2012 in Review

It’s nearing midnight on January first, and it’s clear (to me, at least) that I didn’t plan on offering any thoughts on what’s happened here in Perfume-Land: 2012 edition. I’ve enjoyed reading the “Best of” lists of many of my favorite bloggers, and I love the birds-eye perspective that year-end lists offer. I found myself wishing that I had something to add to the conversation.

In just the last two years, I’ve seen new voices rise and make themselves heard, infusing vibrant new perspective and growing our little community exponentially. We’ve laughed, raised our eyebrows, and frightened postal delivery men together. It’s a community I’m honored to be a part of, and I offer you my somewhat belated 2012 in review…

When it comes to perfume, my initial thought is that it wasn’t really an interesting year– I don’t know how much of that is true because of my personal circumstances (Negative Nelly?), and how much of it is due to actually lackluster offerings. Natalie’s “Best & Worst of 2012” made me feel a little bit better about my frame of mind: her best perfume of 2012? No winner.” Thank you for that liberating post Natalie!

These are the perfumes I experienced in 2012.

For my birthday, I received a longed-for bottle of Cartier L’Heure Fougueuse; I wore it every day that I lugged my worldly possessions across the steaming hot greenbelt that separates one side of my apartment complex from the other. I felt strong as a horse, and each spritz infused my spine with steel.

Earlier in the year, I asked the fragrant community’s help in selecting something for my (ex)husband. He stuck with his favorites anyway (Bulgari Black, Chanel no. 5, Vol de Nuit parfum–good taste!), and I discovered an Eau de Toilette that has become dear to me. Van Cleef & Arpels Midnight in Paris began it’s life as a birthday present, and became a comfort scent for me. I first smelled it on a happy old man I met in the bookstore.

With the assistance of several gift cards generously supplied by my mother, I secured a HUGE bottle of By Kilian Amber Oud. It smells really, really, good.

I went to the fragrance event at Neiman Marcus with one of my best girlfriends, and was astonished at how banal the new Lancome scent was, and pleased by how much Donna Karan Woman felt at home on my skin. Though I’d already been through three or four samples of that scent, and was convinced of it’s worth, I did something crazy. Something that no card-carrying perfumista wants to admit… I bought the 100mL bottle (with free travel mini and necklace!). I like that bottle, and I like that fragrance. I happily wear it several days a week.

There were other fragrance highlights I might share, but none compares to what made 2012 in Perfume Land outstanding for me.  “Best of 2012” belongs to the perfumistas themselves.

Thank you, thank you, thank you!

13 thoughts on “2012 in Review

  1. Howdy! I, too, perceived an unexciting year in perfume – the most exciting things that I discovered were created before this year, in some cases loooong before. I don’t know if this was due to my extended perfume coma, or if it was indeed a lackluster year in the perfume world in general. But I, too, had the desire to say something. So I went down the resolutions path instead, resolutions which of course I will break. 🙂

    1. Hahah, Martha, I love resolutions. This year I’ve resolved to be a better friend, and I’m really, really going to try. I’ve also resolved to stop dilly-dallying when it comes to writing!! 🙂

  2. I’ve never done any of these lists before and did’t plan to do it this year but the more lists by others I read the more I want to voice my opinion because I feel that my personal experience was different from others’: I liked 2012. Probably I’ll do some short write-up in my yearly stats post.

    1. Undina, you have no idea how much it meant to me that you did like 2012. The emails alerting me to new posts each time you hit “publish” over on Looking Glass were like a life-line (there were others, too), which is why I’m so grateful to the perfumistas! Your voice has helped me begin to find my way back ❤

  3. Glad you enjoyed Donna Karan Woman! I tried it several times, and while it wasn’t really “me,” I thought it was very nicely done.

    1. Susan, it was a nice surprise. I’ve liked several Donna Karan fragrances (Black Cashmere, especially), but this was my first full-bottle purchase– I had better just write a review, and tell you what I like about it 😉

  4. Oh, I am so happy to see this post. I hope that the new year brings you lots of happiness, and maybe even inspiration for a few blog posts 😀

  5. I’d have to say, like Undina, I found 2012 really good, in all kinds of ways (especially in regard to what you referred to, Dee, the beauty of our community … I loved that most of all!) and with regard to new launches, too. Granted, I experience only a very tiny amount of newly-launched fragrances, but in 2012 I fell in love with L’Artisan Seville a l’Aube, Arquiste Boutonniere no. 7, MDCI Chypre Palatin, Vero Profumo Mito, Amouage Opus VI and Interlude Man (still trying to make up my mind about Interlude Woman) and La Via del Profumo Tawaf.

    Oh, and I actually was able to join our fellow perfumistas and finally fall in love with a By Kilian scent, thanks to you! Still loving my decant of Amber Oud, many thanks for it! Here’s wishing you a beautiful new start and much happiness in 2013!

    1. Hi Suzanne! While I didn’t spend much time sniffing or blogging, the few new scents that did cross my path were pretty great: Chypre Palatin, Borneo 1834, and Opus VI, from your list (!) were all treasures to discover. For me, 2012 was just an off year, but I believe that 2013 will be much better!!

      I’m so happy that you’ve been enjoying Amber Oud!!! It’s just so darned likable… 🙂

  6. Definitely wishing you a wondrous 2013, Dee. I found several things this year to get excited about, and some of them were actually *released* this year, wonder of wonders! I’ve got a decant of Lumière Blanche that I’m really enjoying, and Musc Tonkin was one h*ll of a way to dip my toe into musky waters. Slumberhouse’s Pear+Olive is right at the top of my “must buy” list and now I want to try more from the house.

    That said, mainstream stuff was absolutely dismal compared to last year. I mean, c’mon, we went from stuff like Bottega Veneta to La Vie est Belle? However, I’ll look up Donna Karan’s Woman because of your review, haven’t tried that one yet.

  7. Happy New Year, Dee! I am planning to do a similarly loose retrospective at some point, and like you, my standout highlight will be the people in Perfume Land rather than the perfumes themselves. That thought came to me quick as a flash – the rest may take more work! I guess I missed a ton of releases – not all likely to have been to my taste, which is quite different from yours on the whole – due to big stuff going on in my personal life, and am finding that I have more of a “to sniff” than a “best of” list at the end of 2012. : – )

    1. Oh, Happy New Year to Adam, Anne-Marie and Dionne of course! I have been ill so far this year, and my attention to detail is shot.


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