Friday, November 2, 2012

nosy's smelloween

My friend Lauren in her jellyfish getup, with one of my fragrant petals creeping into the frame.

This year I was a BOOquet for Halloween (glamour-shot below). I weighed down a flimsy green dress with a dozen hot glue sticks worth of fake flowers, tied a florist's bow around a cellophane skirt, and topped it off with a flower headband so gigantic I'll need a royal wedding-invite to have occasion to wear it again. In the interest of verisimilitude, I coated myself with Rossy de Palma Eau de Protection. Though my costume didn't feature any roses, the scent matched the bright green and iridescent gloss of the dress, and seemed tough enough, somehow, to stand up to the chaos of Halloween. Maybe it's the bloody knife note that Chandler Burr describes in an article about The Art of Scent: 1889-2012, his upcoming show at the Museum of Arts and Design:  
The fragrance is called Eau de protection, Burr explains, and it is “one of the most fascinating works ever created, in any art form.” It was designed as “a portrait of a woman who is so beautiful that rose runs in her blood. And a man comes with a metal knife, and plunges it into her heart. And it is the smell of her blood, running down the blade.”
It was interesting to wear so much perfume (the dress hangs like a giant sachet on the closet door, scenting my whole bedroom even days later), especially since I'm usually a pretty restrained sprayer, perhaps in part due to my love of big ol' overpowering fragrances. But I went bananas spraying this costume, and this meant a lot more reaction to my smell than I typically get, ranging from the positive: "I just want to keep hugging you to breathe you in!" to the not-so-hot: "You smell like that one women's deodorant, you know, the famous one." Okay! 

Boo! Highly-filtered selfies are the Glamour Shots of our time. 

Another guest at the Halloween party, lanky and in all black, was dubbed Vanilla Bean due to her lack of costume and the serious waft of lovely vanilla she was projecting. She told me it was Jo Malone's Vanilla & Anise, a perfume I'd never sniffed before, but will definitely try when I next have the chance, even though I think part of its appeal might have been the ease with which she wore it, and the way its homey tonka bean comforts contrasted slightly with her sharp wit, luminous North London accent, and "nihilist's wardrobe." I'm on a serious "non-yicky vanilla" (term courtesy of Katie Puckrik) kick at the moment, though, having fallen in love recently with the smokey, soulful vanilla in the gorgeous CB I Hate Perfume's 7 Billion Hearts (so like me to fall for priciest car on the lot) and the woody beauty of Le Labo's Vanille 44. Maybe my nose knows that winter is coming and wants the warmth of rich, real vanilla, worn by humans huddled together around a fire.


Elisa said...

You look beautiful! Did you get too spooked to go as a grave?

I read that Burr article this morning. I don't think Rossy de Palma (my baby!) smells like blood, but I can see the metallic element, and blood *tastes* metallic, so there must be some synaesthesia going on for him. I do think it smells shiny. Maybe like a knife is shiny. But it would have to be a red knife. But instead I see the hood of a really shiny, clean, recently painted but vintage sports car.

Wish I could have gone to your party!

nosy girl said...

More glue-gun fatigue than terror, and it was easier to wrap myself in a big swath of cellophane than figure out the dirt/gross bugs situation. (Though I did have a brief fling with some horrible-smelling moss purchased from the craft store. They made an exception to their no-open returns policy due to stinkiness!)

I thought of you, of course, and your baby when I read the article. I am so suggestible; after reading, I went to sniff my bottle and thought, yeah, I can see blood here, though I'd never smelled blood before. There is a sort of menstrual quality (a penny in a panty) to it though, no? I think you're right that it's metallic, and it's not rust. But I love your sheen-y sports car image, and can almost see that gloss around you like an aura, in my memory of first loving RdP, in winter in a now-defunct bar in Boston.

nosy girl said...

And P.S. HAPPY BIRTHDAY! I wish you could have come to the party, too, and to another one celebrating you!

Elisa said...

I wish my menstrual blood smelled like geranium! I need to injure myself so I can remember what blood actually smells like....

Elisa said...


nosy girl said...

Do no harm, dear! But I think shaving (ankles & knees especially) is the easiest way you might accidentally end up smelling some blood.

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