Thursday, May 05, 2011

Jasmine for Me

For many years, I have been infatuated with the fragrance of Chanel No. 5.  Ordinarily, I'm not one who spends a lot of money on myself, so when I say I use this perfume, I mean I savor and use it sparingly.  It's over-the-top expensive for my world.  This morning I learned something about Chanel No. 5 that I didn't know before.....

On this day, May 5, 1921, Gabrielle (Coco) Chanel introduced Chanel No. 5 to some of her friends.  It was given to preferred clients for free at her boutique in Paris, France.  The fitting rooms in her boutique were also scented with No. 5.  Coco Chanel commissioned renowned perfumer, Ernest Beaux, to create the most expensive perfume in the world.  Jasmine was the most expensive perfume oil at the time, and Chanel No. 5 relies heavily on Jasmine.

The biography of Coco Chanel is amazingly interesting. She went from being an orphan to one of the world's leading ladies of fashion. Coco once explained, "Perfume is the unseen, unforgettable, ultimate accessory of fashion...that heralds your arrival and prolongs your departure." 

There's a sweet story that adds another dimension to my using Chanel No. 5.  My dear mother knew how I loved this fragrance, yet she was not able to afford buying it for me.  Wouldn't you know mother found an imitation Chanel No. 5 fragrance, and for my birthday she often bought that for me instead. After I'd unwrap her gift, she'd smile and say, "It's the best I can do, honey."

Ahhhhh, the things we remember!