“All that is gold does not glitter…”: Parfums Dusita Le Pavillon d’Or

As I started writing this post, it dawned on me how prescient were the lines that inspired Pissara Umavijani to create Le Pavillon d’Or: “… to live more happily in just any confinement” (Montri Umavijani, a Thai poet and the perfumer’s father). In just several months after the perfume release, the whole World suddenly had to slow down and start learning how to live in confinement and if not be happier but at least survive.

Le Pavillon d’Or is very fitting to the circumstances: it is not manifestly shiny, so you don’t have to rationalize to yourself wearing it while working from the kitchen table or blitzkrieging through a grocery store in search of TP, but it possesses an internal beauty that elevates your spirit and contributes to the feeling of well-being and… well, happiness.

Dusita Parfums Pavillon d'Or

Do you remember how Parfums Dusita brand appeared on the scene? It came seemingly from nowhere around 2015, released 3 perfumes by a new perfumer, and those perfumes were offered at a price point that not that many niche brands dared to put on their price tag back then. Especially not those without some history/standing in the community or at least done by renowned “noses.”

While I do not think that perfumes (or any luxury goods for that matter) should be accessible or even reasonable in their price setting, I remember being slightly annoyed by that launch. (Little did I know that from that point on there will be dozens of brands springing up like mushrooms and flooding the market with perfumes at astounding prices.)

But since back then many blogs that were reviewing and discussing new perfume launches were still around, I got curious about the brand because of the general buzz those reviews created. So, as soon as I got a chance, I tried those first three perfumes and … let me put it this way: I still didn’t get either the prices or the buzz. I guess, the fact that two out of the first three perfumes were built around ingredients I usually dislike (agarwood and tuberose) didn’t help.

The next three perfumes that were released I found interesting, but I didn’t want to wear any of them – so, I decided that Parfums Dusita wasn’t “my brand” and could have never tried another perfume from this brand if it weren’t for my perfumista friends. Cynthia (The Fragrant Journey), after in comment to her wonderful review, I expressed interest in testing Le Pavillon d’Or, had shared with me the remaining portion of her tiny sample. And it was enough for me to fall in love with Le Pavillon d’Or.

Dusita Parfums Pavillon d'Or

I’m a little confused with the notes for Le Pavillon d’Or. The brand’s site has the following list (explanations in parentheses are mine): Wild Menthe Citrata (bergamot mint), Honeysuckle Extrait, Boronia Absolute, Frankincense Green Sacra, White Thyme Oil, Vanilla, English Oakwood and Sandalwood Spicata (Australian sandalwood). I do not smell mint, but Cynthia in the review linked to above shares what she discovered about the ingredient used. Fragrantica, Luckyscent and the perfumer’s older posts on Instagram also mention fig leaves, heliotrope and orris butter. I wouldn’t recognize heliotrope (in general, not specifically here), but I thought that I know both fig and iris enough to distinguish them in the composition, and I can’t. So, I’m not sure if they are there, were there before but not anymore, or if they are created by some other ingredients that I don’t recognize as such. Le Pavillion d’Or starts as a very green perfume – a tad herbal, slightly bitter and somewhat uplifting. It develops through sheer resinous frankincense into a woody base, though my nose isn’t sophisticated enough to recognize which wood. But when you like what you smell, it doesn’t really matter what you smell, does it?

Rusty and Dusita Parfums Pavillon d'Or

The pavilion is golden not because it’s made of gold. Imagine a late-Spring morning when a rising sun reflects in dewdrops on the wooden beams of a pavilion making them sparkle through the leafy branches of the old tranquil park.

 

Images: my own

Saturday Question: Which of Your Favorite Aromas You Do Not Want Bottled?

It’s quite a usual poll when people are asked to suggest favorite scents that they would love to smell in perfume form: realistic flowers (especially those that cannot be steam distilled or processed by other traditional methods), first rain drops, a unicorn tears – we all dreamed about one of those at some point. But today we’re talking about aromas that you think are great but not as perfume notes.

 

Saturday Question on Undina's Looking Glass

 

Saturday Question #59:

Which of Your Favorite Aromas You Do Not Want Bottled?

There must be dozens of scents that you find pleasing and enjoy every time you smell them but which not necessarily would work as perfumes. What are those?

My Answer

Let’s start with an obvious candidate: meat. I love the smell of fried meat (though as I get older I eat it less and less often), and I think it’s great… but even the idea of having in perfume any part of the aroma that I enjoy from the plate makes me shiver.

But if to think about some more traditional scents, I can offer an inoffensive and widely used in cosmetics (and in perfumery as well) aroma: a cucumber. As much as I like it on its own and as a part of my meal, for perfumes it’s a deal breaker for me (I’m thinking of you, En Passant).

And the last one that I know is my personal nemesis while many people love it is a peach. While I love eating peaches and enjoy their scent, especially fresh from a tree and warmed up by the sun, there’s just a few perfumes where peach doesn’t bother me, but for the most of them I can’t stand that note. But I would love-love-love to have a bowl of ripe peaches on my table: they smell amazing!

 

Which of Your Favorite Aromas You Do Not Want Bottled?

Shalimar EdT by Guerlain: Current

Shalimar EdT by Guerlain: Current

Hi Crew, Shalimar seems to have been part of my life forever. That Guerlain released it nearly 100 years ago in 1925 and won the Paris World Fair design award for the bottle was a particularly auspicious start.

Mum and a couple of her girlfriends were Shalimar wearers. It was the scent of daytime and coffee catch up hugs in my early years. Funnily, when I was working as a squirt bitch I made Mum start wearing Samsara so she’d stand out in her crowd. When I started properly down the fragrant rabbit hole it was a big surprise that Shalimar was such a revered scent. Going back and revisiting it was a revelation. It seems to hold the highest place in my heart, nose and brain. Seriously weird that I became such a collector when my favourite perfume has been with me all along.

In the years of collecting I have amassed a Shalimar specific collection. From EdC to extrait, a bunch of the flankers and many vintages. It became a bit of an obsession for a while because every version has its own personality. They have all aged, been cared for and kept differently. Each year, as much as they try for consistency, the batch is every so slightly different. The year specific naturals included react to each other. The regulation, reinterpretation, quality, weather and available synthetics have all given each year of Shalimar a “vintage” much like wine or whiskey. Sometimes the changes are imperceptible till the perfume is 10 or more years old.

Sometimes people ask me which I love more but it’s not really like that. I tend to wear a few of them more than others though for various reasons. I have a small set that remain out of boxes and at hand in a Guerlain box behind my desk. It holds a bunch of unboxed Guerlain beauties and gets quite a bit of action. Impossible to tell what they all are but I know you’ll have fun trying.

Shalimar EdT by Guerlain: Current

Portia Loves: Shalimar by Guerlain

Parfumo gives these featured accords:
Top: Blossoms, Bergamot
Heart: Iris, Jasmine, Rose
Base: Vanilla, Balsamic notes, Tonka bean

Above is my new bottle of Shalimar EdT. It’s a tester bottle bought for sweet nothing from FragranceNet. For favourites that I know will get used to their dregs I don’t need boxes or packaging, just the bottle and juice. This will stay out and get its share of use with my current other Shalimars; EdC and Sha-Lemur.

So I know that a new bottle will smell different. No oxygenation yet. It does seem though that there is a marked difference between this bottle and my last.

That opening swirl of lemon sorbet has been cut down to a rumble. Also the whole fragrance seems cleaner and less animalic. A floral reinvention, more sparkle and less depth. I’m not complaining. It still smells beautiful. It just isn’t as thick or rich. To be honest it smells like a fresh flanker or an Eau Fraiche for summer.

The longevity is still good but not as long lasting as the older formulations, or even the current EdC in the older bottle. Also, I feel this modern version leans more modern traditional feminine.

I think it’s the most day to day wearable of my Shalimar pillar scent collection. Less an event in itself and more a comfortable, longtime travelling buddy.

Have you tried the latest Shalimar EdT?
Portia xx

Saturday Question: Have You Tried Any Perfumes Released in 2021?

It’s hard to believe but we’re a quarter into the current year. I don’t know about you, but my testing activities subsided significantly. I suspect that many brands have slowed down with new releases as well, but still, if you were to look at Fragrantica’s list for 2021, you’d see a significant number of new perfumes. It got me wondering what my readers were testing this year.

 

Saturday Question on Undina's Looking Glass

 

Saturday Question #58:

Have You Tried Any Perfumes Released in 2021?

Have you been to any stores that carry perfumes? Do they allow testing? Or were you buying samples? Were there any interesting finds so far?

A bonus question: are there any new perfumes you want to try?

My Answer

I was amazed to realize that so far I tried exactly one perfume released this year – Tom Ford Tubéreuse Nue. Not surprisingly, I dislike it: even though I do not think it’s a real tuberose, unlike it happens to me with artificial oud, I do not like either natural or artificial tuberose. But it made me to appreciate Malle‘s Carnal Flower and By Killian‘s Beyond Love more (even though I still don’t think I’d wear any of these). I’m not sure how this name continues the infamous line of questionable names, but I prefer not to look for the answer.

Tom Ford Tubereuse Nue

As to perfumes I’d like to try… There are not that many I’m aware of. Probably, I wouldn’t mind trying new Byredo scents, Diptyque Orphéon, new perfumes in Armani Prive and Tom Ford Private Bland lines and Les Parfums de Rosine Rose Griotte. I’m mildly curious about Jo Malone’s limited edition with hibiscus. But I think that’s it.

How about you?

 

Have You Tried Any Perfumes Released in 2021?

In The Search For The Perfect Mandarin

How often do you see print ads for a fruit? I’m talking not about store fliers, delivery service leaflets or motivational magazine collages about healthy eating, but actual ads that promote fruits. Not too often if you ask me. So, when I saw the ad in The New Yorker magazine, I registered it as something unusual.

Sumo Citrus

I’ve been seeing so-called Sumo Citruses/Mandarins for at least a couple of years, but it wasn’t until my vSO told me its story that I decided to try it (before seeing that ad). If you’re up to reading, here’s an article in the Los Angeles Times from a decade ago that gives a lot of details. But in short: it’s a Japanese hybrid citrus fruit known as Dekopon. Due to the high susceptibility to “exotic pests and diseases,” this fruit is prohibited from being imported into the US. It took a private grower many years to get trees grafted with legally imported branches cleaned off diseases, in quarantine, before those could be planted, legally but in secrecy, on 430 acres in California. So, now these are legally produced locally Dekopon fruit given in the US name Sumo (I really hope Japanese are secure enough not to claim “cultural appropriation”).

I like Sumo Citruses, but since they are two-three times more expensive than regular mandarins, I won’t eat them casually but will be buying them several times during the season (January – April).

What makes me even more fond of Sumo mandarin is that this hybrid is a “grand-child” of my most favorite mandarin – Satsuma. And my quest for the perfect mandarin perfume is based on it since I know it the best.

Of course, when the perfume pyramid mentions “mandarin,” it doesn’t usually clarify its variety or origin. So, I went just by the note in my database and selected a bunch of perfumes that I either remembered had that note as a prominent one or I thought they might.

* * *

I’ll start with samples.

Mandarin Perfumes Samples

From time to time, Antica Farmacista decides to step up from their usual ambiance scents ampluá and produce “Fragrance for Home & Body” or even “Le Parfum” version of their scents. These appear for a short period and then disappear, never to be seen again. I’m not sure whether they are different from Antica Farmacista’s Room Sprays. But if it says “body,” I feel better about spraying them on the skin. Vanilla Bourbon & Mandarin was one of such scents. I got it as a part of the sample set offer a couple of years ago, and I’m not sure if I tested it before, but now it seemed like a good occasion to finally get to it. Notes (according to the brand’s site): Crisp Satsuma Mandarin, Sweet Clementine, Orange Peel, Heliotrope, Bright Verbena, Spicy Bourbon, Warm Amber, Bourbon Vanilla, Labdanum Balsam. It’s a nice ambiance scent with juicy citrus in the opening and not overly sweet but boozy vanilla. I think it would be perfect in a diffuser, but there is no good reason to wear Vanilla Bourbon & Mandarin as perfume.

* * *

I’m not sure whether Atelier Cologne still produces Mandarine Glaciale: it’s “out of stock” everywhere I checked. But even if it has been discontinued, I won’t be upset since I’ve never warmed up to their Collection Azur, as a part of which Mandarine Glaciale was released. I don’t know if subconsciously I thought less of the collection because it appeared at Sephora first, or if it actually was less interesting than Atelier Cologne’s earlier lines. But whatever it was, I’m done with the sample. It is not mandarin I am looking for.

* * *

Pont Des Arts A ce soir was a “false positive” in my list: the promised “green mangarin” note was completely indiscernible. I’m mentioning it here only because it got into the “group photo” before I decided it wasn’t a part of this exercise.

* * *

BDK Parfums Citrus Riviera has an impressive list of notes (from the brand’s site): Essence of Moroccan Neroli, Essence of Italian Mandarin, Essence of Italian Lemon, Fig Accord, Moroccan Orange Blossom Absolute, Jasmine, Strawberry Neo Jungle Essence, Eucalyptus Essence, Everlasting Flower Absolute, White Musk, Patchouli from Indonesia, Vetiver from Haiti and Tonka Bean Absolute. For my nose, it opens with a nice citrus accord – bright, juicy and happy. I don’t get any fig, which surprises me since usually it’s a note I easily recognize. Citrus Riviera settles down to a drier composition with recognizable vetiver, but it’s not too insistent, like, for example, it feels for me in Hermes’s Vetiver Tonka. All the announced florals are probably there but blended without any prominent outliers. I’m a little bit annoyed by the promise of the strawberry note: as much as I do not trust my nose, strawberry is one of the most ubiquitous and recognizable aromas, so why to even mention it if it’s not really noticeable? It’s not like they put in some natural and extremely rare/expensive strawberry enfleurage or strawberry butter and now want us to know that, right? All-in-all, I like this perfume but… I’ll explain it while talking about the next sample.

* * *

If it weren’t for the current situation, for this post I should have got a sample of Tom Ford’s Mandarino di Amalfi. But I don’t know when I get to the store next time, so I decided to go with Neroli Portofino, a sample of which I had at home: after all, it has a mandarin note listed. I like this perfume, same as many other Private Blend variations in “blue bottles.” But I always felt like all these aromatic, aquatic, etc. perfumes, while quite nice and not simple or linear, in my book were “lesser” perfumes than, let’s say, chypres, orientals or even florals. So, leaving aside the absolute price of each perfume (e.g., Citrus Riviera is much cheaper than Tom Ford’s offerings), I could never justify paying any luxury brand’s “standard” price for their citrus perfume. I know, it’s not rational, but this is how I feel.

* * *

For someone who proclaims herself not a citrus perfumes fan, I discovered that I had quite a few perfumes featuring mandarin in my collection.

Mandarin Perfums

I had a small bottle of Annick Goutal Eau d’Hadrien for the last 10 years, and I’m not done with it yet. I don’t think it has enough mandarin to be a contender in my search – it’s more lemony and rather astringent than sweet. But today when I smell it, I like it much more than I did back then. I blame the industry! Compared to hundreds of releases of similar genre perfumes in that period, this 40-years old creation seems like a masterpiece.

* * *

Jul et Mad Aqua Sextius was a wrong choice for this post since official notes on the brand’s site do not even claim mandarin, but that note got into this perfume description in my database from Fragrantica – and that’s how it ended up here. If you haven’t tried this perfume and are curious, read Lucas’s review. From me, I want to add that I find it a little bit on the masculine side (but not overly) and that I think it wears much better in warmer weather. And if you like the scent, the combination of its longevity with the available bottle formats (7 ml, 20 ml and 50 ml) makes the price almost tolerable.

* * *

Hermès Eau de Mandarine Ambrée is one of my most favorite Hermes perfumes. And it is a great mandarin. Recently I wore it “hajusuuri-style” – 8 sprays. It produces a pleasant burst of mandarin in the opening, and in a couple of hours, it’s just a sheer amber with a hint of the initial fruit. I do not mind: the cute bottle that I have can easily fit into the smallest purse for the re-application (in case I ever again need to go anywhere for longer than a couple of hours, that is).

Rusty and Hermes Mandarine Ambree

Prada Infusion Mandarine is probably my perfect mandarin perfume. It combines wonderfully juicy and very realistic mandarin with some recognizable aspects of the “Infusion” line, which makes it more interesting in the drydown than many other citrus-centric perfumes. I plan to finish this small (8 ml) bottle in the next couple of months and will probably buy a FB – luckily, it can be found for a very reasonable price online.

* * *

I previously published a post about Atelier Cologne Clementine California (When Life Gives You Clementines, Enjoy Them), but I want to mention it here again since, as I admitted then, I have no idea what fruit I smell – it can be either a mandarin, a clementine or both. But I enjoy it every time I wear it, and it’s one of those perfumes that I would consider repurchasing if I ever go through the bottle that I have. It is extremely juicy, bright and uplifting.

Mandarin Samples and Perfums

Have you tried Sumo citrus? Do you like mandarins? Do you have a favorite mandarin perfume?

 

Images: my own

Saturday Question: Do You Dream About Perfume?

We all dream in our sleep. Some people remember what they saw in their dreams, some don’t. They say, as we get older, we dream less. It doesn’t feel like that to me, but it might be.

 

Saturday Question on Undina's Looking Glass

 

Saturday Question #58:

Do You Dream About Perfume?

I don’t mean constantly and repeatedly – that would be probably extremely unusual even with our shared hobby. But have you ever had a dream that involved perfume – buying, smelling, finding a “treasure trove”?

My Answer

I came up with this question a while ago when I woke up remembering a dream. In that dream I found myself in a deceptively recognizable perfume store (it’s a non-existing one, outside of the dream I cannot place it, even though I still remember a little how it looked). As I was walking around, there were many perfumes in different parts of the store, grouped by their brands, I think. I was evaluating what I saw and planning where I’d start testing, but as it often happens in a dream, I was constantly interrupted by something else and couldn’t get to smelling those perfumes. And then the store was closing…

Another time I remember smelling something in a dream. I woke up thinking that it was an unusual experience: I didn’t remember ever smelling anything in my dream before. I even told about it to my vSO. Unfortunately, I can’t remember now what it was that I thought I smelled in a dream.

Speaking of dreams (not perfume-related though), once I had a dream that I was telling something to Rusty, and suddenly he replied. I mean, he didn’t meow but actually said something. At that point, still sleeping, I told (? him),“It’s clearly a dream! No, cats do not talk!” To which he replied defiantly, “Yes, they do!” In our household this “Yes, they do [talk]!” became a recurring joke.

Rusty Sleeping

Do You Dream About Perfume?

Le Regent by Oriza Legrand

Le Regent by Oriza Legrand

Hi there ULG crew. I ordered some fragrance and soaps from Oriza Legrand back in November 2020. The world and postal services being what they are right now it wasn’t until late February the package finally arrived. Inside were some small soaps and a couple of fragrances. The Oriza boys had a fab deal going art that time that if I bought a 100ml bottle (I was buying 100ml of Heliotrope, review coming) they’d add a 50ml of my choice. Well, Le Regent is new from 2019, the notes sounded fabulous and it was a FREE GWP! Of course it’s the one I grabbed.

Le Regent by Oriza Legrand

Parfumo gives these featured accords:
Top: Peru balsam, Tolu balm, Benzoin
Heart: Vanilla, Benzoin, Ambergris
Base: Opoponax, Gaiac wood, Leather

The Le Regent bottles are super indie feeling. They are glass, heavy and simple so don’t have the usual luxurious Oriza feeling. Don’t let this put you off but I thought it important to say.

If you are a fan of Mona di Orio‘s Eau Absolue but always felt it was a bit too cool and detached then Le Regent will warm the cockles of your heart. All the same smooth resinous beauty but handled in a much more welcoming way. Also Le Regent is a much bigger, more potent perfume, it’s a bad ass showstopper.

From the Oriza L Legrand site: “Le Régent” 1st Tome of the Collection “Jewels of the Crown”, explores the 18th century archives of the Maison Oriza L. Legrand which was then called “Parfumerie Oriza de Fargeon-Aîné” at the Court of Roy Louis XV also called in Europe “The Perfumed Court”. 

One of the things I have loved about the boys at Oriza is that they always allude to fact that they are inspired by historic fragrance, not copying it verbatim. Which is impossible nowadays anyway because the way perfume and accords are created is so different, even some of the original ingredients have long gone.

How does Le Regent smell? Firstly, it’s BIG! An over the top, smooth, resinous beauty. Amber amped up by some fabulous bells & whistles that take it well up to the next level. The very slightly briny ambergris adds so much texture and depth. Scotty was over yesterday and he spritzed wildly and nearly asphyxiated himself. I could still smell Le Regent in the living room when I got up this morning. By then it had dried to a deeply burnished woodsy amber. So beautiful.

Unisex, extra large silage and longevity. Advised to use sparingly until you know how it blooms on you.

The Oriza boys have hit this over the fence.

Sound like you might like it?
Portia xx

 

 

 

Saturday Question: What Is Your Favorite Diptyque Perfume?

When I just started my niche perfume journey (note to myself: ask Vanessa of Bonkers about Perfume what’s wrong with this word – she’s usually censoring it in her posts), Diptyque was one of everybody’s favorite brands, and Tam Dao was one of the better-known perfumes from the brand. That’s why I was a little surprised with everyone’s answers to my question in the previous post (Rusty the Cat: On Favorite Note): perfume that everyone loved a decade ago, today is nobody’s favorite. So, I got curious what my readers think about Diptyque’s perfumes today.

 

Saturday Question on Undina's Looking Glass

 

Saturday Question #56:

What Is Your Favorite Diptyque Perfume?

Do you own and still wear any? Do you check their new offerings? Do you look forward to what the brand does next?

My Answer

It is a somewhat strange situation: while I have a positive opinion of Diptyque, it is not “my brand”: out of 23 perfumes that I tried, I love and own a bottle of Volutes EdT and enjoy wearing (usually while in Hawaii) Eau Duelle from a travel spray. I probably wouldn’t mind to get a travel spray of Eau de Minthe, but I’m not in a hurry to do so. And on my vSO I like Tam Dao (he still has about 1/5th of volume in the original square bottle) and 34 Boulevard Saint Germain (a travel spray). But at least 15 perfumes do not work for me at all. So, while I still check whatever new the brand comes up with, I do not have either hopes or expectations. But I will keep testing whatever they release – as long as I can get to do it for free at the local Nordstrom.

https://orpheon.diptyqueparis.com/en_us/scene

 

What Is Your Favorite Diptyque Perfume?

Rusty the Cat: On Favorite Note

When Rusty was younger, he used to like perfumes… or at least some of them. But as he got older, at some point he started avoiding close exposure to strong scents. He seems not to mind any of my perfumes when I apply them to my neck, especially after the initial application settles down. But he strongly objects to my testing on wrists, and whenever I put something on a wrist and try to hold him, he runs away indignantly shuddering.

But it looks like he still has some favorite scents. See what happened when our friend brought us a freshly cut piece of cedarwood.

Rusty and Cedarwood

I should probably try and see what he thinks about Dyptique‘s Tam Dao. Speaking of which… When did you try it last? Is it still any good? A bottle I have is of the EdT, and it’s about 11 years old. I used to like it, especially on my vSO, but I’m not sure if I tried any version of EdP. I’m sure it has been reformulated at least once since it has been launched because of IFRA regulations, but I don’t know how far the current iteration is from what I used to like.

Saturday Question: Where Do You Photograph Your Perfumes?

I know that not all of my readers have blogs or publish pictures on Instagram or Facebook. But if you do, or if you take pictures of your perfumes for any other purposes (e.g., for swaps or to sell), please chime in.

 

Saturday Question on Undina's Looking Glass

 

Saturday Question #55:

Where Do You Photograph Your Perfumes?

Do you do it – at your place or outside? Do you have any special set-up or do you improvise? Do you use any props?

If you do publish pictures publicly online, would you share a link to any of them that you especially liked or were proud of?

My Answer

Most of the perfume photos I take for this blog, Instagram is kind of a “spill out.” When I travel, if I have a travel bottle of perfume, I can attempt taking pictures in an unusual place, if it fits the idea of the shot. But mostly I travel with handmade decants instead of bottles, and those aren’t interesting enough to take pictures of them.

Since I don’t have a garden, and there are only that many pictures one can take in our tiny and not that picturesque backyard, every time I want to take a picture of a bottle, I start roaming around my house trying to figure out where I have sufficient light to

place a set-up that I came up with. It isn’t that easy to do: my house has a lot of shadowy spots and not that many sunny ones with suitable background to take pictures against.

I was considering a shooting tent, but none of them would be suitable for engaging Rusty. So, for now I try to use either natural light from windows or an additional light I bought for Zoom meetings (because I’m having exactly same issues trying to find a properly lit spot for those video conference calls).

Speaking of Rusty… Whenever I want to brighten my pictures with his presence, it limits my photo shoot location choices even further: I need to organize it in one of a couple of places where Rusty can naturally join in. And preferably do it when those are well-lit.

I usually do not do flat lays, so, not counting Rusty, my props are usually limited to flowers or some objects that have direct relevance to the idea of the photo. I admire people’s ability to do interesting compositions with multiple related (or not) objects, but I haven’t mastered that (yet?).

 

Where Do You Photograph Your Perfumes?