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  1. #1
    Basenotes Member Anamandy's Avatar
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    Default Mysterious Bottle of Chanel No. 19

    I have a friend who showed me her 3oz. bottle of Chanel No. 19 Eau de Toilette she said she purchased in Macy's NYC in the late 70s, while on a shopping trip with her mother one year during the Christmas season. Unlike us, she rarely wears perfume and most of the time doesn't even remember to do so even when going out to a special event. She's just not into it. As a result, this bottle barely has a dent in it. I was really shocked to see this bottle. I have never seen a Chanel bottle design like this before. Half glass, half metal, with the glass lightly ribbed and has a texture to touch of ribbing. The bottle itself lacks the normal markings of a Chanel fragrance. Has no batch code anywhere I could see. Has no Chanel name raised on the bottom of the bottle. Has a clear sticker on the bottom of the bottle with all the right information. She said she thinks she remembers it having ink digits on the bottom of the bottle that might have worn off over time, or it might have been on the box, that is long gone, but she couldn't remember. She said the Macy's SA told her at the time that it was a special limited edition. As to the scent, it is fabulous. The best version of 19 I've ever smelled. Smells more like the pure parfum than the edt, but lighter, as to be expected. Even better than the vintage edp's I've smelled in the past. Now, the color of the perfume seems to have changed, no longer that spring green and has taken on a golden hue. I've seen this happen before with 19 and also with a bottle of Cristalle I've had for years; and the top notes are not what they once were, but it's not as bad as some other vintages I've smelled. I have no reason to doubt my friend, and she has no motive to lie about it because she really doesn't even care about the perfume one way or the other, but could she be wrong about the decade she purchased this? This is the weirdest thing. I always thought all Chanel bottles had their name raised on the bottom of the bottle, but this one doesn't. Same with the batch code. I always thought they were engraved on the bottle. Anyway, if anyone can help solve this mystery with information you might know, I'd really appreciated finding out. Here are some pictures to help figure it out -
    Chanel 1.jpg
    Chanel 2.jpg
    Chanel 3.jpg
    Chanel 4.jpg
    Attached Images Attached Images

  2. #2

    Default Re: Mysterious Bottle of Chanel No. 19

    Beautiful! I haven’t seen one of those either.

  3. #3
    I’m not old, I’m vintage.
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    Default Re: Mysterious Bottle of Chanel No. 19

    There are a couple of these up on eBay now, but no info on when they were issued or whether they were part of a special edition. However, the fact that that they’re atomizers rather than natural sprays makes them pretty old.

  4. #4
    Common Lackey

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    Default Re: Mysterious Bottle of Chanel No. 19

    Does the top half feel like solid metal, or like it's a metal skin over a plastic base? The weight of the cap might give you a clue, if you can't tell easily.

    The metal-skin caps were common on 1970s bottles of EDT. And I have a couple of purse atomizers that have it, too.

    Unfortunately, our resident Chanel bottle expert has been AWOL for a while. He (RoRo) would know much more than I, but I might be able to help more if you can answer those questions. And I'll look for a couple of the threads where he addressed similar questions.

    (As to the ribbing on the bottle, that I have definitely not seen before.)

  5. #5
    Basenotes Member Anamandy's Avatar
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    Default Re: Mysterious Bottle of Chanel No. 19

    Well, though the edt was released in 1921, it can't be earlier than the late 1960s when she got it because before that she was just a kid. I'm wondering if this was an original special edition release or a reissue of a special edition for that holiday season. The bottle designed, with the ribbing, makes me think late 40s early 50s.

    As far as the other listings on eBay I checked them out. Boy, are they expensive! I don't see any batch codes on those bottles and the sellers never mentioned them. The bottles all have identical tags on the bottom. One seller had it with all it's original packaging. I sure wish my friend had saved it. It's beautiful. I've since contacted the one seller that has the complete package to ask about batch numbers, either on the bottle or the box and they responded that they'll get back to me tomorrow. Anyway, for anyone who wants to see how this was originally packaged out of curiosity, here are some pics I grabbed from that listing.
    Chanel 6.jpg
    Chanel 5.jpg

  6. #6
    Basenotes Member Anamandy's Avatar
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    Default Re: Mysterious Bottle of Chanel No. 19

    It's solid metal.

    Edited to add, the ribbing is very soft, subtle, but definitely ribbing. Not paint, though the glass is colored, but not paint. It's part of the glass.

    The ribbing in the other photo of the seller's bottle shows it aligns with the design on the dais of the packaging. Cool.

  7. #7
    I’m not old, I’m vintage.
    PStoller's Avatar
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    Default Re: Mysterious Bottle of Chanel No. 19

    Quote Originally Posted by Anamandy View Post
    Well, though the edt was released in 1921, it can't be earlier than the late 1960s when she got it because before that she was just a kid. I'm wondering if this was an original special edition release or a reissue of a special edition for that holiday season. The bottle designed, with the ribbing, makes me think late 40s early 50s.
    I think you’re confusing No. 19 with No. 5. No. 19 was launched in 1971.

  8. #8
    Mudassir's Avatar
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    Default Re: Mysterious Bottle of Chanel No. 19

    Wasn't the juice yellow in 70's?

  9. #9
    Basenotes Member Anamandy's Avatar
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    Default Re: Mysterious Bottle of Chanel No. 19

    Sorry, PStoller, you're right. I thought I pulled up the No. 19 page but pulled up the No. 5 by accident and just went by the dates. Okay, so then she is right. It was in the 70s. That bottle design sure looks like a 50s retro though.

  10. #10
    Common Lackey

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    Default Re: Mysterious Bottle of Chanel No. 19

    Quote Originally Posted by Mudassir View Post
    Wasn't the juice yellow in 70's?
    No, it was a greenish-gold. The color in these bottles looks correct to me. Then it turned bright green some time in the '90s.

    You say the glass is colored? Looking at your photos, I can't see any evidence of that.

    The fact that it's three ounces might give us some clues. That's an odd volume (not being an even 100mls).

    I feel pretty confident that this is a '70s bottle. If the cap and center band really are solid metal, then it probably was some kind of special edition.

    I just noticed that the front of the box says Chanel Inc. I don't think any of mine have the "Inc." I'll have to look into that too.

  11. #11
    Basenotes Member Anamandy's Avatar
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    Default Re: Mysterious Bottle of Chanel No. 19

    Mudassir, I always remember it as being a spring green from the bottles my older brother used to give to my sister-in-law. I was just a kid then. I only got into 19 later when I get into perfumes. This scent was never on my radar before.

  12. #12
    Basenotes Member Anamandy's Avatar
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    Default Re: Mysterious Bottle of Chanel No. 19

    Really, I always thought the color was spring green. That's great to know because it really narrows down the date.

    Does that mean that the formulation was changed in the 90s? What could account for the color change? What was removed? Oakmoss? That might be brown that would give it that gold color. I can certainly smell the oakmoss in here. Also, the leather and other notes too. But it is the smoothest version I've ever smelled.

  13. #13
    Basenotes Member Anamandy's Avatar
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    Default Re: Mysterious Bottle of Chanel No. 19

    Yes, the glass on the bottle seems to be two-toned color. It doesn't look like paint. Maybe some kind of, I don't even know the terms honestly. Not embossing, but something else where the ridges are raised to the feel, but very, very soft. Maybe that color was created by the ridge making of the bottle. Whatever it is, it is very unusual.

  14. #14

    Default Re: Mysterious Bottle of Chanel No. 19

    Fascinating - I'm a No. 19 aficianado, but I've never seen one of these. Perhaps it was a US only release?
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  15. #15

    Default Re: Mysterious Bottle of Chanel No. 19

    Quote Originally Posted by Anamandy View Post
    Well, though the edt was released in 1921, it can't be earlier than the late 1960s when she got it because before that she was just a kid. I'm wondering if this was an original special edition release or a reissue of a special edition for that holiday season. The bottle designed, with the ribbing, makes me think late 40s early 50s.

    As far as the other listings on eBay I checked them out. Boy, are they expensive! I don't see any batch codes on those bottles and the sellers never mentioned them. The bottles all have identical tags on the bottom. One seller had it with all it's original packaging. I sure wish my friend had saved it. It's beautiful. I've since contacted the one seller that has the complete package to ask about batch numbers, either on the bottle or the box and they responded that they'll get back to me tomorrow. Anyway, for anyone who wants to see how this was originally packaged out of curiosity, here are some pics I grabbed from that listing.
    Chanel 6.jpg
    Chanel 5.jpg
    Chanel Inc. indicates a bottle from the 1970s or earlier. My Chanel Pour Monsieur bottles - Chanel For Men and A Gentleman's Cologne have this tag on the bottle and box. As for sprayers I've seen Chanel using sprayers as early as the late 1960s as evidenced by A Gentleman's cologne sprayer bottles.
    https://www.basenotes.net/threads/44...-Cologne/page2

    As PStoller indicated, a few of the No 19 ribbed bottles can be found on ebay:
    https://www.ebay.com/itm/20065826991...SABEgKcFPD_BwE

    Here's an ad for Chanel No 19 Eau de Toillete dated from 1972, it includes the 3oz EDT bottle:
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  16. #16
    Basenotes Member Anamandy's Avatar
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    Default Re: Mysterious Bottle of Chanel No. 19

    Wow N.Cal, that ad is amazing. Are those prices for real? They're like the price of a latte today. Just incredible!

    I spoke to my friend tonight and she told me that she thinks it was purchased in 1975 or 1976. She wasn't exactly sure because she and her mother made the trip to NYC to go shopping every holiday season. While in Macy's her mother stopped at the Chanel counter and told her (my friend) that she must get a perfume for herself. My friend has no interest in perfumes. Soap and water is good enough for her. She didn't even want the perfume but her mother pressured her to get it. When the SA came over to them she just pointed to the No.19 bottle and said she'll take a bottle of that. She didn't even try it beforehand. She just wanted to please her mother and get away from that counter. That's when the SA brought out the "Special Edition" bottle, to which my friend agreed and her mother paid for it. She said if she wore it all of 3 times over the years she wore it a lot. Her mother wore it more than she did, but not by much, as you can see from the amount that's left in the bottle.

    Thank you for providing this ad and helping to solve the mystery of the strange bottle of Chanel No.19 EDT!

  17. #17
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    Default Re: Mysterious Bottle of Chanel No. 19

    Just one point I don't think anyone touched: as far as batch codes on Chanels from the 50s through at least mid but I think late 70s, if any of my gazillion bottles have any or all of a batch code on the bottom of the bottle they're ink or paint.
    I think a few edcs have numbers on the back of the label. I'm not 100% but in my experience - most with extraits & edcs - the engraving on the bottle started in the late 70s, or maybe 1980.
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  18. #18

    Default Re: Mysterious Bottle of Chanel No. 19

    Quote Originally Posted by theladymay View Post
    Just one point I don't think anyone touched: as far as batch codes on Chanels from the 50s through at least mid but I think late 70s, if any of my gazillion bottles have any or all of a batch code on the bottom of the bottle they're ink or paint.
    I think a few edcs have numbers on the back of the label. I'm not 100% but in my experience - most with extraits & edcs - the engraving on the bottle started in the late 70s, or maybe 1980.
    I know that the Paris/New York bottles all had their batch codes inked on to the bottles. Wouldn't it have been better if Chanel followed in Guerlain's footsteps in using stickers as batch code indicators in the early days? I would like to think so.
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  19. #19
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    Default Re: Mysterious Bottle of Chanel No. 19

    Oh, I love that brushed metal finish. That was indeed very '70s. A real wallet-opener for this guy!
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