Ile d’Amour

Ile d'AmourSweet water with vague apricot and flowers.

Lily-of-the-valley blooms a half hour in, about a handspan off the skin, while the wet fruit stays close. Lasts the morning on skin and forever on clothes–even after laundry day, cotton still holds the watery musk.

It’s too refined for me. I want to dirty it up with salt or civet or something–my Love Island is messier than this.


The band Isle of Love is out of Warsaw, Poland.  I have no idea what they’re singing about, but it’s a pretty tune.

Belle de Nuit

belle de nuitMidnight Fantasy and Tea Rose meet for a tryst in a hedge maze, saying, “J’adore!” while Lou Lou watches with Envy.

Plums are tasted, roses are plucked.
Night flowers bloom, then fade after a few hours, leaving a long trail of powdery musk behind.
No one speaks of it in the daytime.

It’s gorgeous and delicate, yet a bit naughty.


2001 also saw the release of one of my very favorite French movies.

Capucine

capucineCapucine means nasturtium in French–I grew them in my little garden when I was a girl–and there’s a hit of that weird woody spice note at the opening.
Mostly though, I get fancy tea-shop–jasmine oolong and marzipan cakes–and dusty bakery musk in the air, with fresh roses on the cafe tables.

The dry-down lasts close to the skin all afternoon, a gorgeous elusive vanilla, with an Alice-in-Wonderland vibe–ruffles and cookies and riddles.


This sweet little song was a huge chart topper in France the same year.

Fragonard

fragonard edgesOpens with a faceful of  white flowers, and I’m suddenly claustrophobic–have I been trapped in a hot elevator with this, when I was a child?
(When did this come out, anyway?)

Slowly drifts into soapy milk suds for a while, then settles down with jasmine and woodsy amber a foot off the skin–and stays there all day long.

Complicated–there’s a trace bit of musk that cuts through the sweetness and ages it up. This would be a great Boss-Lady-shows-her-soft-side perfume, in an up-do and day-to-evening shoes.


Fragonard opened in 1926. That same year Carl Nielson’s flute concerto opened in Paris to huge success.