T.S. Eliot might have written that "April is the cruelest month", but if he'd lived where I do he'd have sacrificed the artful rhythm of his line to write "February" instead. By now, I've had my fill of cold, rainy days. Mean old February seems cannily aware of how I feel and lures me into a false hope of spring by easing a few daphne buds into bloom and the odd robin and scrub jay into the yard. Still, the lilacs are weeks from blooming. It isn't really winter any more, but it certainly isn't spring. What kind of perfume suits the "in between" season?
For me, the in between season is a great opportunity to try something new or to revisit scents I haven't worn for a long time. I'm ready to put away Caron Tabac Blond and Guerlain Mitsouko for a day or two, but I'm not quite ready for the spring-like smell of Annick Goutal Des Lys or Ormonde Jayne Champaca. Now is when I reach for L'Artisan Parfumeur Piment Brûlant and remember its bell pepper kick, for instance. Or I might dig toward the back of the perfume cabinet for Jean Patou Adieu Sagesse or Mauboussin Histoire d'Eau, both of which I adore but seem to forget about when I'm thinking strictly seasonally.
The in between season is also when I base my perfume choices less on the weather and more on the events of the day. Tonight, for instance, is a lunar eclipse. Forget that it might freeze later, I'm wearing Guerlain L'Heure Bleue parfum. Last night I started reading a mystery novel set in the Marais in Paris. Paco Rabanne La Nuit seemed right for the imagined winter-chilled smell of narrow, urine- and exhaust-scented streets shot through with Chanel No. 5 and the rush of warm air from opened cafe doors.
Finally, I depend on the year-round classics in the in between season. Never-fail Dior Miss Dior, Guerlain Vol de Nuit, and Yves Saint Laurent Y see plenty of action when I can't put my finger on the kind of perfume an in-between-season day demands. If the fragrance doesn't last long on my skin, so much the better. It might have been sunny this morning, but by the afternoon it will almost surely be raining again and I'll want to reach for a few drops of Chopard Casmir parfum to warm me up.
What perfume do you wear when you're not sure what is right for the day, when neither the weather nor your mood drives you toward a certain scent? How do you choose?
Note: image of crocuses in the snow via The Scottish Rock Garden Club.