I am a great fan of artisan perfumers like Strange Invisible, The People of the Labyrinths, L'Artisan Parfumeur, and Escentric Molecules.
Especially Strange Invisible. Their scents are like memories in a bottle. You will feel like you are opening an old leather suitcase in the attic, and finding a forgotten bouquet of dried flowers inside. Or like you are in a distant harbor in a magical land where a faint smell of kelp is overpowered by an arriving cargo of precious spices. Best of all: on their website, you can order samples of the perfumes, and they are only five dollars each. They're highly concentrated, so a sample size lasts quite a while.
If I were to start my own artisan perfume line, Eau de West Oakland would smell like that tangy top note of hot asphalt molting on a summer day, of dried grass, of sweet roses growing in big bushes, of the neck sweat of someone currently experiencing pride, of something shiny, of a toasted diesel base, of dog smell, barbeque smoke, and sexily sideways smiles.