Tag Archives: vintage perfume

Perfume gods smiling down on me

A while ago I wrote about whether my collection should contain classics, if only for reference purposes. And lamented the fact that I don’t own a vintage variant of Chanel 5.

Well, that is no longer true. πŸ˜€

Like the title says, it seems the perfume gods were really smiling down on me and put half a bottle of vintage Chanel 5 in front of me. I cannot describe my happiness upon coming across it (the story is a bit macabre so I’m not going to share it).

And it smells nothing like the modern variant! Oh, it smells amazing.

The luck didn’t stop there though.

The small collection of perfumes I came across also contained bottles of Balenciaga Michelle, Max Factor BlasΓ© and unopened bottle of Givenchy III that looks like it came from the 80s.

I have to say that the woman whose collection this was obviously had great taste in perfume.

Except for the happiness this brought me, I also came to a conclusion. The Balenciaga perfume house seems to be neglected in the perfume world (or at least by me) because everything I have tried so far was amazing. OK, it was only 3 perfumes that I recall, but randomly trying 3 perfumes from one house and being amazed how great they are is a good sign in my book.

So, I’ll be trying their perfumes some more. If you have any favorites from them, please share.

Ombre Rose by Jean-Charles Brosseau (vintage)

First off, a huge thank you to Olenska from Parfumieren who sent this. And here is where I have to say that packages arriving from perfume bloggers/enthusiasts are simply the best. You know what you are receiving but there is always something in there you are not expecting that makes it so much more fun.  πŸ™‚

Oh, where to start…
I loved this one from the start. I smelled the aldehydes and the rose in the opening and so much more than words can convey.
I love smelling vintage perfume becasue unfortunately, you really can’t smell that anymore today (well, you can but very rarely and it will probably then cost some serious money). Anyway, the thing is, vintage doesn’t always correspond to something you will like/love, but usually it does mean you will appreciate the trip.

I was completely prepared to love Ombre Rose. It smelled to me like the first cousin of Shalimar. Obviously not a sibling, but very close family. Somewhat more proper but with a twinkle in the eye that hinted at more interesting things. Not as powerfully present and strongly opinionated as Shalimar but still having the same beauty displayed in a different manner.

Oh, I was seduced by the rosewood making my association to Shalimar veer off in another direction and giving this spirit of its own. I was so happy to find another friend.

And then we got to know each other better.

Turned out that the twinkle in the eye was only learned from the more experienced cousin but there was nothing afterward to give it credence. The interesting cousin turned out to be a proper little miss smelling of shampoo flowers/rose and not the sexy minx from the introduction.
Unfortunately, we were not meant to associate for long.

Notes: aldehydes, peach, brazilian rosewood, geranium, sandalwood, orris root, vetiver, ylang-ylang, lily-of-the-valley, cedar, rose, honey, orris, tonka bean, cinnamon, musk, vanilla and heliotrope.

I do wonder though, how it was possible to turn one into the other, perfumer-wise. It must be a feat.

Pic by: http://www.jcbrosseau.com/index.php

Carol’s vintage gems II

Today I want to write about another two, one of which has left me baffled. I just started thinking how I’m starting to smell more and understand scents a bit better than before and then comes Aramis/Portos by Estee Lauder and I get lost in the drydown notes.
Notes by Carol: bergamot, rosemary, lavender, geranium, vetiver, pine, cedar, moss, fir, musk, patchouli, amber, tonka.
What I smelled was a fresh start (by that I usually mean, it gives my mind a slight fresh boost and that usually happens with citruses). It smelled to me warm, spicy, woody and old (as in vintage, not today’s stuff).  Then I started getting something dry and vegetable-like, possibly smelling of mushrooms. So I thought that might be msuk (I was so glad to read musk as one of the notes). My idea was that it smelled like an old wardrobe,  where flowers were kept to keep some freshness in it.  Which doesn’t sound as good as the scent smells. It reminded me of my grandfather and the way he used to smell, it gets slightly sweet and woody and possibly smoky. The smoke hint just hit me, because if it reminds me of my grandfather then it had to smell at least a bit smoky and that is why I was getting a slightly nauseous vibe from it. The cigarette smoke combined with something sweet smelling always makes me feel slightly nauseous.
I won’t be wearing my sample but I will be smelling it more because there are more notes to be learned from it and I know this one is the equivalent of a really difficult math equation.
The other sample I tried today was Extra Vieille by Roger et Gallet. That one was made right for me. πŸ™‚ It starts green, flowery and colognish. 
Turns out the notes are as follows: bergamot, lemon, tamgerine, orange, rosemary, carnation, neroli, petit grain, rose and clove.

To me it smelled like minty, flowery grass, you know, there was a herbal fresh aspect to it making me think  mint. It feels like you are walking through a fragrant meadow where there is some rosemary and lavender growing. But since this is really a cologne, it lasts correspondingly. Not that I mind. I could walk through that meadow every day. Breathing in that green, aromatic spiciness.

Pic by: http://ideachic.wordpress.com

Carol’s vintage gems I

I was lucky enough to score some decants and samples from the already famous Carol’s vintage find. So I decided to give them the attention they deserve. You should all take into account that my knowledge of vinateg stuff is seriously limited so I’m just learning my way here. And what a way that is! I wrote the other day how I finally understand all that love for vintage perfumes going around.
Today I’ll talk about two samples I received and I’ll cheat a bit and check what Carol already said about them because it is really hard deciphering notes without anything to go by.
I first tried Blue Carnation. The opening almost threw me off my feet. Boozy chocolate with some saffron and cinammon incorporated into a perfume structure. And I just adore cinammon. Unfortunately for all the other notes, after a while I couldn’t smell anything around saffron/cinammon. πŸ™‚ Not that that really bothered me. It’s not like it smells only of cinammon (although it’s quite unmistakeable) but that’s what I could smell most easily and I just couldn’t figure anything else. Now I’ll go see what Carol wrote.
I obviously have no idea what carnation smells like. πŸ˜€ I can smell something a bit flowery and slightly salty-tinged (is there some iris in this?) around my cinammon /saffron thingy – maybe that’s what carnation smells like?
On my second try I kept wondering where did I get that boozy chocolate from the beginning. But I’ll keep hoping it will appear again eventually.
Next off is Stepan. That was a bit more complex to figure out than Blue Carnation (not that I managed well). I thought I was smelling rose (lately, whenever I’m not sure at first what it is, I assume it’s rose). It smelled aromatic in a licorice-like way, sweet and sligthly nose-pinchy  but not as lavender can do it, more in the way of green, herbal aromatics (you know rosemary type although I don’t think it was that). But it could be an aromatic Mediterranean herb of some kind. It was everything – aromatically oriental and spicy. Like an aromatic rose but not a soft and feminine rose (this smells more masculine), it is easy to smell but slightly prickly. And there is this exuberant fruity feeling hidden somewhere inside. Here is Carol’s take.
I will wear this a bit more trying to get more out of it because I can tell there will be more as soon as my nose acclimatizes itself to vintage stuff. I get surprised each time I smell one of them.
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