Chanel Russian collection

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“The base of these three shades is black, to which we added a different sparkle for each of the colours: red, gold and blue. The Feu de Russie shade is intense and reflects passion. Or de Russie has a slight gold patina and evokes richness, while Nuit de Russie blue is full of mystery.

I like Or de & Nuit de Russie.

Oh , i have been a long time devotee of Cuir de Russie as well. I am lucky enough to get hold of the parfum before it was relaunched as part of the les exclusives in the form of EDT 

Cuir de Russie, or Russian leather was a theme modern at the end of the 19th century. Many perfume houses were creating perfumes for women who smoked cigarettes. Chanel’s Cuir de Russie was created in 1924. as a provocative and shocking fragrance, and that exactly was its purpose, because it was created for a woman who dared to smoke cigarettes in public. It was a kind of encouragement and approval, because at that time a woman who smoked was a scandalous and inconceivable symbol of emancipation.

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Cuir de Russie has an décadence avec élegance vibe; In the words of Luca Turin:

“Sumptuous leather, light and balsamic, forgoing any sugary compromise, Cuir de Russie regains its place at the top of this category, right next to the rather more jovialTabac Blond. […]Cuir de Russie is a striking hologram of luxury bygone: its scent like running the hand over the pearl grey banquette of an Isotta Frashini while forests of birch silently pass by”.

Chanel’s Cuir de Russie came out in 1924, a time at which the impact of Les Ballets Russes (1909-1929) was palpable. Russian émigrés having fled the motherland because of the revolution in 1917 had populated Paris and had lent it their own mark of decadent sophistication. Suddenly the exotic East, in which westerners classified the vast Russias since before the time of Peter the Great, became all the rage and the embodiment of everything forbidden and alluring. The datchas, the orthodox churches, the ballads on balalaikas, the Cossacks.

In the words of a critic of the times:

“nothing is more foreign to our tradition than those violent bursts, those frantic and intense dances, this instinctive frankness, this disproportionate imagination. The discordance is so brutal that one would be astonished by the tenacious favour that those people over there hold on us. The simple truth is that Russians fascinate us because they distrurb us”.

Legendary nose Ernest Beaux, guided by Chanel’s desires to dare, made women indulge in what is essentially a men’s scent formula, garlanding it though with sparkly, dry aldehydes and the eternal feminine flowers: jasmine, rose and ylang ylang; redolent of No.5’s own heart, giving a warm, honeyed aspect that contrasts with an icy element that enters and exits the scene like an aloof, declassé aristocrat ~in perfect accordance to what was the brief behind it: the leather pouches for jewels. The inclusion of rectified birch tar, supposedly along with styrax, gave it the brutish animalic touch of 20th century and the intelligent beauty of Constructivism arhictecture. Sublime cadenzas of amber and resin provide the warm but never too congenial backdrop hinting at a bygone luxury and perhaps a little smoking fetish, letting off a subtle hint of tobacco. Contrary to Tabac Blondhowever it weaves smoothness of skin and rounded contours under the dress that cloths the woman. This is supremely manifested in the far superior extrait de parfum concentration which, like all Chanel parfums, exploits the best of raw materials and gives the most luxuriant experience.

I prefer the parfum to EDT, it’s a choice between the cigarette & nicotine patches

 

 

 

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