A Gift of Perfume

 

At fourteen I swapped my first love, to which I held on for four years,  for a new imaginary relationship. I do not mean that the other person didn’t exist: S. was a perfectly real 15-years old boy I met and befriended during the summer break. Our romance started months later, as the result of the frequent letters exchange, real hand-written letters sent over the regular post. Since we lived a 6-hours bus ride apart, in two years that it all lasted we spent together less than three weeks and even that was only because we had smart and understanding parents who would organize carefully supervised his visits to my city or my trips to his. We would write every 3-5 days, talk on the phone once in a while (long distance calls were expensive) and spend together several days during school breaks.

Where I lived back then, being a rare and expensive commodity, perfumes were not just acceptable but rather desirable gifts and not just for romantically involved people or relatives: a bottle of perfume could be gifted by parents to a kindergarten teacher, offered as a “special thank you” to a doctor by a patient or presented to the retiring accountant by colleagues. Personal tastes weren’t taken into the consideration. As today most people wouldn’t think twice before bringing a bottle of wine as a gift, the same way people felt about giving a perfume while knowing nothing about recipients’ preferences.

Tet-a-Tet Cologne

S. was the first person in my life to whom I gave a perfume as a gift. It was cologne Tête-à-Tête produced by Nouvelle Etoile (Moscow). I remember that I liked the scent but I have almost no recollection about how it smelled. I don’t know if S. liked and wore Tête-à-Tête: it hadn’t come up in our correspondence and six month later he outgrew our love story. I wonder if I would have recognized it today. It’s still in production but I decided not to chase it either in its modern or in the vintage form: since I smelled Tête-à-Tête only from the bottle I have no nostalgic feelings about it.

***

It’s hard to predict whether I would like a perfume – even though I know my tastes, read notes and other people’s impressions. So with other people it’s almost impossible to guess the right perfume for them. And for many years I steered clear of gifting people with perfumes unless I knew which one they liked. The brand that has changed it for me is INEKE.

On my last trip to Ukraine I brought two travel bottles from Ineke’s Floral Curiosities line – Poet’s Jasmine and Sweet William – as gifts to two of the relatives who do not wear perfumes much but I thought would appreciate them: not revolutionary but pleasant perfumes created by a perfumer from the city where I live (well, if you look from Europe) and with the impossibly cute packaging (I couldn’t resist and bought four “books” for my collection). Both recipients liked their gifts.

Ineke Scent Library

With upcoming holidays that involve family gatherings and gift exchanges, I want to suggest a perfect, in my opinion, gift for somebody who isn’t into perfumes, is in the beginning of their fragrant journey or uses mainstream perfumes primarily: Scent Library from Ineke. It’s a set of samples of all five perfumes in the Floral Curiosities line presented in an unbelievably attractive package. I don’t think I’ve ever seen a presentation of samples with more attention to the smallest detail. For $22 (including S&H) you’re almost guaranteed to get a smile from your mom or sister who still remembers old library system with the paper pocket in each book and library cards or a conversation with a younger niece about the changes that happen during the lifetime of any generation, hand-written letters and rotary phones. And if they end up liking any of the perfumes in the set they will be able to redeem the full price of the set against any 75 ml bottle purchase from the site.

Ineke Scent Library

Scent Library set was sent to me by the brand (without any conditions). I haven’t decided yet if I should get one for my collection: I love it but I have four perfumes from the set already and the packaging of each fragrance “book” that I bought is almost as cute as the one for the Library. Meanwhile I decided to have a draw for the set I’ve got. It’s new but I sprayed one of the samples twice (Briar Rose) and Rusty “helped” me with the pictures. I will send it anywhere in the world but I won’t be responsible for the package if your postal service decides it’s too cute dangerous and destroys it.

Usually I don’t have any special conditions for entering into my draws but this time I have a requirement. To be entered into the draw answer the question below (I’m gathering data for this month’s statistics post) and tell me the country where you live (this way I’ll know that you want to be in the draw). If you do not want to enter, just answer the question for my stats. I’ll close the draw on Thursday, October 31 PDT, and announce the winner in the October Entertaining Statistics post in the beginning of November.

Rusty andI neke Scent Library

Have you ever given a perfume as a gift not knowing beforehand that the recipient wanted to get/liked that specific perfume?

 

Images: Tête-à-Tête from some auction site; all others – my own

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88 thoughts on “A Gift of Perfume

  1. Hi Undina!
    Wow, that’s an interesting story about your teenage crush.
    I have to say that those book-like packagings from Ineke look lovely and extraordinary, unfortunately those scents don’t work for me. I find them too simple and rather girly, so no need to enter me in the draw.

    Answering your question for the statistics: yes and no. I gave an aftershave to my Dad couple of times for Christmas but he didn’t care about the scent really, (he’s not a perfume person!) He just said that he’s current aftershave is almost finished and he wanted a new one. He got his new aftershave because he wanted it, the scent wasn’t important (he liked it anyway)

    • Thank you, Lucas.

      I’ll count you as Yes: since it was you who chose the scent, it still counts.

      I agree with “simple” and “girly” but I think they are good for what they are and in their price range.

  2. Dearest Undina
    What a touching story by way of prelude to introducing this sweetest of gift ideas.
    Strangely, on twitter this week there has been some conversation as to ‘Russian perfumes’, and now here you present us with a very real one (albeit from a time passed).
    Thank you so much for sharing that sliver of youthful romance and reminding me about these literary scents!
    The Dandy resides in London in the United Kingdom, and must confess to giving perfume quite incessantly as a gift… by happenstance I bought four bottles only yesterday to be given as part of the forthcoming festivities!
    Yours ever
    The Perfumed Dandy

    • Dear Dandy, thank you for reading and participating in the poll.

      I do not remember much about Russian (or,rather, Soviet) perfumes since I had a very little exposure to those: you couldn’t try those at a store and my relatives, mostly, wore French perfumes.

      Your vote is counted as Yes.

      #1 (for the draw)

      • Dearest Undina
        A very emphatic yes!
        I had cousins who honeymooned in Moscow and some other pasts of the Soviet Union, Leningrad, the Black Sea I think way back in the mid 1980s.
        They spoke of the opulence with which they were greeted everywhere, great buffets at every meal, department stores opened apparently just for them, marble metro stations and incredible palaces of culture. But also of an awareness that these places were very empty, filled only insofar as they were, by people who seemed to speak very correct English and French and had little to say beyond the wonders of life under the Workers’ Republic.
        How quickly, in some quarters. memories of this entirely different world have slipped away.
        My grandmother meanwhile holidayed in Yugoslavia (as it then was) Hungary and Poland before the fall of the iron curtain. She found all three beautiful but noted how much freer and happier those in the Balkans seemed.
        She lived to see her beloved Dubrovnik bombed, which quite broke her heart.
        Yours ever
        The Perfumed Dandy

  3. Hi Undina,
    I am a serial perfume gifter, and have even been the receiver of same recently with fabulous luck. Jin’s friends expect perfume from us as gifts now and rub their hands together when we give them packages.
    I live in Sydney Australia but DNEM please as I have 3 bottles of this lovely Ineke line already.
    Portia xx

  4. I loved this story and would appreciate being entered into the draw. I give gifts of fragrance regularly. My children each receive a bottle of something (carefully considered for their tastes!) each Christmas. My husband regularly benefits as well. Looking forward to following your blog!

  5. Hi, Undina
    I never gifted perfume as I always thought it’s too personal
    In my teenage I was asked to find and buy a “gift to be” for the doctor that eased the last days of one of my father’s dear friends
    I live in Israel and I will be glad to participate in the draw
    thank you

  6. Hi Undina! Yes, I actually often give perfumeas a gift. I know it’s risky, but among my friends and family, I’m considered somewhat of an expert. They have trusted my judgement. Most recently, I bought my sister-in-law Faith Hill for Christmas last year, a couple of body sprays for het birthday in August, I gave my mother-in-law the newest version of EL Pleasures for Christmas last year and No.5 Eau Premier for her bday in May, and I just gave my niece Coco Mademoiselle for graduation. All of them adore the scents I chose and do wear them every day. My sister-in-law has asked that I give her perfume more often, as she’s not sure what to get and has really liked my selections. I often choose perfume for my mother-in-law as she loves almost anything and uses it up. It’s a guarantee pleaser. In fact, perfume was the first Christmas gift I gave her when my husband and I were dating, I gave her the original Pleasures.

    I usually do not gift my family perfumes, as almost no one wears them. My mom has a lot of allergies and sensitivities, yet she always makes it a point to smell me! Curiously, I have gifted my brother a few. I say curiously, because my bro does not seem like the sort to wear a perfume – he’s heavily tattooed, pierced, and very punk. He’s the life of the party, mischief-maker, and welder. But he has gone through numerous bottles of CK Truth for men (which is gorgeous), a couple Love by Aveda, and even a bottle if classic Polo. I gave him CK Truth several years ago, and It’s his favorite. We are very very close, so it wasn’t a gamble to gift him a perfume.

    Sorry this is so long!

    • Annina, I loved your long reply! Thank you for sharing. Your family should be very appreciative of you.

      So big YES from you on the main question.

      #4 (for the draw)

  7. I have only given perfume that I know the recipient likes. I’ve had a couple of friends over separately to sniff around in my collection and see what strikes them. I ended up giving one friend Prada Infusion d’Iris, and it has become her signature scent. The other friend is like me and not satisfied with just one scent, so I made her a bunch of 5-10ml decants and later bought her a birthday gift of L’Occitane Neroli (reformulated version).
    I’m in the US and would love to be entered in the draw, thanks!

    • Stacey, I take your answer as No.

      It’s interesting but I got two people hooked on Infusion d’Iris – a close friend and a relative. There’s something about this perfume that captures people.

      #5 (for the draw)

  8. I have given perfumes as gifts to my immediate family such as my mom, dad, brother, but have a good idea of their general taste and my gifts thus far have been hits. For my aunts or cousins who live in hungary I usually try to take typically american scents ( my teen cousin for example has no access to juicy couture and is always ecstatic when I show up with a bottle

  9. No need to enter me in the draw, as I own this already.
    I never give perfume unless the person asks for it, because my family is not into perfume, and I don’t want them to give me fragrances I don’t like.
    I’ve given my mother-in-law Charlie in the past because she has asked for it, and my sister-in-law asked for Jessica Simpson Fancy two years ago. And now you know why I am alone in my fragrance hobby!!

    • :)
      Thank you for the input, Barbara. I recorded your answer as No (and yes, I feel your pain but maybe you could bribe your SIL with the idea of testing different Ineke’s scents – either from this or from her regular collection?)

  10. I’ve never gifted someone with perfume where I didn’t know if they liked it. Because my own skin chemistry is a bit of an outlier, I have plenty of first-hand experience knowing that it may not always smell on someone the way it should. On the other hand, I LOVE gifting friends with decants made from my collection. I find that very satisfying.

    I’ll love to be entered in the draw, and I live in Canada.

    • Dionne, I understand from where you come (though with some perfumes that regular, not perfumista, people wear sometimes it seems that some Jo Malone, L’Artisan or Atelie Cologne should be a safe bet ;) ).

      So, No from you on perfume gifting.

      #7 (for the draw)

  11. Hi Undina! I’m in the US and have only given perfume as a gift twice- both times to mu best friend. The first time I didn’t know how she would feel about the perfume- it was Ambre Gris by Balmain. The second time I sent her one of mine that I knew she liked- Lust by LUSH. Oh, and before I really got into perfume I gave my Mom that D&G set.

  12. Thanks for sharing your story about your first love! It was really sweet and endearing, and I’m glad that perfume was somehow involved in that story. I have gifted perfume to my friends and to my mum before, although usually I sneakily have them sniff around in my collection first in order to figure out what they like so that I don’t end up buying something they don’t like! :)

    I’d love to be entered into the draw, and I live in London, UK.

    • Thank you, Joshua. I just have to clarify that today’s story is a story of my second love, the first one is just mentioned (and linked to).

      From your description I’d guess that the answer is No since you followed your friends’ and mother’s choices rather than making a decision on your own.

      #9 (for the draw)

  13. No need to enter me, Undina. Just wanted you to know that I enjoyed your story about S. It reminded me of the sweetness of those romances that happen in adolescence – and especially of those romances that happened back in the day before all parts of the world were instantly connected via the Internet. Oh, the letter writing and the long distance telephone calls … those were the treats we lived for and savored because they involved a certain amount of time and energy and, of course, true desire.

    Glad to hear of your gifting success with the Ineke books, which are very cute indeed. And to answer your question, I used to give perfume gifts to my mom, dad and grandfather when I was young, and I still do so with sisters and nieces now, not knowing whether they’ll like the perfume in question. It’s pretty much a hit or miss proposition, but I’ve had some successes.

    • Thank you, Suzanne. It’s nice to share a story with people who know exactly what I mean.

      Just a couple of hours ago we were discussing with our friend that nowadays nobody expects to get a fountain pen when asking a next seat neighbor on a plane to borrow one (he was explaining an inkblot on his jeans).

      Yes from you on the gifts.

  14. Is Rusty going to pick the winner? He is such a handsome boy!

    I love your story about your first gift of perfume. I have never given “unsolicited” perfumes as gifts; however, to the extent that someone mentions a favorite perfume, I will buy that as a gift. One year, for an element of surprise, I took 2 of my nieces to Sephora and told them to sniff away and tell me their top 3 favorites and I bought one of the 3 favorites for each of them!

    I live in the U.S. and would love to be entered into the draw.

    • Thank you, hajusuuri!

      It’s interesting: I thought of phrasing my question exactly that way – “unsolicited” perfumes but then wasn’t sure if it would be clear enough.

      Ok, your answer – No. And Rusty gets a treat from you but we’ll see if he wants to help me with the draw.

      #10 (for the draw)

  15. Hi Undina,

    I live in the US (Seattle), and it would be great to be entered into the draw, thank you.

    Once, I gave a full bottle perfume gift, but it was to a known perfumista, so it probably doesn’t really count. A couple of times, when I was fairly sure of my gift-ees, I decanted several perfumes from my own stash hoping they’d find a “love”. Mostly, though, I go with scented soaps and lotions as people will actually use them, and they tend to be less intimidated by them while letting me feel like I’m still promoting the wearing of perfume – it’s a win-win. :)

  16. Off-topic: I just voted for a perfume called Undina over at Another Perfume Blog.

    On- topic: As Portia would say DNEM (great tagline for underwear elastic).

    The amazing thing here is the price and the handsomeness of the book which I already have and enjoy.

    I gift perfume by the following methods:

    A: Take the person to a niche boutique once for a browse and explanatory explore. Then pay for a gift voucher and send them away to return 1 or 2 more times before redeeming. This gives them an interactive experience,

    B: If the gift was for a Perfumista then I would send them a gift certificate so they could buy as they pleased.

    C: If it was you I would send a Jo Malone gift certificate so you can keep up with new releases. Redeemable at the New Zealand store of course so you and your man would have to visit with a side trip to our vineyards.

    So No is the answer to your question. Enjoyed the love story. Maybe you outgrew the story though? I remember you mentioning the scarcity and treasure of perfume in your early years some time ago.

    • Thank you, Jordan :)

      No – recorded.

      New Zealand is on my “hopefully one day” list.

      I agree with your approach to fragrant gift giving. I have a variation of it: if I get somebody a perfume I buy it from the place to where it would be easy to return/exchange and give an additional sample of it so a person can try it first without opening the actual bottle so it would be easier to get somrthing else if the one I gave wouldn’t work.

  17. Only my husband receives unasked for perfume as a gift, and it’s usually because I like the smell of it on him.
    What beautiful packaging in those photos. I live in Perth Australia.

  18. Yes, I have gifted people perfume. No, I have not done so recently to anyone but those I am extremely close to and whose tastes I know very well. When I think back now of how I used to give perfume willy nilly as a teenager or young adult without thinking deeply of a person’s tastes, I cringe a little, but honestly, there weren’t SOOOOOO many perfumes some decades ago. Plus, people didn’t seem so finicky for some reason (???), though maybe I’m just imagining it.

    I’d love to be entered, and I live in the U.S.. I’ve actually seen those Ineke books in person and thought they were adorable. Plus, they combine some of my big passions: books and perfume. If only someone could figure out a way to combine German shepherds, history and perfume, I’d be first in line to buy it! :P

    • I still will count your answer as Yes. It’s interesting that even where you lived perfumes seemed more acceptable and easy gifts.

      Maybe you should write a history fiction book how a German shepherd helped to find a lost perfume formula? ;)

      #13 (for the draw) – let me know if you don’t like the number.

      • My answer definitely counts as a “Yes.” And I don’t mind the #13. I’m not superstitious about numbers, though I always did have a weird love for Red 36 when it comes to bets in roulette. (And 13, too, now that I think about it. lol)

        I think I need to do a blog post on the glorious scent of a German shepherd and how the damp, earthy, sweet, almost violet-in-the-woods-like aroma of his paws is like some famous perfume. At which point, all of you will promptly call the men in the white jackets to have me locked up…. ;) :D

        • I like number 13 – probably to help in restoring a balance for this poor number shifted by a superstition :)

          If you decide to writes omething along those lines just preface it by saying that somebody suggested you’ve done that. Just don’t forget to link to this page so people don’t think it was an imaginary “somebody” ;)

  19. When I moved back to California in my mid-twenties, my sister gave me a bottle of Opium for Christmas. (I had been wearing Tabu since high school, and she told me I was “too old to wear that awful, cheap stuff.”) I loved it, and wore it for twenty years. Wanting to return the favor, I bought her a bottle of Paloma Picasso for her birthday that year. When I asked her how she liked it, she looked doubtful, and said, Well, it smells expensive.” That was exactly my reasoning in buying it. She was always very interested in money, and skipped college to go right into the workforce. When I was smelling things at the local department store, it stood out immediately; ifb one could distill a scent from money, I thought it would smell just like PP. She turned out to be more the Clinique Happy type. After that, I decided buying perfume as a gift was too risky, although I recently got my mother a cheap lily-of-the-valley Eau de toilette from Yves Rocher. I’m in the US, and I suppose my answer is yes. (Please excuse the random letters, etc. The Bloglovin app is being uncooperative, and this is my third attempt at a reply.)n

    • It’s a good story, Laurels, thank you for sharing. I can completely understand how a Clinique Happy person would struggle with Paloma Picasso :) But at least your gift was recognized for what it was.

      Your answer is noted as Yes.

      #14 (for the draw)

  20. in my pre-parfumista life (before 2011): no, except perhaps my dad who in that case must have received something like Tabac or another of those universal ‘male’ fragrances at the time (early-mid 70s).
    Once I became interested in perfume, I’ve given away samples to others for a RAOK w/o knowing whether they’d like them or not, but I’d rather not do that too much..
    Does that count as a yes and maybe ?
    I’m from the Netherlands and interestingly, Ineke has Dutch roots and.. I’ve laid my hands on her most wonderful sample set (A to H). She doesn’t ship outside the USA but fortunately I could buy the set through a niche perfume store with the same voucher card service. Since my live revolves around samples, it is wonderful how thoughtful her sample sets are made : the perfect gift to people who either don’t know what to get or want variety in their life.
    In the distant past I was what we call ‘book worm’ but life is too busy now and internet too much of a distraction.. last book I read was Jonathan Gullible by Ken Schoolland, another person with (distant) Dutch roots.
    PS: read your lovely intro on FFF and adore the cat pictures..

  21. Undina, what a great story. And those Inekes look lovely, so presentable- so to say :-) So yes please include me in the draw, from cold and rainy autumnal Denmark
    I have gifted perfume on several occasions, and had good success with it. A good friend will get a bottle this Christmas too, she’s in Switzerland, so it isn’t an option to swap it, but I feel fairly confident she’ll like it. However I only make scented gifts if I have a special idea for a perfume for someone, I don’t go looking for perfume to gift to people. Looking forward to your statistics.

  22. Hi Undina, this is a great story and draw. I have only bought perfume for my Mum so far but I can’t wait to buy something for my boys when they’re a bit older (they’re only 6 and 9 so that won’t be for a while). I definitely like the idea of a voucher / gift card from a great store and your idea of a sample to go with this is brilliant (so I just may use that technique in the future). I live in France and yes please enter me in the draw.

  23. Wonderful story dear Undina about S. You know how I love a good love story! And a first love story with perfume. I am in heaven. I am going to see if I can find a bottle of Tête-à-Tête (I have always been curious about Russian perfumes) As for the Scent Library by Ineke I have my volume and I love it. I almost did a review on it today but another perfume grabbed me. I will be doing it down the road a bit. Loved the post.

    • Thank you, Lanier. I’m glad you liked my story. Right now eBay has only a current version but if I see a vintage one (it appears from time to time) I’ll let you know.

      How about telling me about gifting others with perfumes?

  24. I have given my mom perfume that I wasn’t sure she would like but, as a fellow perfume lover, I don’t think it was a big risk. I love your story! I live in the UAE.

  25. The Scent Library set looks cute indeed and I love the story of your long distance relationship. You have broken a whole seam of memories for me of visiting libraries as a kid – including mobile libraries – I had forgotten all about the little pocket and the library cards but it was all just as you describe!

    I am ashamed to say that I bought my mother a gift set of Rochas Byzance in those dark PP days (pre-perfumista), without the slightest heed as to whether she would like that particular scent, or even wore perfume that much. I doubt that I would have tested it first, but probably just grabbed a promotional box from the Christmas pile…

    I am in the UK, but you knew that anyway! ;-)

  26. I live in Australia and would love to be entered into the draw. Thank you for the interesting story. The Scent Library set does look very attractive.

    I haven’t given perfume to anyone who hasn’t requested it as far as I remember – it’s always possible I did when I was much younger but have forgotten! Most people I know aren’t into perfumes – some are even sensitive to them – and I do feel it’s such a personal choice anyway that I’d really hesitate to do so. (I have sometimes sneaked a surprise sample or decant into someone’s package when sending another decant but I don’t think that counts!) I have gifted full bottles to my daughter of perfume that I know she loves. But if it’s about unrequested perfume, I guess my answer has to be No.

  27. Hi Undina, no need to enter me in the draw as I have tried these. But I will enter your poll. I live in the USA. I have given perfume as a gift not knowing beforehand that the recipient wanted to get or liked that specific perfume. I should clarify though that the perfume was gifted to my husband who will happily wear almost anything I like. Or, at least, he will give it a fair chance. :)

    • ah, you know what, I have also given scented lotions and the like – bath and body works type gifts- for people I did not know very well or did not know their scent preferences. Work colleagues and such. In fact that is a very common gift from me. But it’s a bit different than buying a more expensive (department-store-priced) perfume.

      Last Christmas I also gave my sister-in-law (who is 13) a Sephora sampler set that allowed her to redeem it for a larger size bottle. So she got her choice of anything in the set. I didn’t know if she would like any of the perfumes specifically but I knew she liked scented lotions, body sprays, etc. (she had a few Bath and Body Works products in her bathroom when we visited). I have also given her scented lotions/shower gels in the past as well.

    • Susan, thank you for participating!
      Husbands also count!!! It’s not like ALL husbands are willing to where whatever their perfumista wives would like them to. So I totally take your answer as Yes. :)

  28. Hi Undina – as always, enjoyed the insight into your early years in Ukraine. Fun to hear about your experiences there. I already have Ineke’s Scent Library – glad you’ve turned me on to Ineke’s perfumes. In fact, I am wearing Angel’s Trumpet today. Still trying to decide which fragrance from the collection I want to get a full size bottle of. I am mainly leaning towards Poet’s Jasmine. To answer your question – Yes, I have gifted perfume not knowing if the recipient liked or wanted that particular perfume. I don’t do this often, as perfume is such a personal preference. As Susan posted above, my significant other has mainly been the recipient of unsolicited perfume/cologne purchases, and he generally will wear anything I buy him. For stat purposes, I live in the US – no need to include me in the draw since I have the Scent Library – seriously considering getting some as presents for some family/friends – ones I know that enjoy reading and enjoy wearing perfume.

    • Thank you, Juli! I’m so glad it worked out for you. I think Ineke’s sets are things on their own, even if they don’t turn into a full bottle purchase. And if they do – even better.

      I count your vote as Yes (it’s the act of gifting that counts; the fact that the recipient isn’t too finicky is a bonus :) ).

  29. Lovely post, Undina!

    And I love the concept and packaging of the Ineke’s perfumes- though when I briefly tested her perfumes none of them grabbed me..I should probably revisit them.
    I LOVE gifting perfume..Usually the recipients include my mom, my sister and my mil. Unfortunately, except for my mom, the recipients are not as enthusiastic about perfume as I’d like them to be.
    A while ago I gifted my sister Ta’if after kind of consulting with you (remember, she also liked Deep Red :)). She liked it, finished the bottle. She wanted something vanilla musky so I’m thinking of getting her Prada Candy this time. But these Ineke sets are also a great idea- packaging is important to my sister so I am also taking that into account. those ‘books’ are adorable (as is Rusty, of course :-))

      • And I just went and looked at the website- I am sooo tempted to get one of these for my sister. Any recs? :)
        I remember those library cards and pockets..ahh I love libraries..

        • I would suggest giving your sister a Scent Library book and then later, when she tells you which one she liked the most, use a $22 coupon to get a full bottle (not a travel spray): this way your sister will get both – a cute book and a perfume she’ll enjoy wearing.

          • yep- makes sense..I’m not usually tempted just by packaging but these are just so cute!!! Any that you think I might like? (just as reference for the future? though if I do get these for my sister I can test them out hehe..) the 15 ml sprays don’t come with the library card do they?

        • I’ll answer here since there’s no enough nesting on the next level :)

          Individual “books” do not come with a library card. You can see how they look if you follow the link ‘four “books”‘ in the post. They are still very cute but the fact that I’m considering actualy buying the Library Scent set even though I have those books already should tell you something :)

          I have to tell that, in my opinion, it’s almost impossible to get anything that will compare favorably to Ta’if – not only from this collection but in general. But if you expectations are on the proper level, I can tell you which ones I like more: Poet’s Jasmine and Sweet William.

  30. Oh, I confess shamefacedly that I have given perfume as a gift without OK’ing it with the recipients. As I never got feedback from them about it, I took that as a sign that they wouldn’t want me to do it again! Lesson learned.

    cheerio, Anna in Edinburgh, Scotland, UK:-)

    • Anna, thank you for the input! Yes on perfume giving (let’s hope at least some of the recipients liked your gifts but forgot to tell :) )

      #22 (for the draw)

  31. More cute small things! I like the little library set. And I enjoyed hearing about the past perfume too. I am always curious about the obscure fragrances I see on the shelves, from Spain, Poland, and other countries that seem to have less perfume production than the US, France, etc. Unfortunately, those obscure fragrances are also usually the ones that don’t have testers; so the only way to know what they smell like is to blind buy.

    • No testers – no testing. But, most likely, those perfumes are for in the know people. Or for those who buy gifts – if a recipient doesn’t know what he/she is getting it’s not that important for a giving side to know :)

  32. I forgot to answer the question! Yes, I have given perfume as a gift without knowing in advance that the receiver wanted to get that particular perfume. Mostly, it has been successful (or at least that is what I have been told!). You know where I live, I think. ;)

  33. Pingback: Why you need friends: NEST body products and perfume « The Unseen Censer

  34. Pingback: Christmas Gift Idea 1 – Scent Library – $US22 | The Fragrant Man

  35. Pingback: Scented Gift Ideas 2015 | Undina's Looking Glass

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