Saturday, December 24, 2011

Merry Christmas Eve!

A quick look from yesterday. I used Darling Girl eyeshadows in Fluff, Apparition & Moon Dust. Berry Merry duochrome blush (from the Christmas collection) on my cheeks, and Cookies for Claus lipbalm. I've been loving this grey sweater dress lately, and I picked up some colorful tights to go with my sweaters. I wore a similiar black feathered headband I purchased at a local craft show.... Loving everything with feathers lately!

Friday, December 23, 2011

Darling Clandestine

I came across Darling Clandestine one day while perusing Etsy. I purchased during a 20% off sale; I ordered three sample perfumes and one "Bitsy" vial in Circassian. The bitsy vials are quite interesting; they are 1 dram (about 3.6 mls, filled to the top. Most "5 ml" perfumes contain 4mls in a 5ml container) and are a steal at 4.00$. My only beef with the mini vials, is they don't have a tiny applicator on the lid as my larger bottles do. My total, including shipping, with the discount came to less than 9.00$. If you take a look at the shop (which is currently closed for the holidays, but you can browse past sales!) all of Evonne's perfumes have unique, pretty artwork, and each perfume comes with its own little story. Here is mine:

Odd and wondrous, these trinkets the suitors bring—astonishing flowers that look like paper birds, jasmine tea and black coffee, a costly box of chocolates with a red silk ribbon. You once saw a tiger in Bangkok, a riot in Paris, a machine at Coney Island that they said could really fly. The exotic butters in your fantastic hair, the livelihood you've adopted and the orchards you left behind. Your love is not a curiosity—it's a marvel. Make them earn it.

Carefully blended and infused by me in small batches in vintage green glass wine bottles, this is a warm chocolaty fragrance with intriguing notes of amber and blossoms. A dozen different scent elements and several days of methodical alchemy make Circassian no ordinary scented oil mix—it's a truly inimitable fragrance

I honestly adore all of the descriptions in the listings! In the bottle, this smells like delicious, gooey chocolate; the fondant sort. I am glad I decided to get more than a sample of this one, because it is lovely. On the drydown, the chocolate is still dominant but the amber and coffee beans creep out. All this needs is a buttery pastry to go with it :)

I ordered samples in Ballyhoo, Big Top Train 2010 and Falchion. These sample vials are VERY generous, and are a bit larger than regular sized samples from other companies. Evonne also included two samples in Mad as Birds and Step Right Up!

Ballyhoo: created as a limited-edition fragrance, is back by popular demand. This fragrance is a surprising melange of amber and spice with notes of creamy coffee and lime and dozens of other fascinating notes

Ballyhoo is definitely interesting, and I'm not sure how I feel about this one yet. My skin amps the lime, and I can smell just a hint of spices in the background.

Falchion: deep, sultry, intense, earthy unisex fragrance with a hint of dark chocolate. There’s a smack of dusky, almost fruity spice out of the bottle, but roll it onto the skin and give it a minute—the drydown is superbly sexy. Thoroughly appropriate for gents and bold ladies. More than a dozen different scent elements and weeks of methodical alchemy make Falchion no ordinary scented oil mix—it's a truly inimitable fragrance

To my nose, this smells like a mixture of herbs and chocolate. Like the listing states, the drydown is quite different than the initial scent and becomes quite sexy. I'm surprised by the morph, as initially I found the herbal note too strong, but it mixes together nicely! I don't think my man would wear this one, though.

Big Top Train 2010: VERY rich and spicy, nutty and molasses-sweet for the holidays

Quite spicy in the bottle, and when wet on kin. On the drydown it becomes more nutty, sweet, and smokey. This one really is perfect for the Holidays; It reminds me of the scents that mingle together in a Christmas market.

Step Right Up: Clean, blue-green with a little spiciness. Nostalgic, fascinating. Unisex.
This scent does remind me of the ocean, and it is very clean. It's not the sort of "clean" you get from dishsoap or detergent though, It really is soft and nice.

Mad as Birds: Cool, yellow-green; garden dew with pear and mint and marigolds. Unisex to feminine.
This is another "clean" sort of scent, but more floral and girly. I wish this one had more of the mint.

Morbid the Merrier

Aftert reading many reviews about Morbid the Merrier, I finally caved in. I purchased solid perfumes in Natali, Desert Absinthe and Maximo, and samples in Aurora, Eggbert, Voix de Ville. I only paid 23$ including shipping for my entire order, which was wonderful. The solid perfumes come in a tube container, similiar to a lip tube. These ones cost 4.50$, I believe they are transitioning over to solid perfume tins, which are still affordable at 9.00$! I also received a solid perfume in Absinthe with my order!


Natali is a brooding yet comforting blend of sweet, spicy orange and dark, fragrant chocolate with a heart of vanilla and wood

Some reviewers have compared this scent to a Terry's Chocolate Orange, so obviously I had to try it! In the container, it smells purely of chocolate. Maybe I need to apply a thicker layer, but it smells quite soft on me. It is definitely a chocolate, with a powerful kick of orange!


A complex and beautiful blend of sweet cocoa, spicy black pepper, earthy patchouli with a heart of vanilla and wood

This truly is beautiful. In the container it smells of patchouli and chocolate, and on skin it stays similiar, with a hint of vanilla. This is very earthy, but the chocolate makes it very sexy! I was hesitant on ordering this one at first, after reading mixed reviews, but I am SO glad I did!

Desert Absinthe

Absinthe, softened with cream, sugar, and soft citrus.
This one is very sweet, and smells mostly of absinthe with an under note of citrus. It is quite soft and creamy, not too strong. The regular Absinthe smells much more herbal, with more anise.


A gluttonous, heaping plate of sugary sweetness; sweet yellow cake, tiny coconut shreds, candied walnuts, sugared violets, and vanilla, with a palate-cleansing dose of wood and moss

This one is strange; it starts off very foodie, but there is a definite woodsy/forest note to it. On the dry down, the two sort of mix together, but I get mostly green, woods with a hint of vanilla in this one.

Voix de Ville

Succulent, juicy, ripe red apple soothed and darkened by black fruit, decadent florals and sensuous

This one is more green and floral than Sarawen's Black Apple. The apple note reminds me more of a sour green apple than red, and it's quite strong.


Bittersweet cocoa, coconut, heavy cream, and wood

The chocolate scent to this is sexy, and more grown-up than your typical vanilla.

With the exception of Eggbert, I truly enjoyed all of these scents. I'm very pleased with Maximo and will probably be ordering a full size of Aurora. Many bloggers have commented on the dark overall feel to Morbid the Merrier; the website, the beautiful packaging and artwork, and the scents themself. I also have to agree I love MM. When I first placed my order, the TAT in my reciept was different than that posted on the website, so I sent the owner a quick email just to confirm. I received a reply very soon, my order shipped before the stated TAT, AND I received a free solid... I will be back for more!

Sarawen Perfume Art

I came across Sarawen's shop randomly one day when searching upon etsy. I was very excited, because not only did she have Harry Potter inspired scents, she is located in Canada! I asked Sara for some recommendations of scents to try, and she recommended some of her best selling foodie-type scents. I purchased a set of 6 sample sized perfumes; Ravish, Cake or Death, Tea With Watson, Deaths Day Feast, Yuletide at Baker's St & Black Apple. Shipping took just over a week within Canada, but I suspect it would have been faster had I not ordered during the Holidays. Photos are property of Sarawen.


A delicious blend of summer raspberries and decadent chocolate over incense and amber. Sultry, sweet, and indulgent! Beware, an innocent little nibble could quickly turn into love bites!

In the vial, this smells mostly of rapsberries and dark chocolate. On skin, not much has changed, it remains quite sweet! I'd say the raspberry is more of a raspberry preserve sort of smell, but it doesn't smell fake, like how most strawberry scents end up smelling like Strawberry Shortcake dolls. It reminds me of a sort of cookie my dad bought me as a child. On the drydown, there is a bit of the incense/smokey scent. Delicious!!

Cake or Death

When you -must- have your cake or die! Decadent buttercream frosting and vanilla cake with a touch of spice over a darkened amber base.
I read a review where Sarawen was compared to BPAL's perfumes, and this reminds me of the cake scents they would release for Lillith's birthday. I'm not fond of this in the vial, but on the skin it is purely soft vanilla and amber. I would say my skin amps the amber on this one. I would recommend this for those who like softer foodie scents, or maybe those who typically are not foodies. It smells sort of innocent to me, if that makes sense. By the way, a "foodie" are those of us who *love* to smell of cakes, pastries, fruit, spices or really anything sweet.

Black Apple


Sweet, red, ripe apples corrupted with poisoned honey and labdanum. A base of dark incense and roses completes the fragrance. Starts off fruity and innocent, then the darkness emerges.

Yum. This one reminds me very much of BPAL's Poisoned Apple, one of my favorite scents of theirs, and my favorite apple scent. It is a tart, juicy, almost sour sort of red apple. I might even say it smells more of green apples. The background notes compliment it beautifully; there is something else "green" about it, the smell you can't really name, but is like walking through an orchard. It takes a while for the incense to emerg on my skin, but again, smells lovely.

Tea With Watson

Take a break from adventuring and stop at 221 Baker Street for awhile. White tea, delicious yellow cake, and a dash of cream caramel layered over light tobacco and bay rum. It smells just like a tea party at Holmes and Watson's flat! This is a balanced unisex fragrance inspired by the world of Sherlock Holmes.

I get mostly the rum in this one, and with the caramel is smells a little like butterscotch. This one reminds me of BPAL's Grog, one of my boyfriend's favorites, and I will surely have him try this one on! This one is more boozy than foodie, I'd say, but it's a nice scent. On the drydown it becomes more like smokey caramel on me.

Death's Day Feast

Hallowe'en is in the air, and it's time to celebrate! The scent of comforting warm pumpkin, delectable caramel apples, chocolates, and spicy incense fills the Great Hall. Just watch out for Nearly Headless Nick!

Again, Yum! In the vial I can smell a lot of the chocolate, which smells similiar to the chocolate in Ravish. The juicy apple scent is here as well, I'm not sure if I get the pumpkin, but it smells like a delicious chocolate covered caramel apple, if there is such a thing! Again, the incense comes out more on the drydown. I'd say this is one of my favorites of the bunch!

Yuletide at Baker St

Sugared peppermints, delicious butterscotch candy, and almonds with dried fruits decorated around the tree. The scent of light tobacco lingers in the background. Spend your holiday with Holmes and Watson! This is a balanced unisex fragrance inspired by the world of Sherlock Holmes, and is perfect for the merry-making lady or gent! Available only through Winter 2011-2012

Ohhh. In the vial, and when freshly applied to skin, I get a jolt of pure peppermint! I wear BPAL's Spooky quite often, and the peppermint note is quite similiar. The description is pretty accurate; there is a hint of smoke in the background and a hint of nut. This one smells mostly of candy, and, I want to eat it.

For those of you who have not tried BPAL, I got hooked on them a few years back, until the prices of 5mL bottles went above 20$. They only ship flat rate (around 14$) to Canada, so they are really not affordable, unless you plan on saving your money and making a few larger orders a year to justify shipping. Their TAT also runs quite long, which I remember being close to a month at times. Their scents are still beautiful, but Sarawen's remind me very much of BPAL, which is a good thing. BPAL has always been praised for their high quality perfumes and interesting scent combinations. Sara's perfumes are highly affordable; samples run at 2.45$ a piece of 6 for 13.50$, and bottles are 10$! I highly recommend giving them a go, especially if you are a BPAL or usually go for more expensive collections. Although I mentioned some scents remind me of BPAL, hers are all truly unique, and maybe it is the unique-ness (is that a word?) that reminds me so much of BPAL.
Check out her Facebook page, as I hear she has plans for a Boxing Day sale!!