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  1. #1

    Thumbs up Sonoma Scent Studio

    I've recently been exploring SSS, and I have been very impressed with many:
    I have small bottles of:
    Lieu de Reves
    Fireside
    Champagne de Bois
    Tabac Aurea
    Voile de Violette
    Winter Woods
    Woody Violet

    also loved Opal, and will probably add that one to the collection.
    I am curious to know which of Laurie's scents you have tried, and what you think of them.
    Hearts starve as well as bodies; give us bread, but give us roses.
    ~~James Oppenheimer~~

  2. #2

    Default Re: Sonoma Scent Studio

    I have small bottles of the following fragrances from SSS:

    Encens Tranquille
    Fireside Intense
    Velvet Rose
    Vintage Rose

    I have had samples from Ambre Noir, Champagne de Bois, and Tabac Aurea.

    I am very impressed with Laurie Erickson's fragrances. Her fragrances are all parfum extrait strength and very reasonably priced. She is very friendly and answers all emails quickly. Soon I will order bottles of Tabac Aurea and Rose Musc. My favorites are Vintage Rose and Tabac Aurea.

  3. #3

    Default Re: Sonoma Scent Studio

    I have sampled most of the offerings at Sonoma Scent Studio and think that ALL of them are full-bottle-worthy. SSS excells with wonderful customer service and thoughtful communication. Laurie is a talented perfumer.She's a gem!

    I have bottles of:
    Femme Jolie (sadly, discontinued; reminiscent of Feminite du Bois, but more gingery and "bright")
    Sienna Musk
    Winter Woods
    Wood Violet
    Vintage Rose
    Tabac Aurea
    Ambre Noir

    If you like creative uses of fragrant woods - this is the perfumery for you.

  4. #4

    Default Re: Sonoma Scent Studio

    Procratus, I do like the Fireside Intense sample I have. It seems to have a bit of leather notes as well as the woods.
    Lorien, I received a Femme Jolie sample last time I ordered from her. I hate getting excited about a perfume only to find out that it's discontinued! Rats. Tabac Aurea is wonderful with the creamy cherry tobacco. Also very happy with the Winter Woods and Woody Violet. The WV reminds me a bit of Bois de Violette, except sweeter.
    It's good to know that SSS is appreciated here! I hope that in the future, LT/TS will discover her and the Ava Luxe line. I am curious as to what their reviews would be like. It seems that the future of great perfumery may rest on these Artisan/Niche houses. The personal service is outstanding, and it is obvious that the owners CARE.
    Hearts starve as well as bodies; give us bread, but give us roses.
    ~~James Oppenheimer~~

  5. #5

    Default Re: Sonoma Scent Studio

    Hi Lessa! I have bottles of Velvet Rose and Wood Violet. I also love her Opal, Rose Musc, and Cameo. I need to try samples of Tabac Aurea and the Fireside ones, because I'm pretty sure I'll like them a lot!

  6. #6

    Default Re: Sonoma Scent Studio

    Haunani, I sample Opal over the weekend at bedtime, and just loved the soft vanilla-sandalwood-muskiness. This may become a regular comfort fragrance. I plan on a bottle ASAP. If you like tobacco when it is unsmoked, fresh out of the pouch, Tabac Aurea will make you swoon. I had a grandfather that smoked a pipe, and this reminds me of him.
    Last edited by Lessa; 5th May 2009 at 09:35 PM. Reason: Booboo I can't blame on the cat
    Hearts starve as well as bodies; give us bread, but give us roses.
    ~~James Oppenheimer~~

  7. #7

    Default Re: Sonoma Scent Studio

    Quote Originally Posted by Lessa View Post
    Haunani, I sample Opal over the weekend at bedtime, and just loved the soft vanilla-sandalwood-muskiness. This may become a regular comfort fragrance. I plan on a bottle ASAP. If you like tobacco when it is unsmoked, fresh out of the pouch, Tabac Aurea will make you swoon. I had a grandfather that smoked a pipe, and this reminds me of him.
    You are right about Opal being a perfect comfort scent. And if I wasn't already convinced that I would like Tabac Aurea, you would have me with your description! I'm pretty sure I will love it as long as it doesn't have too much cherry.
    Last edited by Haunani; 6th May 2009 at 07:03 AM.

  8. #8

    Default Re: Sonoma Scent Studio

    Oh, oh, another lemming.

    I've been meaning to try this line, but this thread just got me to order a number of samples, including the Tabac Aurea (I too am hoping for minimal cherry), Velvet Rose, and Vintage Rose.
    For sale: JL Scherrer parfum (reduced price) and more!

    "One half of the world cannot understand the pleasures of the other." ~ Jane Austen

    “Pleasure is the flower that passes; remembrance, the lasting perfume” ~ Jean de Boufflers

  9. #9

    Default Re: Sonoma Scent Studio

    Quote Originally Posted by Lorien View Post

    If you like creative uses of fragrant woods - this is the perfumery for you.
    Oh, that *does* it. I really don't need another transatlantic indie perfumer to fall for, but creative use of woods.... sign me up.
    It is known that there are an infinite number of worlds, simply because there is an infinite amount of space for them to be in. However, not every one of them is inhabited. Any finite number divided by infinity is as near nothing as makes no odds, so the average population of all the planets in the Universe can be said to be zero. From this it follows that the population of the whole Universe is also zero, and that any people you may meet from time to time are merely products of a deranged imagination.

    Douglas Adams

  10. #10

    Default Re: Sonoma Scent Studio

    Count me as interested! Vintage Rose sounds delightful.

  11. #11

    Default Re: Sonoma Scent Studio

    I hate to enable , but when you find a perfumer who does superb work for cheap, how can you not love that? I don't think SSS is capable of making a bad scent.
    Hearts starve as well as bodies; give us bread, but give us roses.
    ~~James Oppenheimer~~

  12. #12

    Default Re: Sonoma Scent Studio

    I love her Fireside!

  13. #13

    Default Re: Sonoma Scent Studio

    I have samples of:

    Vintage Rose (skanky note spoils it for me)
    Velvet Rose (smooth and velvety, just like it says on the tin, but not the most true rose I have smelt. More akin to FM Lipstick Rose, say.)
    Rose Musc (similar to Velvet Rose, but with musk! I got more of a body lotion scent with this one, but it is pleasant).
    Champagne de Bois (apparently I had a discontinued sample, so my verdict that it was too "planky" should be disregarded - it has been reformulated since to tone down the woody note.)
    Jour Ensoleillee (not quite indolic floral number - nice but no mad love!)
    Sienna Musk (more like a spicy pot pourri or candle than something I would wear)

    I am interested in trying Gardenia Musk when it comes out, and may give Opal a go, or one with violets.
    "So many scents, so little skin"...

    http://bonkersaboutperfume.blogspot.com/

  14. #14

    Default Re: Sonoma Scent Studio

    Narguile, Fireside is one of my favorites. I would love to sample the Fireside Intense.

    VMIHateCivet,
    Velvet Rose does have some skank, but I like that. I can see how it would be an issue if didn't care for a bit of dirtiness.
    Sienna Musk - Not my top fav on the list, but nice. Definitely tend to agree with you on this one.
    Champagne - I have the reformulated version, and I like it alot. I don't know what the old stuff smells like.
    Hearts starve as well as bodies; give us bread, but give us roses.
    ~~James Oppenheimer~~

  15. #15

    Default Re: Sonoma Scent Studio

    I have sampled most of the SSS line and don't dislike any of them. My only FB purchase so far has been Fireside. I absolutely adore it in the fall and winter, and Fireside Intense is nice too. Jour Ensoleillee is another favorite, but it is currently being reformulated with a new/different oakmoss so I'll have to see if it's still love before I buy a FB. Tabac Aurea is gorgeous and I'll likely be purchasing that one in the fall. Laurie is great, the fragrances are inexpensive and very longlasting. Sample this line!!

  16. #16

    Default Re: Sonoma Scent Studio

    Hello Everyone posting above...

    I am a huge SSS convert. Laurie is very talented. Her fragrances are interesting, unique, and she is great at customer service. It is real quality artisan work. I've sampled most of her line and have a few favorites. Please also note, and you can read this on Laurie's SSS blog, that you can order Femme Jolie and she will mix it up for you. You can email her or read about it on her blog. I obtained my bottle last fall after asking her to do it for me!

    My favorite SSS are Velvet Rose - a great rose soliflore. I don't get skanky from it, but I am anosmic to most musks, so others are probably getting something I don't. Rose Musc - which is just gorgeous rose and ladbanum. I had no idea how much I loved labdanum until I smelled this one! Femme Jolie, which is a very soft and pretty woody orange blossom. I actually think it smells like the extreme drydown of DK's Chaos ... Lieu de Reves which is a gorgeous, soft, powdery violet fragrance, like a rusticated version of Apres L'Ondee with some raspy powder. It smells like the fresh spring when the air is still cool. Voile de Violette which is an excellent violet soliflore - a wee bit green, a wee bit sweet, but just fresh enough to be different from all the rest. And my fav of her line - the new Tabac Aurea, which just about knocked my socks off! I wasn't expecting to like it, but sampled it just because I could. It is just amazing, gorgeous, and warm. Whoever above mentioned it smells like tabacco out of the pouch is right - it is very much like rich piple tobacco, and there is no smoke at all. It is extremely well blended.

    Many of her other woods and incense fragrances are also very well done. I think the Champage de Bois would rival Chanel 22 for beauty, and the incense and ambers are all very dark, rich, and woody. I agree that anyone who loves woods and incense frags should test her fragrances.

  17. #17

    Default Re: Sonoma Scent Studio

    I've tried 3 so far:

    Encens Tranquille -- it seemed pretty harsh to me (too much tar?)
    Winter Woods - better, but not 'the one'
    Wood Violet - ta-da! We have a winner -- I'm thinking of buying that one.

  18. #18
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    Default Re: Sonoma Scent Studio

    This thread deserves a BUMP. Count me in as the latest acolyte of this temple. I have sampled 8 and already love 5 of them. It's unreal how often Laurie Erickson hits the bulls eye with her compositions. To think her educational background lies in geomechanics and environmental earth sciences...

    Ambre Noir
    More incense than amber but its a dark ambery incense with mossy leathery undertones, worthy of the word 'noir'. 4.5 Stars

    Encens Tranquille
    First impressions: rather sedate for an incense fragrance, then I realise it's just living up to its name "quiet incense". 3.5 Stars

    Tabac Aurea
    Unsmoked cherry pipe tobacco over soft leather, in the classic style of Tabac Blond. Suave. 5 Stars.

    Champagne de Bois
    Superbly executed soft aldehydes over vetiver + florals, in the style of Chanel classics. Stunning. 5 Stars.

    Fireside
    Wood coals with little smoke, rather chemical to me. Probably my least favorite of the line. 2 Stars.

    Fireside Intense
    What Fireside should have been. Woodsmoke over woods and leather, edged with little tar-like notes. Rather masculine. 4.5 Stars.

    Winter Woods
    Like sitting around a campfire in the warm company of close friends. Cozy and comforting winter scent, one of the finest. 5 Stars.

    Lieu de Reves
    A wistful blend of heliotrope, violet and rose over cedar, vetiver and amber. Softly woodsy in the drydown. 3.5 Stars.

    The journey down the scented trail continues...

  19. #19

    Default Re: Sonoma Scent Studio

    I am starting to explore this line, thanks to Diamondflame above and the recommendation for Tabac Aurea. (I am too poor to afford By Kilian's Back to Black, so why not look at other good tobacco scents?)

    I just ordered a sample of Tabac Aurea...and hope for wonderful things!
    Last edited by Primrose; 22nd February 2010 at 01:35 AM.
    "No sweet perfume ever tortured me more than this." Desert Rose by Sting and Cheb Mami, Album 1999.

  20. #20

    Default Re: Sonoma Scent Studio

    The two ones I've tried were excellent. I need to explore this line more.

    Wood Violet

    Not particularly violety, but rather like Feminite du Bois made richer and creamier. It's odd to say it, given that Feminite du Bois is a Lutens, but it's Feminite du Blois made more Lutenesque. Less transparency, much more richness.

    Velvet Rose

    Pure, loud, true-to-life rose. Totally linear but also extremely realistic.

  21. #21

    Default Re: Sonoma Scent Studio

    I got my ten samples this past Friday, and have made my way through 4 of them. I wrote in one review that these wear on me like my Caron urn fragrances. My taste runs more conservative and classical (between Caron and Guerlain I have 9 fragrances), and SSS is a house that has definitely caught my attention.

    too soon to tell yet what I"ll end up buying!!
    Last edited by BayKAT; 22nd February 2010 at 03:25 AM.

  22. #22

    Default Re: Sonoma Scent Studio

    Quote Originally Posted by Galamb_Borong View Post
    The two ones I've tried were excellent. I need to explore this line more.

    Wood Violet

    Not particularly violety, but rather like Feminite du Bois made richer and creamier. It's odd to say it, given that Feminite du Bois is a Lutens, but it's Feminite du Blois made more Lutenesque. Less transparency, much more richness.

    Velvet Rose

    Pure, loud, true-to-life rose. Totally linear but also extremely realistic.
    I agree with you on Wood Violet. It has always reminded me of Bois de Violette or FdB. If you've tried Winter Woods, it brings to mind Bois des Iles. Femme Jolie is reminiscent to me of FdB, and one of her best scents, IMO.
    Hearts starve as well as bodies; give us bread, but give us roses.
    ~~James Oppenheimer~~

  23. #23

    Default Re: Sonoma Scent Studio

    Alright, I'm enticed. I'll be ordering soon and will report. Love that there is a 5ml "purse" spray option!

    Ambre Noir, Tabac Aurea, Winter Woods, Champagne de Bois, Sienna Musk, Opal, and Vintage Rose are ringing my bells... but I'll surely pair down the list for now.
    I offer you perfume,
    More for its pleasure than for yours;
    You perfume perfume.

    --Anonymous Ancient Greek Love Lyric

  24. #24

    Default Re: Sonoma Scent Studio

    I'm a new fan of this line, also! I was going to place an order a couple of weeks ago, but her shopping cart was down so I had time to wait and ponder my decision, which I had never really made in the first place (I usually just dump everything I want into the cart then whittle down from there.)

    I'm completely with you regarding the small sizes, Antaeusintheair, as I want bottles of almost everything I've sampled so far -
    Cameo, Voile de Violette, Vintage Rose, Velvet Rose, Rose Musc, Lieu de Reves, Champaigne de Bois....actually, that is everything I sampled!

    I really need to narrow it down a bit and place the order so I can get samples of a few more (although Opal is out of stock right now and that's the one that I most wanted to try next - hmph!) but I just can't seem to rule any out, and I don't need to be adding more to the list just yet (although I suppose if I were a reasonable person I'd realize that I don't need all three roses at once....that would be good start.)

  25. #25

    Default Re: Sonoma Scent Studio

    I think Femme Jolie (I have only smelled the re-formulation) is more wearable then FdB, which I love but tend to tire of after a few hours. It is also reminiscent of Rochas Femme. More than anything though, it smells like a richer, sweeter, better Ineke's Evening Edged in Gold - the way I wanted that scent to smell.

    Opal is one of the few comfort scents that I can imagine wearing in very hot weather, as the bergamot prevents it from becoming too cloying.

    Wood Violet smells nothing at all like Bois de Violette to me - far too much cumin. Voile de Violette does though !

    I have only a few of the line left to smell but those I have tested have seemed extremely good to me, even if they are not 'me'. I am also very impressed by Laurie's reasonable prices, friendly and efficient customer service and the speed of shipping to the UK.

  26. #26

    Default Re: Sonoma Scent Studio

    Quote Originally Posted by Antaeusintheair View Post
    Alright, I'm enticed. I'll be ordering soon and will report. Love that there is a 5ml "purse" spray option!

    Ambre Noir, Tabac Aurea, Winter Woods, Champagne de Bois, Sienna Musk, Opal, and Vintage Rose are ringing my bells... but I'll surely pair down the list for now.
    I am VERY much excited to sample!

    I also like the option to sample in the 5ml size. The parfumeuse personally responded to my query. I am really looking forward to sampling and I think small niche houses like this can certainly be competition not only for quality but also price. (Some niche houses command premium for exclusivity and also for fancy packaging/advertising.)

    I understand she will next release a white floral, so it seems she is hitting all the bases of fragrance groups--from the florals to the deeper scents.

    The shopping cart is now up again:

    http://www.sonomascentstudio.com/FragranceShop.shtml
    Last edited by Primrose; 22nd February 2010 at 06:01 PM.
    "No sweet perfume ever tortured me more than this." Desert Rose by Sting and Cheb Mami, Album 1999.

  27. #27

    Default Re: Sonoma Scent Studio

    I would love to see her do a leather or something with skank! I think that's the only hole in her collection.
    Last edited by Lessa; 22nd February 2010 at 06:37 PM.
    Hearts starve as well as bodies; give us bread, but give us roses.
    ~~James Oppenheimer~~

  28. #28

    Default Re: Sonoma Scent Studio

    Quote Originally Posted by Lessa View Post
    I would love to see her to a leather or something with skank! I think that's the only hole in her collection.
    Eau de armpit, as with a strong cumin note?
    "No sweet perfume ever tortured me more than this." Desert Rose by Sting and Cheb Mami, Album 1999.

  29. #29

    Default Re: Sonoma Scent Studio

    Quote Originally Posted by Primrose View Post
    Eau de armpit, as with a strong cumin note?
    That would work! Something with civet, too....
    Hearts starve as well as bodies; give us bread, but give us roses.
    ~~James Oppenheimer~~

  30. #30
    Basenotes Plus
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    Default Re: Sonoma Scent Studio

    Laurie's a sweetheart, isn't she? Glad to see a few more explorers in SSS. Do post back with your thoughts. I have included here the rest of the brief takes after sampling 15 from her line:

    Velvet Rose
    Reference rose, rich but dewy fresh.

    Voile de Violette
    Lush, fresh yet earthy violet.

    Vintage Rose
    Drier and a touch musty, smells more like some cask-aged wine - full bodied and plummy, with hints of dusky woods and light spices.

    Rose Musc
    Deeply heady rose derivative, but a little 'perfumey' for my taste.

    Wood Violet
    Violet subdued by plum and cinnamon, over warm cedar and cloves. Rather comforting.

    Egyptian Musk
    A skin scent that is far too subtle to matter. Strictly for sillage haters.

    Sienna Musk
    Dry warm spices over dusty woods, rounded by balsamic nutmeg and white musk. Airy masculine.

    Opal
    Elegantly feminine, natural smelling musk with hints of creamy vanilla and sandalwood.

    Cameo
    Vintage-musty roses and violet juxtaposed against dry woods and musk. Classical.

    Jour Ensoleillé
    A joyous floral chypre. Think wild flowers under an oak, basking in Nature’s own sunny embrace.

    Femme Jolie
    Cedar-tinged cinnamon with faintly fruity undertones over light musk and sandalwood. A Lutens-beating act.


  31. #31

    Default Re: Sonoma Scent Studio

    A question for SSS fans - does anyone know if she has a store or similar place where one can try her fragrances? I'm curious because I'm spending a while in the Bay Area this spring, and I'm wondering if it's worth stopping by Healdsburg to smell the whole line.
    Last edited by Sugandaraja; 22nd February 2010 at 07:27 PM.

  32. #32

    Default Re: Sonoma Scent Studio

    Quote Originally Posted by Galamb_Borong View Post
    A question for SSS fans - does anyone know if she has a store or similar place where one can try her fragrances? I'm curious because I'm spending a while in the Bay Area this spring, and I'm wondering if it's worth stopping by Healdsburg to smell the whole line.
    Drop her a line. She will respond. I don't know it she has a storefront or not.

    http://www.sonomascentstudio.com/contact.shtml
    "No sweet perfume ever tortured me more than this." Desert Rose by Sting and Cheb Mami, Album 1999.

  33. #33
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    Default Re: Sonoma Scent Studio

    Quote Originally Posted by Galamb_Borong View Post
    A question for SSS fans - does anyone know if she has a store or similar place where one can try her fragrances? I'm curious because I'm spending a while in the Bay Area this spring, and I'm wondering if it's worth stopping by Healdsburg to smell the whole line.
    Why don't you drop Laurie a note and ask her? She answers her emails v promptly.

    Edit: Primrose, you beat me to the punch...
    Last edited by Diamondflame; 22nd February 2010 at 07:37 PM.

  34. #34

    Default Re: Sonoma Scent Studio

    Quote Originally Posted by Lessa View Post
    That would work! Something with civet, too....
    I get civet in Vintage Rose - too much even - how strange!

    Opal is my favourite - would love a bottle of this some time.
    Last edited by VM I hate civet; 22nd February 2010 at 07:39 PM.
    "So many scents, so little skin"...

    http://bonkersaboutperfume.blogspot.com/

  35. #35

    Default Re: Sonoma Scent Studio

    Galamb- I've already asked her about store hours. Here is the reply:

    "I don't right now, but I'd like to set up some open studio hours this summer, probably Saturday afternoons. I'd have testers out to sniff, and I have a collection of vintage perfume bottles and vintage perfume ads people could see. it would be fun. I'll post about that on the blog when I start. I'm not sure yet, but I'll probably do a combination of some 'by appointment' hours and some drop-in open hours."

    Also- I"m thinking threads like this should be pulled altogether, lest LVMH see it and start poking around to see if she'll sell. I don't want these fragrances to go the way of so many others that sold out and gave their forumulas to accountants and lawyers. (so sshhh!!!)

  36. #36

    Default Re: Sonoma Scent Studio

    Quote Originally Posted by BayKAT View Post
    Galamb- I've already asked her about store hours. Here is the reply:

    "I don't right now, but I'd like to set up some open studio hours this summer, probably Saturday afternoons. I'd have testers out to sniff, and I have a collection of vintage perfume bottles and vintage perfume ads people could see. it would be fun. I'll post about that on the blog when I start. I'm not sure yet, but I'll probably do a combination of some 'by appointment' hours and some drop-in open hours."
    Thanks for saving me some research time, BayKAT.

    I won't be there in summer, but oh well, there's certainly plenty of things to go smell in and around the Bay area anyway...

  37. #37

    Default Re: Sonoma Scent Studio

    Ordered samples of Tabac Aurea, Winter Woods, Ambre Noire, and Bois de Champagne (along with some Chanel Exclusifs I have yet to try and some other odds and ends) from the Posh Peasant. First time trying them as a TPC alternative. I cannot wait for these to arrive. Yay!
    I offer you perfume,
    More for its pleasure than for yours;
    You perfume perfume.

    --Anonymous Ancient Greek Love Lyric

  38. #38

    Default Re: Sonoma Scent Studio

    The samples arrived! Okay, first impressions:

    Vintage Rose 4.5 *

    Very beautiful, natural rose top note. Not as extroverted as Velvet Rose; more subtle ( admittedly, Velvet Rose is about as loud a rose as you'll find ). Slightly apple-tinted, greenish rose note, like Sa Majeste La Rose. Quite soon develops a cedary-peppery Feminite du Bois accord I've smelled in her Wood Violet, yet with the rose note, I'm simultaneously reminded of Paestum Rose. Honestly, I can see this being a huge hit with the men on Basenotes, as it's rose without a hint of powder and quite a subdued sweetness.

    Surprisingly, as I often smell wine in rose and oud fragrances, I don't smell it at all here, despite many reviews describing it thus.

    Sienna Musk 4 *

    Like Musc Ravaguer? Hate the fact that it makes you feel like someone should cover you in chocolate sauce and stick a fork into you? Run out and get this! It's that exact musk note without any of the gourmand sweetness. Instead, it has a curiously dry "dustiness" I'm at a loss to accurately describe. I'm reminded of warm terracotta ( not the Guerlain, I mean terracotta as in terracotta pots ).

    Tabac Aurea 3.5 *

    I'm a little baffled at those who find this harsh. Strong, certainly, but in all honesty I don't even find tobacco to be the dominant accord The tobacco note weaves in and out of my impressions, together with another appearance of that peppery-cedary accord, and perhaps most surprisingly, a distinct and uplifting floral side. It's not like any other tabacco fragrance I've smelled, but is somewhat akin to various Lutens' of the Bois series.

    Ambre Noir 3 *

    Labdanum fans, this one is for you. It's almost a labdanum soliflore ( a misuse of the term, I'm sure, but if iris can be a soliflore, then why not rock rose? ) I smell tobacco here too, but this one is quite a bit different from Tabac Aurea, bigger, moodier, edgier. The only two fragrances I can draw parallels to it are Neil Morris Gotham ( though it's less sweet and less wild ), and MGM Success ( for the tobacco meets labdanum ). I promise you when you think "amber", you're not imagining this, and oh yes, and this one is very, very animalic.

    All four fragrances are big fragrances with strong personalities. I think I like Vintage Rose best so far, but I'm a sucker for interesting florals. Tabac Aurea is great but too cedary-peppery. Sienna Musc I'll need to give a few wearings, and so far seems the least complex but the most wearable. Ambre Noir has serious attitude, but is a little too... "too" for me. Undoubtedly one to recommend on the powerhouse group.

    It's fragrances like these that pull me out of vintage nostalgia and make me realize what an interesting time it is to be alive and experiencing fragrances now. I'm looking forward to experiencing the rest of this line!
    Last edited by Sugandaraja; 9th March 2010 at 10:02 PM. Reason: Clarification

  39. #39

    Default Re: Sonoma Scent Studio

    I ordered a bunch of samples just because of you guys....sheesh, enablers.

  40. #40

    Default Re: Sonoma Scent Studio

    Thank you, Galamb, for the reviews. I enjoy Tabac Aurea, but only in cold weather, as it is very strong. I would prefer more florals in this.

    I also like Liz Zorn's Tobacco and Tulle for a nice tobacco scent. It is very animalic and has a good mingling of florals.
    "No sweet perfume ever tortured me more than this." Desert Rose by Sting and Cheb Mami, Album 1999.

  41. #41

    Default Re: Sonoma Scent Studio

    Three more "first impression" reviews.

    Fireside Intense
    2 *

    "Remember that time we decided we could smoke a beaver with paraffin candles? Let's never talk about that again, okay?"

    Castoreum and birch tar overload, yet with a curious snuffed-candle note mingled in. It's different, I'll give it that. If the idea of some mid-point between CB IHP's Burning Leaves, Andy Tauer's Lonestar Memories, and Ava Luxe's Incense Noir sounds up your alley, by all means, try it. I find it scary and more than a little gross. Intense, indeed - like the way the Saw movies are "intense".

    Champagne du Bois 2 *

    Kind of fell flat on me. Starts off with a pleasant aldehydic chypre vibe, then gives up the ghost and becomes this faintly woody, dusty smell. Very "meh", but not gross like the last.

    Rose Musc 5 *

    Ah, finally, SSS's answer to a "pretty" fragrance. While many of the others are beautiful, interesting, and complicated, there is something moody and dramatic about them all, even the explosively natural Velvet Rose. Rose Musc has none of that. Here is a beautiful, pure, naturalistic rose with a muted, gently musky accompaniment. Think Sa Majeste La Rose with more body and a creamy roundness ( no powder here, though, lucky for me ).

    Yes, it's the most traditionally "femme" of any I've tried in this line; no, that in no way is going to stop me from picking up a bottle. It just makes me feel so good.

  42. #42
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    Default Re: Sonoma Scent Studio

    Thanks Galamb for your thoughts. I quite agree with your impression of Ambre Noir and Erickson seems to favor the use of labdanum in her compositions. Luckily I love labdanum...

    I also don't find Tabac Aurea strong at all. But I've yet to purchase a bottle as I'm having so much trouble narrowing it down. I just love many of them!

  43. #43

    Default Re: Sonoma Scent Studio

    Quote Originally Posted by Galamb_Borong View Post
    Sienna Musk 4 *

    Like Musc Ravaguer? Hate the fact that it makes you feel like someone should cover you in chocolate sauce and stick a fork into you? Run out and get this! It's that exact musk note without any of the gourmand sweetness. Instead, it has a curiously dry "dustiness" I'm at a loss to accurately describe. I'm reminded of warm terracotta ( not the Guerlain, I mean terracotta as in terracotta pots ).

    [
    GB-- I'm enjoying all of your mini reviews. Sienna Musk is spot on. I thought of Musc ravageur right away, too.

    I do recommend the sample box from the SSS sight. Carded samples with excellent descriptions on each card.

    I'm crazy for Tabac Aurea and Opal.
    And Lieu de rêves is smelling awfully nice on my left wrist right now. Like a more heliotropy and violetty Après l'ondée. Sweeter, but nothing like, say, the uber-desserty Quand vient la pluie.
    I love Winter Woods ,too.

    I'll be posting reviews eventually.

    Meanwhile, many are making their way to my wish list. The only ones I don't like are the big roses [Velvet and Musk]--but I think that is more about me than about SSS.

    But wait Vintage Rose just gets better and better the longer i wear it.

    Oh my gosh--Jour ensolleilé is one I was sure I would hate--all those screechy white flowers--but it is lovely!
    Last edited by Nostalgie; 12th March 2010 at 11:06 PM.
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  44. #44

    Default Re: Sonoma Scent Studio

    Three more:

    Voile de Violette 3 *

    Nice, greenish violet, but I'm not too big on the woody, sudsy drydown. Pleasant, but just "okay". ( Why must everything seem so pale after smelling Midnight Violet? )

    Femme Jolie 1 *

    Sweet, powdery headache-in-a-bottle. I'm sorry to say this is everything I don't like in a women's fragrance all in one spot. Sorry, it's a scrubber.

    Jour Ensoleillé 5 *

    Another really gorgeous floral, which I'm a sucker for. I'm surprised everyone everyone finds this one so soft and understated ( including its very creator! ) While not as loud as the average SSS creation, I find it extremely, rich, heady, and indolic ( in fact, this the second-most indolic white floral I've smelled after Saffron James' Nani ). It's deliciously buttery. I don't smell much "chypre" here, neither in terms of a bergamot top or moss base, but it is a glorious floral with a lot of orange blossom and tuberose. Even Laurie's love of woods is played down, though I definitely smell the hay nuances ( I'm faintly reminded of Bois Blond ). Tied with Rose Musc as my favorite.

  45. #45
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    Default Re: Sonoma Scent Studio

    I am loving the wine note in Vintage Rose. It's a "tipsy" rose that settles down to a really beautiful close-to-the skin scent. Much prefer it over Velvet Rose. There's a rose in my garden that this reminds me of but with just a little extra spice. In a few weeks, I'll have blooms and can tell you which one it is. I particularly like the play of notes against the rose/plum and ladbanum.
    Might "need" this one.
    Last edited by RHM; 10th March 2010 at 07:29 PM.
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  46. #46

    Default Re: Sonoma Scent Studio

    Quote Originally Posted by Nostalgie View Post
    GB-- I'm enjoying all of your mini reviews. Sienna Musk is spot on. I thought of Musc ravageur right away, too.
    Thanks! I'm glad it's not just me who sees the link between MR and Sienna.

  47. #47

    Default Re: Sonoma Scent Studio

    Whoa Nellie!!! I just got my samples from SSS...I can't thank y'all enough for turning me on to Laurie's AMAZING work. I am in sample heaven, just in time for the weekend!!!

  48. #48

    Default Re: Sonoma Scent Studio

    Do tell us about the ones you like - or otherwise - when you're done sampling, Bloomy.

  49. #49

    Default Re: Sonoma Scent Studio

    Well, first of all I doused myself with Chergui today so I can't properly test these until I shower, but I can say after a few little whiffs that this is EXACTLY the kind of stuff I was looking for when I joined BN three weeks ago (small house, niche frags). The scents are really strong which I like because my chemistry tends to eat it up. I don't know why, but I always have to spray more than most people and I have never had anyone say that I'm wearing too much.

    Anyways, I have always loved perfume, but never wore anything really unique or different until recently. I would not consider myself an expert in any way; I am really new at this and so I won't be able to pick apart every subtle nuance, but will do my best to convey my impressions.

    I get the feeling they won't fade in a couple of hours like most frags do on my skin. So it will take more time to test each one....



    more soon...
    Last edited by *bloomy*; 13th March 2010 at 05:01 AM.

  50. #50

    Default Re: Sonoma Scent Studio

    SSS Femme Jolie- OIL
    Femme Jolie starts with strong spicy with cinnamon and clove and a very slight fruity note with perhaps just a hint of violet. Becomes sweet woodsy and warm, I am reminded of those gift shops that sell grubby candles that are supposed to make your house smell like you’ve been baking cookies and pies. It continues down the sweet powdery spicy path. I finally couldn’t take it any longer and I had to wash my arms. I love the strength and longevity and I think it’s well made. I personally cannot wear this one because it is simply not my style. Nauseating …sorry.

    SSS Jour Ensoleille
    Shoots out a golden floral, but is there is a lot of wood in here too. Somewhat astringent, maybe due to moss? I don’t know. As far as the flowers go, I smell only tuberose and jasmine which are really held in check by the whole woodsy/mossy thing. Definitely unisex!

    SSS Lieu de Reves
    Slightly aldehydic, violet and heliotrope, which always smells super powdery to me(fear of bathroom deodorizer enters here). Soft musk and cedar rescue the powdery flowers, thankfully. Lieu de Reves is very soft and VERY feminine. I LOVE the dry down on this one. On my skin, I found that I personally need a heavier application to fully appreciate the different notes.

  51. #51
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    Default Re: Sonoma Scent Studio

    Thanks for sharing, bloomy. Jour Ensoleille is definitely one of the top picks from this line. While I love it tremendously it's just not something I wd imagine myself smelling of. I doubt if I can pull it off.

    I'm reviewing Champagne de Bois right now, trying to whittle down my list of favorites to the top 4. But darn, it's hard...
    Last edited by Diamondflame; 15th March 2010 at 09:55 PM.

  52. #52

    Default Re: Sonoma Scent Studio

    I finally got my first unsolicited positive fragrance comment in over a year. The fragrance? Tabac Aurea. I love it and don't find it strong, but I do think my skin tends to eat fragrances. I do get a fair amount of tobacco, but also some leather sharpness, followed by a warm, golden amber. Yum!
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  53. #53

    Default Re: Sonoma Scent Studio

    Blackcat- Tabac was one of my favorites too! Also on my 'should I buy' list is Jour ensoleille, Velvet rose and winter woods. Hmm...

    diamond- if you see this, how does Champaigne Bois compare to Amber Noir and winter woods? I"m nervous about that aldehyde note, I usually can't wear this
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  54. #54
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    Default Re: Sonoma Scent Studio

    Quote Originally Posted by BayKAT View Post
    diamond- if you see this, how does Champaigne Bois compare to Amber Noir and winter woods? I"m nervous about that aldehyde note, I usually can't wear this
    The use of aldehydes in Champagne de Bois is very restrained, merely to add a little sparkle to the opening. Really nothing to worry about. All 3 scents share the use of labdanum absolute in various degrees so the sibling resemblance is evident. To my nose Champagne de Bois focuses more on the creamy floral leather & sandalwood aspect, Ambre Noir is more about labdanum and incense, while Winter Woods feels warmly smoky but never harsh with a deft layering of birch tar and cade over amber and ambergris. All 3 are distinctly different yet feel somewhat similar towards the drydown..
    Last edited by Diamondflame; 16th March 2010 at 04:11 PM.

  55. #55

    Default Re: Sonoma Scent Studio

    Great to hear your thoughts, Bloomy!

    I find it interesting that so many smell a woody-chypre side to Jour Ensoleille; I can't smell at all. It's like I'm anosmic to it or something.

    As for Champagne du Bois, it is very understated in terms of its aldehydic side. It has fairly middle-of-the-road greenish, aldehydic top notes that just disappear on me after ten minutes and become a quiet, dusty, woody scent. It's one of the scents that failed to captivate me in this line, but not through over-the-top aldehydes ( a quality I actually like ), but by a rather quiet, flat, woody drydown ( which I didn't like ).

  56. #56

    Default Re: Sonoma Scent Studio

    Quote Originally Posted by BayKAT View Post
    diamond- if you see this, how does Champaigne Bois compare to Amber Noir and winter woods? I"m nervous about that aldehyde note, I usually can't wear this
    Oh, I should also add that to me, Ambre Noir and Winter Woods have very labdanum-heavy drydowns, a note not apparent to me in CdB. Champagne du Bois' drydown is much more like the woody side of Sienna Musk without the musk, if that makes any sense.
    Last edited by Sugandaraja; 16th March 2010 at 04:37 PM.

  57. #57

    Default Re: Sonoma Scent Studio

    Well Tabac Aurea has definitely grown on me, it took me three wearings to sort it all out. While l like it VERY MUCH, on my skin the cedar becomes sharp and takes over. I wish for more leather, more warm tobacco and less cedar. Does anyone know of a great tobacco frag for my comparison? I am so new that I have no frame of reference.

    Velvet Rose is straight-up-bury-yer-nose-in-a-fully-blooming-three-hundred-petal-sun warmed-Damask rose. I don't smell anything else in this one and I LOVE it. I will be buying this one...

    Voile de Violette starts off damp and earthy, out in the garden on your hands and knees at eye level with the a clump of blooming Viola odorata just after it rained. Not too powdery like so many violets can be and lasted about three hours on my skin. Gonna order a small sample, unless I like Wood Violet better....

  58. #58
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    Default Re: Sonoma Scent Studio

    Quote Originally Posted by *bloomy* View Post
    Voile de Violette starts off damp and earthy, out in the garden on your hands and knees at eye level with the a clump of blooming Viola odorata just after it rained. Not too powdery like so many violets can be and lasted about three hours on my skin. Gonna order a small sample, unless I like Wood Violet better....
    I have a feeling you would prefer Wood Violet. I know I did.

    Btw here's a thread on tobacco frags you might want to check:-
    http://www.basenotes.net/threads/235...obacco-Vanille!)

  59. #59

    Default Re: Sonoma Scent Studio

    So, I"ve narrowed my 'buy' selection down to Velvet Rose, Winter woods and jour ensolleille. i hope to buy in person the next time i am up that way :-)
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  60. #60
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    Default Re: Sonoma Scent Studio

    Quote Originally Posted by BayKAT View Post
    So, I"ve narrowed my 'buy' selection down to Velvet Rose, Winter woods and jour ensolleille. i hope to buy in person the next time i am up that way :-)
    An excellent trio.

    I thought I've narrowed mine down but now still agonizing over these:
    Tabac Aurea
    Ambre Noir
    Champagne de Bois
    Vintage Rose
    Winter Woods
    Fireside Intense
    Sienna Musk

    I probably shouldn't have sampled that many in the first place...
    Last edited by Diamondflame; 22nd March 2010 at 08:21 AM.

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