Sunday, 21 March 2010

Scent of Life


Along with the music the other thing that people are mentioning are scents.Which of course took me off in a journey done memory lane!

There are the more functional but evocative smells, like freshly baked bread, just brewed coffee. No accident then that the coffee pot was on yesterday when my first viewers for months came by to look at the house! Shoe polish is one I love, takes me back to being given sixpence by my Daddy for cleaning his shoes ready for work. And him spending hours polishing his army boots and his Sam Brown (leather army belt)ready for him to do his TA duties.

The smell of loose face powder, my mother wasn't very tidy, and her make up drawer in her dressing table when open always billowed out clouds of the stuff. She wasn't a great one for perfume, but she had a signature scent, Joy by Jean Patou, which today remains one of my favourites.

I had a very glamorous Aunty Cynthia who adored perfume, when she died I got all of her collection. She introduced me to Guerlain, a company that specialises in heady and opulent smells,Shalimar is my all time fav from this company.

Then there are the sleeping baby smells that every mother knows. That freshly talced clean sleepy smell. The one where however bad the day has been with a crying baby the mother just lets it all go, as she wants to keep her sleeping baby safe for ever,even if she has wanted to strangle her darling the rest of the day.

What about the smells of love, Eau Savage by Dior worn by my first love. I even bought my own bottle after we broke up! When I was a teenager all young men seemed to smell of Brut by Faberge. Such an evocative smell of those first cheek to cheek dances and tentative kisses.

Clinique's Elixir is the scent worn for ever by my best friend Eve in Philadelphia. It permeates her house. And it's a smell that I now love because of her, but outside of her don't like at all.

I personally adore perfume. I go through bottles of the stuff, nowadays they tend to be from companies that work with more natural ingredients. I do not like a lot of the synthetic (nasty smelling to me ) scents around. I don't particularly have a signature scent,except I'm now into my fifth bottle of Honeysuckle and Jasmine by Jo Malone. It smells of warm sunny days with just a hint of suntan lotion on a hot body to me. Otherwise the smells I buy will be on my way somewhere. As many trips as possible have to include enough time to spend an hour in duty free finding that holidays smell.

And of course now in the Northern hemisphere the smells are increasing by the day, as the flowers start to bloom, and when the blossom comes out the world will be heady with divine perfume. Then the grass will be long enough to mow and I will just breath and breath in that smell, that goes all the way back to my childhood and will never stop being one of my and most other peoples favourite smells.

14 comments:

BenefitScroungingScum said...

I'm sitting at GG's by the open patio door with the smell of spring wafting in. Bliss! I so know what you mean about scent, you describing your mother's face powder reminded me my grandmother who died when I was 12 used to smell of that. A happy memory evoked by yours which otherwise would probably have stayed buried forever. Thanks for that FB! Hope all is well for you today, BG Xx

Helen said...

Oh boy! Here we go again! My sister wears Shalimar so whenever I catch a whiff on someone else, I think of her. Another sister wears Tabu and again my thoughts turn to her whenever I smell it. My mother wore Estee Lauder's L'air du Temps and I will forever associate her with that delightful fragrance. As for me? I am like you. Have way too many bottles, tend to enjoy the deep/dark/dusky fragrances and they all cost way too much money. Clinique Elixer is my signature scent ... so perhaps you would like it on me?

Von said...

Ah the joys of Spring! One of our most beautiful smells comes in Winter, the scent of almond trees in flower in July.
Chanel No 5 or course for evening, Lentheric's Tweed for Winter days, Bluegrass for Summer days and Caleche and anything rosey if it's good.Boss of course for the boys.Have a good day!

Lia said...

Funny how smells can evoke such deep seated memories in us all.

I hate the smell of pubs, sounds odd, but I was raised in pubs as mum was a publican. To this day the worse place to take me is a pub. I associate it with being alone a lot as a child.

Seems smells can evoke good and bad memories.

much love
Lia
xx

CheekyDani said...

I have a scarf that I crocheted myself that I wear often. Whenever I pick it up I take a long sniff because it smells like me - a combination of my perfume (Soir De Lune by Sisley), my shampoo and my natural "flavour". I know it's strange but I find it intoxicating.

Nice post x

Lori ann said...

I liked reading this Mandy, it's fun to think of all the smells in our lives too.
I inherited my love for Chanel from my mother, although i admire the bottles i have much more than i wear them. I love most the smells of nature, salt spray, sage, pine needles, the earth after a rain...they all remind me of places i've been, and love.

Vi said...

I love the smell of rain...some people say I'm mad you can't smell rain, but you can. On a really hot day, you can smell the rain coming, as it hits the hot roads/pavements and the steam hisses and you can smell it coming!

janis said...

I have something for you at my Blog! :)

Beatnheart said...

Hey thanks for visiting 10 times! I was feeling oh so bummed as I wasn't getting any comments. Thought,"ouh,ouh...I've gone to commerical and now no one likes me"..Finally read an email from Maura saying I was'nt coming through..Then the agony of finding out what I did wrong..Yea! problem solved..
I love the new look of your blog..A definate feeling of Spring in the air as the look is lighter,cheerier, happier.. Oh yes, smells and tunes..how could we ever live without them..Music to me is the ultimate..I know words to songs that were popular when I was 3!! How could that be..Oh and yes..I remember a post of yours with bottles in a beautiful case..You have lovely things!! I'm allegic to perfume per sey but love natural scents, applied lightly..in US some women dump them on.. Remember OPIUM..everyone seemed to wear tons of the stuff..I sneezed my way through the 80's.

Paula said...

Yummy, the smell of freshly made bread. Fresh cut grass, the heavy ripe scent of late Summer, the freshness after rain, herbes and spices. For mayn years I loved Halston, even when it wasnt avilable in Germany anymore I ordered from Harrod's. However I have outgrown it and now I use First from van Cleef & Arpels and love it. The faint scent of freshly washed linen, my own smell... I could go on and on. Love xxx Paula

Pam said...

Woodsmoke, and freshly-cut grass are my favourites Byrd. Thanks for a lovely incentive to post about this. I've linked to you. Enjoy your coming of Spring!xxx

Janean said...

scent is sooooo emotionally charged, isn't it?

fresh mowed grass; lilacs; old tangee lipstick when i was growing up was my favorite.

miss*R said...

I love the smell of compost.. strange but true.
I love essential oils of rose, lavender and geranium.
I love the smell of gardenias and orange blossom.

I remember JOY by Jean Patou!!!

Beatnheart said...

Good Morning, Had to laugh at your comment to me , you don't know how I find the time...I must tell you in truth. I have loads of time.. I do not work at a real job, I don't have to commute, I can sit at the computer in my pj's all day long if I want to...I am a lazy cow really!
No way am I the overachieving superwoman!! I spend 90% of the day in my head and most of that is worrying!! But thank you so much for making me feel like I am doing something!! gotta love that. Cynthia