Chantilly

As is the case so often with fragrances of the past that are still produced today Chantilly (Houbigant 1941) is an entirely different experience in its vintage formulation.  The vintage is almost reminiscent of Miss Dior in   its citrusy, gorgeous, peppery floral beauty.  Chantilly is sexy and lively but certainly not over the top……

SpellBound

The opening of SpellBound (Estée Lauder 1991) is bright followed by sugary fruit and an unbelievably delectable spiciness, with hauntingly beautiful floral notes following the initial shout of cardamom.  On Frangrantica the note of narcissus isn’t listed as a dominant one, but on my skin it’s quite strong.  Carnation is also a strong note in…

Mystery

Since our samples are all almost entirely packed or put away somewhere I thought I’d write about this mystery bottle of perfume.  It’s warm, spicy and sweet.  I’m guessing at notes of coumarin, cinnamon, benzoin, amber and cloves for certain – possibly neroli.  It’s a very vintage balsamic fragrance, whatever it is.  There’s a beautiful,…

Jungle Gardenia

Bold, sharp, and very loud, Jungle Gardenia by Tuvaché rivals any 80’s powerhouse floral even though it arrived 50 years before (Tuvaché 1933).  It’s sugary, powdery and honestly, the gardenia smells a bit fake.  This is not a fragrance for casual use and certainly not for anyone seeking a light, fresh floral scent.  It is,…

Cristobal Balenciaga

Cristobal Balenciaga’s namesake fragrance (Cristobal Balenciaga 1988) is rich, warm and sultry.  Soft, but bold florals (peony in particular) are surrounded by an elegant patchouli, sandalwood and a poignant vanilla.  Cristobal Balenciaga is lovely in an unusual, sweet, but not too sweet sort of way.  It’s an engrossing fragrance – mysterious and yet friendly. Top…

Crêpe de Chine

Crêpe de Chine (F. Millot 1925) was made with rare Grasse jasmine and would be much too expensive to make today.   It’s vintage florals, delicate and lovely set in a warm, raucous background.  Dominant notes in the drydown are perhaps patchouli and leather.  Crêpe de Chine is a balance between wild charm and sweet restraint. Top…

Floral Fantasies

Designed as a hot weather cologne, Floral Fantasies (Dorothy Gray 1940) but the rich, warm spiciness seems very suitable for fall as well.  Yes Floral Fantasies is indeed a floral fragrance but it’s also very sweet and again, spicy.  While I can’t find any list of notes online anywhere, I’m absolutely positive there are notes…

Tuvara

Balsamic, spicy and a tiny bit green (to my nose), Tuvara (Tuvaché 1948) is a warm, exotic vintage beauty.   The incense, patchouli, aldehydes and chamomile seem strongest at first.  Eventually, sandalwood, myrrh, vetiver, musk and oakmoss reign supreme. Tuvara reminds me of the other fragrance by Tuvaché I own, Sumatra.  While Sumatra is a bit…

Tiara Bouquet

Tiara by Lenthéric (Lenthéric 1913) starts with a fresh, moving green floral burst and then proceeds to warm into a powdery, floral charm.   It smells a little soapy too.   Tiara is a vintage scent, but it’s not heavy or terribly unaccessible…   The crispness of this fragrance is particularly pleasant, especially in warmer weather….

Anais Anais

Very green, elegant and luxurious Anais Anais by Cacheral (Cacheral 1978) is iconic.  It has the 1970’s written all over it, but it transcends time. Galbanum, orange blossom, and lily are the notes strongest on my skin at first.  It’s fresh, never heavy and pretty.  Into the drydown the sandalwood, and cedar emerge as strong…