Thursday, December 15, 2016

Fragrances for Christmas Occasions: My Personal Picks for 2016 Christmas and New Year's Day

For those of us not inclined to do mad shopping, nor partying till dawn just because it's the holidays, meeting with relatives and close friends who have distanced themselves spatially by moving to other countries is the very best part of what makes the holidays what they are. There's a beautiful ambivalence surrounding these meetings, which reminds me of the boyish hands-in-pockets and rocking-on-toes-a-bit pose that says "missed you" in the sort of shy manner that you know is really heartfelt. The feelings run so high, even if we do not admit them verbally, that a reassuring fragrance feels like welcome expression of the warmth that emanates from hearts that have grown fonder by the distance put in between.


My scent choice for those occasions is Tolu by Ormonde Jayne. The fragrance oscillates between the cozy affability of a classic "oriental", built on balsams and powdery amber, and the nostalgic, in the literal sense of "pain from an old wound", feeling that the sharp and aromatic elements bring to the composition. A whiff of frankincense lends it the spirituality which inevitably surrounds Christmas. Could it be that you're all meeting over candles burning with the flicker warming your hands praying for journeys ending in lovers' meeting? Or snacking over orange-flower-sprinkled butter cookies and sweet wine, reminiscing over past funny events?

There's a pang of moments in the future already lost when meeting knowing you must part again, and Ormonde Jayne's Tolu captures that perfectly. In the meantime, rejoice for the moments shared. It's the holidays, after all.


The other fragrances which I'm fondly thinking of wearing this holiday season are:

Ambre Narguile Hermes (Christmas baking)

Bois des Iles Chanel (Night out)

Dans tes bras Editions de Parfums Frederic Malle (Clubbing)

Feminite du Bois Serge Lutens (Evening by the fire)

Nuit de Noel Caron (Silent Night, Holy Night)

Angeliques sous la Pluie Editions de Parfums Frederic Malle (Rainy Morning After).

12 comments:

  1. Anonymous13:18

    Serge Lutens 5 o'clock Au Gingembre also reminds me of s good Christmas frag.

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    1. Good point! Had forgotten about that one. Have a decant of it.

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  2. Hmmm, thanks for reminding me of Tolu, I think I have a decant of it somewhere... Another fragrance that is good for Christmas occasions is Dior Dolce Vita - it is so rich and sweet but also elegant and the name says it all :)

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    1. Thank you Marie for reminding me of Dolce Vita! It's in that special ballpark of boozy fruity spicy fragrances that we naturally associate with this season. Isn't it? Great addition!

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  3. I own and like Tolu-hadn't thought of it for Christmas, but now you made me want to wear it sometimes during the holidays (I used to have the bath oil as well for after gym showers, but I'm out of it).
    As for me, following Turin I've been recently wearing Ferragamo Incense suede, which feels too austere for Christmas, and Lubin Korrigan, whose hypergourmandise seems instead perfect for it.

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    1. You're encouraged to get it out of the darkest recess and wear it again. It's lovely!
      No great following of LT but Korrigan is something I have long held in my wish list and should probably get its share one of these days. Sooner rathert than later.
      Incense Suede if only going by the name sounds like the perfect frag for me!!! (Need to test that one).

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  4. Nuit de Noel was my mother's favorite perfume. I haven't had any for years; I've heard it's been reformulated (like everything else!) and just isn't the same at all. But obviously if you like it enough to list here, it's worth trying to get!

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    1. It's still above shoulders of all the syrupy things on the department store shelves. That's one thing.
      The other is that I do own a vintage bottle in that fabu gold hammered casing...*dreamy eyes fluttering eyelashes*
      It's definitely a great choice. Your mother has (had?) great taste!

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  5. I am off to the city today ....I hope something springs out at me but ..... I am so tired of all the perfumes we see all the time in the shops. As you know , we do not have a huge choice of niche type fragrances here :( I might check out Lubin .
    I do not think we will have the Hermes Ambre you talked about - sounds lovely.
    I think I am suffering "Perfume Depression" Helg!!! LOL

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    1. I believe the Ambre by Hermes should be easily found. It's in the mainstream line. So is Mandarine Ambree which is on the Colognes line and probably more like a summery-time fragrance.
      Perfume Depression should enter the statistic and diagnostic manual; it's a REAL thing!

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  6. kultakutri09:29

    When you say clubbing, I imagine hitting someone with a club. Which, thinking of it, would be the just about appropriate response to this time of the year.

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    1. Hahahahahaha!!! You DO have a great point. I meant it in the more figurative sense but sometimes you do have to resort to some clubbing in the literal sense (OK elbowing) when on the dance floor in those places when crowded! :D

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