Two notes before I tell you about the latest perfumes from my friend Meredith’s perfume subscription service:
1. I was reluctant to post this review because the subscription list is closed for the remainder of the year. I decided to go ahead with it because if you are interested in any of the perfumes, you can buy a sample size on her website. Also, maybe I’ll have convinced you to sign up by the time she opens subscriptions for 2015.
2. One of my all-time favorite novels (The Virgin Suicides) inspired one of this season’s perfumes. I’ve been considering posting a series of book reviews of my all-time favorite novels, and this perfume has convinced me that it’s high time I re-read the book, whether I write a blog post about it or not.
So without any further ado, let me tell you about what a perfume inspired by The Virgin Suicides smells like.
The fall edition of the Sweet Anthem features two perfumes dreamed up by customers in the Dream Fragrance Contest.
Petra got my vote in the contest, mostly because of the whole inspired-by-my-favorite-novel thing. There’s a scene in the book where the boys (who act as narrators) walk into the house of the Lisbon girls (after whom the book is titled) and it’s dank and musty and one of them steps in an uneaten sandwich on the stairs. That scene flooded into my head when I opened the sample bottle.
… Sorry for describing what is actually a lovely scent in an unappealing way; I promise it does not smell like rotten sandwiches. I was delighted with Petra at first sniff. It reminds me of walking into an old house with wood panelling (which is what the Lisbon’s house looks like in my head.) It’s sweet with the cherry and heliotrope, and a little smoky.
Unfortunately, something in this perfume smells a little sour on my skin. (I don’t have a sophisticated enough nose to pick out what it is.) I’m pretty disappointed, but I must confess – it hasn’t stopped me from wearing Petra (though, mostly around the house.)
Then there’s Ella, which comes, of course, from Cinderella: “a dream is a wish your heart makes.” Ella is kind of perfect for fall … mostly because of the pumpkin pie spice, because, duh.
It reminds me a little bit of Lolita (from the spring collection) mostly because they’re similar in intensity and both on the sweet side. I really like this perfume, but I’m “saving” it for when the days get shorter and Starbucks announces the return of the pumpkin spice latte and I dig all of my tights out of storage.
There was also a sample of Owl, which was the winner of last year’s dream fragrance contest. Owl is fabulous – it has the same white amber base note as Alice (my very favorite out of all Meredith’s perfumes) and is similarly earthy. They aren’t really alike – Owl is spicy; Alice is musky – but I really like both. I also got a solid Marguerite perfume, but it’s not pictured because I accidentally misplaced it. D’oh.
If you’re interested in trying samples of these, you can pre-order Petra and Ella from Meredith’s shop. Also, keep an eye on her blog or Twitter if you’re interested in signing up for The SA List when she opens subscriptions again.