Monthly Archives: May 2015

Items 1 to 10 of 13 total

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  • white musk

    Ok. I admit it: I sometimes watch it, home order TV, just to relax. Never with the goal to shop. Although, yesterday, I was tempted, for the tenth of a second.

    But yesterday was special anyhow: I think I never ordered that much fragrant "stuff" and other stock items for my Tauer Perfumes world like yesterday. Like "wow!" (says the bookkeeper) and "uiii....exciting" says the creative director (me) and "let's hope we can sell that in this year's season!" says the sales manager (me). Thus, in the end, the Euro 31.99, would not have made a big difference really.

    I did not however, as I have enough perfume.

    A couple of things made me think, though: first why a product costs 31.99 Euro but 44.95 Swiss Francs in a time where the Franc and Euro are close to parity. And then, there was this bamboo head note. Hmm...I wonder what bamboo smells like. I guess green and energetic, as bamboo grows like super crazy. I know this, as our neighbour planted some a couple of years ago and they ended up digging over half of their garden because the bamboo was threatening to reach out to a little pathway, owned by the city, and from there to reach out towards downtown, so to say.

    And then there was this white musk thing. That was the only base note mentioned during the 10 minutes or so that I sat in front of the TV. White musk. This is ok. But it made me think about the irony how an extract from a dirty little animal gland smelling super sexy and erotic and dangerously wild, how the idea of musk could be changed completely to a white nice scent that stands for clean and comfort. That's amazing. It is a turn of 180 degrees really and it always amazes me.

    From there, it is just a small step for perfume creating mankind to come up with the next question: How about mauve musk? "Pink musk" unfortunately exists already. Or better even: AZUR musk. To my amazement there does not seem to exist an azur musk fragrance, yet. Now that's cool!

    So you see: Inspiration is pretty much everywhere.

  • Vetiver MD

    The other day I got more vetiver, the real stuff, shipped from France, produced by "molecular distillation". This distillation method gives rise to a special olfactive quality, where the gentle woody, vibrant citrus notes of vetiver come out and the rough earthy "dirty" olfactive quality  becomes secondary. It is still sitting here in the stock room, where it will get better. Not everything gets better over time, but vetiver sure does.

    I do not use this quality in many scents (you'll find it as a secondary line in PHI-une rose de Kandahar, though) but I felt I will need more in the future and was worried that it is not always available. Me thinks: Vetiver, the real thing, the natural ingredient, is one of those ingredients that are misunderstood and not appreciated for what it is. I am pretty sure that many would be amazed what vetiver really smells like, coming from what is sold as "vetiver fragrance".

    In many "vetiver" fragrance you do not get a lot vetiver actually, but vetiverol, one of the constituents of vetiver essential oil.

    Anyhow: I have used this "super" vetiver MD in a couple of experiments, and I am sure there's more to come. Because... it is sooooo good. Actually, it is so good that it feels like a perfume in itself, just asking for a few decorative elements before it can go into bottles. But for sure, I will not start new experiments this week: There is definitely too much going on this week (hence no post yesterday). Yesterday, I have sent 200+ kg of perfume packaging material over the oceans, and more of packaged perfumes needs to go there and north and east.

    And then, ... well, then I have a couple of funny side projects, that are totally low priority but that keep me busy; you know... the funnel (funny) projects. This week will see one of them going live. On tauerville, though, as there, on  tauerville, there's a bit more room for funny, totally not important, but nevertheless totally relevant ideas.

  • these days

    These days there is more coming into the house of tauer than going out. It is the time of the year where we are sort of preparing for autumn. You know: Bottles, fragrances, and paper stuff. Summer is the quiet season, more or less. The more I am happy if some boxes get out of my way: This morning there will be another pick-up of an order and while I wait for the truck driver, I will make another shipment ready of stuff to go out next week, bottles et al. to fly over the Atlantic. The backpack is ready and soon I will hit the bike to head for the "factory". I packed a couple of experimental scents as, this afternoon, finally!, hurray! I will meet to sniff these. The perfect way to start my weekend.

    We will also smell my fresh aqua fidelis calone scentric iteration. I am very curious there...

    Today's picture shows you my end of work day relaxation exercise. A4, after sending off (more or less) the last email yesterday, after a looooooong day behind the computer, trying to get a couple of things done. Pictures, newsletter preparations, applications over the internet, and tons of mails.

    This one is - in my opinion- actually pretty good. While painting I am just letting go and do my thing. I don't see really "what" I am painting. A couple of hours later, I looked at it again and realized a couple of things: There's Fibonacci's spiral in there. Sort of guiding the eye to the center of the picture (not the geometric center).


    20150522-2 Fibonacci's Golden spiral ?


    The orangeish stone is complemented by the bluish water/sky.

    Sometimes, the same happens to me when I compose fragrances. They sort of "happen"; I type numbers into my excel where I write down a formula before I actually mix it, and sometimes, numbers are just flowing in there. Hard to explain. Then I mix it; when mixing a trial I always smell all ingredients from the bottles, and hence the nose gets pretty numb. Thus, after mixing, although I immediately smell the mixed fragrance, I usually do not get much. And the mixture has not matured, too. Then, after a week or more, I smell it again, and mostly it is not worth thinking too much about it, but just the invitation to try again and try differently. But sometimes, I smell it, "look at it", the trial version, and "see" it. It is one of these happy moments of a creator, when you "see it" and when you smile because you see it turned out right.

    Having said this: As creator you are mostly blind for what you do. Hence the importance of today's sniffing session. Getting a thumbs up and/or a kick in the butt does good.

    Another highlight yesterday: A discussion on, initiated by a client who got a bottle of air du désert marocain, found a signed card inside and wondered, slightly confused "does he always do this?".

    Yes, he does.

  • the nose

    I came across a couple of articles in newspaper and magazines lately. And, being a nose myself, I cannot but publish this quick short post. Hello world, please take note: owning a perfume brand does not make you a nose.

    Does it matter? Yes, it does. The nose knows. What's the difference?

    What's the difference between prince xzy asking for a picture painted for him, and the artist doing the portrait? The artist knows.

    Today's picture: A quick sketch, a chimeric nose picture ;-)

  • Ozonic versus dark cistus twists

    Today, right before I started writing this blog post about my "aqua fidelis" perfume trial, a review of PHI-une rose de Kandahar went live on the Pierredenishhapur blog, talking about PHI-une rose de Kandahar, with a lovely intro about the Afghan rose oil and then talking about the multifaceted aspects of this rose de Kandahar. Here's the link. It is a post that comes with a couple of compliments that are highly appreciated. What a great coincidence!

    A coincidence because I was thinking 5 minutes ago about naming scents, wearing the latest iteration of "aqua fidelis", my fresh "andy" interpretation of an established theme "calone", fresh ozonic, aquatic.

    This aqua fidelis actually is quite modern in my nose. Features some fresh natural head notes/ingredients and sees an ozonic freshness complemented by airy woods without any darkness. Very translucent and bright and fresh. Don't ask me what I will do with it. I am clueless, really. But anyhow: sitting there and musing, I realized that my two best sellers "air du désert marocain" and "PHI-une rose de Kandahar" come with very evocative names. Part of their success? Who knows...

    And while thinking about this, and smelling my wrist, in some sort of amazement, I realized that I actually have not one "light" scent in my tauer perfumes collection. Even my "cologne du Maghreb" comes with a dark cistus twist. A bit at least.

    So I figured, I might - when ready- really need to introduce an aqua fidelis. But aqua fidelis is the running title of an excel sheet only, and coming from above's conclusion, it might need another name. Like ......and yes, here, there's an idea missing.

    Today's picture doesn't fit perfectly. But at least we have the ozonic sea freshness in there. But it is too dark. It is another sea picture, done yesterday, oil pastel on canvas.

  • entering a romantic phase

    I think I just entered into a romantic phase here. Yesterday was half a day off, due to a holiday day here in Switzerland. I ended up working half the day nevertheless, but the other half was mixed media, so to say: doing some research on some official stuff and doing some photoshop work on pictures and fooling around with the oil pastels, again.

    Today's picture shows you the result of the oil pastel work, sort of finished, unfinished, I do not know. Done without a reference, starting somewhere and ending up somewhere else, kind of following the flow. I sent it to a friend and she said "are we entering into some sort of a romantic phase?" And I said yes, sort of, and started wondering whether my perfume trials might that way, too.

    But then, this this morning, I felt how the romantic phase came to an abrupt stop.

    Which may be a good thing actually. Time to move on and come back with some realism in my creative ventures.

    How to stop a romantic phase? Very simple:  Within 5 minutes, after the first coffee, I started reading diagonally the EU Cosmetics regulation  No 1223/2009 OF THE EUROPEAN PARLIAMENT AND OF THE COUNCIL of 30  November 2009 on cosmetic products, and you can do so, too. Here's the link. Actually, I recommend getting a whiff of it. Texts like these exist, probably, world wide. They are amazing. Some 150 pages. With phrases like (citing here):
    " Since the objective of this Regulation, namely the achievement of the internal market and a high level of protection of human health through the compliance of cosmetic products with the requirements laid down in this Regulation, cannot be sufficiently achieved by the Member States and can therefore, by reason of the scale of the action, be better achieved at Community level, the Community may adopt measures, in accordance with the principle of subsidiarity, as set out in Article 5 of the Treaty....".


    Maybe we'll better go back to romanticism. So I wonder: What are romantic perfume notes? Vanilla and amber come to mind.



  • a material world

    We entered summer here in Zurich. Which is wonderful and brings me out on the balcony early in the morning, listening to the birds, watching the neighborhood waking up and reading the news of the day before I start creating my own news.

    This morning, I read an article about Microsoft's new business model, giving one of its core products for free in the future, the upcoming operating system, 10, and what follows after. They will try to make money with everything that goes around it, like their office products that you do not buy as physical software on a DVD but that you license. Like Adobe with their deal of licensing their tools for a monthly fee. The later product I use, and love the offer: I always get the newest version, it is hassle free and costs less in the end. It is also a great way to try new pieces of software.

    Now, as I am always and constantly think "perfume" I could help asking myself: How can this be translated into the material world of perfume? Can it, or can't it?

    I haven't answered this question. But, as in the super fast moving IT industry, the perfume industry is moving fast these days, and business models change. These days, I feel like we are switch from Information Technology to Intelligent Technology and sometimes I am just amazed how fast this technology develops and how smart some tools got. Siri is still somewhat stupid, though. But I can see where my Siri guy is heading.

    So.... Microsoft will give its operating system for free. Imagine you would get some of your perfume for free, and would pay for some sort of service on the other hand.

    Maybe it was too early when I was thinking about it. It guess this piece of thought will linger in my own bio IT system when working in the factory today.

    Ah, and yes: Here is another interview that I forgot to share. I got the questions from Liam running his Olfactics blog and before I got them I asked him to -if possible- try to come up with some "new" questions for me. Some where indeed "new". Like how I like my eggs. Here's the link: Enjoy!

    (and yes, he asked me to do a quick picture of him... and no: This is not going to become a new standard for blogger interviews ;-)

  • going to Baumarkt

    Today's picture: I published it yesterday already on my facebook page ( , oil pastel, on paper, done with a couple of limited colors from the Sennelier collection (the best oil pastels in my humble opinion). It was the second picture done in oil pastel only, I worked on it for an hour or so and when I showed it here in the house, I got something back like "nice, a bit kitschy, but nice".

    So I shared it on facebook and I think it is one  of the pictures with the most comments and the most "likes" which is great! Do not ask me why.

    I smeared the colors, blended the oil pastel, using my fingertips and loved the intimate connection.

    When I create perfumes, or better said: When I mix my trials, then I am always wearing gloves. Although I love the intimate connection to scented mater, I try not to get scented stuff onto my fingers. You know: Bergamot oil is one thing on skin. Vetiver or Cashmeran is another thing. Actually, vetiver is nicer than cashmeran. Cashmeran, you might have heard about it, maybe even seen it as note listed, is a fun molecule. Here's its Wikipedia page. I haven't really come across what is described as " chypre, balsamic and vanilla notes" (besides the core musky woody notes, although Cashmeran is not a musk, really). I get the musky and somewhat harsh odor profile, and sort of miss the "sensual cashmere feeling", but that might just be me. Anyhow: Cashmeran is sort of sticky and I definitively do not want to get it onto my hands. Therefore, gloves.

    I learned that a lot of people of cashmeran. To me, it is quite an aggressive scent. But then: Scent is so subjective. I haven't used Cashmeran in most of my scents, but in a few upcoming scents you might find it, because...Here's the thing: I learned that although by itself alone I do not like it, it does wonders in compositions. Can do wonders. So there you go: Sometimes, as creator, as artist, you have to go beyond what you enjoy working with.

    And sometimes, you even have to hit the real world where folks are talking business and volumes and margins and sales pitches and all that. Not easy. The more you are an artist, the harder this might be. Lucky me, I do not really consider myself an artist. Thus, when doing a little sales pitch the other day, and sniffing some things there at the sales pitch place, I went like: Wow. It is amazing how banal most of this stuff is.

    And you know what: it sells.

    And you know what: That's ok. There's something in there for all of us. Just one wish: Please do not compare mine with theirs.

    The same is true for today's highlight: There's something in there for all of us in ....Baumarkt! (think hardware store, huge!). I need to get some cardboard boxes from my supplier, will have to use the car, and as Baumarkt is right around the block, I will be heading there, too. I love Baumarkt. Together with housewifes, workmen, and bank directors I dream the dream there, of building a bright future. And Baumarkt has canvases, too!


  • after a week

    ...filling lots of flacons of Vetiver Dance, Incense Extrême, Lonestar Memories and Orange Star: Creative Friday! Hurray.

    I will head now to the factory in order to finish off the Orange Star flacons that I filled yesterday, polishing, labelling them and then: Playtime and doing what does not need to be done. Time for some little crazy projects.

    Can't wait.

    Have a great weekend!

  • funnel

    Today's picture: Looking into a metal funnel. I decided to take this picture this morning when sitting on the balcony and thinking about today. Today's is going to be exciting; and so far the whole week was. Today, I will get three deliveries: Strawberry plants, some vetiver that I get back from the company who's mixing some of my scents. Yes, some I do mix, some they do following my recipe and working with my specialities. They basically mix to the ones where I have to produce too large a volume and where I outgrew my capacities. One of the specialities is this vetiver that they are sending back to me for a little funnel project of mine. Ah, yes, and I am supposed to get some printed labels.

    FA fnel fits perfectly for this week, too; I was/am filling lots of bottles. Vetiver dance (vetiver again!), Orange Star, Lonestar, Incense extrême. Funnel fits also perfectly because of the funnel project. Back then, many years ago, when employed and having a boss I hated these. You know: You work in a development team, busy as a bee doing what needs to be done, project work, plans, design, you name it. And then one morning your boss walks in and comes with this sweet little idea of his that he already convinced his boss of. No chance to say no, really. And suddenly, the funnel project becomes bigger than the real project. And this although it never really passed a board and was tested for profitability or whether the resources are there. And it is always top of all priorities for your boss.

    I do not have a boss anymore. Or better said: I have thousands of bosses, my clients, and I am trying to serve them well, and I am trying to run my projects in an organized way. But sometimes, these funnel projects appear nevertheless. They are fun, totally distracting and often completely useless. But sometimes, they are the door opener to new lands, like Rose flash was. I will keep you updated on my funnel project.  But, as I realized that I only have one bottle of this special vetiver that is coming home these days, and when I realized that this one bottle might get lost and with it my capacity to produce more PHI-une rose de Kandahar, the Vanilla flash, and another scent or two (where this particular vetiver oil is an ingredient), I decided to stock up. You know: It is a special quality. Sort of "hard" to get. All natural of course, but distilled in a particular way and its quality is amazing. Seriously: I could dilute it, bottle it and it would be the perfect vetiver. It is soooo good. I did a google search for it and funny enough: I found my own blog posts, where I talk about it. Actually, it does not appear on the producer's website. But they still make it. A hidden gem ! Ha!

    Anyhow: The strawberries. They will go into my "hanging garden", where I hung some 8 aluminum cans last years, cut 12 liter cans, on a palisade trench. I prepared them last year and planted beans. They actually did very well. Starting now, I want to grow strawberries there, a strawberry breed that is actually dangling, and supposed to have berries from spring to autumn. We will see...What is nice about the hanging gardens: They are snail safe, sun exposed and look weirdly cool.

    And after this long post (sorry!) and if you are not tired of reading yet: Here's the link to 13 thoughts (of mine) published on Perfume Polytechnic.

    And heres a 5 minute feature on niche perfumes and how independent perfumers are making a big splash (yes!) (you can read it or listen to it) on Enjoy!


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