Late last year I finally got around to reviewing some Sarawen perfumes I'd bought and then pretty much forgotten about months earlier, and since then I've been wanting more. I recently got around to doing another order - annoyingly I'd left it so long that several of the ones on my wishlist are no longer available - and decided to make the shipping worthwhile and pick up quite a few at the same time. I'm not going to talk about all of them here as I haven't tested them yet, but I'll give you the basic rundown of what I bought (I'm assuming these prices are in Canadian dollars as this store is Canadian).
First of all, packaging and presentation is gorgeous - the samples are 1.5ml and come in little screw top bottles (much easier to deal with than vials with wand caps). The labels have been designed to fit in with the rest of the shop's theme and look just as lovely as the regular sized bottles.
Shipping for me for a total of 14 sample bottles was $10.40CAD, which is very reasonable considering the recent US price hike has all of us internationals shelling out $12US and up on the bare minimum of purchases these days (boourns!). My only concern is that although they were packed in a bubble mailer, the bottles themselves were not wrapped in bubble wrap, just (albeit very pretty) tissue paper. Given the general carelessness of Australia Post workers, it's just blind luck nothing was broken. Sara did put a sticker on it saying that the contents were glass and therefore fragile, however I've had several PO employees cheerfully tell me that they have no 'fragile' service here and those stickers mean nothing to them. I think I'd rather pay a bit more in shipping and know that my little glass bottles are safe - or at least more safe.
So on to what I bought! The descriptions are the seller's own.
Sherlock Holmes sampler - $15
Logical Deduction - Sophisticated notes of bay rum, Earl Grey tea, and tobacco, with a hint of leather and dark chocolate. This is a unisex fragrance inspired by Sherlock Holmes, and is reminiscent of a gentleman's Victorian parlour.
Logical Delusion - A dangerous and cunning blend of poisoned tea, tobacco, and gunpowder, with a hint of nag champa and absinthe. Beware, Holmes! This is a unisex fragrance that borders towards masculine and is inspired by the character of Moriarty from the world of Sherlock Holmes - it is the perfect foil to my Holmes' fragrance, 'Logical Deduction'!
Scandal in London - She's seductive, secretive, and little dangerous! Feminine lilac and ylang ylang flowers blends with feisty dragonsblood with a light hint of eastern sandalwood. A touch of Holmes' favourite tobacco tops off this sultry floriental perfume.This perfume is inspired by the character of Irene Aldler from the world of Sherlock Holmes.
Tea With Watson - Take a break from adventuring and stop at 221 Baker Street for awhile. White tea, delicious yellow cake, and a dash of cream caramel layered over light tobacco and bay rum. It smells just like a tea party at Holmes and Watson's flat! This is a balanced unisex fragrance inspired by the world of Sherlock Holmes.
The Hunger Games sampler - $11.50
Girl on Fire - Wild strawberries gathered from the forest blend with the comforting scent of leather hunting boots, and in her hair a very faint hint of sweet forest herbals. A pretty scent, but not to be taken lightly - rebellion lurks beneath the feminine fruit notes!
Run Away With Me - The masculine scent of leather melded with gunpowder and soot from District 12's coal mines. A whisper of wild strawberries and amber completes this unisex fragrance inspired by the character of Gale from the Hunger Games.
The Baker's Boy - Spend a day frosting and decorating cakes with Peeta. A luscious, gourmand fragrance bursting with ripe strawberries (from Katniss of course!) and delicious yellow cake. Underneath the delicious-ness drifts soft vetiver, leather, and golden amber. This perfume is a unisex blend that borders towards feminine.
I also bought a set of 3 custom samples for $11.50:
Lion's Roar (Game of Thrones) - Let them Hear You Roar. Sexy leather blends with luscious neroli blossoms and earthy patchouli to create this unisex fragrance that embodies the Lannister family's conquering and ferocious nature. Top notes of frankincense, vanilla, and precious woods completes this rich fragrance! Primary notes: neroli, leather, frankincense, rosewood, vanilla.
Beer'n'Butter (Harry Potter) - A delicious and foamy elixir! Creamy butterscotch, dreamy vanilla, and a dash of pumpkin layered with a drop of coffee as you sit relaxing by the pub's roaring fire.
Lady Nightingale (Dragon Age) -Fragrant white flowers of ginger blossom, jasmine, and gardenia over a sensuous base of light musk. Topped off with a single note of sweet vanilla. Delicate and innocent, yet charmingly sexy.This scent is an ultra-feminine floral musk inspired by the character of Lelianna from the Dragon Age game.
Note: I've reviewed this perfume for my other blog here.
Ambrosia Chocolat (free sample) - "If you are not feeling well, if you have not slept, chocolate will revive you. But you have no chocolate! I think of that again and again! My dear, how will you ever manage?" - Marquise de Sévigné... Chocolate: delicious, sensuous, and an absolute necessity! This scent will satisfy your chocolate craving as it drizzles with honey, dark chocolate, and hints of vanilla cream. A scrumptious blend of tasty treats with a light touch of patchouli to round out the sweetness. A gourmand perfume that will have you constantly sniffing your own wrists! Main notes: chocolate, amber, honey, vanilla.
And of course, because this is going to be the big theme among indie cosmetic artists this year, I had to get the sampler of The Great Gatsby ($11.50). I haven't seen the movie and I'm not entirely sure I'm all that interested. I'm iffy on Baz Lurhmann - sometimes his movies are a glorious mess (Moulin Rouge), and sometimes they're just a mess (Australia). The Great Gatsby looks... ehhhhhh. I do love the book though, after reading it for school and then many times since, so I'm all for buying into the current craze. And of course, I'm all for anything inspired by the 1920s - when are they going to bring back The House of Eliott, I ask!
Jaded Ambition - He lights his expensive cigar, watching the party descend until dawn. The enigmatic Mr. Gatsby seems to have many secrets. Sidling up beside him, he gives you a friendly grin and you catch the aroma of his sweet cigar, exotic woods, citrus, and little hint of Daisy's orchid perfume. For only one woman can truly hold his heart. Main notes: tobacco, citrus accord, oud, coffee, orchid, benzoin. This scent is inspired by the character of Jay Gatsy from F. Scott Fitzgerald's American masterpiece, and is unisex bordering to masculine fragrance.
Manly men doing manly things. The tobacco and oud amp on me and it's almost headachy. The coffee is in the background but it's so subtle I couldn't place what it was. Not for me, but I think those who like very masculine scents would enjoy this.
Jaded Decadence - She's the ultimate party girl. She is youth, beauty, and decadence personified. Her athletic figure dances to the latest rage - jazz music. And soon you note the scent of violets, rose, and a hint of cream vanilla and sweet red wine. She flashes a smile and the young men sigh. Main notes: violets, vanilla, rose, chypre, citrus accord, merlot wine. This scent is inspired by the character of Jordan Baker from F. Scott Fitzgerald's American masterpiece, and is a floriental -style scent for modern flappers!
The wine adds an interesting seedy element to this- it's quite clever. This is a fairly strong floral, dominated by the violet. Definitely more of a night time perfume than an office one.
Jaded Innocence - Distant yet so close. Cold, but still yearning for a past love. Her soft eyes twinkle, and the scent of orchids, cream, honey, and violets fill the sense. She speaks, and the warm timbre of her voice can still make Gatsby weaken at the knees. Main notes: orchid, champagne, honey, citrus accord, chypre. This scent is inspired by the character of Daisy Buchanan from F. Scott Fitzgerald's American masterpiece, and is a soft floriental scent for modern flappers!
Again, the boozy note brings this perfume out of the realm of your bog standard sweet florals. And again, it's quite strong, though the honey softens it up after 30 minutes or so. I liked this one the best of the three.
Sarawen has two shops - Big Cartel and Etsy. I bought this order from Etsy, really only because I prefer it for ease when I can use it. My last order was through the Big Cartel site, and there's really no difference except that one may sometimes have stock the other doesn't.
In summary, Sarawen is a gorgeous little perfume shop, and I highly recommend trying it out.