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Thread: VCA First

  1. #1

    Default VCA First

    Good evening, ladies.

    I am interested in your opinions with regard to Van Cleef & Arpels "First".

    Be honest. Be direct. I want to know your age. This provides a framework for interpreting your answer. I can see the flag next your name already. Thank you.

    Regards,
    C.
    blackguard, n.
    3 : an inverted gentleman
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bZ5a2JH_BVE
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hWEOaosGDi0
    ... oů flotte l'étendard ...
    ... Ich will die Ruhe stören ...
    ... Stand up and admit it! ...

  2. #2

    Default Re: VCA First

    Honest answer? I am in my forties(oh the horror!!! LOL)

    I have a body cream which I was given as a present sometime ago.
    To me First is elegant,classic and femmine in the vein of say No5 or Joy.
    But then I think of all Van Cleef's like that, the jewellery connection high class style.
    DONNA

  3. #3

    Default Re: VCA First

    Thanks, i appreciate the reply!

    Stumbled across "First" out of curiosity - the VCA pour homme is a favorite and i wished to know if the house created equally impressive fragrances for women. So when time came to reorder my PH, it was joined by 60ml of the EDP. I think it's a very striking and elegant scent, and the only complaint is that they could have done a better job with the bottle. The plastic cap seems out of place on something like this.

    So anyway, thought i'd pop into the forum and get others' impressions - there are only five reviews on Basenotes and i wanted to round out my knowledge - being new to approaching the world of fragrance from a more serious angle than casually making personal choices through non-intellectual association. As i've learned from the community here, there's an entire part-science/part-art to it, not unlike wine-tasting, say.


    What got me interested in delving deeper is the simple fact that i was complimented on a cologne recently, and asked what it was.

    I said, "Chanel".

    But was completely unprepared for the next question, which was:

    "What number?"

    In my mind, Chanel's numbers were always associated with women's perfume. Apparently, people have started wearing them as unisex so i thought i'd better get educated. Great resources here, glad i stopped by.

    Regards,
    C.
    blackguard, n.
    3 : an inverted gentleman
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bZ5a2JH_BVE
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hWEOaosGDi0
    ... oů flotte l'étendard ...
    ... Ich will die Ruhe stören ...
    ... Stand up and admit it! ...

  4. #4

    TaoLady's Avatar
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    Default Re: VCA First

    blackguard, n.
    ˈbla-gərd, -ˌgärd; ˈblak-ˌgärd
    3 : an inverted gentleman
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bZ5a2JH_BVE
    (Very much enjoyed the link - MANY thanks!)

    From Webster's New World: "Black-guard" 1) Orig. the lowest servants of a large household in charge of pots and pans. (!!!) 2) A person who uses abusive language; scoundrel, villain. Abusive or to use abusive words" This doesn't sound like YOU at all, dear CoTHukoB. TOTALLY none of my business but maybe you should re-think your ID....?

    But to answer your questions...in my NEVER humble opinion Donna's got it pegged...."First is elegant,classic and feminine....all Van Cleef's like that, the jewelery connection high class style"

    I am 77.

    "The world is ruled by letting things take their course. It cannot be ruled by interfering." Lao Tze

  5. #5

    Default Re: VCA First

    <waves>

    Hiya, Tao ... oh, i'm definitely a bit of a scoundrel.

    And partly a cynic.

    According to the unabridged Devil's Dictionary by Ambrose Bierce, a 'Cynic' is "A blackguard whose faulty vision sees things as they are, not as they ought to be".

    Following up on that esteemed gentleman's publication, a 'Blackguard' is "A man whose qualities, prepared for display like a box of berries in a market - the fine ones on top - have been opened on the wrong side. An inverted gentleman."

    So glad you enjoyed the link!
    blackguard, n.
    3 : an inverted gentleman
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bZ5a2JH_BVE
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hWEOaosGDi0
    ... oů flotte l'étendard ...
    ... Ich will die Ruhe stören ...
    ... Stand up and admit it! ...

  6. #6

    Default Re: VCA First

    Owned it back in my mid-20's and I am in my late mid-30's now. Of central European origin.

    First is intense and rounded, although it has aldehydes on top, and cool flowers in full bloom are juxtaposed to overly sweet fruit and warm woods in it. In one word I would say "multifaceted", in four words, I think "musse should try it". All of the Van Cleef & Arpels scents I have tried, have that "something about it" factor -- I suppose it is one or two unusual notes that nobody would expect in there -- they would have been just generic every nose pleasers and run-of-the-mill without it. At the moment I own three VC&A -- Murmure, Birmane and Van Cleef, and I would re-purchase First in a heart beat!

  7. #7

    Default Re: VCA First

    I'm 48. I had First several years ago, was given it as a gift. I remember it as a very pleasant, classy, understated, classic type of scent, but there was nothing distinctive about it, imo, though someone did recognize the fragrance when I was wearing it, asked me if I was wearing First, and told me it smelled nice. But...I thought it was a little boring. I don't know if my age has anything to do with my answer, but First is a fragrance I think someone could wear anywhere without offending - like a wedding, a business meeting, a funeral. But it doesn't excite me or lift my spirits. In total honesty, I'd sooner reach for my Charlie White (Revlon) than First.

  8. #8

    Default Re: VCA First

    I used to wear First, but only occasionally. It never felt quite "me" but I've also only had it in parfum concentration. I think of it as a lovely, "dark floral." It is strong with aldehydes, very sophisticated and upscale. I also think of it as an "intellectual" type of fragrance. In the summer it goes more chypre on my skin and reminds me of another perfume- Crepe de Chine.

    While I think it's a beautiful composition, ultimately it's not passionate enough for me. It's more to the somber side and doesn't move me as emotionally as I like my fragrances to. I just turned 40 this past year.
    Scent is such a lovely, simple pleasure!

  9. #9

    Default Re: VCA First

    Thanks to all.

    Twolf (and Artisan to a degree): i feel similarly about this fragrance, you've supplied some of the words to help me articulate my impressions. Have you reviewed the other VCA? I'll look 'em up.

    Sherrie: what notes do you consider un-boring in a composition of a fragrance, specifically?

    Artisan directly: as Marquise de Merteuil said in "Dangerous Liaisons", intellectuals can be incredibly stupid. She was much woman. What notes move you "emotionally"?

    I could never wear "First", it's out of the question. It's incredibly feminine. I'll keep a bottle around in case occasion arises ... and perhaps gift it to someone worthy.
    blackguard, n.
    3 : an inverted gentleman
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bZ5a2JH_BVE
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hWEOaosGDi0
    ... oů flotte l'étendard ...
    ... Ich will die Ruhe stören ...
    ... Stand up and admit it! ...

  10. #10

    Default Re: VCA First

    Quote Originally Posted by CoTHukoB

    Artisan directly: as Marquise de Merteuil said in "Dangerous Liaisons", intellectuals can be incredibly stupid. She was much woman. What notes move you "emotionally"?
    Lovely question...

    I guess it's probably more the juxtaposition of notes that move me, of course.

    I could say that I love tiare flower- but in some compositions it's not always the case.

    I think "stark" fragrances move me. A single note floral that is so achingly clear, clean, true- even if I can't necessarily wear it, or make it my own- will often move me. Full-bodied fragrances, perfumes bursting with fleshy flowers and ripe fruits, or spices that smell sun-warmed and mix with the air from the desert. A chilly scent of wet, crumbling stone over the waft of hot, acrid resin incense. High drama. Oudh and rosebuds with the slight smell of cold air right before it snows.

    I always prefer the vulgar (meaning more common) over the sophisticated it seems. I have Chanel No 5 in parfum and I have it because there is a beautiful note of jasmine that comes through - however, for the most part I know that I will never really be a Chanel No 5 gal- it's way too smooth and demure for me. Hand me the zingy, red lipstick and slather me in Coco and I'm set to listen to fusion jazz all night though.

    What moves you emotionally when it comes to scent?
    Scent is such a lovely, simple pleasure!

  11. #11

    Default Re: VCA First

    Quote Originally Posted by Artisankey
    What moves you emotionally when it comes to scent?
    Artisan,

    ... i wasn't quite sure how to answer your question until i understood why it was causing me so much difficulty.

    See, the sense of smell and taste aren't something i immediately relate to as causing in me a direct "emotional" response. Perhaps i'm simply more attuned to sight, sound, touch. The arts, such as music and cinema have the capacity to move me to a much greater degree. Or perhaps they're just more powerful stimuli; don't know - not really my area.

    To me, fragrance is mostly just a part of grooming, it's like coiffure or wardrobe - it says something about the wearer. The ones i choose for myself seem to be composed of several factors: they have roots and associations with the past, whatever mental connection my body machinery makes to temperament and character, and to a lesser extent the present. I think it's really about identity and self-expression. The past probably carries greater weight than the present on account of the formative years, in my case, being in the past. Younger people are probably weighted more to the present, they're still searching for their identity.

    To make a long story short (too late!) ... are you still awake? See, i've given an intellectual answer. The Marquise was right.


    Having spent time outdoors, in Yatagan i get pine sap and big-time wood, and no celery. I haven't spent much time in kitchens. And even though i much prefer the culture and energy of cities along with the convenience of things that go "flush" in the night - this doesn't stop me (except decorum) wearing Yatagan and other woods/mosses whenever i damn please.

    Maybe i also like woods because i have fond memories of my grandfather making me wooden toys when i was little. I learned the importance of craftsmanship from him.

    I lean towards spice, not so much sweet. Probably a link to preference in cuisine.

    I like animalic. Your own dog smells great despite the fact that he wipes his butt on your rug sometimes, doesn't he? I have fond memories of pets.

    Then there are the leather, tobacco, floral elements. The real art is in how it comes together, but i'm unable to get "high drama" from a fragrance ... yet. The function of a scent is just something else for me - although the only way i can describe a fragrance is by wordsmithing a good prose for it.


    Loved your description, you have a much easier time with this!
    blackguard, n.
    3 : an inverted gentleman
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bZ5a2JH_BVE
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hWEOaosGDi0
    ... oů flotte l'étendard ...
    ... Ich will die Ruhe stören ...
    ... Stand up and admit it! ...

  12. #12

    Default Re: VCA First

    Quote Originally Posted by CoTHukoB
    Thanks to all.
    Sherrie: what notes do you consider un-boring in a composition of a fragrance, specifically?
    Gee, I wish I knew. My interest in a fragrance is a purely physical/emotional reaction. I can't isolate particular notes that bore or interest me because those same notes in a different composion might strike me entirely differently. I have no idea why. Lately, I'm in love with jasmine, vetiver (apropos of the vetiver thread here), lily of the valley, cinnamon. They all are "un-boring" to me. I have a love/hate thing with patchouli, but it certainly is "un-boring." Thought-provoking question!

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