Chamade is a masterpiece. A bright, springtime, pollen masterpiece that blooms like summer after a few hours of wear. The top notes are powdery, like a garden with baby’s breath, daffodils, dandelions, and all other kinds of cheerful flowers. It doesn’t try to be sexy at all, but it smells fertile enough to attract more than bees. It doesn’t try to be mature, but it is confident and has a sultry ease about it. This beautiful effect lasts for a long time, but then it subtly starts to change, as real flowers do with the seasons. Chamade lifts its veil and the nectar comes out, smelling both delicate and strong. It’s a distinct oily smell, like honey mixed with greasy but still fragrant blossoms that fell off the tree. There isn’t a specific flower that comes to mind, nor is there a specific mood, as there is with Chanel fragrances. Guerlain makes perfume simply to be gorgeous, no personification necessary. Chamade is a flower, just that. But it makes a lofty and successful attempt to supplement the already proven theory that man can triumph over nature, because it is more beautiful than any natural fragrance I have ever smelled.
Perfumer: Jean-Paul Guerlain
Price: $122 for eau de toilette, $317 for the parfum
Purchase: Neiman Marcus in King of Prussia Plaza, 160 North Gulph Road, King of Prussia, PA 19406. (610)-265-7607