Friday, July 21, 2006

Des Filles a la Vanille Riviere de Janvier

Having enjoyed Je T'Aime so much, I thought I might try some of the other scents from Des Filles a la Vanille. The notes in Riviere de Janvier are fig leaf, green accord, rose and vanilla. I thought this might be an interesting take on vanilla, which to my mind represents warmth. Also, I liked the name...January River. I saw dark, cold, choppy water against a smoky grey sky...old grey stone buildings, cobbled streets, street lights glowing golden at regular intervals down the lane on a late afternoon. Romantic rose and vanilla, a green promise of spring that seems far off...

But what you see is not always what you get. Perhaps you're strolling down that lane and you come upon a cafe that looks cozy from the outside, but when you walk inside, you find their heat's been turned off and they only serve gelato. Hrm. The opening of Riviere de Janvier is very sweet and fruity, yet cold. The rose and fig leaf offer up a chilled fruit with a vanilla base, but I personally don't find the chill refreshing, as you think I might in all this nasty heat and humidity. Instead, this is the chill of artifice--like a finely decorated model house, it looks wonderful but you can tell nobody lives there, and so it lacks the warmth that might make you think, "Yes, this could be my home."

Perhaps if the rose were darker, duskier, this fragrance might have some depth. But it comes off with a superficial quality, like a corpse. I don't mean this in a hateful way, but I thought of Nicole Kidman, perfectly beautiful and polished, well-mannered, but something's off. Something's missing. A lack of warmth, a lack of depth, a face containing perfect composure (thank you, Botox) at all times.

*photo from luckyscent