Monday, 2 June 2014

Violent Violets

Ach, violets. Such delicate little things. I always thought it odd that the German word for them, Veilchen,  is also used to describe a black eye. Totally unjustified, misleading and rather lazy. Yeah, they are purple blue and so is that bruise in your face, but still, so many other plants come with that colour and are far better suited for fist fights. Thistles, for example, or even bog standard pansies seem more robust and outgoing than the shrinking violet. For me, a perfume smelling of violets should carry an innocent sweetness around for a little while. I don't mind at all if the fragrance turns into something different, modern or dark after ten minutes, but I do want that intense powdery hit for the briefest of moments.  Otherwise, what's the point? 

So, why has this violet here, the one in that innocuous little glass vial labelled I Profumi di Firenze, Violetta di Bosco, just punched me in the face like some thuggish alpha violet on steroids? You remember these cartoons when someone bends over to smell a flower on a lapel? This. Not nice, not fair, not done. I mean, I understand that perfumers use the violet leaf rather a lot these days, and the word bosco in the name indicates that this could be a rather savage version of the note, so one can say I should have known. May be. But it didn't prepare me for this:

Violetta di Bosco, the visual. 

So much for shrinking.... Poisonous, bitter, wild, out there to eat through my skin layers. It's not a very blue smell either but comes and goes in wafts of ugly and medicinal screeching greens.  It's not entirely impossible that I have a very bad skin/nose day... and I understand the attempt to create a greener, manlier(!) version of a note that is often perceived as cloying and grannyish, but on me these violets from the woods are a complete disaster and I hate them too much for another trial on skin time. One Veilchen is quite enough. 

How and where to wear:
You don't like violets? Why not wear a violet perfume? What could possibly go wrong? 


  1. Sounds terrifying! There's a Pizza Express salad called the Bosco - I may give it a wide berth now just to be on the safe side.

    1. As a salad, that perfume would actually be OK.