Krazy Krizia : Perfume Review

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Star rating: 5 stars–outstanding/potential classic, 4 stars–very good, 3 stars–adequate, 2 stars–disappointing, 1 star–poor.

Does anyone else wear any of the Krizia fragrances? Although some of the best in the collection have bit the dust, Krizia exemplifies such an ebullient and vivacious side of Italian perfumery that it should be explored for this reason alone. Thankfully, the elegant floral K de Krizia by the great Maurice Roucel is still around. Unfortunately, some of my favorites are gone*: Teatro alla Scala, a composition of amber and tobacco, the coffee laced Spazio Krizia Donna as well as the effervescent and sexy Krazy Krizia. The latter is particularly fun—imagine Guerlain Shalimar dressed up for 1980s.

Ah, the 1980s with their glitz and high maintenance glamor! Although Krazy Krizia was released in 1991, its roots are firmly in the preceding decade. Its author, perfumer Dominique Ropion who already had several perfume gems under his belt by the time he started working with Krizia, took the classical oriental idea and made it sparkling. Its effervescent citrusy top is intertwined with a crisp apple note. After this initial cool sensation, the smoldering richness of patchouli, vanilla and woods comes as a surprise. Like Shalimar, Krazy Krizia is based on the contrast between bergamot and vanilla, except that Ropion inserts an exquisite rose and tuberose accord as well. Krazy Krizia hits all of its notes one by one, until suddenly they begin to sound like a rich harmony.

The name Krazy Krizia alludes to Krizia’s lead designer Mariuccia Mandelli, who received the nickname Crazy Krizia for her collection of outrageously short hot pants done in unusual fabrics. Nevertheless, the Krazy Krizia fragrance is more sensual and plush than provocative and shocking. It may smell too heavy and dense today when the fashion is for airy and luminous orientals, but it is just as alluring and bold. Mandelli used to say that “every woman should dress as she pleases as long as what she wears becomes part of her.” Wearing Krazy Krizia, I feel that it not only becomes a part of me, but brings out the whimsical sides of my personality. How can one be serious trailing the sillage of golden apples, candied almonds and tropical florals!

Krazy Krizia includes notes of bergamot, mandarin, orange blossom, tuberose, patchouli, sandalwood, tonka bean, and vanilla.

*Krazy Krizia has been discontinued, but most of the discontinued Krizia perfumes can be easily found online and on Ebay at reasonable prices. A quick google check today revealed that you can find 3.4 oz EDT spray for $27.

Photograph: Mariuccia Mandelli via wiki commons.

Sample: my bottle from 1995

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24 Comments

  • Olfacta: So that’s what that top note is! Apple! I knew there was mandarin but also something else.I have Krazy and also K — big in-yo-face Italians — and not to be forgotten, Teatro. All worth having and then some. January 11, 2012 at 8:39am Reply

  • nstephens@beachcroft.com: I have not heard of this one before but MUST investigate now, thanks! It sounds such fun as well as having good pedigree. Your review has also set me thinking about Italian perfumery and how it is different from French or American. My only points of reference are the original Fendi and Theorema (which I love) and Laura Biagotti’s Roma (another old favourite, it’s that blackcurant note) and does Mauboussin count as Italian? Hm..
    Nicola
    ps first comment of the year here so happy New year! January 11, 2012 at 9:01am Reply

  • Suzanna: I love that you have covered retro fragrance that isn’t collectible or subject to the exacting dialogue over vintage. I remember, dimly, the original K, but have never seen Krazy and now want to explore it.

    Italian perfumery always seems to be full of sunshine and joie de vivre, even when on the heavy end of the scale. January 11, 2012 at 9:43am Reply

  • Kym: I wore K de Krizia as a signature scent for a few years in the 80’s. Couldn’t get enough of it. Then one day “poof,” and I didn’t want to wear it anymore. I came across a vintage bottle last year and bought it just to have it. It is a lovely and underloved scent. January 11, 2012 at 10:59am Reply

  • Elisa: Ooh this sounds good. I haven’t tried any of the Krizia fragrances. Shame they’re DC’ed. I may investigate unsniffed mini’s…. January 11, 2012 at 11:42am Reply

  • civava: I have Krizia Africa. It is warm spicy. I have to digg my miniature of K or Krazy from the basement and give it a smell. January 11, 2012 at 11:49am Reply

  • Lynn Morgan: OMG! Olefactory nostalgia! I loved Teatro alla Scala! I remember wearing it briefly while helping a friend create a madri gras mask based on “Aida”! It was such a sexy and yes, theatrical scent. I am so sad to hear that it is gone.There was a moment, back in the 80’s when big, bold, even borderline overwhelming scents were in fashion- witness Poison, Giorgio, Opium, etc., but they faded away and lighter, more self-effacing scents seemed to rule the next decade or two. I’d love to score a “lost” bottle or two of Teatro and wear it in Venice! January 11, 2012 at 5:08pm Reply

  • Victoria: Fiori di Krizia was already good, a floral with a twist. Unfortunately, I do not see any of Krizia’s perfumes in stores here. January 11, 2012 at 9:26pm Reply

  • Victoria: Happy New Year, Nicola!
    Yes, very different style, more extroverted, louder, I would say. Italian market preferences interesting too. Big florals do well there, as do straightlaced citrus colognes for men. January 11, 2012 at 9:27pm Reply

  • Victoria: Full of sunshine and joie de vivre also describes Mandelli’s collections well. Krizia is still alive as a fashion house, from what I read, but I do not find the clothes to be that interesting. January 11, 2012 at 9:29pm Reply

  • Victoria: K de Krizia has so much presence! And the drydown is just gorgeous. January 11, 2012 at 9:29pm Reply

  • Victoria: I bought pretty much the whole collection of minis from Ebay for a few dollars. It was already a few years ago, but you can still find them at low prices. January 11, 2012 at 9:31pm Reply

  • Victoria: Oh, that’s another good one. The spice notes in Africa are warm and comforting, but still sexy. January 11, 2012 at 9:31pm Reply

  • Victoria: Teatro alla Scala makes me want to put on my silk sleeveless dress a la Dolce & Gabbana classical style, gold bangles and let my hair down. As does Krazy Krizia! January 11, 2012 at 9:35pm Reply

  • k-amber: I had K de Krizia and Teatro alla Scala and liked them very much. I loved sweet tabacco and the bottle of Teatro alla Scala very much. They were bold!

    Kaori January 12, 2012 at 9:07pm Reply

  • Victoria: Bold is I how think of them too! And dramatic even. I miss that kind of verve. Today so many perfumes smell pale and limpid, so I crave the richer compositions for a change of pace.

    Is Krizia sold in Japan? I only see it in Italy and time to time in France at the perfume counters. In the US, the only place I’ve encountered Krizia was at the discounters. January 13, 2012 at 11:22am Reply

  • Bryan Ross: K de Krizia is amazing stuff! I must look into Krazy Krizia, thanks for the review. January 13, 2012 at 6:35pm Reply

  • k-amber: I barely remember buying K de Krizia in Japan and Scala at a duty-free shop somewhere. At that time the line was easy to spot.

    After early 90's I had a "dark age" for finding favorite perfumes for a while. Based on the statistics you posted, the market trend, I somewhat understand the reason.
    Kaori January 13, 2012 at 8:32pm Reply

  • Victoria: Definitely try it, Bryan. If you liked K de Krizia, I think that you will appreciate the style of Krazy Krizia (of course, their olfactive characters are different.) January 13, 2012 at 8:57pm Reply

  • Victoria: I love duty-free shops, even if I do not buy anything. Just seeing the available selection (and the odd duty-free exclusive editions) is worth a visit. 🙂 January 13, 2012 at 8:58pm Reply

  • Rednails: I have K, Teatro and Moods de Krizia but I’ve never tried Krazy. Like the ones I have very much. January 16, 2012 at 7:56pm Reply

  • Mags: Amazing Review Victoria.
    I’ve always liked Krazy most of all th Krizia scents not only because it’s connected with my teenage but also because it had a delicious tonka bean (more than vanilla) facet topped by the mandarin/apple cider-like aspect. Quite 80’s indeed with the typical Ropion diffusivity, but in a very good way. January 15, 2013 at 12:14pm Reply

  • Annette Reynolds: I don’t know where I was – perfume-wise – in the late 80s and early 90s, but I sure missed a lot of pretty spectacular scents that actually work for me now!

    I have only JUST NOW discovered Krazy Krizia. Five minutes ago I dabbed on my first test from a miniature bottle I bought on eBay. And four minutes and 59 seconds ago I fell in love!

    This fragrance works so well for me that I’m astonished, because I have so much trouble finding a perfume.

    Another monster 80s (?) fragrance that passed me by in its time was “Mackie.” I began reading about it a few months ago, purchased a bottle as a blind tester and again fell head over heels. Mackie works for me. Period. And the compliments I’ve gotten have confirmed that it isn’t just me.

    Oh. I just took another sniff of my wrist and I’m swooning… 🙂

    Thanks for the great review, Victoria – even though I’m just now coming to read it a year and a half later! October 16, 2014 at 11:25am Reply

    • Victoria: Enjoy it! It’s really a terrific perfume, and if you love Shalimar and its family, then Krazy Krizia is perfect. October 16, 2014 at 11:46am Reply

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