If you have not heard a lot about Parfums d’Orsay previously, don’t worry. Neither have I.
Ines sent me a decant of L’Intrigante and I promptly went from initial bewildered awe to all-out obsession.
The house of Parfums d’Orsay is marketed as a traditional perfume line named after Count Alfred d’Orsay (1801-1852), said to be the “most fashionable man in the most fashionable city of the world – London”. He was a Frenchman and reputedly created a perfume or cologne by the name of “Eau de Bouquet”. After his death the company was founded in his honour, most likely in 1908, although there is some controversy about the founding year.
His Eau de Bouquet, a unisex cologne was finally re-named Etiquette Bleue and is still available. The company was revived in 1995 and several perfumes have been added to the line-up since. There is a collection called Les Intenses of which L’Intrigante is a part of.
Created in 2010 by Anne De Puy Raimond, L’Intrigante includes notes of “musk sparkle”, juniper berries, myrrh, black pepper, camellia, red rose, carnation, orange blossom, sandalwood, vanilla, patchouli, white musk and suede.
L’Intrigante is mostly characterized as a fruity-floral, but it is far from your typical representative of the genre. Osmoz says it is a spicy-oriental, which is more what I would say myself. This is a warm, spicy, vanilla and musk-heavy floral that is extremely well blended and therefore hard to categorize.
“A bewitching eau de parfum created in the image of the beguiling temptress, who harnesses her charms for ambitious seduction.”
-from the company website
What I love about L’Intrigante is that it keeps me guessing. When asked what it smells like the best I can come up with is “good”. (Well, I did think a little harder later on, and the results are visible here.)
It is a real perfume-y perfume. So well blended, so smooth and seamless, so abstract that saying “this smells like…” is almost impossible. Trying anyway, I would say it smells warm and sweet, floral and spicy, musky and leathery.
L’Intrigante smells old-fashioned in the best of ways, it smells like the glory days of perfumery, I feel like a lady in waiting at the French court, like a turn-of the century belle taking a walk in Versailles, heck like the Empress Marie Antoinette herself, why be meek, it is only my fantasy, a little narcissism can’t hurt now and then.
L’Intrigante is thoroughly French to me, I see powdered wigs and tight corsages, rouged cheeks and seductive smiles behind beautiful lace fans.
I think I’ll leave the analysis for now and just enjoy my Marie Antoinette moment with L’Intrigante. I highly encourage you to do the same.