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Penny Dreadful

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#1 Belladonnastrap


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Posted 03 June 2005 - 06:56 PM

Also called Gallows Literature. A dime novel rife with melodrama, horror, madness and cruelty; a ten cent analogy of vice and virtue in conflict. Soft perfume evocative of noir heroines over rich red grave loam.

First Sniff:
Baby powder. Baby powder, ginger and something sweet...maybe vanilla? It's very odd. It smells like something you're not suppossed to like but do anyway. Weird.

Dammit I know what this scent is but my mind is completely not cooperating. Oh wait! It's like Shub-Niggurath's younger but just as bad sister. Which on reflect would be really odd but that's what it reminds me of. There's also a hit of something darker and more rich, sandalwood maybe?

Gingerbread Poppet minus the buttery note with a dose of sandalwood.

I need to get to know this better. I know there is an aspect of the perfume I'm missing but I can't place my fingers on it. Will update the review accordingly :P

#2 blood*rose*flowers


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Posted 13 July 2005 - 08:43 PM

In the Bottle: Spicey dirt this one is off to an odd start

On wet: The potting soil scent drops off a tiny bit with a smidge more spice moving forward. Almost a little more like desert dust instead of the thick rich soil I get in the bottle. There also in brief sniffs seems like a slightly sandalwoody scent.

Dry Down: I am getting a warm spicey scent like cinnamon or clove but maybe something else, and now a little Dragons blood maybe, but the scent is still tinged with that scent of dirt. This is one of the oddest scents. I have to say I really think I might like it. This actually makes me understand how some people could like the smell of dirt.

#3 sarada


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Posted 14 July 2005 - 11:25 PM

Ummm, mmmmm.....yes, love the earth soil smell, mmm.

On first sniff this is very very me, that delicious moist mossy dirt earth smell, like Graveyard Dirt but sweeter, more like Zombi because of the other notes wafting through this blend. This is an incredible earth scent, like one of the clay masques that I like to use.

The floral aspect is very interesting -- I was afraid of "soft perfumes" but this is a very pleasant fragrance. If the roses in Zombi were too much for you but you still like the idea of flowers and soil, this could be the answer. It's not moldering flowers on a grave though, it's more like dried flowers pressed neatly in a book and laid on the ground beside freshly tilled soil in a garden. This is a wholesome, life-affirming "earth and dead flowers" blend! I really like it. Almost like a less intoxicated version of Nosferatu, actually...it's the teetotalling little sister who doesn't know about the vampire lurking behind the shed.

It dries down to almost a grape candy scent though, that's the only problem. That might just be because I have too many smells going on right now and I'm getting confused, but it has kind of a fruity, berry...yes, grape really, and a touch of spice. And sort of a cinnamony quality but very faint. The fruity spice is the last stage and I'm not as fond of that but I LOVE it in the imp. I can see getting a bottle of this eventually but I gotta chill on my ordering now for awhile. :P

Edited by sarada, 14 July 2005 - 11:26 PM.

#4 shelldoo


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Posted 15 July 2005 - 06:45 PM


in the vial...loamy earth

wet: earth, ginger, and chocolate??

as it dries it is spicy ginger and loamy fresh earth there are also very light occassional sniffs of something breifly floral.

this is earthy, naughty, sexy, and did i say earthy?

#5 UltraViolet


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Posted 17 July 2005 - 08:59 PM

In the bottle
My whole last review is just gone, cuz something went down for a second. :P
It smells like earth and patchouli or something.
It smells like else is in there like coffee? Toffee?
Gingerbread! I'm glad I looked at the other posts. :D It's earth and gingerbread.

30 minutes
Becomes stronger earthy and patchouli or whatever that other smell is and the gingerbread is still there but not as prevelant.


Scent category:

I always purr about the earthy blends because they are so grounding to me (Aries), and Penny Dreadful is no exception. It's a comforting blend of deep smelling earth, with a splash of vanilla and a gingerbread-like note .

Purchase again?
I would definitely use this whole imp up, but I probably won't purchase a bottle, I'd probably purchase Zombi before that.

1-5 rating (5 being best)

#6 oakmoss


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Posted 18 July 2005 - 08:35 PM

I'm not getting any of the notes that others are getting, nothing earthy, particularly. I'm actually having a hard time getting anything from this scent on my skin, though I've applied it twice now. It's strong in the imp, but disappears for the most part as soon as I put it on, leaving a faint peppery trace with something sharply unpleasant, maybe ginger blending with something (I like ginger, but it's connected to something else here too that makes it rather bug-sprayish). I'm afraid this is going to the swap box for someone with better chemistry. Too bad -- I love the idea of this scent! :P

Edited to add: A couple of hours after application, I'm getting the sandalwood/baby powder scent, and the sharpness has gone. It might be a matter of just waiting this one out! But fortunately, there are so many others that provide instant gratification for me. :D

Edited by oakmoss, 18 July 2005 - 10:51 PM.

#7 mistri


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Posted 20 July 2005 - 12:29 PM

This is a really *interesting* scent.

To my nose, it smells mostly loamy in the bottle - reminding me strongly of Graveyard Dirt, which I thought was a great scent, but not something I'd particularly want *me* to smell of.

Once I put it on, I began to get hints of the soft perfume. The perfume smell is hard to describe - slightly spicy, very slightly floral (I couldn't pick out individual notes) - I like it very much, actually. I wanted to love Zombi, but found the rose overpowering - this is a similar smell but without the rosiness and something much nicer (from my perspective) in its place.

I'm not sure whether this is the kind of scent my husband will like on me - it's very earthy/dirty. However, *I* like it on me, which is clearly more important.

Glad I jumped straight to a 5ml.

#8 Lorencita


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Posted 20 July 2005 - 09:40 PM

This is beautiful... soil with lingering flowers all around, it's sweet, but not too much. I love how this remains very true ffrom the bottle, then it just fades slowly to a lighter scents. I like it alot, I will purchase a 5ml of this one :P

#9 miss apple

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Posted 21 July 2005 - 04:45 PM

Penny Dreadful

Can't quite tell what I'm sniffing in the bottle yet. Once on I immediately get a mixture of chocolate and smoke - not dreadful at all! A bit later I get incense mixed with the chocolate and smoke and teeny tiny bit of dirt underneath. Everything blends together to create a quietly seductive earthy scent. Wonderful!

#10 Galen


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Posted 22 July 2005 - 10:17 PM

I really need to review some of the newer oils, especially because the impressions I have are a bit different from the current reviewers; apologies that it's so brief!

Penny Dreadful - this starts out as crunchy heavy biscuits* - digestives or something. Very like the current smell of Lush's Aqua Mirabilis!

Then it does the same trick as Jailbait - a womanly sophisticated perfume slowly emerges from underneath a completely un-related smell. But the biscuits manage to ground it a little so that it's not as overwhelming as Jailbait was on me.

I love the first stage, but I'm still not convinced about the shape shift to the second stage though...

*or cookies if you're not british :P

#11 VorpalBunny


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Posted 23 July 2005 - 04:16 PM

Hmm... I can't really put my finger on this scent, but I love it a lot. Something about it reminds me of that sweet, sort of musty scent of old books. It has a little floral tinge and a little sweet one, with the faintest earth scent underneath, not an overpowering earth scent like Zombi or some of the Demeter perfumes, a very subtle one.

#12 klowey


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Posted 24 July 2005 - 05:04 PM

On first application and dry-down, this is a very wet, wet earthy scent. It's not even a garden dirt after a storm. It's stranded in a deep, dark forest (or "wood" to be appropriately melodramatic) after a thick mist has drifted in. Oddly, the one place that comes closest to this scent is down by the locks at the end of the Rideau Canal, with the water falling over and through the locks and the vegetation on the escarpment.

There's a rose scent doesn't seem to pop up until it's almost completely dried down and faded somewhat, after two to three hours.

Overall, it is completely evocative of the penny dreadful stories and perfect to wear while giving tours.

#13 darkling



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Posted 25 July 2005 - 02:35 AM

Penny Dreadful smelled exactly like Graveyard Dirt in the bottle. Once it was on my skin, a spiciness mingled with the rich dirt.

As with Graveyard Dirt, the earth scent of Penny Dreadful was too overpowering for my tastes.

#14 SoapyRN


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Posted 27 July 2005 - 03:49 PM

Wet, in the imp, gingery dirt, or loam I should say.

I am getting baked goods on my wrist....plus dirt. How odd. Like I have a piece of fresh baked chocolate bread with ginger butter and I am eating it in a field of wet, freshly turn earth.

Totally weird, and yet I love it.

#15 youkaichan


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Posted 30 July 2005 - 01:27 AM

i was very excited to try this scent and i am not disappointed. :P it smells like a sweeter graveyard dirt with spice (cinnamon and ginger, maybe?) and very very faint floral hint. i think i'm going to have to add this my 'want a 5mL' list. =D

#16 Lucretia


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Posted 01 August 2005 - 06:20 PM

I love this! So glad I got the 5ml off the bat.

First on dirt. Very much like Nosferatu. Then something acrid and sharp, this is where i got worried the first time, but as it dries down it gets really mellow. Dirt, some sort of wood, some sort of floral and a hint of gingerbreadynes. I find it really hard to describe since it's such a unique scent. The final dry down is a soft ginger and hint of floral dirt. This review does not even do it justice.
I feel so grounded and calm when I wear this. It's just... it smells like earth, not as in dirt finally, but as a broader concept of earth and warmth and being grounded. :P i feel like my brain has melted... one of my most scattered reviews to date.. but i love Penny Dreadful!

#17 tart


    must be 5mL to ride

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Posted 01 August 2005 - 09:30 PM

Am I the only one who thinks Penny Dreadful smells like Pine Sol when first applied? As it dries, I can recognize something earthy, as well as a spicy ginger scent. I'll give this one another try later -- it doesn't really "grab" me right now.

#18 wolfie13


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Posted 01 August 2005 - 09:42 PM

Initial application:
Mostly dirt - but overall lighter in scent and feel than, say, Graveyard Dirt. More similar to the dirt note in Burial, maybe.

Upon wearing: I get a hint of floral and an overall sweetness (but a sugar sweetness as opposed to a vanilla type sweetness) added to the underlying earth scent. Not really spicy to me per se, but has something in the background giving a bit of depth and a vintage feel.

This is nice and quite unique, but for me, I have many other Bpal scents with dirt elements that are more appealing.

#19 cranberry


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Posted 01 August 2005 - 11:30 PM


dirt. ginger. incense. yummm.

In the Imp: spicy dirt

On the Skin - wet:
dirt and ginger. Yummy. I haven't smelled Burial in a while or ever smelled graveyard dirt, but this is a true dirt smell, plus the ginger that's so wonderful in Shub Niggurath. Slightly foody (gingersnaps).

On the Skin - dry: The dirt smell mellows out, as does the ginger, moving into the background to be a spicy, warm, mellow scent. Incense notes come out, as do MAYBE a touch of something floral way in the background.

Overall: I love it! It has the dirt smell that love about the K/Q of Club scents, plus the wonderful spicy ginger. An instant favorite.

#20 slave1


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Posted 02 August 2005 - 10:00 PM

In Bottle: Dirt and something sour.

On Skin: Fresh wet potting soil. The sour note is similar to Dior’s Poison. It is kind of like a dirtier Zombie with a much lighter floral note. There is also a sweet note that might just be chocolate or cocoa. This sadly doesn’t remind me of Noir Heroines, but it does remind me of something dark and seedy... and also like dusty old magazines. Fans of Zombi and Graveyard Dirt need to get this.

#21 janelle_hell


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Posted 06 August 2005 - 07:22 PM

i only have an imp of this;i think i need to get a bottle.

This is such an...evocative scent. Yes,it smells like dirt. Like mud,precisely. It also smells like faded perfume,and makes me think of a stack of old love/hate/i-love-you-so-much-i-don't-know-whether-i-want-to-be-with-you-or-BE-you letters,tied with dusty pink silk ribbon,sitting in a heart shaped box on the edge of an unmade bed in a Victorian-era residential hotel. It makes me think of a long walk in the rain and mud through an old cemetery with mossy marble angels looking down as you steal one wet,red rose to give to the person that all those letters are to and from. It smells like something you keep looking at,even though you don't know why,because what you're looking at,well,you aren't sure if it's the most beautiful or the most horrifying thing you've ever seen.

Penny Dreadful is the scent i would choose to wear if i had the urgent need to put on my white satin slip from the 1940's and show up on a certain someone's doorstep at 3 in the am with a stolen (from the park,not the cemetery-i'm too superstitious for that!) rose in one hand,and a half-empty bottle of Southern Comfort in the other.

There's just no other way to describe it.

#22 Ina Garten Davita

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Posted 06 August 2005 - 10:58 PM

First Impression: Graveyard Dirt and movie theater popcorn.

Second Impression: Graveyard Dirt meets the buttery stages of Harvest Moon. As it begins to dry, the rich perfume starts to bloom and that buttery-ness is gone. The drydown is spot-on true to the description. It's morbid, evocative and gorgeous.

Final Analysis: As I was contemplating Penny Dreadful, we were watching a History Channel show called "Death Cars" and a segment on the tragic death of Jayne Mansfield was highlighted. This perfume captured the essence so very well, it freaked me out just a bit. That aside, this scent is amazingly beautiful. I love it.

#23 tesao


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Posted 08 August 2005 - 11:16 PM

this one baffled me.

both in the imp and on my wrist, wet, there is some sharp scent that just jumps out at me and overpowers everything else. can't put my finger on it. it is metallic, somehow. it smells the way that blood tastes to me.

that top note lingers for over an hour.

once past that phase, it is creamy and warm. i think i recognize amber.

if it smelled this way from the first, i think i would keep it. but there are so many other scents out there to try!!!

#24 Brianne


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Posted 09 August 2005 - 02:37 AM

In the bottle:
Strong, perfumey, and sort of powdery

On me:
This isn't what I was expecting from the description, but it is what I was expecting from the reviews. People have pretty much gotten the same thing I did from it. It wasn't so much earthy - though I could smell that loamy smell behind the "perfume" smell. It was rich and moist, and mingles well with the main note of what I think is ginger. It's peppery and spicey, and a little bit sweet. There is something else in this blend that is very familiar to me, but I can't put my finger on it. I see this as the kind of blend that a mature, established woman would wear. It's confident, and feminine, and a little bit sultry, but also a little business like too.

Final note:
This is a nice blend, and it makes me think of a more commercial perfume, but without that "fake" sort of smell to it.

#25 AliBabble


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Posted 11 August 2005 - 04:15 PM

crap! i loved the idea of this one, but i don't know if i got a bad batch or what, but it smells like ammonia! not good. i get the "earthy" thing that's been mentioned, but it smells like earth where someone dumped a bottle of ammonia onto it. not good.

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