemylab.com/shop/limited-edition/dum-spiro-spero-spring-2020/the-instinct-of-hope-perfume-oil/

Oil Color: The color of melting snow in sunlight.

Bottle Design and Artwork: This is a standard 1/32 ml imp that has been decanted for me by Dizzystardust. The label just contains the scent name and company name, and the collection information. The Lab image, which is different than the bottle art, is as follows:

Scent:

  • ITI: This scent makes me think of a violet cedarwood fougere – there’s something  dry yet refined and darkly woody about this scent that would be at home on a Victorian gentleman. The violet oud is both brightly purple and sweet yet deeply earthy and nuanced, much like the Lab’s Dark Moths. This is aerated with a fine, full-bodied cognac and ornately carved woods.
  • Wet: The tolu and cedar are more forward once applied to my skin, which enhances the dusky somberness of the violet oud and cognac just behind it. It very much smells like a Victorian mansion and I’m here for it!
  • Dry:  Sadly, my skin just eats this one up.  All that’s left after 5 hours is just a ghost of dry cedar.  After a 4 hour re-application, it’s much the same, although there’s a bare suggestion of violet oud, but it’s really just a suggestion.

Other Impressions: “It smells like a combination of those Chinese cone incenses and Pixie Sticks.” -Tony

Day 1733 – BPAL’s The Enkindled Spring

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Scent Name:  The Enkindled Spring

Manufacturer:  Black Phoenix Alchemy Lab –

Scent Description and Notes:

This spring as it comes bursts up in bonfires green,
Wild puffing of emerald trees, and flame-filled bushes,
Thorn-blossom lifting in wreaths of smoke between
Where the wood fumes up and the watery, flickering rushes.

I am amazed at this spring, this conflagration
Of green fires lit on the soil of the earth, this blaze
Of growing, and sparks that puff in wild gyration,
Faces of people streaming across my gaze.

And I, what fountain of fire am I among
This leaping combustion of spring? My spirit is tossed
About like a shadow buffeted in the throng
Of flames, a shadow that’s gone astray, and is lost.

– DH Lawrence

A verdant inferno of daffodils, tulips, voluptuous pink peonies, star magnolias, and a blaze of crisp, green leaves.” -https://blackphoenixalchemylab.com/shop/limited-edition/dum-spiro-spero-spring-2020/the-enkindled-spring-perfume-oil/

Oil Color: The color of water-tinned white wine.

Bottle Design and Artwork: This is a standard 1/32 ml imp that has been decanted for me by Dizzystardust. The label just contains the scent name and company name, and the collection information. The Lab image, which is different than the bottle art, is as follows:

Scent:

  • ITI: Hmm, this is almost watery, like a clear brook adorned with pale florals.  The pink peony, tulip, and magnolia combination is delicate yet delightfully fresh, fragrant floral speckled with verdant gently swaying green leaves.
  • Wet: Very much true to the imp, the scent is so joyful, pure, and celebratory of its fresh florals that one can’t help but smile.
  • Dry:  I had to compare this to Fresh’s Memoirs of a Geisha because there was something that reminded me of it.  While Memoirs is much more sake/rice-based, the sparkling freshness that is almost fruity is present in both of these.  The Enkindled Spring is much more distinctly feminine-leaning in it’s crisply frilled floral celebration, but it a stunning scent on its own. Whispers of pink peony and tulip with a hint of star magnolia remain well after 8 hours sitting on the skin, but it is much faded and lacking significant through at this point.  However, this is such a sparkling floral that I’d be happy to reapply. 

Other Impressions: “There’s a lot going on there.  Tiny rose soaps, kumquat rinds and pulp.” -Tony

Day 1732 – BPAL’s Every Day You Play with the Light of the Universe

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Scent Name:  Every Day You Play with the Light of the Universe

Manufacturer:  Black Phoenix Alchemy Lab –

Scent Description and Notes:

Every day you play with the light of the universe.
Subtle visitor, you arrive in the flower and the water.
You are more than this white head that I hold tightly
as a cluster of fruit, every day, between my hands.

You are like nobody since I love you.
Let me spread you out among yellow garlands.
Who writes your name in letters of smoke among the stars of the south?
Oh let me remember you as you were before you existed.

Suddenly the wind howls and bangs at my shut window.
The sky is a net crammed with shadowy fish.
Here all the winds let go sooner or later, all of them.
The rain takes off her clothes.

The birds go by, fleeing.
The wind. The wind.
I can contend only against the power of men.
The storm whirls dark leaves
and turns loose all the boats that were moored last night to the sky.

You are here. Oh, you do not run away.
You will answer me to the last cry.
Cling to me as though you were frightened.
Even so, at one time a strange shadow ran through your eyes.

Now, now too, little one, you bring me honeysuckle,
and even your breasts smell of it.
While the sad wind goes slaughtering butterflies
I love you, and my happiness bites the plum of your mouth.

How you must have suffered getting accustomed to me,
my savage, solitary soul, my name that sends them all running.
So many times we have seen the morning star burn, kissing our eyes,
and over our heads the gray light unwind in turning fans.

My words rained over you, stroking you.
A long time I have loved the sunned mother-of-pearl of your body.
I go so far as to think that you own the universe.
I will bring you happy flowers from the mountains, bluebells,
dark hazels, and rustic baskets of kisses.

I want
to do with you what spring does with the cherry trees.

– Pablo Neruda, translation by WS Merwin

Skin-warmed honeysuckle, plum and cherry blossoms, and amber cream.” -https://blackphoenixalchemylab.com/shop/limited-edition/dum-spiro-spero-spring-2020/every-day-you-play-with-the-light-of-the-universe-perfume-oil/

Oil Color: The color of pollen dusting a car.

Bottle Design and Artwork: This is a standard 1/32 ml imp that has been decanted for me by Dizzystardust. The label just contains the scent name and company name, and the collection information. The Lab image, which is different than the bottle art, is as follows:

Scent:

  • ITI: Honeysuckle forward, less skin-warmed and more dew-touched, surrounded by the verdant touch of green stems and delicate, airy cherry blossoms.
  • Wet: It reminds me of cool spring dawns, quietly shining yet floral perfumes slowly unfurling in the home of sun-kissed petals.  It’s very similar to what I smell in the imp, although every now and then, a blush of soft plum occasionally peaks through the bright honeysuckle top note. Thankfully, this is not a screechy honeysuckle note, but well balanced and cheerful.
  • Dry:  As it settles, I’m thrilled as undertones of a soft, floral cream appear far below the high spring floral musk, like sunlight just kissing petals. After 8 hours, I’m surprised that this still has a fair bit of through, delighting my senses with a honeysuckle and faded cherry blossom musk.

Other Impressions: “Is that carnation?  No?  It’s some kind of floral that I should be familiar with, cream, like milk cream, and verbena.” -Tony

Day 1731 – BPAL’s Violet and Pale Woods

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Scent Name:  Violet & Pale Woods

Manufacturer:  Black Phoenix Alchemy Lab – Duets: A Little Lunacy 2019

Scent Description and Notes:Dry, soft, and sorrowful.” -https://blackphoenixalchemylab.com/shop/in-memoriam/a-little-lunacy/duets/violet-and-pale-woods-duets-perfume-oil/

Oil Color: Colorless on my skin.

Bottle Design and Artwork: This is a 5ml standard brown apothecary bottle.  The label extends just under halfway around the bottom.  The label features the name of the company in ombre shadowed cool pink font along the bottom.  The name of the scent is positioned above that in a larger lilac version of the same font shadowed along its borders. Image art is as follows:

IMG_20200414_143527_Bokeh

Image courtesy of Tiah Schindelheim Rodriguez.

Scent:

  • ITB: Watery purple violets rule the scent so far, but I don’t mind since I do love the smell of violets.  This is more of a fresh, springtime violet than a candied violet.
  • Wet: Strong violets, watery yet proudly purple, almost like what I imagine the violets in Alice in Wonderland would  have smelled like. However, I’m still not picking up any of the pale woods even on my skin.
  • Dry:  Interesting.  After two hours, the violet has softened under gentle pale woods that remind me of pale and another blonde wood I can’t quite name. There’s something far underneath that reminds me of a faded butter extract.  Love this!

Other Impressions: “It smells like every flower, all at once.” -Tony