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Artist's Notes: The Last Carousel

Posted by Black Baccara on

Carousel horse

a submerged carousel
hauled from the sea;
a flood of horses
in salted reins,
music welded to a tide,
this is how you will
be stalled from hell.

-Kalliope Amorphous 

I have such a complex relationship with each blend that I make and I think about and obsess over them probably more than anything I work on. Yet, for brevity’s sake I try to keep it short and sweet in the listing descriptions! Many people just want to know the notes and don’t necessarily want to hear diatribes from my Dr. Frankenstein mind about creation process, but with this new collection coming up I thought I would share a bit more about where the inspiration comes from for those who might be interested.

The Last Carousel will be part of my upcoming collection. Probably because I also work in visual art, my olfactory art inspiration almost always begins visually. One of my favorite visuals has always been of an abandoned carousel or of a carousel submerged in water. It has become a sort of personal emotional archetype for me, because it has showed up in my poetry many times as well —a harbinger of childhood, the passing of time, a certain feeling of innocence lost, and a yearning to return to a place and time that is no longer accessible. It’s bittersweet oneiric imagery to me and I’ve wanted to capture it in scent for a long time.


The Last Carousel is inspired by faded memories and phantom aromas that sometimes leave their impressions upon places long after crowds disperse. It’s a nostalgic atmospheric. To me, it’s beautiful and sad at the same time, and that sort of emotional duality is something that I always gravitate toward no matter what type of medium I’m working in. I find the most beauty at the places where seemingly disparate emotions intersect.

This one is a boozy gourmand built on amaretto, cognac, & tonka bean for a “old ghosts reveling” feel. It’s softened by dark vanilla and honey on the dry down. My dark vanilla note is deeper and more shadowy than other types of vanilla, but here the touch of honey elevates it another level up in lightness without going too confectionary. As it dries down, the dark vanilla and honey slightly cloaks the boozy notes, softening the “party” and freezing it just before its vanishing point. It sits on my skin like a liqueur soaked almond cake before settling to a soft vintagey honeyed vanilla.


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