Year 2014 wasn’t the best year in my life, most of all because some of the negative events can’t be considered even educational. But still it wasn’t all bad and I’m grateful for the good things and look forward to more of those this year.
We’ve got some rain in the last two months of 2014. That hasn’t solved our drought problem but made it a bit less severe and gave us hope.
We got a chance to spend time with one of the friends from our youth whom we haven’t seen for many years. He hasn’t changed much and we already plan our future visits.
I had a relatively close encounter with charming Hugh Laurie.
I enjoyed many mini-trips to the surrounding wine regions; one of them with thoughtful and endlessly generous with her support Suzanne (Eiderdown Press) and her husband.
I received an extremely touching gift from Daisy (coolcookstyle) and hajusuuri (a spontaneous perfume lover who became a contributor on my blog).
I took an obscene number of perfumes to the Hawaii vacation (I hope they enjoyed it as much as I did).
I had good time perfume shopping with Natalie (Another Perfume Blog).
And, finally, despite all the work-related stress and busy schedule I had a wonderful holiday season, which culminated in the one of the most delightful New Year celebrations at our friends’ house in Austin.
Now let’s see how my 2014 looks in perfume terms (numbers in parentheses are from 2013, for comparison where applicable).
In 2014 I tested1 even less perfumes than in years before. It isn’t a complaint, I think I’m testing enough: I pay attention not just to new releases or even perfumes new to me but also I’m revisiting some of the previously tested perfumes. I tested 299 (321) perfumes from 108 (107) brands on 391 (461) occasions. This year there were also fewer perfumes that I’ve tried for the first time – 147 (185) and only 55 (fifty-five!) of them were created in 2014. It’s less than, according to Parfumo, has been released by now from the beginning of this year. Probably I could add 15-20 mainstream perfumes that I smelled at a store on a paper strip and never went for a sample or skin test. But still it’ll barely scratch the surface of the last year’s new releases. 2,646! Can you believe it?! It’s a huge number of new releases and I tested 2% of them. Out of those 55, I liked – more or less – just 11 (20% of tested) but I would consider wearing only 6 (~10%) of them and, most likely, not from a full bottle purchase.
I have a feeling I’ll test even less in 2015: with endless new releases who can follow them?
Since I usually end up not liking most of the perfumes I test and, at the same time, the number of perfumes I like and own is enough to wear a new one every day for several months, same as the year before, I mostly wore2 perfumes from my collection (bottles and decants) while using samples just for testing or the final decision stage before [not] buying the perfume I thought I liked. In 2014 I had a better rotation of perfumes than the year before – I wore 156 (142) perfumes from 61 (54) brands – but I used perfumes less often – just on 341 (355) occasions.
Eight out of twelve brands I wore the most this year are the same as for two previous years, which isn’t a big surprise: those are my favorite brands and I have those perfumes in my collection. More interesting are those brands that moved up. Two out of four got that high with a single perfume from each of the brands: Rajasthan by Etro (I told its story in the How many perfumistas does it take to … post) and Chic Shaik No 30 by Shaik (its story is still waiting to be written). The third brand, Lancome, made it also mostly thanks to one perfume – my first and everlasting perfume love Climat (I bought a back-up bottle and started wearing it more often) but there was one more perfume – Mille et Une Roses – that contributed to the statistics. The last new player on my yearly Wheel of Fortune chart is By Kilian. I finally found several perfumes in this line that I like to wear: Amber Oud, Prelude to Love and Love & Tears (and there are several more promising candidates).
It’s getting harder to come up with new silly aspects of our hobby to present in numerical form for this monthly series. I realize that many of my current readers haven’t read all the previous posts and those who have, most likely, won’t remember each of them, but I still couldn’t bring myself to repeat exactly the same topic. Because of that there were fewer posts based just on my personal perfume-related habits (Perfumes Tested in 2014 by Year Released, How many perfumistas I met in RL, TwitterCounter’s Predictions vs. Reality) and more of those, input for which I asked from you (Ten Niche Brands You Need To Know, What is the main reason for your spontaneous perfume purchase?, 10 Most Popular Brands (based on Olfactoria’s Travels Monday Question), To Wear or Not to Wear a perfume you used to love but don’t any longer if there is no other choice?, Perfume Shopping Mecca, Favorite Amber Perfumes).
Come back in a month to see if I could think of anything new to count. Hopefully, not sheep.
Images: my own
1 For the testing I apply a perfume to one area on my arms easily available for the repetitive sniffing. But, most likely, I’m the only one who can smell it. I can test two, sometimes even more perfumes at the same time.
2 When I wear a perfume I apply it to at least three-four points and usually I plan to spend at least 4-8 hours with the same scent so I’m prepared to re-apply if the original application wears off.
Wow Undina – I admire your tenacity in taking such detailed statistics of your perfume life! I haven’t taken any stats of anything – though I guess I could look at how many blog posts I did. That’s the only stat I have!
I look forward to your posts in 2015 – and may you continue to be warm through the winter.
BTW, I’d be happy to send you my sample of Moon Bloom if you don’t already have one – I’ve already tried it and reviewed it, and while it is lovely, I don’t know that I need to wear it again. Just let me know!
Thank you, Sun Mi. Tracking everything perfume-related is my hobby and it fits perfectly fits into my mild OCD ;) So I’ll keep looking for more angles for my 2015 statistics.
(Thank you, I’ll contact you about Moon Bloom)
Undina, it amazes me that you have managed to keep your “entertaining statistics” posts going and I particularly like the ones where you invite your blog audience to participate by answering a question. I’m not sure how many more questions can be asked, or how many more things you can count (besides sheep), but I wish you luck, as they’ve been fun and makes this blog very community oriented. (And it’s always great seeing your snazzy charts!)
So glad I got to meet you and see San Francisco and Sonoma last year. In a year that was tough for you, I’m so happy to hear that our visit was one of the things that was good. :-)
Thank you, Suzanne. Community – is something that attracts me in the whole blogging thing the most. I enjoy talking to people about perfumes, cats and other important things :-) I should do some cats statistics: cats are much more interesting than sheep. And much cuter.
oh, you were in Austin! hope you had a nice visit to my city. :)
It was a perfect visit (though this time I saw the city only from the car window on my way to and from my friends’ house ;) ).
Loved reading your annual statistical roundup, and given your low hit rate with new perfumes, would like to say what an absolute trooper you are to carry on testing as much as you do. Like you, I have tried a tiny proportion of the new releases – I may attempt the maths but it is undoubtedly going to be lower than yours. I have lost a lot of desire to test, period, and find myself wearing more scents from my collection these days, sometimes for several consecutive days – the very idea!!
PS I believe I am to blame for that word ‘educational’, and would like to qualify its use forthwith to avoid further, possibly painful confusion – it relates in my mind essentially to life events such as relationship breakdowns and maybe forced changes of career, but I wouldn’t extend its application beyond those kind of scenarios to other negative events that just bring you down, end of story.
I know what you mean! I just wore the same perfume twice this week (though, in my defense, I should mention that it was Boxeuses and I had a particularly difficult meetings).
As to the “educational” part, I actually liked your approach, and just stated the fact that some of mine this year, regretfully, weren’t of that kind (but the others were! – or at least I choose to consider them such ;) ).
Is that “purrmaid” in the top photo yours? It seems absolutely perfect for the ginger cat-owning Undina/Ondine.
Also, I think it’s great fun when you turn readers’ responses into a graph (provided we learn how to answer the questions!).
The ornament was on my friends’ tree. But I got to spend 4 days in its company! :)
Yeah… I tried many different approaches – and still I cannot get straight answers from all of the participants. Good thing I do not take those numbers too seriously.
I do love your statistics… but tell me, how do you keep on track with soooo many testings and what you wore?? I promised myself to keep notes on everything I tried but haven’t been too successful. I guess I’m just lazy.
Hope you have a great 2015!
It’s easy! I’ve created a database with all the perfumes (bottles, decants and samples) I have. Every time when I wear or test anything I add a record of when, where to, my reaction, etc. Since it’s all done through the form, almost every field is a selection, so I do not type more than 2-3 letters before I get to the choice I want. This way, whenever I want, I can query data by any data I have in the database. The hardest part is entering new perfumes into the database (since it requires more information, such as perfumers, year created, notes, etc.) but I have a rule: I cannot start testing until the perfume is in the database.
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I thought about it but then decided to give him some rest. Besides, those numbers are too… intangible for Rusty to grasp ;)
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Yee-ha! I love this round-up, Undina! I am amazed at how disciplined you are with your records. I started last year intending to keep a SOTD diary but towards the end of January, my computer misbehaved and caused me to force-reboot and lost the Excel file and I did not feel like recreating it.
As to your perfume statistics, I’m curious to know which Chanel you wore the most. Which perfume had you already drained a full bottle (or two or three) and is now on your next bottle?
How nice that you were able to spend time with friends in Austin! I had been to Austin twice, once on business and once for vacation and I enjoyed the vacation more :-)
Regarding Rustytistics, I would like to see the number of treats he got per month or per quarter based on the number of compliments he got.
You should do your stats in Google docs or something like that: this way you will be able to access everything from anywhere and it won’t get lost.
I checked: three Chanel perfumes I wore the most – Cuir de Russie (5), Coromandel (3) and №19 EDT (3). The last time I drained a bottle was probably 5 years ago. But I’ve just finished your decant of Boxeuses (yeah, the year was that taxing at work) and had to buy a bottle ;)
I’ll try to get some Rusty-related statistics in the upcoming months – thank you for the idea! :)
Undina, it’s incredible, I don’t know how you manage to be so disciplined about writing down everything you wear and test, it’s a great enjoyment for us all that you do :-) . And it’s good to know it the middle of all that the most talented, photogenic and beautiful cat Rusty can do, numbers might not be his thing, I feel my little ginger borrow-feline, might just have something there; she plays chess and I have evidence!
Anyway, I love your statistics please keep thinking up new ones in 2015.
A happy new year to you, cheers to a new and much improved 2015 and beyond!
It’s not that hard once there is a tool. I built mine but Fragrantica has a basic way of tracking your SOTD/SOTN. It takes less than a minute to add it there.
I think I’ll keep the series for another year. Worse comes worst, I’ll make it once a quarter instead of monthly. But thank you for the support, Asali!
One thing I like the most at your blog is your statistics – it is very fun and cool to read. Thank your for posting it every now and then :)
Thank you, Juraj. I’ll try to keep them this way for a while longer.