This mini is the eighties edition of the seventies formula, which was a remake of Caron’s 1913 original. (The 2018 version is a complete revamp into a pear and vanilla gourmand.)
A big gust of retro aldehydes out of the bottle, carrying a mess of flowers–jasmine, lily-of-the-valley, rose and tuberose–that settle down fairly quickly a few inches above the skin, anchored by sandalwood and amber.
It’s pleasant, and nice to find a vintage scent of that era that isn’t a tangle of oakmoss and civet, but not one to keep for nostalgia or reference.
In 1970, the top female pop song in France was Venus, by the Dutch band Shocking Blue–it was also re-released in the eighties by Bananarama.
(There was actually a “Venus Waltz” by the American Standard Orchestra recorded in 1913, on cylinder.)
Opens sharp and sweet, like peaches, then settles into soft green forest floor leaves with a cinnamon/curry melange–calycanthus is also called “spice-bush” and “sweet-shrub” in the US–and ends with ferns with cardamom spoor.
Interesting and unusual.
Released in 1970 as part of Bosari’s Library of Fragrance, but I don’t know if it was sold apart from the reference set.
It’s a spicy scent–reminds me of the curry-plants the herb guy at the farmer’s market sells.
Le Orme is a prog-rock band out of Italy, formed in 1966. They’re still around today.
Vintage rose solifleur from an antique reference set.
(Perfumeintelligence suggests this one was first formulated in Parma, Italy, in 1880.)
So how do you define what a rose smells like? This one does a pretty good job of it–
Opens with airy pastel buds, lemony with sugar in the tea, then ripens with earthy green leaves and bright fruity rosehip wine. The dry down is exactly that, dried petals–dusty, musky and spicy sweet with a hint of powdery cloves.
So top notes to bottom, a good illustration of rose that would hold its own against Perfume Workshop’s Tea Rose and Annick Goutal’s Rose Absolue–though it doesn’t quite have the luxe of Fort and Manle’s Harem Rose.
Everyone’s favorite pizza delivery tune, Funiculì, Funiculà, came out in Italy at the same time. I wouldn’t wish that on anyone, so here’s some Sting.
Starts out sugar sweet, the dust on marshmallows, then turns jasmine-like, with a touch of honey.
Finishes fruity-juicy, more gourmand than neroli’s greener woody-spice edge.
It’s the floral note easily found in the opening of Coco Mademoiselle, and tastes delicious in Italian Cream Cakes.
This one was bottled for a mini collection for tourists from the Borsari 1970 Museum in Parma, in the seventies–the caps are hideous plastic, but they’re effective–it’s quite well preserved for being so old.
Honey sweet erotic tune from Princess Nokia–
Vintage Wisteria solifleur, by Borsari 1870.
The middle of a Venn diagram of all the purples–where violet and concord grape and lilac overlap into a unique creamy/fruity/floral, with a hint of clove to spice it up.
A sharp leafy green at the bottom keeps it from going gourmand.
A nice reference–it’s the architecture of Nest’s Wisteria Blue, and the shaded garden of Azzaro 9.
This is a forgotten gem of a scent–
Opens with sharp green herbs and a squeeze of citrus, then immediately blooms with lilac and honey. Projection for miles, yet the flowers change closer and closer to the skin: lily of the valley, then rose, then violet.
Lasts forever, ending with the softest civet-y oakmoss and more honey.
A new favorite.
I’d never heard of it until I blind bid on a auction lot of vintage minis–then fell in love and did the research–it’s been around since 1913.
The tango was taking France by storm then, brought from Argentina. This is a modern one from the Parisian group Gotan Project.
This one opens with a ’70’s record scratch of thorny green rose then settles into a good long roll in the hay while listening to Joni Mitchell albums–but then the pepper leaves you itchy, and you’re vaguely aware that a cat has peed nearby.
To be fair, this is a nearly fifty-year-old bottle of perfume, and it may have soured a little.
(The same might be said for my nearly fifty-year-old nose.)
“See the blue pools in the squinting sun–“