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  1. #1

    Default How Does Your Family Influence Your Fragrances?

    Do you think we choose certain fragrances because they carry memories - or avoid fragrances because they "belong" to people in our lives?

    As I've been trying more fragrances, I've noticed that I tend to shy away from light florals and spicy orientals. I didn't understand why until I began to follow the chain of association triggered by the scents. I remembered that my grandmother, who was a beauty queen and a chorus dancer in the 1940s, loved those spicy, musky, civety fragrances, which worked wonderfully with her dramatic personality, but I just can't wear them - they instantly make me think "old". And my mother, who wore Chanel No. 5 for most of my childhood, also loves light floral scents like lilac and lavender - which, again, works, because she's a much lighter, more delicate, more relaxed person. But, to me, those things smell like playing it safe - sort of like the fragrance equivalent of "comfort food."

    Then again, there are certain notes (orange, caramel, violets, sandalwood, vanilla) that show up again and again in all of the fragrances I respond to. They usually pop up in odd or edgy combinations, but I can trace the notes themselves back to the sandalwood in Opium, the vanilla in Shalimar, the neroli in Chanel No. 5. In an odd way, I find that touching - it reminds me of the way that certain qualities are always passed down from mother to daughter, even though each generation may manifest them differently.

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    Shycat's Avatar
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    Default Re: How Does Your Family Influence Your Fragrances?

    It's a wonderful bond. My family didn't wear perfumes per se--too poor! My grandmother grew roses, though. She grew them like mad! There were always roses in her house, not an arrangement or bouquet, but willy nilly together. My sister lived in her house in later years, and grew over five hundred as president of the local rose society.
    My mom is Rosemary, and I am Patty Rose. My sister's daughter is Emily Rose.

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    Default Re: How Does Your Family Influence Your Fragrances?

    My mother never wore perfume and disliked most fragrances, she was very sensitive and allergic to everything under the sun, but when she got L'Air du Temps for Christmas she wore that (I can't stand L'AdT, it makes me sneeze violently). When I later asked her if there were any fragrances she liked apart from it, she said Chanel no 5 which I gave her as a present. She still has that bottle (I gave it to her 20 years ago...)

    My aunt (who lived with us until I was nine) wore perfume but I hate all the fragrances she ever wore: Chanel no 19, Chamade, Nahema, Ysatis. To my nose they all smell mean (which she was and still is).

    My grandmother didn't wear perfume but she used Rosewater & Glycerine hand cream.

    I haven't the foggiest where I got my taste for perfume! Not from my mother's side, that's for sure.
    "Wovon man nicht lesen kann, darüber muss man schreiben."

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    Gumoosh's Avatar
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    Talking Re: How Does Your Family Influence Your Fragrances?

    I used to wear Opium and loved it - but always assumed it was a real sexy, femme fatale fragrance that oozed 'come hither' looks and throaty whispers.
    Then, lo and behold, I catch a whiff on my Nan (in law) who is 75 and been a widow for 20 years. It suits her like nothing else! I was astonished! Nanna Ruby oozing 'come hither' looks and throaty whispers? I couldn't be sure if the universe had somehow played a trick on me. But I was pleased (and secretly relieved) when she asked to borrow some of my bodice ripping erotic romance novels. The universe has been righted and I was right about Opium all along! LOL

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    Default Re: How Does Your Family Influence Your Fragrances?

    Quote Originally Posted by Gumoosh
    I used to wear Opium and loved it - but always assumed it was a real sexy, femme fatale fragrance that oozed 'come hither' looks and throaty whispers.
    Then, lo and behold, I catch a whiff on my Nan (in law) who is 75 and been a widow for 20 years. It suits her like nothing else! I was astonished! Nanna Ruby oozing 'come hither' looks and throaty whispers? I couldn't be sure if the universe had somehow played a trick on me. But I was pleased (and secretly relieved) when she asked to borrow some of my bodice ripping erotic romance novels. The universe has been righted and I was right about Opium all along! LOL
    LOL! Indeed! And welcome to basenotes, BTW.

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    BN better than ever
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    Default Re: How Does Your Family Influence Your Fragrances?

    Quote Originally Posted by Gumoosh
    I used to wear Opium and loved it - but always assumed it was a real sexy, femme fatale fragrance that oozed 'come hither' looks and throaty whispers.
    Then, lo and behold, I catch a whiff on my Nan (in law) who is 75 and been a widow for 20 years. It suits her like nothing else! I was astonished! Nanna Ruby oozing 'come hither' looks and throaty whispers? I couldn't be sure if the universe had somehow played a trick on me. But I was pleased (and secretly relieved) when she asked to borrow some of my bodice ripping erotic romance novels. The universe has been righted and I was right about Opium all along! LOL
    As my friend Shycat said: Welcome, Gumoosh. I sense we'll be enjoying your entries!

    My childhood fragrances had more to do with gravy on Mom's stove, motor oil on Dad's metal lathe, or fumes from the asphalt plant next door. I'm coming to see that, for me, fragrance was the forgotten art form. Drawing, sculpture, photography, music, writing, architecture, landscaping; I'd explored their effects on my senses. Somehow, fragrance was overlooked until very recently. I am now enjoying creative fragrances thanks to online options and a museum of smells by mail.

    I don't know that I'd have formulated this "lost art form" perspective if I hadn't investigated this thread and given thought to an accurate response. Thank you, as always, my smelly companions, for continuing to stir the mind.
    Monarch butterflies require milkweed to prevent extinction

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    beachroses's Avatar
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    Default Re: How Does Your Family Influence Your Fragrances?

    We all love fragrances with orange blossom in them, it seems to run in the family.

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    Smile Re: How Does Your Family Influence Your Fragrances?

    My mother has never been very interested in fragrances but my dad has always had a collection of scents. Not surprising then that one of the first scents I liked was masculine, Eau Sauvage. Dad wore it and for a while, in my teens so did I. With my dad being the main fragrance wearer in our house it was inevitable that I would be drawn to strong perfumes like Montana Parfum de Peau and Poison as opposed to the more 'girly' ones, to my nose, for example LouLou (I am talking about the 80's!). I still like strong frags today, Kenzo Jungle, Costume National Scent, but they are part of a wardrobe which also has a place for softer scents like Noa, Sensi and the very feminine AG Passion which I love. Interesting thread thank you!
    Last edited by chaelaran1008; 26th September 2006 at 07:57 PM.

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    beachroses's Avatar
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    Default Re: How Does Your Family Influence Your Fragrances?

    >>I don't know that I'd have formulated this "lost art form" perspective if I hadn't investigated this thread and given thought to an accurate response.<<

    I always loved good perfume, but never really knew what notes were in the fragrances I was wearing and didn't appreciate the art aspect of it, until I got online and could see what they were! I was amazed and enchanted. I always grew up surrounded by good art, music, books and food, this is just one sense I didn't start exploring until recently and I am having a ball.

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    Default Re: How Does Your Family Influence Your Fragrances?

    Quote Originally Posted by Gumoosh
    I used to wear Opium and loved it - but always assumed it was a real sexy, femme fatale fragrance that oozed 'come hither' looks and throaty whispers.
    Then, lo and behold, I catch a whiff on my Nan (in law) who is 75 and been a widow for 20 years. It suits her like nothing else! I was astonished! Nanna Ruby oozing 'come hither' looks and throaty whispers? I couldn't be sure if the universe had somehow played a trick on me. But I was pleased (and secretly relieved) when she asked to borrow some of my bodice ripping erotic romance novels. The universe has been righted and I was right about Opium all along! LOL
    Nice story about Opium, which I love, even though I'm a bit of a Y-chromosomer!

    Nobody in my family is interested in scents, other than maybe owning 1 or 2. So it's fortunate that you folks are here, or I'd have no one to talk to about this wonderful hobby!

    Nobody in my family except me dances, either. Well, somebody has to have a good time!

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    Default Re: How Does Your Family Influence Your Fragrances?

    My mom wore Coty facepowder scented with L'Origan. I love that scent and have been trying to find it at local discounters. Also L'Aimant.

  12. #12

    Default Re: How Does Your Family Influence Your Fragrances?

    My mom wore a lot of Chanel No5 and L'air du temps a lot of years ago, she also got a couple of very expensive made-for-her parfum from paris, some of them i really liked some of them i hated! later on, she went for vanderbilt and the carolina herrera, she also used herrera's aquaflore and flore, wich i liked both. she has also used one time or another: rumba, charlie white/red, noa, virtually all of estée lauder scents for women, chloé's narcissus, sunmoonstars, and a long etc.

    My dad wore everything under the sun that said "lavender", but he later on came to use minotaure, some masculine scents from rochas, paco rabannePH, and some 4711-inspired eau de colognes (but not 4711).

    My little sister uses a lot of fresh girlie scents: par amour toujours, true love, escada 2005, english roses, happy in bloom and so on.

    We had maids also that wore scents, when they were with us, i considered them family: one used AnaïsAnaïs -all the time- and the others used a lot of Avon scents,again some of wich i liked some of wich i didn't like.

    Of the granpas and grannies i only remember tabu and some older rather obscure french houses that had some amazing scents out in the 20's to the 50's ...they didn't use anything "new"(read: anything released after the 60's).

    so yeah , i would say that they all influenced me in a good way.

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    Default Re: How Does Your Family Influence Your Fragrances?

    My perfume preferences may have begun way back when I used to help
    my Dad (in his Pharmacy) make up hand cream preparations and
    Rosewater/Witch Hazel etc. I never thought about that connection
    until now! It was great to be surrounded by all the make-up, perfume(mainly Coty and Lentheric, it must be said!) and the medicinal odours (liquorice, menthol,camphor and suchlike.)
    You really have made me reminisce now!

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    Default Re: How Does Your Family Influence Your Fragrances?

    This is an interesting thread about emotional attachments to scent and association with people and personality traits.
    My family treated perfume like a precious commodity, to be "saved" for special events, sitting pretty on a mirror tray on the dresser, until it went bad. I used to sniff them all and sneak some. I grew up, and I now I wear perfume constantly. Maybe this is how it affected me: overcompensation!

  15. #15

    Default Re: How Does Your Family Influence Your Fragrances?

    Mi mom, sister, aunt and cousin wore Eau de Vanderbilt back in the eighties, when I was a little girl, and that's why this fragrance brings such sweet memories to me. I've started using it regularly with the firm purpose of finishing my mom's 100ml flacon -she's allergic to perfume now, but today I'll take a trip to Sephora with my friend, so maybe when I have come back I'll have fallen in love with another scent, ha ha -I hope not.

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    tdi's Avatar
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    Default Re: How Does Your Family Influence Your Fragrances?

    I seem to be the only one in my family who is quite this olfactory driven. I am obsessed with fragrance from my perfume to the plants I plant in my garden....any thing that has a scent! The women in my family tend to be more loyal to one fragrance. My maternal grandmother, one of the most important women in my life, always wore Estee Lauder Youth Dew. I don't ever remember her smelling like anything else. She has been gone 11 years now and just walking past the Estee Lauder counter still makes me want to cry sometimes because I catch that faint scent in the air.By the way, my Mother-in Law also wore Youth Dew exclusively ( she has been gone for 4 years ) so this fragrance will always remind me of these two strong beautiful women.

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    Default Re: How Does Your Family Influence Your Fragrances?

    I grew up in a family compound and I remember marveling at my aunt's dresser and opening her perfume bottles. My mother wore Balenciaga, Je Reviens by Worth and my dad wore Aramis. When I was working on a summer job while I was in college, one of the secretaries wore Shalimar and I can smell her a mile away. I don't know if my family influenced my taste in fragrances but it certainly brings back fond memories each time I smell them.
    "A great perfume is a work of art, it can lift our days, haunt our nights and create the milestones of our memories. Fragrance is liquid emotion. And that never goes out of fashion. " MICHAEL EDWARDS

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    Default Highly Indirect Family Influence on Fragrance preferences

    My maternal grandmother's dislike of fragrances meant that I could freely sample and abscond with her perfume bottles. I do not know how she acquired Cabochard, but it was unopened when, at the age of 9 or so, I appropriated it, dusted it off (she had it at least since the late 60's), and fell in love with it. Ever since then, I've gravitated toward leathery, tobacco, and neroli (I know it is not one of Cabochard's notes, but on me, it SMELLS as though it is) notes, and fragrances that are genuinely distinctive and unique, fragrances with presence.

    Another fragrance-related influence appears to be an inherited (from my father) partial/fluctuating anosmia, which may contribute to my dissatisfaction with many fragrances on the market: Part of the reason they smell unsatisfactorily similar, plasticky, and oversimple may be that I am simply not perceiving all the notes.

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    Dependent pluran's Avatar
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    Default Re: How Does Your Family Influence Your Fragrances?

    ***
    Last edited by pluran; 22nd October 2006 at 10:58 PM.
    “Perfume is decidedly not about two things: it isn’t about memory and it isn’t about sex. Perfume is about beauty and intellect,”.........“A perfume is a message in a bottle—not a smell—and the message is written by the perfumer and read by the person who smells it.”

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    Default Re: How Does Your Family Influence Your Fragrances?

    Mom wore My Sin and sometimes Chanel No. 5 when I was growing up, and Dad always wore something spicy with Bay Rum. There was also one great aunt whose dresser smelled like Shalimar and kid gloves -- she was single, travelled, lived in an apartment that looked Parisian to my grade school sensibilities, and generally seemd to have more fun than the married relatives. I remember thinking that if you had to be a grownup, that was definitely the way to do it. Now that you mention it, that pretty well accounts for my jones for spicy Guerlain orientals!

  21. #21

    Default Re: How Does Your Family Influence Your Fragrances?

    My maternal grandmother wore Youth Dew; I still love its deep notes. The fragrance's notes remind me very much of her, true, but they also hold their own. One of her sisters wore Shalimar, and I share this rich, spicy, Oriental (and I think unisex!) passion with my late great-aunt. The other sister wore Chamade, O de Lancome, and White Linen, if I remember correctly. I cherish them all, just as I did her.

    My stepmother was always awash in Evyan's White Shoulders, and I still associate its soft, powdery, gardenia-ish notes with both my stepmother's beauty AND her duplicity. My baby stepsister wore Lauren, Sung and Bill Blass (hey, it WAS the Eighties!), and those sweet, innocent scents can still take me back in a big way. My youngest stepsister favored Opium which -- while wonderful -- was far too mature a scent for her at the time (and really still is -- she can be very childlike even now). Both girls (my stepsisters) always wore Charlie when they were on a budget. It was cheap, true enough, but by no means the worst of the drugstore variety.

    Daddy always wore one of three colognes: Quorum, Portos (the Balenciaga, not the Aramis), and Aramis. Love 'em all, but I take Aramis with a grain of salt. Well, I do Quorum, too. (Both must be applied with care, else you'll get the "nuclear sillage" effect in no time flat.)

    My older brother turned me on to the (lamentably discontinued) Calvin for Men. My late mother had execrable taste in scents -- she would always reach for utterly awful shit (e.g. Cachet, Galore, Tigress etc.). To the day she died, all her taste was in her mouth. Poor thing -- she went to her grave likely a fan of Tabu.
    Last edited by tvlampboy; 23rd October 2006 at 03:24 PM.

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