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  1. #1
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    Default What Did Your Grandmother Wear?

    On another thread, I just wrote about how my grandmother used to only wear Diorissimo, and how one of my most formative memories was how on summer vacation at her country-home in France, I would wake up early just to go into her room and watch her by her dressing table, doing her hair, putting on make-up, jewellery, and then, Diorissimo.

    And this got me wondering, so I thought I'd ask the question: what scent did your grandmother wear? What are your memories of it? And have you ever tried wearing it yourself? (I never could, Diorissimo always seemed too much like her, and I love how it only ever reminds me of her when I smell it).

    Look forward to reading your stories!

  2. #2

    Default Re: What Did Your Grandmother Wear?

    My mom's mom smelled powdery. She had Coty scent of some variety. I remember her sitting on the porch with her boyfriend, shelling pecans. She was tall, and skinny, and blonde so when her hair turned white it wasn't very different.

    My dad's mom smelled like cigarettes and soap. I remember her lighting cigarettes on the gas stove, and oyster dressing at Christmas, and her hair, it was long and she always wore it rolled up in the back, it was black with a dramatic white stripe.

  3. #3

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    Default Re: What Did Your Grandmother Wear?

    My mum's mum wore April Violets, & her name was Violet. Very sweet violets always remind me of her.

    l don't associate any perfumes with my dad's mum.
    "What is this secret connection between the soul, and sea, clouds and perfumes? The soul itself appears to be sea, cloud and perfume..." - from Zorba the Greek by Nikos Kazantzakis.
    Currently wearing: Jasmin Full by Montale

  4. #4
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    Default Re: What Did Your Grandmother Wear?

    My grandmother on my mother's side wore Joy I believe
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  5. #5
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    Default Re: What Did Your Grandmother Wear?

    Shalimar. I think that's why I like it so much. Her blankets and sheets smelled of it. Which is primarily, I think, why I wear Shalimar to bed almost every night.

    She also wore Beautiful by Estee Lauder. And Oscar de la Renta in that beautiful flower shaped bottle with the Body Cream and Powder.
    "A man has made at least a start on discovering the meaning of human life when he plants shade trees under which he knows full well he will never sit. "

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  6. #6

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    Default Re: What Did Your Grandmother Wear?

    Mine wore Bellodgia and Shalimar. When she died, when I was very young, my mother started wearing them herself in memory of her mother so I have very strong, positive associations with those two scents. I never knew my other grandmother--I should ask my aunt what she wore.
    Very clearly a case for corn flakes and classics

  7. #7
    Basenotes Institution freewheelingvagabond's Avatar
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    Default Re: What Did Your Grandmother Wear?

    My grandmothers (on either side) were too poor to wear any perfume. Occasionally they'd wear talcum powder.
    Currently wearing: Castile by Penhaligon's

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    Default Re: What Did Your Grandmother Wear?

    My grandmother (mother's side) always wore Coty L'Aimant.

  9. #9

    Default Re: What Did Your Grandmother Wear?

    When my grandmother passed in 1988 I inherited her perfume collection of 3 bottles, which surprised me because I didn't know she had any scent at all. I never smelled her wearing anything. Besides a Prince Matchabelli or Dana that I can't remember she had Fabergé Woodhue, and Tigress which was fun.
    How do you know what a French whorehouse smells like?

  10. #10

    Default Re: What Did Your Grandmother Wear?

    My Grandmother on my mother’s side died when I was only 1 year old. My mom tells me she wore Chanel # 5. My grandmother on my father’s side never wore any perfume. I have owned a bottle of # 5 extrait and now I own a bottle of the Eau Premiere version.
    Currently wearing: Journey Woman by Amouage

  11. #11

    Default Re: What Did Your Grandmother Wear?

    My maternal grandmother died long before I was born, but my mom has told me that her mother had a treasured bottle of Elizabeth Arden Blue Grass that she wore only on very special occasions. As this would have been the late 1930s to early 50s, and the family was rural and not of means, I would imagine she wore it on religious holidays only.

    My paternal grandmother was an immigrant, and relatively poor. I have no memory of her ever wearing perfume, but she always smelled of Rose Milk Skin Cream.

    On My Perfume Tray July 2020


    1. Dawn Spencer Hurwitz - Giardini Segreti
    2. Dawn Spencer Hurwitz - Summer Cologne
    3. Dawn Spencer Hurwitz - Le Jardin Vert
    4. Lubin - Gin Fizz
    5. Guerlain - Mahora Extrait (vintage)
    6. Soivohle - Honeysuckle Bird
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    9. Maison Francis Kurkdjian - Amyris
    10. Ralph Lauren - Safari
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  12. #12
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    Default Re: What Did Your Grandmother Wear?

    Have no idea. Both grandmothers were deceased by the time I was 11 or 12 years old. I don't remember one, while the other I barely got to know.
    fa shizzle...
    Currently wearing: Honeysuckle by Avon

  13. #13
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    Default Re: What Did Your Grandmother Wear?

    I don't know about my paternal grandmother, but my maternal grandmother daubed her neck with vanilla extract from the kitchen.

  14. #14

    Default Re: What Did Your Grandmother Wear?

    My grandmothers were very poor!
    She didn’t know perfume existed!

  15. #15
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    Default Re: What Did Your Grandmother Wear?

    I remember she smelled of Noxema face cleanser. It's the smell of her bathroom I remember most though.

  16. #16

    Default Re: What Did Your Grandmother Wear?

    This really opens up a whole different world. Both my grandmothers went through the depression, and couldn’t really afford perfume. But that made it all the more important, because at that time it represented a special luxury and indulgence, a small touch of beauty in their lives. I remember they both had a fragrance of some sort but it wasn’t so much what it was, but that they had something.

    I remember the energy in the air as they went about the ritual of getting ready for a rare evening out - bringing out their one special dress, not their church dress but their evening dress, ironing it, washing their hair, carefully creating a hairdo with Bobbie pins and a type of gel that preceded hairspray, applying makeup, most importantly lipstick, always a type of strong red, which I found very beautiful, very compelling, and at the end dabbing on the perfume. It felt like a ceremony. It made me look forward to the day I would be able to do the same. As poor as they were they always had a little table or area of the bedroom that was ‘theirs’. I liked to go in and look at their ‘stuff’. My grandfathers never bothered that.

    Sniff, I wish I knew what fragrance it was that gave them that little pleasure. But I know for one grandmother it was one of several perfumes in stock at the local general store, and was displayed in a glass cabinet behind the counter. I believe my other grandmother got hers from a traveling dry goods salesman who stopped by their ranch. So I don’t think they were brand names we’d even recognize. Things are so different now in the perfume world.
    Currently wearing: Futur by Robert Piguet

  17. #17
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    Default Re: What Did Your Grandmother Wear?

    I don't recall hearing my grandmother ever having an interest in perfumes when she was alive. I did see a few bottles that I later recognized as Avon when I was young.
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  18. #18
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    Default Re: What Did Your Grandmother Wear?

    My grandmother on my mother's side wore Arpège, and on my father's Opium and Parure. I approve of all three!

  19. #19

    Default Re: What Did Your Grandmother Wear?

    I don't know who this was made by but I recall the fragrance grandma wore was called Ashes of Roses.
    The name puzzled me as a kid, I thought why would anyone want to smell like a burnt flower lol!
    I can't recall the smell, sadly.

    My mum was't really into perfume, we were poor too, but did have a bottle or two of some cologne made by Penhaligan.

  20. #20
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    Default Re: What Did Your Grandmother Wear?

    Quote Originally Posted by LittleArtist View Post
    I don't know who this was made by but I recall the fragrance grandma wore was called Ashes of Roses...I can't recall the smell, sadly.
    Bourjois made a fragrance by that name - long discontinued. I don't know what it smells like, either.

  21. #21

    Default Re: What Did Your Grandmother Wear?

    My maternal grandmother wore 4711. My mother inherited a big bottle after my grandmother died.

    My fraternal grandmother was long dead before I came along. I don't think there was money for a luxury like perfume.

  22. #22
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    Default Re: What Did Your Grandmother Wear?

    I don’t remember either of my grandmothers wearing perfume but:

    My mother had a box of Avon Here’s My Heart dusting powder that she said originally belonged to my maternal grandmother.

    And during one visit to my paternal grandmother I was wearing Cinnabar, and she loved it.
    "I felt something so intense, I could only express it in a perfume." - Jacques Guerlain

  23. #23

    Default Re: What Did Your Grandmother Wear?

    My grandmother from my father's side wore Chanel No.5 the pure perfume. My father had brought her a 100 ml bottle from Paris in the fifties.
    This flacon was the gem on her dressing table.

  24. #24
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    Default Re: What Did Your Grandmother Wear?

    Quote Originally Posted by LittleArtist View Post
    I don't know who this was made by but I recall the fragrance grandma wore was called Ashes of Roses.
    Quote Originally Posted by Bonnette View Post
    Bourjois made a fragrance by that name - long discontinued. I don't know what it smells like, either.
    Such a beautiful name I had to look it up. Check out this gorgeous flacon. Apparently Bourjois also made one called Ashes of Carnations. A little weird that the cap looks like a cremation urn.


  25. #25

    Default Re: What Did Your Grandmother Wear?

    My fathers mother wore Je Reviens, L’air du temps, and something by Worth.
    My mother’s mother wore April Violets and 4711


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  26. #26
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    Default Re: What Did Your Grandmother Wear?

    My maternal grandmother wore Jean Nate.

  27. #27

    Default Re: What Did Your Grandmother Wear?

    My maternal grandmother was rather austere and didn't wear perfume but my paternal nannie
    was very cuddly, loving and wore Coty l'Aimant.
    A woman without perfume is like a flower without a scent.
    Currently wearing: Roma by Laura Biagiotti

  28. #28
    Basenotes Institution 30 Roses's Avatar
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    Default Re: What Did Your Grandmother Wear?

    My grandmother bought me a bottle of Tabu when I was not even 10! But I don't recall her wearing it, or any other perfume.

  29. #29
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    Default Re: What Did Your Grandmother Wear?

    Quote Originally Posted by Cook.bot View Post
    Such a beautiful name I had to look it up. Check out this gorgeous flacon. Apparently Bourjois also made one called Ashes of Carnations. A little weird that the cap looks like a cremation urn.

    Now I want it.

  30. #30
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    Default Re: What Did Your Grandmother Wear?

    Quote Originally Posted by Bonnette View Post
    Now I want it.
    Me too, dammit. I feel an obsession coming on.




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