Author: Violet Fenn

Blue Bottle Guernsey Gin

It may not be scientific, but I regularly judge gin by its bottle – if I know I’ll want to keep it after I’ve drunk the contents, then we’re already off to a good start. And this Blue Bottle gin from Guernsey is just glorious. Whodathunk a bluebottle fly could be so HANDSOME?? The illustration – and, indeed, the name of the gin itself – was inspired by studies into bluebottles that the company’s head distiller made during research study many years ago. The bottle itself is cuboid (I do love a squared-off bottle), decently heavy and a beautiful shade of blue. I really don’t like the colour blue – to an almost irrational extent, it just screams BORING at me, for some reason – but blue glass is something different altogether.  Plus I like seeing the beauty in things that others find ugly – and flies are a wonderful example of that. Flies are CLEVER and they have amazing eyeballs. Fact. Annnnyway, back to the mother’s ruin. From their website: Blue Bottle is the epitome of boutique distilled gin. Each batch is meticulously crafted in our copper still at the Three Fingers Distillery on Guernsey. Our gin has a unique combination of botanicals scrupulously selected to create a delectable treat. Traditional juniper is here but doesn’t dominate. Astute drinkers will appreciate the tropical scent of local gorse flowers, be...

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Putting a new spin on an ancient design

This is a sponsored post. However I only ever write and/or publish sponsored pieces if they fit into the usual SDRR remit – no jarring adverts for vitamin pills or pyramid schemes here!  I couldn’t help but be fascinated by the idea behind the Dodil when its designers first got in touch with me. I’m used to sex toy manufacturers throwing all the bells and whistles at their products and hoping some of them stick, so the idea that someone had simply reinvented the plain old dildo seemed almost ridiculous. What can you do with a design that is...

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Review: Lovehoney Deluxe Wand

*** I do love wands. By which I mean that I really, really love them. They are basically made to do one thing, and that thing is to bring the user to squealing paroxysms of delight. The best of them do this very well, but there are so many of them around right now that a product has to be pretty damn special to make yer average sex toy reviewer sit up and take notice. Once you’ve seen one sexy excitement stick you’ve pretty much seen them all. So does the Deluxe Wand from Lovehoney stand up to close scrutiny? Let...

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Review: the Mysteryvibe Crescendo

I have been waiting to review the Crescendo for years. Literally years. I first met the designers at Eroticon three or four years back and kept in touch throughout the process of bringing it to the market. I held its cleverly motorised ‘vertebrae’ in my hand before I’d even seen the fully finished item. The whole thing seemed new and interesting and potentially brilliant. So having a fully realised Crescendo actually under my roof was super exciting. Everything was going to be perfect, right? Erm. Let’s start with the good points. It was developed by very clever and genuinely lovely...

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Memento mori – man in white, 1885

*** I found this memento mori photo on eBay (whilst actually looking for shoes, the algorithms clearly knowing what I like) and it’s still for sale at the current time.  This poor chap was only 34 when he died in Paris in 1885. The seller has helpfully included a photo of the back of the print, which tells us that the deceased was one Alfred Jules Montel – I’ve had a quick google but can’t find any further details, not helped by the fact that there were clearly a lot of Montels in the area around that time. It’s...

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If you have read The State of Grace and enjoyed it, I'm almost at 100 Amazon reviews and it would be SO lovely to get there.