One of my favourite perfume shops used to be The Morbid The Merrier. It shut down in early 2012 after the owner went through some major personal issues, and then a once beloved company was mired in the usual indie drama with payments and orders not happening for quite some time. I'm not going to go through the whole saga - you can find it easily enough if you Google - but my understanding is that everyone was eventually repaid, though it took almost a year to happen.
A few months ago the owner Lysa opened Sugar and Spite Bathery, and she's been keeping pretty low key, because I had not heard a single thing about it on the grapevine. I didn't know of its existence until Liber Vix posted a first impressions haul. After finding out Lysa was back I was pretty much falling over myself to get to the shop and make an order. I am sure people might be hesitant because of the way the last store imploded, but I'm willing to give her the benefit of the doubt. She seems to have made amends with everyone eventually - either by delivering their order or a refund - and while she was operating I never had a single problem. Her products and customer service were always excellent. However, I would say people need to make up their own minds when it comes to this kind of thing.
One of the things that really stood out with The Morbid The Merrier was the packaging and presentation, and Sugar and Spite carries on that lovely tradition. Of course, I took a bunch of pictures before I opened anything, and of course, I cannot find them ANYWHERE. All I have is a grainy Instagram photo.
International pricing for shipping is not listed on the Etsy site, though the notes say that international shipping is available and to contact for a quote. That always sets off my alarm bells because I feel like it's going to be some whopping amount if they're not willing to state it up front. However, in this case I think it's just a matter of her not getting around to listing them individually, as the quote for me for 1 full bottle and a sample set of 3 was $11US, pretty standard these days for shipping to Australia (annoyingly - stupid postal charge rise).
My package took less than three weeks from the time I ordered to the time it arrived, again pretty standard for US to Australia. And once I had it in my hot little mitts I could not wait to tear it open and get into it.
The Halloween Sampler is 3 perfumes, and I received a free sample of Horseman, which I already have from the TMTM days. You can read my impressions when I first bought it here. After 3 years it has aged well and still smells amazing. I haven't tried the sample at all but I'm going to do a comparison in the next week or so to see if they differ from ageing, because Lysa said the blend is the same.
Fiend - Ripe apple pulp, tart mandarin, vanilla bean, and a fiendish ribbon of black amber.
A lot of perfumes that involve citrus tend to go straight to toilet cleaner on me, and this one teetered on the edge without ever quite getting there. Regular readers will know I am not a fan of fruit scents, and I particularly dislike the smell of apple. Although, this is definitely a fruit scent, it's masculine and quite dark. To my own surprise I liked it, but it's not my thing and probably my least favourite of the three samples. Lasting power was good with this one - I could still smell it at the end of the day on my wrist.
Goblin - Blackened honey kissed by night blooming flowers and a ghostly whisper of smoky vanilla.
Love this one. A gorgeous smokey honeyed floral. Not too sweet, could be worn by men or women. The smokiness of the vanilla deepens it beautifully. This didn't last too long on me - only a couple of hours - but it's worth it. Definitely a full bottle.
Sinister - Black licorice whips, tea leaves, and incense smoke from darkened caravans.
My favourite of the 3 samples. I do love me a licorice scent. I can smell the tea and the smoke, and the incense sweetens it just a tiny bit but not too much. This is a night time scent - dark and very potent. It lasted forever on me - I put it on in the morning and I could still smell traces of it on my wrist the following morning before I showered. Licorice is a polarising scent note - people tend to either love it or hate it. If you love it, try this. If you hate it, avoid - this will not convert you.
Katrina - A trio of white flowers, smoky almond, and spiced pumpkin.
I had ummed and ahhed about this one in its first incarnation in 2010. Although I thought it was lovely, I decided against buying a full bottle because I had a million white floral perfumes and this one didn't seem unique enough to warrant more of it. I always vaguely regretted it though, because I did love it. When I saw it was back I snapped it up quick smart, and I'm glad I did. For a white floral it's quite low key - it doesn't scream its entrance to a room. It's soft and pretty and super feminine. I don't really get the pumpkin or spices at all, which is fine with me because I'm not a fan of pumpkin scents.
Overall, I'm thrilled Lysa is back, and she mentioned on Facebook possibly bringing back some of her other TMTM scents so I'm quietly excited about that prospect as well. In the mean time, I'm going back for a couple of full bottles before the Halloweens come down in early November.
Ordering if you're not in the US
Send an Etsy convo to Lysa stating what you want to buy and she will give you a shipping quote. If you're happy with that she will create a custom listing for you. She doesn't go online on Sundays, so if you contact then it may be a day or so before you get a response.
If you want to read some more detailed information about the shop's products, Liber Vix went back for seconds.