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BPAL Madness!


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Everything posted by ivyandpeony

  1. ivyandpeony

    Weed & Whiskey

    No additional scent description.
  2. ivyandpeony

    Cranberries & Popcorn

    No additional scent description.
  3. ivyandpeony

    Fir Needle & Smoke

    No additional scent description.
  4. ivyandpeony

    Rosewater & Myrrh

    No additional scent description.
  5. ivyandpeony

    Amber & Cardamom

    No additional scent description.
  6. ivyandpeony

    Candlewax & Chocolate

    No additional scent description.
  7. ivyandpeony

    Peppermint & Pine

    No additional scent description.
  8. ivyandpeony

    Narcissus & Snowflakes

    No additional scent description.
  9. ivyandpeony

    Cinnamon & Clove

    No additional scent description.
  10. ivyandpeony

    A Do’s & Don’ts Refresher

    The official guidelines link has glitched out on us, but you will find a general guide here if you happen to have questions while we are repairing. Please feel free to contact mods/admins with questions & remember that if you receive a note from us, it’s a gentle reminder, not a personal attack. No one else sees it & we are still glad you’re here. Thank you, guys!
  11. Patchouli, carnation, peach blossom, frankincense, honeysuckle, and Spanish mandarin. Wet, it's hard to identify any single note, but once applied, this is drying down to a gorgeous resinous blend with just a touch of fruitiness. I'm surprised not to be getting much honeysuckle, since it's a note that likes to amp on me, but it may be melding with everything else and just adding some sweetness to the blend. I'd definitely characterize this as sweet as opposed to dry, yet nowhere as sweet as things like Sugar Skull, Anaconda, Snow Angel, etc. It's really lovely.
  12. ivyandpeony


    She is the Goddess of the Sky, one of the Ennead, daughter of the air [shu] and water [Tefnut], lover of Geb and Hadit, the Eternal Mother, and the Receiver, Reviver and Protector of the Dead, whose loving, divine embrace shields our souls from annihilation. She is love, rapture, splendor, continuous and eternal birth and rebirth, infinite space, and the “the naked brilliance of the voluptuous night”. Nuit is Earth’s guardian, and shields her lover and her mortal children from the primeval chaos that threatens Existence. Her perfume is starry and crystalline, a jewel-clad and glittering paean to night: dazzling white musks, white rose and night-blooming jasmine with the soft moss of moonlit meadows, a waft of Egyptian incense, and a gentle breath of moonflower. Nuit is a rich and gorgeous floral blend. Out of the bottle and freshly applied, the jasmine and musk truly sparkle and are dominant on me. But I have repeatedly found that the jasmine in many BPAL blends (The Caterpillar, Euphrosyne, Moscow) overwhelmed me when the blend was fresh from the lab... only to morph into a well-mannered and beautiful top note once the oil has aged a month or so. I have every reason to believe that Nuit will become even more balanced and that the subtle notes will come through once this has aged a wee bit and the individual notes have married, since I get a hint of smokiness as it begins to dry down and the jasmine backs off. I'm very happy I ordered a bottle of this one.
  13. ivyandpeony

    Scattered Gloom

    Dry olibanum, opoponax, mandrake accord, black currant, and opium pod. Posting the first review is always pressure-pressure-PRESSURE! And Scattered Gloom is a really hard nut to crack for me. It is dark, and resinous, and a bit on the dry side. One of those scents where I can't pick out any single note in the bottle or on my skin. If you love resins, then I think you will love Scattered Gloom - it strikes an excellent balance between sweet and dry, which I find that I am enjoying, and I think that it is only going to get better and better with age. I'm so infatuated with black currant these days, I am hoping that note will peek out a little bit as my bottle settles, too. All in all, a gorgeous blend and so very evocative. ETA: I promise I'm not crazy, abejita! But my skin absolutely refuses to let that sweet black currant show its face or even take a peek at what the big resins and slightly bitter opium are doing. I may not be crazy... but I am stinking jealous of your skin chemistry
  14. ivyandpeony

    Incessant Torture of Remorse

    INCESSANT TORTURE OF REMORSE “You are fettered,” said Scrooge, trembling. “Tell me why?” “I wear the chain I forged in life,” replied the Ghost. “I made it link by link, and yard by yard; I girded it on of my own free will, and of my own free will I wore it. Is its pattern strange to you?” Scrooge trembled more and more. “Or would you know,” pursued the Ghost, “the weight and length of the strong coil you bear yourself? It was full as heavy and as long as this, seven Christmas Eves ago. You have laboured on it, since. It is a ponderous chain!” Scrooge glanced about him on the floor, in the expectation of finding himself surrounded by some fifty or sixty fathoms of iron cable: but he could see nothing. “Jacob,” he said, imploringly. “Old Jacob Marley, tell me more. Speak comfort to me, Jacob!” “I have none to give,” the Ghost replied. “It comes from other regions, Ebenezer Scrooge, and is conveyed by other ministers, to other kinds of men. Nor can I tell you what I would. A very little more is all permitted to me. I cannot rest, I cannot stay, I cannot linger anywhere. My spirit never walked beyond our counting-house—mark me!—in life my spirit never roved beyond the narrow limits of our money-changing hole; and weary journeys lie before me!” It was a habit with Scrooge, whenever he became thoughtful, to put his hands in his breeches pockets. Pondering on what the Ghost had said, he did so now, but without lifting up his eyes, or getting off his knees. “You must have been very slow about it, Jacob,” Scrooge observed, in a business-like manner, though with humility and deference. “Slow!” the Ghost repeated. “Seven years dead,” mused Scrooge. “And travelling all the time!” “The whole time,” said the Ghost. “No rest, no peace. Incessant torture of remorse.” “You travel fast?” said Scrooge. “On the wings of the wind,” replied the Ghost. “You might have got over a great quantity of ground in seven years,” said Scrooge. The Ghost, on hearing this, set up another cry, and clanked its chain so hideously in the dead silence of the night, that the Ward would have been justified in indicting it for a nuisance. “Oh! captive, bound, and double-ironed,” cried the phantom, “not to know, that ages of incessant labour by immortal creatures, for this earth must pass into eternity before the good of which it is susceptible is all developed. Not to know that any Christian spirit working kindly in its little sphere, whatever it may be, will find its mortal life too short for its vast means of usefulness. Not to know that no space of regret can make amends for one life’s opportunity misused! Yet such was I! Oh! such was I!” Life’s opportunity misused: opopponax, lavender, blackberry, patchouli, olive leaf, myrtle, and white cognac. There were a few moments of terror, when I first sniffed this from the bottle and when I first applied it. Lavender terror! It was incredibly strong, like single note lavender. And I like lavender, but not as a dominant note, so I was wondering if I had rolled the dice and lost. But then, after just a few minutes, the lavender fog lifted and this scent started to morph into what I wanted it to be. It is soft, a little sweet and a little woody - nicely anchored by the opoponax, with a hint of blackberry, a gentle and cooperative patchouli (as opposed to a raw and dominant one) and a little bit of a green feel. The cognac floats just on top and is also a gentle version as opposed to the in-your-face cognac note in The Imp of The Perverse. I really like this one & I am looking forward to seeing how it ages - hoping that sassy lavender will step back a little bit, but it's worth the few minutes of dominant lavender for the rest of the ride.
  15. ivyandpeony

    Hua Mulan

    Click, click, for ever click, click; Mulan sits at the door and weaves. Listen, and you will not hear the shuttle’s sound, But only a girl’s sobs and sighs. ‘Oh, tell me, lady, are you thinking of your love, Oh, tell me, lady, are you longing for your dear?’ ‘Oh no, oh no, I am not longing for my dear. But last night I read the battle-roll; The Khan has ordered a great levy of men. The battle-roll was written in twelve books, And in each book stood my father’s name. My father’s sons are not grown men, And of all of my brothers, none is older than me. Oh let me to the market to buy saddle and horse, And ride with the soldiers to take my father’s place.’ In the eastern market she’s bought a gallant hors. In the western market she’s bought saddle and cloth. In the southern market she’s bought snaffle and reins. In the northern market she’s bought a tall whip. In the morning she stole from her father’s and mother’s house. At night she was camping by the Yellow River’s side. She could not hear her father and mother calling to her by name, But only the voice of the Yellow River as its waters swirled through the night. At dawn they left the River and went on their way; At dusk they came to the Black Water’s side. She could not hear her father and mother calling to her by her name, She could only hear the muffled voices of foreign horsemen riding on the hills of Yen. A thousand leagues she tramped on the errands of war. Frontiers and hills she crossed like a bird in flight. Through the northern air echoed the watchman’s tap; The wintry light gleamed on coats of mail. The captain had fought a hundred fights, and died; The warriors in ten years had won their rest. The went home, they saw the Emperor’s face; The Son of Heaven was seated in the Hall of Light. The deeds of the brave were recorded in twelve books; In prizes he gave a hundred thousand cash. Thus spoke the Khan and asked her what she would take. ‘Oh, Mulan asks not to be made A counsellor at the Khan’s court; I only beg for a camel that can march A thousand leagues a day, To take me back to my home.’ When her father and mother heard that she had come, They went out to the wall and led her back to the house. When her little sister heard that she had come, She went to the door and rouged herself afresh. When her little brother heard that his sister had come, He sharpened his knife and darted like a flash Towards the pigs and sheep. She opened the gate that leads to the eastern tower, She sat on her bed that stood in the western tower. She cast aside her heavy soldier’s cloak, And wore again her old-time dress. She stood at the window and bound her cloudy hair; She went to the mirror and fastened her yellow combs. She left the house and met her messmates in the road; Her messmates were startled out of their wits. The had marched with her for twelve years of war And never know that Mulan was girl. For the male hare sits with its legs tucked in, And the female hare is known for her bleary eye; But set them both scampering side by side, And who so wise could tell you ‘This is he’? Pink musk, white ginger, tea leaf, night blooming jasmine, bergamot, and leather. Hopefully you will all forgive this first reviewer for not being the finest of review writers, but I know that lots of people are anxious to hear something about Hua Mulan since this prototype wasn't available for testing at last month's Will Call. My biggest fear was that the leather would dominate, my second that it would be prominent, and luckily for me (because leather rarely works on my skin) neither is the case! Hua Mulan overall is a soft, warm floral scent. Way prettier than it is tough. The white ginger and the mellow night-blooming jasmine work together to give it a little bit of a white floral feel and there's some spicy, light musk anchoring the blend. I almost get the barest hint of pink pepper - is it my imagination, or is it a component that Beth might have used to "pink" up the musk? I think that I'd classify this particular musk as a relative of white musk and skin musk. It definitely is light in feel and has some warmth as well. I don't detect a lot of tea or bergamot in Hua Mulan, although both may have contributed to making this less sweet and less heady overall than a straight white floral blend would be. I think that's the role the leather's playing for me, too, and it's adding a little woodiness and spiciness that wouldn't be there without it. (I've been wearing it about an hour now and haven't experienced any drastic morphing - a caveat is that I did rip into the package and apply right away, I couldn't wait so if I find that it wears any differently after the bottle has settled a bit from its travels, I certainly will make a note of it. And as Shollin is headed out for a long weekend vacation, I am not sure how she will want the final description to read and I need to check the final date for the close of the inquisition before I can add that to the subtitle - so bear with us on that unfinished business )
  16. Frankincense, myrrh, styrax, oakmoss and clove. The perfect frankincense and myrrh scent! All of the loveliness of those symbolic resins with none of the mess or smoke you get from burning the resins or incense. The styrax lends a bit of creaminess, which I like because I find frankincense a bit sharp - and the oakmoss and clove make it a bit spicier than it would be on its own. I don't find it nearly as "dark" as the perfume that accompanied it (in my case, Scattered Gloom) - it's a beautiful holiday scent but would be lovely as a sophisticated home scent any time of year.
  17. ivyandpeony


    "Excuse me," barked Tyler. "Is that your crisp packet?" "Oh, it's not just mine," said the boy. "It's everybody's." R.P. Tyler drew himself up to his full height. "Young man,' he said, "how would you feel if I came over to your house and dropped litter everywhere?" Pollution smiled, wistfully. 'Very, very pleased,' he breathed. "Oh, that would be wonderful." Beneath his bike an oil slick puddled a rainbow on the wet road. A toxic chypre: radioactive green musk, davana, and oozing white amber. I love this - it is exactly what I wanted it to be. I imagined a cleaner (ha ha, irony), more piercing cousin to 51, which is one of my absolute favorite GC blends of all time, and that's what Pollution is on my skin. I picture this being easier for a man to wear than 51 would be - the musk and davana are nicely balanced so that you don't pick out an assertive floral note, and the sweetness that all the fruits add to 51 isn't present. This is stark and clean, glowing, bright, gorgeous and green. I'm so pleased that I took a chance on an unsniffed bottle.
  18. ivyandpeony

    Imp and Bottle Cap Issues (breakage, leakage)

    I haven't had a leaky bottle or imp cap issue in a long time, but I completely sympathize! I would encourage all of you to be sure to let the Lab know via e-mail. They don't have enough staff to constantly monitor threads like this one, but if you let them know when you received the order with the leaky imp (and I promise, it doesn't matter if it was an imp you bought or a frimp) they may be able to check their stock and prevent more faulty caps from getting out there. They are completely dependent upon the QC at the bottle supplier - imagine the expense if they were to have to test every container they buy before filling it - and it is helpful to them to know when something like this happens.
  19. ivyandpeony

    International Shipping Info+Questions

    I just read on one of the Facebook groups that there's a glitch on the Lab site that's screwing up shipping for imps. Apparently bottle-only orders aren't affected but as soon as you add an imp or imps to your order, it triggers the glitch.
  20. ivyandpeony

    Who do I email with questions? BPAL/BPTP contact info

    I would try sending an e-mail directly to answers@blackphoenixalchemylab thru your e-mail instead of using the website form. I've heard a couple people say they got answers much more quickly that way - could be a glitch with the website. Good luck!
  21. My rec isn't a GC, but it might be easier to find because the Salon was around for so long - Garden Path With Chickens (Damp grass, ivy leaves, morning glory, daisy, rose geranium, heliotrope, white gardenia, climbing roses, peppery nasturtium, phlox, begonia, verbena and sun-warmed herbs). Don't let those floral notes that are listed chase you away, this one is a sunny bright green scent.
  22. ivyandpeony

    Sell me on patchouli?

    I love Visions III too and agree with your description, Leira. So many BPAL fans adore Goblin, but it's always seemed like the patchouli was on the raw, hippy-dippier side of the scale. But Gingerbread Goblin is so different to me! The patchouli seems so much softer and fuzzier. And for anyone trying to find a smoother, more mellow patchouli, my advice is always: age it, age it, age it. Patchouli seems to get softer as it ages. The woodiness that seems so raw to me in fresh patchouli becomes more of a spiciness.
  23. ivyandpeony

    Viewing past orders on the site?

    I'd message the Lab at answers@blackphoenixalchemylab after the holiday rush to find out. In the meantime, you might be able to find what you're looking for by searching your e-mail for the earlier orders. I know it's not as convenient, though.
  24. Oh, thanks! I have a bottle of Cicuta in my undecided box - I will definitely give it a re-whirl and see how it clicks with me. I bet it's been two years since I skin tested it. I just got my bottle of Scholar's Tower tucked in my Halloween order. It is definitely a member of The Lion - Jacob's Ladder - Hesiod's Phoenix - La Lugubre Gondola family. Anyone who loves those scents should try to score a bottle (and should have at least one back up bottle of The Lion tucked away and aging as we speak!)
  25. ivyandpeony


    I am an ambergris lover too! Look for "grey amber" or "gray amber" when you're perusing notes, since it's another name the Lab uses for it. I'd almost swear that there's ambergris accord in The Girl, even though its description includes white amber, not grey. Under the Harvest Moon (Blue and white musk, summer roses, wild crimson leaves, grey amber, carnation, lavender bud, and vanilla bean) is a really lovely crystalline autumn blend. The Torture Queen from Carnival Diabolique is maybe my favorite blend that lists it as a note (white amber, vanilla musk, white tea, ambergris, gardenia, and chrome) - and another favorite from CD is The Maltese Cross of Sanctus Germanus (golden amber, blood orange, ambergris, lilac, frankincense, and agarwood). Silver Haired Bat (Gleaming white amber and silvered ambergris accord with copoiba balsam, benzoin, Atlas cedar, black pepper, and oudh) is gorgeous, although harder to track down (it was a Bats Day exclusive last year IIRC). Unveil the Grace in Thine Eyes (orris, luminous ambergris, and golden amber illuminated by a sunlit golden musk) is another LE with it that I've tried but I need to revisit it. I uncovered a few LEs with ambergris that I haven't tried (or have since forgotten): Aubin Grandpied Bunmanchi, Childhood Playmate (pale fur, lavender water, Corsican immortelle, white thyme, benzoin absolute, ambergris accord, and sorrowful carrot seed), The Shadowy and The Sublime (Moroccan amber, wisteria, ambergris accord, white rose, magnolia, white mint, angelica, bergamot, and myrrh), A Nocturnal Reverie (Violet musk and oudh with black amber, ambergris, agarwood, black currant, dark musk, fig, and lavender incense). I have to go look in my BPAL box ASAP. I bought quite a few of the Century Guild scents but now I'm baffled because I don't remember buying or trying Curved Sky and it sounds so much up my alley!