Tuesday, June 7, 2016
WHITE SHOULDERS MIASMA
In my recent article YOUTH DEW I also mentioned White Shoulders perfume.
When I was a girl, I thought that only OLD LADIES wore White Shoulders perfume. Whenever there was a gathering where there were a number of mothers, the aroma of that perfume was so prevalent, I called it the WHITE SHOULDERS MIASMA!
Most people who know me know about my obsession with perfume. My life work should have been as a a perfumer (or as the French say, a Nez, which means "nose" in French).
Making perfume was my junior high school science project. My mother and I continued to make scents after that, but none of which we wore. We used the scents for potpourris, sachets, and rose water for recipes. Jean Ann Miller won the science project with her knowledge, drawings, and sculptures of horses.
I remember the first time I smelled the men's cologne Canoe, I said, "That smells like bergamot!" I still have a bergamot plant and I fondly recall using the petals to make potpourri with my mother.
When I smell someone's perfume I usually do not forget it. Perfume is my favorite gift to give. I wore the same scent, L'Interdit for 30 years, until it was discontinued (see BLOG "L'Interdit" from July 7, 2011). My dream/fantasy is to own the formula, go to the House of Caron, and have it blended just for me. After L'Interdit, I tried all the other Givenchy perfumes, all the Caron perfumes, all the Dior perfumes, all of the Yves St. Laurent perfumes, and ones by Hermes, Gucci, and others. I even tried "old" perfumes such as Arpege, Chantilly, and Bal A Versailles, but Gerald liked only L'Interdit on me. When L'Interdit was "re-introduced", I could finally be ME again!
With each new fragrance I tried, the little-used bottles ended up on my mother's dresser, as everything smelled good on her. She wanted the new ones because she didn't like the OLD LADY PERFUMES.
When I was growing up, my mother's favorite perfume was Nuit de Noel, (see BLOG "NUIT DE NOEL" from July 5, 2011), but she wore less expensive ones like Wind Song ( I still remember the song with the Wind Song ad: "Wind Song stays on my mind"). My best friend's mother wore L'air du Temps which I thought was very elegant. She also had Arpege, My Sin, and Chantilly on her dresser. I remember the ads always had My Sin by Lanvin. The mother of my sister-in-law Sheila wore Shalimar.
My friend Cammy and I would sniff and apply all the perfumes at the Lazarus perfume counter and take home the scent cards. I couldn't buy the expensive L'Interdit at that time but I said, haughtily, "It smells better than Joy!" Joy by Jean Patou was advertised as "the most expensive perfume in the world". Cammy wore Tabu and as my sister-in-law Betty sold Avon, I wore Cotillion. Other girls at school wore L'Aimant and other Coty and Avon scents.
Below are introduction dates of OLD LADY PERFUMES:
1921 Chanel No. 5
1922 Nuit de Noel
1945 White Shoulders
1947 Miss Dior
1948 L'Air du Temps
1952 Wind Song
1953 Youth Dew
I started the list with the best and ended with the best!