CB I Hate Perfume Black March

CB I Hate Perfume (CBIHP) settles in a lovely little center of my heart as that fragrance house that did. In that, it took concepts of memories and did them and did them well. No surprise as the place is headed by Christopher Brosius. The man can make you a perfume that conjures memories you never even knew you had.

Black March

In Bottle: Earthy but fresh, like moist soil after a rainstorm where the electric charge is still lingering in the air and you can still hear thunder rumbling faintly in the distance.

Applied: Poetic opening, very unusual and very welcome to me. I get fresh, wet dirt and a cleanness that dries to scrub the earth but doesn’t quite make it. It’s like I said for the in bottle impression, this smells like the aftermath of a rainstorm. It’s a little crazy how Black March can make me picture so well, a little clearing, some sprouts of grass poking out of the dewy ground. But it doesn’t stop there, as the scent ages and heads into a mid-stage, Black March dries a little, gets a bit more dense and dark like drying soil as the sun peeks out and the faint smell of green leaves and tree trunks arrives. The dry down is much the same, sun-kissed leaves, baking earth, and tree trunks.

Extra: You might be wondering about the name of the fragrance house. This article touches upon it near the beginning.

Design: There’s two types you can get Black March in. A perfume oil that comes in a glass vial with a twist cap that looks very scientific lined up with other CBIHP perfumes. And the type I got which is the fragrance diluted in a water-base. My type  comes in a tall cylindrical glass bottle with few embellishments and the design is better that way. The minimalist artistic approach works well here.

Fragrance Family: Earthy

Notes: Rain drops, leaf buds, wet twigs, tree sap, bark, mossy earth, spring.

I think there’s a lot in CBIHP’s line that might work against people’s desire to wear them as fragrances though many people have many different ideas of what smells good and what constitutes a perfume. If you happen to love a scented candle and wish it was a fragrance too, you wouldn’t be the first one. And then there’s elements in CBIHP’s line that I can’t see myself wearing as a perfume like Black March. It’s beautiful, a fantastic little journey, but I don’t know if I would call it perfume. Which I suppose is what Mr. Brosius might be going for. I can spray this on and relive in a fantastic memory though, and I think that’s worth it.

Reviewed in This Post: Black March, 2010, Eau de Toilette.

Bond No.9 Chelsea Flowers

There aren’t a whole lot of things I can say for Bond No.9 as a perfume house or as a business. However, I can attest to how well-sealed their fragrance samples are. Getting that little stopper off the vial should be classified as an Olympic Sport only to be played by the most determined of fragrance junkies.  Chelsea Flowers

In Bottle: Light, airy flowers, slightly sweet and very floral. Entirely pleasant but not very original. Chelsea Flowers is rather nice for an inoffensive wear to the office.

Applied: Light and green, small and subdued white floral opener with a nice mist of sweet peony. Its mid-stage is a pleasant bouquet of rose and peony with that same mist of green freshness. This smells like freshly picked flowers, or flowers that just bloomed on a hopeful spring. A gorgeous fragrance by all accounts and purposes even if she isn’t all that exciting, she’s very well done. Dry down is a nice enough floral with a very faint woodsiness lent by a tame sandalwood note.

Extra: There is a lot of talk about Bond No.9’s more recent business antics in relation to them disallowing decants from selling decants of their fragrances online. To get a Bond No.9 fragrance sample on the up and up these days you will have to visit a Bond No.9 counter and hope the people working there like you enough to hand you some of the candy-like wrapped vials of perfumy goodness. Further adding to my distaste of this company’s policies is the legal wrestling they did with Liz Zorn of Soivohle over her use of the word “Peace” in one of her fragrances.

Design: I’ve always found Bond No.9’s bottling to be a bit silly looking. I see these things and all I see are stars. Which reminds me of the Hollywood Walk of Fame decorated in pop-art designs. Not highly unpleasant but not my first choice for perfume design. Holding one of these bottles, I’ll admit, feels luxurious and they are an interesting shape and have nicely done colors. I just can’t say a minimalist like me would be swayed much by the design decisions, nice and bold as they are.

Fragrance Family: Floral

Notes: Peonies, tulips, hyacinth, magnolia, rose, musk, sandalwood, vetiver, tree moss.

Don’t let my distaste for Bond No.9’s business antics to turn you away from Chelsea Flowers as a fragrance. This is a very competent and versatile white floral.

Reviewed in This Post: Chelsea Flowers, 2008, Sample Vial.