December 9, 2014

PLP Perfume Project

Carlos J Powell of PLP, Goodsmellas, Brooklyn
Fragrance Lover, etc.

The PLP Perfume Project was inspired by the theme of Peace Love and Perfume, a fragrance group of online friends who were brought together on Facebook and often in person, too, by Carlos J. Powell, who promotes the love of perfume online and at events, encompassing a full range of styles and tastes. He creates perfume review videos as the Brooklyn Fragrance Lover, blogs and and also organizes the Goodsmellas group which has focused attention on the rapidly growing interest in fine and niche perfume among men from a wide variety of backgrounds.

There are many fragrance groups online but Carlos maintains a special atmosphere that focuses especially on the qualities of Peace, Love and Perfume, so that it's a space for appreciation that helps introduce a wide range of people from all over the country and internationally to perfumes they otherwise might not run across on their own.  The civility, open mindedness and pure enthusiasm is a rare combination in the online world and makes for a safe space to explore and discuss those fragrances that are close to the members' hearts.  Carlos has a great talent for bringing people together around perfume and takes a lot of joy in it.  As he often says, quoting a famous source, "perfume and incense bring joy to the heart."  He asked several of his favorite indie perfumers to participate in a group perfume project to embody the spirit of the PLP group.

New York Man by Envoyage
New York Man - by Shelley Waddington of Envoyage Perfume.  This is a subtle and transparent dark perfume, highly animalic and musky but at the same time subtle and stealthy in its power.  It begins as if nothing will happen at all, seeming to be almost invisible, and then rises up from the skin as it warms to become ever more a presence, increasing itself into a highly decorative skin scent, a silky envelope of warmth and velvety ambiguity.  It's quite abstract, and doesn't remind or recall anything, acting kind of like instrumental mood music, maybe New York House and Electro, or early trance/rave washed up on our East Coast shores from the UK. Directly inspired by Carlos Powell of PLP, I know the perfumer and her subject have never actually met, but this is her tribute to the presence he's made felt through all of his many online trails. Slanted to masculine but notwithstanding the name I would wear it with no qualms as I am always looking for another musk experience that will lead me further down the road opened by Bruno Acampuro's Musc.  For me that means a relaxing subtle and a true atmospheric fragrance that creates an aura, and this perfume certainly puts me in that place of comforting body scent beautified by skillful emphasis on all the right things.

Pink Haze by The House of Cherry Bomb
Pink Haze - by Maria McElroy and Alexis Karl of The House of Cherry Bomb.  A truly Brooklyn inspired fragrance, composed of the fragile and fragrant petals of street trees in bloom, mixed with the scent of gritty sidewalks and traffic soot, washed by rains and collecting together at the street corners. That very specific city and earthy metallic feel as lightened by cherry and apple blossom petals, that infusion of the natural into the man made environment.  There is a glow that comes through clearly within the perfume, inspired by those pink sunsets over the rivers and reflected in the glass of a million windows. People in Brooklyn sometimes get a little high when a form of natural beauty presents itself, it's always a surprise and delight, like those aforementioned pink sunsets and pink petals set against the greys of steel and sidewalks. Hence the lovely short song voiced by Alexis Karl on their video for the fragrance, based on the Jimi Hendrix classic, which has a sensuality that evokes the true spirit of this perfume.

Peace, Love and Perfume by Dawn Spencer Hurwitz of DSH perfumes.  The PLP group concept was divided into the three component parts, Peace as a meditative incense, Love as a romantic perfume laced with animalic tones, and Perfume as a classic cologne formula updated into a more contemporary feel.  

Peace holds a soothing deep woodsy incense cloud within, and embodies an East/West aromatic mix.  The incense and woods are so closely bonded they are perfectly equal. Resin, oud and attar together softened by the great moderator, Rose de Mai and lightly powdered by Orris, for me combines into the effect of the fine sandalwood of my dreams, as I fondly remember it. A powdery woodsy-ness gives it a comfortable familiar, almost child-like innocence.

Peace Love and Perfume by DSH
Love is a dark dark vanillic rose, a rose reduced over a long simmer to a caramelized state. Super urban and highly animalic, I find it more masculine than even I would attempt to carry off, so I would have to admit this one's for the boys, even though that kind of strictly gender specific perfume designation is against my general principals. The animalic aspect is stronger than the rose by far, but the florals tame that wildness somewhat to make it soft for all its strength.  Those fans of the most 'skanky' of vintage perfumes should assuage their cravings by trying this one.  After it settles down a bit of pepper peeks out, cut with a little cool aldehyde to balance it all.  Definitely a fully tatted old school Brooklyn gangsta rap level of skank going on in this infatuation/romance.

Perfume is based on the aesthetic of the classic cologne but made with non-traditional materials of grapefruit, rhubarb and cognac spiraling down to a fruity and creamy finish.  A complex composition of varied essences that work together to give that characteristic lift and refreshment of a traditional cologne, cloaked in clever choices of fruit and herbs not typical of the cologne genre.  This will also be available in an Absolute strength in limited edition. I think this one would be highly pleasing to a general audience on a beauty appeal level, but reveals its more subtle comments on perfume tradition to the more experienced perfume aficionado.

Chocolate LOVE Coffret by Kedra Hart of Opus Oils concentrates on the Love in PLP as expressed through the sweetness and velvet smoothness of ultra rich chocolates.  There are four perfumes and they are all going to make you smell like a box of the most chocolate chocolates imaginable, at least initially. Those who are gourmand fans are fully indulged in this predilection here. The smallest drop will soak you in deep chocolate scented by the  four different flavors.

White Chocolate from the Chocolate LOVE Coffret by Opus Oils
Though I love chocolate I am not a fan of very realistic chocolate perfumes, but that said, I find Violet Lilac Dream the most relatable and wearable for me.  It's a fantasy chocolate that indulges an old wish of mine. We have an old-school chocolate shop in the West Village of NYC called Li-Lac and this fragrance makes me think of what I always hoped for from the name of that shop. I wanted a lilac/violet infused dark chocolate, and that is made so realistically  in this perfume it is almost the same as having a smooth chocolate melting in your mouth, infused with hints of those two evocative perfume accords.   After awhile the chocolate burns away and a delicate violet/ lilac is left, deepened by the last vestiges of chocolate, combined with a woodsiness in the base that makes for true lyricism.

Dark Chocolate Royale is a deep dark chocolate infused with amber, whose primary initial hit of strong chocolate dries down to an predominantly amber-infused dark chocolate scent.  White Chocolate Delight begins as a super sweet chocolate, as is typical of that type, but then dries down to a more delicate floral with a creamy undertone.  Both morph into a body scent that references chocolate more distantly but uses its darkness and depth to ground and hold the top notes that cling for quite a long time.

Raspberry Rose Rapture is much like a chocolate covered cherry just as you bite into one, with a strong sugary sweet candy note real enough to almost taste it. This one is so realistically chocolate of a certain type that it's almost like a representational illustration of that sensation, in fragrance form. A lot of people have come to associate true love with the taste and smell of chocolate, red roses and raspberries with whipped cream, from years of celebrating Valentine's Day that way, so these signals might call forth the classic Pavolvian response.  It quickly calms down to a much more delicate and refined rendition of sweet rose and berry notes over cream.

Peace, Love and Perfume by Olympic Orchids
Peace, Love and Perfume by Ellen Covey of Olympic Orchids divides the three aspects into three fragrances that soften quickly and can be worn alone or layered together.   Peace opens with a vetiver-ed incense mix of varied calming base notes, dark but transparent, representing the base of the scent triangle.  Love hovers within the  centered, earthy and grounded heart, a middle balanced by a blue lotus accord mixed with some of the Peace perfume elements.  Perfume is a bright dry and fresh cologne emphasizing the top notes, with an evergreen and herbaceous edge. A perfume concept divided into three component parts that can be mixed by the wearer to their preference, with the result based on order of layering, or how it is applied, either directly on top of or beside each other or on different areas of the body, mixing together in the air itself.

Please hit the links above to go directly to the perfumers' sites which will give more details on notes and pricing.  Please see the links in the first two paragraphs for Carlos J. Powell online in videos and blogs.  Carlos has a lot of interests in addition to perfume.  There's music, photography, cooking and two exceptionally cute tuxedo cats. There's a lot online as he is generous in sharing his enthusiasms.

Images above were taken from the perfumers' sites from pages relating to the PLP Perfume Project.
Samples were provided by the perfumers at the request of Carlos J. Powell of PLP.  This post was not commissioned or compensated.  I know Carlos and several of the above perfumers personally and have written about them all before, so please give the search button a try for a lot more about them all.

Copyright 2014, Lucy Raubertas, All Rights Reserved.


Brooklyn Fragrance Lover said...

This was such a delight to read. Thank you.

danielle and mark said...

What a cool project! Love it!