Along with Trumper's Ajaccio Violet, this is the outstanding violet soliflore of the perfume world. Created by Francis Fabron and released in 1947, it was the first of Balenciaga's five classic women's scents (Quadrille, La Fuite de Heures, Prelude, Cialenga being the others).
The perfect violet floating on a cloud of soft, powdery orris is the overall impression of this classic scent. Interesting it was created the same year as another orris masterpiece, Fath's Iris Gris.
It shares nine notes with another Fabron classic, Piguet's Baghari, according to Barbara Herman.
This is a sweet, powdery and soft scent. The oil concentration as with all Balenciagas is stunning. The weakest of perfume concentrations, the eau de cologne, is with Le Dix completely present 24 hours after applying.
Top notes: Lemon, Bergamot, Peach, Coriander, Cilantro
Heart notes: Orris, Violet, Rose, Lilac, Ylang, Jasmine, Muguet
Base notes: Civet, Musk, Sandalwood, Vetiver, Benzoin (Vanilla), Amber, Tonka, Balsam, Ambergris
One of the all time greatest scents of the 20th century. Buy vintage only - it predominates on Ebay.
My Father gave me a bottle of Le Dix Perfume for my fifteenth birthday, from the MASTER Balenciaga. I fell totally in love with it and have worn it my entire life. I have no idea what MORON discontinued it, I have a hard time finding it.
A beautiful perfume: a lovely mix of Chanel No5 and powdery violets. There's not much more I can say about it, but this was a very elegant perfume: I can't believe that it has been discontinued.
I am wearing the original parfum today. A sample from the Perfumed Court. I have to say that on me, in 78 degrees, the base notes precede the top notes. Is this unusual in a vintage parfum? The civet and musk act as top notes; the violet does not appear until 10 minutes after applying. Help.
24th March, 2012 (last edited: 06th April, 2012)
(non-re-issue)In the 50's, Cristobal Balenciaga was considered to be the greatest Couturier who ever lived. Christian Dior himself called him "Father to us all." The tag line for "le dix," when it was launched, merely read: "His Creation." Many today have a difficult time imagining the grandeur of Balenciaga. Diana Vreeland wrote: "If you were at a party, and a woman walked in wearing Balenciaga, no other woman existed." As fascinating as his clothes, "His Creation," le dix, is equally compelling. Balenciaga was the first couturier in history to sublimate ugly women, whose allure he preferred to the merely beautiful, whom he considered common: His salons were regarded with the reverence of a church, and quite simply were not open to the public: One had to be presented, put up for admittance, as it were, and references were required. Once invited, if the severe, gatekeeping "directrice" didn't like the look of any new potential client, access was denied, and she was summarily dismissed. Balenciaga had a fondness for a slightly hunched back, and so he cut all the collars of his jackets several centimeters away from the neck in order to make the feminine silhouette appear as if it were bent: He instructed his models to hold their head forward, their hips out, and to never smile or make eye contact with anyone. Fittingly, "le dix" is a study in perplexed notions of beauty. Its opening is frankly bizarre. It was said at the time that it smelled like vomit, and indeed there is a strange bodily excretion aura to its flight that lingers long enough to be well examined. With le dix, we witness what very possibly could have been the world's first "Indie" scent. Naturally, by the mid 50's, there had been many fragrances that could be considered eccentric: Ernest Daltroff's entire range, for example, or Guerlain's Djedi. Patou's "Que sais-je?" Yet all of these were strange in a very specific manner, exhibiting a purposeful rejection of accepted social codes, where le dix explores the outter reaches of sensibility in a secretive, furtive way: One is never sure if the scent is perfectly lovely, or outright foul.
A cunning composition of violet stems, woods and musks, it has only Jean Kerleo's magnificent "1000" as a peer: It can be inferred that Monsieur Kerleo was a fan of le dix. It may also be inferred that Monsieur Balenciaga was a fan of "Je Reviens," as le dix shares a certain high pitched and lofty distance with this masterpiece of structure from the 1930's, but hasn't a hint of its comforting and very singular loveliness. Le dix can not be compared to any fragrance in a literal sense: It stands alone, and never allows itself to be read clearly. Much like everything else associated with Balenciaga himself, there is an austerity about it that approaches the Biblical: It speaks a language of Heaven and Hell simultaneously, and never teeters off to either side: walking the split straight down the middle of it the whole way down from flight to base. Comparisons others have made to Chanel No5 are lost on me, as I would equate these to comparing the scent of a street-walking two penny harlot to that of a sovereign. Cristobal Balenciaga and Gabrielle Chanel should theoretically not exist in the same discussion, though it is a fact that the two of them were close friends. In the realm of fashion and fragrance, Comparing his taste to hers would be like comparing chalk to cheese. Le dix is a grand perfume. It stands up to any guerlain, any caron, or any patou. What's interesting about it, is that it staunchly refuses comparisons, loudly declaring itself "hors concours." Just as did Monsieur Cristobal Balenciaga himself, it is in a league of its own, isolated, away from the crowd, and silently observes, never smiling, never making eye contact. An intellectual composition perfectly suited to any woman or any man who considers that no perfume on earth could possibly express their personality, requiring one that merely poses questions, without ever hinting at answers. Balenciaga never gave an interview to the press, and fashion journalists were unwelcome in his salons. Following the violent student uprisings in France during the Sping and Summer of 1968, Cristobal Balenciaga shuttered his house, with only this explanation: "The world is no longer a place for my creation."
04th September, 2011 (last edited: 27th September, 2011)