Monday, May 12, 2008


Now, here’s a fragrance that Luca Turin really did a disservice to. He didn’t pan it. Rather, as with too many perfumes in his (and Tania’s) guide, he awarded it four stars, threw off some gnomic wit, and basically told us nothing. Yes, to his point, perhaps it is a little “dated,” but to call it tired would be like calling Garbo tired instead of retired. And, happily for us, 1000 is far from either. Created in 1972 by the great Jean Kerléo (incidentally, founder of the Osmothéque in Versailles), 1000 was one of those scents for which the brief must simply have read, “Mind not the cost.”

For me, it is a most-welcome stop on the road to the perfect floral chypre. Elegant, subtle and understated (compared, say, with the exuberance of Joy), it invites us into a bright, burnished environment of apricot-ey osmanthus, jasmine absolute de Grasse (as opulent here as in vintage No 5 extrait de parfum), rosa centifolia, rosa damascena, violet leaf absolute, patchouli, oak moss and sandalwood. On my skin, the heart notes seem to go on for decades.

Certainly not a bargain to procure, be assured that the quality of the naturals here is unimpeachable. If you like Mitsouko, a bottle of this shouldn’t far off in your future. And it’s still available in the extrait de parfum. Who can guess for how long?


Blogger chayaruchama said...

For me, this is a golden standard; such followers, as Eau de Soir and Soir de Lune merely fall on the heels of this beauty.

1000 started it.
Incredibly complex, unfurling layer upon layer from its onionskin, it reveals great depths of character as well as loveliness-

I suppose, that means that I am hopelessly out of date-
So are you.....

May 13, 2008 at 4:56 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Well, if Britney Spears Curious and Angel are what it means to be Current, I'm relieved to know that at least the 3 of Us are proudly out-of-date.

May 13, 2008 at 9:58 AM  
Blogger Vetivresse said...

We are most definitely not out-of-date. Our shelf life is much, much longer. I agree with you, Chaya, that the Sisley scents will always be consigned to the shadow cast by "1000". There is a place for the "curent," but it doesn't necessarily have to be among the 5 or 6 scents that consistently renew my confidence in that parfumery's ART can do.

May 13, 2008 at 1:43 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Make that four out-of-date classic lovers - 1000 is a golden, beautiful scent indeed!

May 14, 2008 at 7:59 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Count me in as another 1000 lover. In fact, if the gentleman hadn't been so very Vieille France, I would've kissed Jean Kerléo on both cheeks for it when I met him. He told me lots of anecdotes on its composition, some of which I might use in a future post once I've cleared with him (it wasn't a formal interview). One thing though that's interesting, is that in his view, the eau de toilette is really quite good enough: he actually said I didn't need the parfum!

May 14, 2008 at 4:22 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...


I agree with M. Kerleo. Yesterday brought me into renewed contact with 1000 parfum (I'm a longtime devotee of the EdT). While extraordinarily beautiful, it's actually almost TOO lush to my poor nez, as is Joy parfum. Perhaps it's their stellar ingredients? Who knows? But! wearing 1000 on one arm and Mitsouko on the other, I was in heaven! So was everyone else who crossed my path (you could see them sniff appreciatively)

Long Live the House of Patou, in all its glory!

ps. I also got a chance to play with some vintage Carons - incredible!

May 16, 2008 at 4:28 AM  
Blogger Madelyn E said...

Dear Vetivresse,
What a welcome and beautiful commentary on one of my top favorite perfumes ! I resent the "tired" reference of Mr. Luca Turin. Patou 1000 is a chypre lover's dream of modern perfection. The osmanthus note is simply stunning and carries this multidimensional creation.
I consider this scent to be utterly exquisite beyond description.
I prefer it in the pure parfum or Eau de parfum. I first discovered this treasure while meandering the charming old town of Nice. A beautiful French womam from the Cote D'Ivoire introduced me to 1000. I feel instantly in love and bought 1/2 ounce of the parfum the next day. To this day nearly 23 years later I associate this scent with my honeymoon and the magnificent sensuality of the Cote D'azur !
I feel it is "we " that are in date , as thus gorgeous perfume is a timeless classic --

May 17, 2008 at 9:56 PM  

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