Memento Vivere: Editor’s Letter, October 2014

At the end of August, my friend Jen Thomas convinced me to join her at a custom scent–making shop in Thousand Oaks, Calif., to spend what I then considered an obscene amount of money ($200) on a relatively small amount of perfume.I’ve been on the hunt for a signature scent for as long as I can remember, but the graveyard of spent perfume bottles cluttering my bathroom shelf made me wonder if there was such a thing. I was skeptical when we arrived at the Blending Bar. But as founder Sarah Horowitz and her protégé, Debra Piver, seduced our olfactory nerves with tantalizing scents—pikake, blood orange, sweet lime—stored in a rainbow of apothecary bottles, I found it hard to suppress my giddiness. Jen and I each narrowed down our favorite smells until we had a combination of base notes, bouquets, and top notes that pleased us on a visceral level.Afterward, I could barely stop inhal

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