Today on Forget me Not we take a look at three forgotten vintage extraits by this house:
· Le Dix: Named after the address of Balenciaga’s Parisian showroom, Le Dix (No. 10) is a magnificent ambery floral. The top notes are unfortunately destroyed as often happens with vintage fragrances that feature citrus fruits, but the unpleasantness lasts no more than a few minutes. Soon Le Dix starts flying off the skin in song, glowing and beautiful. Musky lilac and caramelized violets are caressed by iris. The scent is gently sweet, with hints of restrained bitterness. The drydown is a glowing ember in the fluid darkness of balsamic resins and amber, hugged by beautiful sandalwood and sweet animalic musk. I wouldn’t hesitate to call the modern edt utterly destroyed, if the vintage extrait is anything to go by. It is light and ethereal, yes, but it lacks body and substance. Powdery and soft, it does not do much to move the heart and intrigue the senses. If I am being honest, I will say that yes, there are days that I feel like reaching for its light caress, but it simply cannot compare to the richness and darkness of the original. Surprisingly perhaps, the currently available edt smells old, dated and dusty while the vintage still shines and captivates with a beauty that is simply timeless.
· La Fuite des Heures: Another round of painfully destroyed top notes. Five minutes later and I simply cannot believe that the beauty presented to my nose has emerged through the nauseating devastation that was there moments ago. The experience starts with the sweet, milky greenness of freshly cut grass and continues to warmly bloom into a dizzyingly heady jasmine with sour, herbal notes of thyme. I find myself swoon as the heavy sweetness of jasmine overtakes me, making my head spin: I go from fantasizing over a 50’s cocktail party in the heart of summer to looking for a fainting couch that will cushion my fall. And then, suddenly, beauty again. The refuge of oakmoss covered bark amidst the thinning shower of flower petals. Deep green moss, creamy soap and the golden aura of sun-dried hay, making me dream once again of dresses that leave the shoulders bare. A gorgeous chypre.
· Quadrille: Quadrille is the only one of the three that appears to not have its top notes degraded over time; It is beautiful from start to finish. It is also the one that seems to veer off into more traditionally masculine territories. An incredibly warming fragrance, it reminds me of viscous red mulled wine. Intensely spicy, herbal and deep, Quadrille successfully combines elements that seem at once modern and vintage. In fact, I could very well see Quadrille being a successful masculine fragrance in the niche market today. It is a perfume deeply attractive to me, due to its generous use of clove, which I adore. Drenched in thick plummy juices, the spiciness becomes mellow and dark, awakening a persistent urge to press my nose against my skin so that I can explore its rich, violet-colored nuances further and further. Comforting and sensual at once, the astoundingly beautiful Quadrille makes me think of calmness and maturity of spirit. It would be very hard for me to decide on a favorite between the three Balenciaga perfumes presented here today as I find them all wonderful: Le Dix seduces me with its true animalic, ambery drydown, La Fuite des Heures intrigues me with its demanding old-chypre character, but in the end, if I am honest, it is Quadrille which truly wins my heart with its darkness, so abundantly decorated with incandescent rubies and amethyst.
Leaving a comment on this post means you will be automatically placed in a random draw for a sample of vintage Le Dix extrait and a sample of modern Le Dix edt. The winner will be announced on Monday afternoon and all entries until Monday morning will be valid.
Images: www.wikipedia.org & Author's Own