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BPAL Madness!
Ina Garten Davita

They Shut Me Up in Prose

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Loosed from the satin-pale corset, emerging from a gilded cage, that prison of silence: sweet bourbon vanilla,

pale sandalwood, mallow flower, osmanthus, and shards of frankincense.


They shut me up in Prose –
As when a little Girl
They put me in the Closet –
Because they liked me “still” –

Still! Could themself have peeped –
And seen my Brain – go round –
They might as wise have lodged a Bird
For Treason – in the Pound –

Himself has but to will
And easy as a Star
Look down upon Captivity –
And laugh – No more have I –
– Emily Dickinson


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I have this on fresh from the mailbox, and it's everything I was hoping for. It's sweet without being too sweet, distinctly vanilla, and very, very smooth. Maybe a tiny touch of golden? If this were a color, it might be a nice ivory.


My fear was that the pale sandalwood and frankincense might push this to dry and thin, as they do sometimes. It seems like the mallow and osmanthus are adding a richness that strikes a nice chord. The notes are present, but blended into something that works well together. It reminds me a little of some other blends-- Edith Cushing, Crinoline and Lace, and maybe Celeste-- but it stands on its own.


As it dries, the osmanthus becomes more prominent, but it doesn't take over. It remains primarily a vanilla and mallow scent.

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Can I bathe in this? Haunting moonlight, painfully beautiful, a melancholy sweetness. Pale but not shrinking, "hidden in her leaflets," she is very much Emily Dickinson. From that first whiff at DSLE, I was musing on how to depict this one just by its scent, without reading the scent notes or flavor text. Emily came to mind. Uncanny, or just amazing blending?


Vanilla is queen, puffed by mallow, yet this is far from foodie. Nor is it quite floral; the osmanthus is a wispy, creamy apricot whisked away by the wind. The sandalwood and frank are impossibly pale ghosts of incense and resin. They wander through, such shimmering apparitions you wonder exactly who they were in their past life. The girl who stands in their midst is undeniably dabbed with vanilla, but her sweetness is touched with pensive reflection. 


I think many BPALers will connect with this. A wearable masterpiece. If I don't end up with multiple bottles, I will wonder at myself.

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They Shut Me Up in Prose was swoon-worthy from the moment it came out of the mailbox. It's not just that I love the way it smells; I'm also fully down with Emily Dickinson and what this whole line of scents represents. Most of the time I don't like to say a scent feels feminine, masculine, or unisex, but this is a scent that's about womanhood in all its forms—unbound, like the name of this collection. Dickinson herself echoes through it. Maybe I've finally found the best poetry-inspired scent for me.


I'm not always able to wear vanilla scents because sometimes my skin turns them plastic or burnt, but this is a dry vanilla like the one in Sonnet D'Automne or Two Sheep and Two Goats Resting Together in a Field, both of which I also love, but this is significantly more ethereal than either of those. The floral, resin, and wood notes are all light and blended perfectly with the vanilla, and I fervently hope that balance doesn't change too much as it settles down and ages. This could require a backup or two, even though I'm trying to avoid that. It feels like it's part of the air around me, not overpowering, but making its presence known.

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this starts off with something a bit nutty and some watery florals. not quite sure what i'm smelling here. maybe vanilla and mallow flower?  the florals in this are soapy on me, unfortunately...it's like vanilla soapiness. after a few more minutes, i get sweeter florals and the soapiness subsides a little bit but it's still present. i also get some sandalwood at this point. after being on the skin about half an hour, it settles into a pretty vanilla-sandalwood with florals. 

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