Tom Ford Private Blend Fleur de Chine : Perfume Review

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Tom Ford’s Private Blend Collection is a mixed bag. It’s too large and hard to navigate. Some fragrances are excellent enough to justify the high prices; others barely stand out. I can list further complaints, but the truth is that I keep returning to the collection and smelling all of its launches, because when Tom Ford scores, he really does offer something impressive. Such is the case with Fleur de Chine.

fleurdechine

When I first tried Fleur de Chine, it intrigued me, but I wasn’t quite sure what to make of it.  Shanghai Lily from the same Atelier d’Orient collection (it also includes Plum Japonais, Fleur de Chine and Rive d’Ambre) was an instant hit for its lush white flowers and generous dose of spice. Fleur de Chine wasn’t going to open up so easily, though. I loved its baroque, ornate character and its hints of retro glamour, but it took its time to grow on me.

Now, a year later, I can say with confidence that this is the best fragrance from Tom Ford’s Private Blend collection. It’s complex, distinctive, with a neo-classical shape and interesting development. It has all of the hallmarks of a timeless perfume, for its references to the great classics that came before and original twists throughout. Fleur de Chine has a baroque character, but it’s not so high-maintenance that it can’t accompany you to the grocery store, library, or worn discretely, to the office. You don’t need to dress up for this perfume, but it will make you feel as if you’re in couture head to toe. It’s a shame that it seems to be lost in the over-bloated Private Blend collection, without more of a spotlight.

Describing Fleur de Chine as a spicy magnolia set on top of plums and sandalwood is too simple. It has so many layers that you can easily enjoy it like a good book–sit down in a comfortable armchair with a cup of tea, spray the perfume on your wrist and follow the story. You  not only get a beautiful fragrance out of Fleur de Chine, but also a perfume history lesson. The start is a cool and sparkling floral aldehyde that calls to mind Balmain Ivoire and Lanvin Arpège. A dash of cinnamon, and soon you notice the creamy sweetness of plums, an impression that will linger long after the aldehydes are gone.

The combination of crushed green leaves and plums reminds me of Yves Saint Laurent Y, and to a lesser extent, Guerlain Mitsouko. These references are subtle, not at all contrived, and the result is original. The magnolia is the star of the composition, but sheer rose and hyacinth add other facets. The drydown is seductive and enveloping, rich in milky sandalwood and musk. As your day slips into the evening, Fleur de Chine wraps you in soft moss and woods. And now it is the classical French chypre, ornate and plush. It takes several hours to get there (and yes, its lasting power is excellent), but this is what makes this perfume so intriguing. It doesn’t reveal all of its cards at once.

While I’m waxing poetic over Fleur de Chine, I realize that it might appeal the most to those who like retro flavors. You have to enjoy the starchy, metallic fizz of aldehydes and the vintage vibe of fruity chypres like Balenciaga Quadrille and Rochas Femme. Part of Fleur de Chine’s charm is its nod to the grand parfums of the past, and while its reinterpretation is novel, it is still the child of another era.

Tom Ford Private Blend Atelier d’Orient Fleur de Chine (Eau de Parfum) includes notes of star magnolia, clementine, bergamot, hyacinth, jasmine tea, plum, rose, white peach, wisteria, cedarwood, amber, benzoin, styrax, and vetiver. 50ml/$215.

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90 Comments

  • Patricia: Magnolia, plums, and sandalwood, oh my! This one is definitely going on my sample list.
    🙂 October 27, 2014 at 8:11am Reply

    • Victoria: It’s also very green and not at all sweet, despite all of these sweet notes. October 27, 2014 at 10:02am Reply

      • Rowanhill: The “green and not at all sweet” convinced me, I will give it a try. The idea of jammy plums first totally put me off as my skin magnifies tenfold any sweetness a perfume has. October 29, 2014 at 11:12am Reply

        • Victoria: The plums aren’t jammy at all here. Imagine more like the skin of plums or peaches. That kind of feel. October 29, 2014 at 11:25am Reply

          • Rowanhill: Just you writing it I can taste the plum skins, their fruity tartness that sometimes feels in the jaw joint. Will definitely find this fragrance. November 2, 2014 at 5:37am Reply

            • Victoria: They have it at Senteurs d’Ailleurs on Place Stephanie. 🙂 November 2, 2014 at 6:46am Reply

  • Annikky: Victoria, I was so excited to see the subject of the review and even more excited to see the five stars. FdC was a love of first sniff for me, it’s my favourite Ford if I don’t count the discontinued Velvet Gardenia and and even if I do, FdC would win on complexity. My only complaint is that I have to spray quite liberally if I want to smell everything and even then I feel that it’s too subtle, I’m missing things.

    I haven’t encountered anything quite like it and although it’s undeniably glamorous, it’s also almost casual. I find it much easier to wear than the classic big perfumes. I probably need a bottle for Christmas, as all my samples are gone now. October 27, 2014 at 8:17am Reply

    • Victoria: Velvet Gardenia, Champaca Absolute, Cafe Rose, Bois Marocain, Shanghai Lily and this perfume are among my favorites from the collection. They are the only ones for which I can’t find decent alternatives. Fleur de Chine caught my attention right away, but I was distracted by the easy beauty of Shanghai Lily at first. It’s really a wonderful fragrance that doesn’t smell quite like anything else among the recent launches. And I agree that Fleur de Chine is much easier to wear than any big classics. October 27, 2014 at 10:06am Reply

      • Alessandra: My fave remains Tobacco Vanille. Gets me everytime. I have a sample of Shanghai Lily, which I find OK but not much up my street. Will revisit it. Eager to try Fleur de Chine now! October 27, 2014 at 11:06am Reply

        • Victoria: I need to try Tobacco Vanille again, because it’s been a while since I wore it. October 27, 2014 at 11:36am Reply

  • solanace: Love Shangai Lilly to bits, and will smell this one as soon as I can. Talk about a compelling review! October 27, 2014 at 9:09am Reply

    • Victoria: They are very different, of course, but if you like classics, it’s worth a try. October 27, 2014 at 10:07am Reply

      • solanace: I love the classics, the retro, complex and baroque. This is something I really want to try, now. 🙂 October 27, 2014 at 10:40am Reply

        • Victoria: Then it might just be the right thing. 🙂 I also realize wearing it right now that it has something of Guerlain Chamade in its combination of rose and hyacinth. October 27, 2014 at 11:34am Reply

  • Cynthia: Thank you! I loved this one at first sniff but it seemed to get ignored. All the love was going to Shanghai Lily. When I sprayed it, it instantly took me back to the early 80’s when I wore a Lauren perfume called Tuxedo. I’m not saying this smells the same; to be honest, I can’t remember the exact scent of that one. I just remember I felt so sophisticated when I sprayed that on. Not many people wore it and I was always asked what it was. Wish I’d thought to buy a few extras! For some reason, Fleur de Chine gives me that same vibe. I find it unexpected and lovely. So happy you like it! October 27, 2014 at 9:26am Reply

    • Victoria: I think that Shanghai Lily has all of the hallmarks of a perfumista perfume, so to speak–a big white floral accord, spices, woods, resins, incense, lots of presence. Fleur de Chine is more wistful and understated by comparison. It’s too bad that it kind of got lost in the collection. October 27, 2014 at 10:09am Reply

  • Phyllis Iervello: I love this Tom Ford creation and own a bottle. It reminds me a little of a very old fragrance called Crepe de Chine (by Millot I think if my memory serves me correctly)…but perhaps it is just the similarity of the name. October 27, 2014 at 9:37am Reply

    • Victoria: Me too! I immediately thought of Crepe de Chine, but since I didn’t have a sample on hand to compare, I was unsure if they are really similar or if I’m influenced by the name. It does have a feel of a mossy perfume from the 50s or 60s, though. October 27, 2014 at 10:10am Reply

      • Phyllis Iervello: Victoria, this may sound ridiculous,, but in my head (or nose) I can still smell the fragrance of Crepe de Chine. I loved that perfume and it was one of my very first ones when I was young. October 27, 2014 at 10:28am Reply

        • Victoria: Not at all ridiculous! When you wear a perfume for a long time, you really memorize it, and our scent memories are like nothing else. Crepe de Chine was really an exceptional fragrance. October 27, 2014 at 11:33am Reply

  • Hannah: I was going to go to KaDeWe to smell some perfumes tomorrow, and I’ll give it a try. It doesn’t sound like my type, but I don’t really know what vintage aldehydes are like.
    Rodrigo Flores-Roux is interesting to me because he did one of my least favorites (Happy) and one of my all time favorites (Black Cashmere).
    It isn’t original, but my favorite is Plum Japonais. There are alternatives, such as Feminite du Bois, but there’s something about Plum Japonais that makes it the winner for me. Not the price, though. October 27, 2014 at 10:52am Reply

    • Victoria: I know what you mean. Plum Japonais is in the same ballpark as Feminite du Bois, but it’s different still. There is more incense, more darker woods, more spice. It’s warmer and richer. I like it very much. October 27, 2014 at 11:35am Reply

      • Hannah: As an alternative to Plum Japonais, I’d rather look for something with a similar mood rather than similar notes. Actually notes barely matter to me these days. My last purchase, tubereuse criminelle, is full of notes that i dont like, for example.
        I tried this and a few other private blends on cards today, but I think it needs to be tried on skin. October 28, 2014 at 6:03pm Reply

        • Victoria: I agree with you. It’s best to go by the smell than by the listed notes. Jasmine can be a dozen of different things in fragrance, for instance. October 29, 2014 at 6:26am Reply

          • Hannah: Today I tried Fille en Aiguilles. I had heard Plum Japonais was a copy of FeA, but I found the comparison to be odd because a) there’s no pine in Plum Japonais and b) it smells similar to FdB. I can’t pinpoint similarities between Plum Japonais and FeA like I can with FdB (both have fruit and woods, but Plum Japonais is distinctly plum and Fille en Aiguilles is distinctly pine) but somehow I do think FeA is more like Plum Japonais. And Fille en Aiguilles may actually be my favorite of the three. I’m not calling Plum Japonais a copy, btw. October 31, 2014 at 9:16am Reply

            • Victoria: Hmm, I wouldn’t peg them as copies, since they start out from such different accords. I see more of Feminite du Bois in Plum Japonais then Fille en Aiguilles. October 31, 2014 at 11:49am Reply

    • limegreen: I agree, there is that extra something (incense without a heavy hand). I love Plum Japonais as well. I think PJ is smokier on skin than FdB, at least on my skin. PJ smoulders where FdB blooms.
      Thanks for a beautiful review, Victoria.
      I did not give Fleur de Chine a second sniff when the quartet came out but the TF SA was keenest on Shanghai Lily and Fleur de Chine. I think your review get a lot of us to not overlook it! October 27, 2014 at 6:48pm Reply

      • Victoria: That’s a great way to differentiate Plum Japonais and Feminite du Bois, I think. Plum Japonais really smolders! October 28, 2014 at 9:39am Reply

  • deborah: For almost 2 years I’ve been reading this blog – this is the first 5 star review I’ve seen you give! What a glamorous description, i can’t wait to try it. October 27, 2014 at 11:10am Reply

    • Victoria: I’m sparing with those 5 stars, but there has been only one more 5-star perfume this year from me, Guerlain’s Habit Rouge. And last year, there were Lalique Encre Noire, Atelier Cologne Orange Sanguine, and Serge Lutens La Fille de Berlin. I don’t remember if there were others. October 27, 2014 at 11:40am Reply

      • Victoria: P.S. here is a link to all 5-star perfumes
        http://boisdejasmin.com/rating/5-stars
        It doesn’t mean that they are the only exceptional ones, just the ones I personally loved. October 27, 2014 at 11:41am Reply

      • Patricia: I wore La Fille de Berlin last night to dinner with friends and was reminded yet again what a great rose fragrance it is. October 27, 2014 at 1:10pm Reply

        • Victoria: I was wearing it this weekend too, and it made me wonder why I bother smelling other rose fragrances. It just feels so perfect to me. October 27, 2014 at 2:14pm Reply

          • Alessandra: I agree! I am difficult with rose perfumes, but La Fille conquered me immediately October 28, 2014 at 8:39am Reply

            • Victoria: It has so many elements in it, not just another straightforward rose! October 28, 2014 at 9:51am Reply

  • Karina: Sounds interesting. I wish I could more easily try Tom Ford’s fragrances, for the ones that I have tried have always been interesting if nothing else. I was gifted a bottle of Velvet Orchid earlier this year which I always enjoy wearing, though I do feel too underdressed for it sometimes! October 27, 2014 at 11:16am Reply

    • Victoria: I haven’t tried Velvet Orchid yet. Here there is a good selection of his fragrances, and it seems that they sell really well at the one boutique in Brussels that carries the whole collection. October 27, 2014 at 11:44am Reply

  • lupo: Thanks for the lovely review Victoria.
    I must say I’m thoroughly impressed with the Atelier D’Orient collection, Fleur de Chine is exceptional, and so is Shangai Lily, and I’m a big fan of Rive D’Ambre as well. In my Opinion, of all Private Blends this particular collection really stands out. It is sumptuous – that’s the only word I can find to describe it! October 27, 2014 at 11:38am Reply

    • Victoria: I agree, Lupo! This quarter was excellent overall, especially in comparison to the first 12 they launched, which stood out less. But Atelier d’Orient really captures the sumptuous, rich, and slightly retro feel of Tom Ford’s fragrance aesthetic. October 27, 2014 at 11:47am Reply

  • Aurora: What an interesting and comprehensive description, thank you, Victoria.

    I love that you list some ‘sister’ or ‘cousin’ scents and so glad to see among them Quadrille, I open it sometimes just to remind myself what a vintage chypre should smell like. Would you call Fleur de Chine and Quadrille fruity chypres?

    I usually stay away from TF because of the price, but your description is too tempting, I will at least try and sample it – hoping though not to fall to much in love.

    Nonetheless, it wonderful to know that it exists. October 27, 2014 at 11:50am Reply

    • Victoria: Quadrille can be classified as a fruity chypre, and it’s also really ambery. Fleur de Chine is much more floral, but the fruity note (which is between plum and peach skin) is big too. I suppose that calling it a floral oriental would also work.

      I hear you on the price, which is too much, even for a perfume this good. I always think that if the same fragrance was launched by another brand, it would cost much less. But there are not so many brands that would go for this kind of style. October 27, 2014 at 11:58am Reply

  • Carla: Very interesting. Probably not for me, based on the description. Also I am not a fan of the Tom Ford brand and price. But it’s clear you have thought this through and I trust your five star rating October 27, 2014 at 12:08pm Reply

    • Victoria: The prices, for the most part, are very high, but at least, the quality is very good. October 27, 2014 at 2:06pm Reply

  • maja: As soon as I read this I went to see if I can order a couple of samples risking to break a promise to myself – no buy until 2015. I haven’t done it (it took a lot of strength) but I’ll make sure to order them on the first of January. 🙂 Sounds utterly gorgeous. I have tried only a couple of TF Amber Absolute being one of them. I could smell it inside my coat sleeve for a month. 🙂 It was really good. October 27, 2014 at 12:23pm Reply

    • Victoria: Nah, don’t break a promise you made to yourself! Better wait till January and in the meantime, fantasize about a new samples collection. October 27, 2014 at 2:08pm Reply

  • Austenfan: Well this might be the Tom Ford that I may fall in love with! Mind you I liked Shanghai Lily, not enough to want to spend that much money but this one sounds seriously good! October 27, 2014 at 12:36pm Reply

    • Victoria: This one is very different from all the rest. It really feels like something timeless and really special. October 27, 2014 at 2:08pm Reply

  • minette: well, that’s the first five-star review i’ve seen from you in a long, long time! so i’m definitely paying attention.

    and it’s not just the five stars – your description has my tastes written all over it! so of course now i must try it.

    ha. just when i am about to pare down my collection, you hit me with this temptation!

    cheers,
    minette October 27, 2014 at 12:39pm Reply

    • Victoria: I wore it for the past year and I find that I only like it more and more. I do love these green, fruity chypres, and I love its retro touches too. October 27, 2014 at 2:10pm Reply

  • maggiecat: This was my favorite of the Atelier scents that came out last year, and I think I’m going to have to go back and sample it again. It seemed different to me every time I tried it – the mark of a complex and intriguing perfume! October 27, 2014 at 12:53pm Reply

    • Victoria: Same here! I also find it evolving and changing, which is another reason it caught my attention. October 27, 2014 at 2:11pm Reply

  • Erry: I smell it at a duty free shop in Qatar airport. I loved it instantly but the price kept me from buying it. It’s beyond my perfume budget. October 27, 2014 at 1:08pm Reply

    • Victoria: Yes, that’s very high for 50ml. October 27, 2014 at 2:12pm Reply

  • Cornelia Blimber: I love perfumes in the retro style, like La Panthère, and Black Orchid. Maybe Fleur de Chine as well (I love plum in a perfume), but when it has something of Chamade, then maybe not. Chamade is the only Guerlain I cannot wear (i.mo. it is the hyacinth, I don’t like that smell ).
    De Bijenkorf carries it, I am curious! October 27, 2014 at 1:20pm Reply

    • Victoria: Do try it! Chamade, after all, is only my impression, and you may not find it in Fleur de Chine. October 27, 2014 at 2:15pm Reply

  • George: Are the bottles baudruchaged? Or is the baudruchage in the picture a skeuomorph? There’s a computer programme used by record companies that listens to songs recorded and then predicts if they are going to be hits or not, by mapping them in a sort musical universe, and those that are likely to be hits crowd together in three separate areas of that universe. Fleur de Chine sounds like it’s in one of those areas, surround by everything from Feminite de Bois and Chinatown to Futur to Le Parfum de Therese to the chypres you mention. Although I think a classical chypre done with high quality ingredients is worth a price approaching that of TF for this, if I loved this and wanted a bottle, I think I’d have to try and haggle them down. When I try this on your recommendation, I kind of hope I like it, because haggling with the T Ford counter sounds like fun. Plus, as it is so related to so many other fragrances, there’s real grounds to do it! October 27, 2014 at 1:42pm Reply

    • Victoria: I don’t think Estee Lauder uses baudruchage. Not sure, though.

      If you like the 50s style chypres, then do try it. Otherwise, I don’t recommend it, even if haggling with the Tom Ford people is your idea of fun. 🙂 October 27, 2014 at 2:20pm Reply

      • George: I”ve noticed that even some of the lower range look like they have baudruchaged: it must just be ornamental. “Fur coat, no knickers” springs to mind! 🙂 October 27, 2014 at 2:49pm Reply

        • Victoria: I haven’t noticed this myself. It’s kind of hard to fake baudruchage, since it is just a fine film covering cap and neck of the bottle. Even if one used some other material, it still means lots of manual work. Few brands can afford it. The golden thread that you see in the photo of Tom Ford’s bottle is not baudruchage, it’s just a regular threaded seal. It does appear on the bottles, but only the largest sizes (which are priced extravagantly to match). October 28, 2014 at 9:32am Reply

          • George: Take a look at the White Patchouli, Black Orchid and Velvet Orchid Bottles. The thread around the neck and the TF insignia give the impression of the bottle having been baudruchaged (even if there is no actual baudruche). It’s a really good example of a skeuomorph- where something is not being practically used but the decorative aspect of it remains in some form- like the guttae on Ancient Greek temples. October 28, 2014 at 11:15am Reply

            • Victoria: It looks just like a regular threaded seal to me, which used to be very common, but now less so, since it can be relatively costly. The closest thing to an imitation baudruche would be the plastic film used by Serge Lutens to cover the stoppers and necks of the bell jars. October 28, 2014 at 11:32am Reply

              • George: But if you look at the lower range Tom Ford, you will see the thread goes around the neck of the bottle, and in no way seals the bottle: it is solely decorative, and has no practical function, yet in terms of design it references either baudruchage (by which I mean the application of the baudcruche, the holding place in place with a thread, and the application of a wax seal to the thread) or threaded seals used without baudruches. October 28, 2014 at 11:48am Reply

                • Victoria: Yes, I have a few older Caron bottles like that. A pretty thing, just for looks. October 28, 2014 at 12:05pm Reply

  • spe: So happy to see this review! It is becoming my signature. Other TF frags are too sweet or too unisex for my preference. October 27, 2014 at 2:22pm Reply

    • Victoria: I don’t like that many perfumes out of that huge collection, but this fragrance is so memorable. October 27, 2014 at 2:27pm Reply

  • Undina: When it comes to loving perfumes and buying full bottles of them, I usually do not care for the most people’s attitude towards the scents I choose. I often buy less popular (by the general blogosphere’s predisposition) perfumes. I don’t do it on purpose but I’m used to it. But it makes me feel really good that you gave such a high rating to perfume for which I seriously consider a bottle purchase. I’m a huge Tom Ford fan, I like and wear (from decants) many of his perfumes but until recently I didn’t think I’d need more than 10 ml of any of them. With Fleur de Chine I’m almost sure that I’ll want to wear it again and again and it’s the right bottle to represent my favorite brand in my collection. October 27, 2014 at 4:27pm Reply

    • Victoria: That’s the best way of going about it, and it’s clear that you know your tastes really well. Someone’s positive opinion may not translate into the best experience for another person.
      At any rate, I’m glad that I lived longer with Fleur de Chine and didn’t feel tempted to review it right away, before I could figure it out better. It’s really a wonderful, complex perfume. October 28, 2014 at 9:34am Reply

  • Andy: Wow, this sounds very special. Retro feel + magnolia + plum, I’m sold. I’ve been underwhelmed by some of the Tom Ford perfumes, but the ones that are good, it’s true, really do hit it out of the park. October 27, 2014 at 5:13pm Reply

    • Victoria: I was especially disappointed in their Lime Azure, which smells like something you can find at Macy’s for a fraction of the price. I anticipated something much more distinctive. October 28, 2014 at 9:36am Reply

  • annemarie: It takes a lot to tempt me to sample perfumes with this sort of price tag. I love Rochas Femme – the current version – but 100mls of that set me back maybe only $40? My Arpege was $50. YSL Y was under $50 I think. Mitsouko was comparatively expensive at over $100, but that was before I had discovered the online discounters. So, hmmm …

    Still, next time I get a discount code from Surrender to Chance I might buy a few mls of Fleur de Chine. Even if I fall for it, I’m unlikely ever to need very much of of it, given what I already own. Thank goodness for the decant services! Once upon a time it was all or nothing. You either owned a FB or you went without. October 28, 2014 at 4:54am Reply

    • Michaela: I think you are 100% right, Annemarie. All or nothing times are long gone. I’ll search for a decant of this one for sure, but a full bottle will probably always wait because the price is well over my perfume budget. October 28, 2014 at 7:22am Reply

    • Victoria: Yes, it’s high, there is no question about it, especially if you compare the price to the perfumes you mentioned (although Guerlain retail prices have increased considerably and some perfumes are no longer sold in small, less expensive sizes). Of course, while Fleur de Chine has some of these classical elements, it is a completely different perfume from Y, Femme and Arpege and has a very different character and sensation. Y, by the way, is itself a twist on Mitsouko.

      I like the idea of decants too. Since these days I add only 1-2 bottles a year to my perfume wardrobe, I prefer to sample and find something I truly love and want to have around. If after a year I still want it, then I buy it. Decants and samples can really help to avoid spontaneous purchases of full bottles. October 28, 2014 at 9:49am Reply

  • Sebastiaan: Hi Victoria, I worked for the Estee Lauder Companies a year ago and received the entire Atelier d’Orient Collection in 50ml. As a man I wear Plum Japonais every now and then when I go out. Although I love Fleur de Chine, I always feel it’s perhaps a bit too feminine for a man. What do you think? October 28, 2014 at 6:01am Reply

    • Victoria: Lucky you, Sebastiaan. I don’t know if it’s too feminine to me, but it will depend on which aspects of this perfume your skin might bring up. It is very floral, so maybe that’s what reads as feminine to you? October 28, 2014 at 9:50am Reply

  • Etomidac: Oh Victoria! I am SO glad you love this fragrance too!
    When the Orient collection launched, this was the one that I fell hard for, when most people preferred Shanghai Lily.
    This fragrance is one that doesn’t scream it’s presence but gives you an additional layer of class and elegance.
    I had to get the 250ml size later because the 50ml just was not enough!

    I know Mr. Ford has a tendency to delete certain creations to make room for new ones but I hope he knows better than to delete this. This is one to remain as a “pillar”! October 28, 2014 at 10:52am Reply

    • Etomidac: I just scrolled up and re-read your review and I agree absolutely with your view points.
      I get what you mean when you say this appeals to those with a taste for the retro.
      Estee Lauder’s Youth Dew and YSL’s Y remain as some of my absolute all-time favourites. October 28, 2014 at 11:02am Reply

      • Victoria: YSL Y must be one of the most delicate chypres, and it could be good for those who are new to the mossy scents. But it’s so hard to find, and I’m not sure how different it is today from the original version. Do you wear the vintage or the modern version? October 28, 2014 at 11:43am Reply

    • Victoria: Wow! You’re clearly a big fan. 🙂
      I also hope that they don’t discontinue this perfume, the way they did Velvet Gardenia, which is still my gardenia gold standard. October 28, 2014 at 11:33am Reply

  • Dk: Wow this does sound gorgeous! Sad to say though that I am quite behind on the whole private blend line. October 28, 2014 at 11:50am Reply

    • Victoria: It’s so big now that it’s hard to make sense of it. There are some very good perfumes in it, though. October 28, 2014 at 12:06pm Reply

  • Melinda: I have decants of the Atelier d’Orient collection, of which Shanghai Lily and Fleur de Chine were my favourites. I chose to purchase Shanghai Lily, because it spoke to me the most and because, for some reason, Fleur de Chine smells too similar to Chanel nr 22 on my skin 🙁 November 4, 2014 at 9:55am Reply

    • Victoria: I absolutely love Shanghai Lily, by the way, and I also found nothing else exactly like it. So, I’m still deciding… November 6, 2014 at 1:31pm Reply

  • Ralu: I couldn’t really smell Shanghai Lily. It was linear and weak. Fleur de Chine really spoke to me. I can’t tell why.Even though I stay away from aldehydes, I couldn’t stay away from this one. I had to have it so I gifted myself a fb on Christmas. I haven’t smelled Charlie in a while but it reminds me vaguely of it. It’s a total mystery why I like this perfume so much. My other favorite perfumes are Coromandel and Carnal Flower. December 26, 2014 at 9:43am Reply

  • Karen: Tried Fleurs de Chine and Shanghai Lily today after reading some comments on both – but had not read any reviews. Ended up loving Fleurs de Chine and my comment when smelling it after a few minutes was, Wow – I feel like such a grown up! The wonderful SA smiled, and in reading your review I now understand why that was my impression! May 15, 2015 at 4:16pm Reply

    • Victoria: I can’t get enough of this perfume, and I love that it smells elegant but still very easy to wear and not aloof or cold. Enjoy it! May 18, 2015 at 2:06am Reply

      • Karen: The SA (again, the SAs at Saks have all been super helpful and generous with their time and samples!) also gave me a beautiful travel atomizer of Shanghai Lily, which has a greater lasting time on me. It was a toss up between the two, but after 15/20 minutes Fleur de Chine was “it”.

        I just wish some of these stunning perfumes lasted longer on me! To make sure I’m just not smelling them, I will ask others – but some just require adding to lotions and more frequent spritzing. May 18, 2015 at 6:13am Reply

        • Victoria: Someone else mentioned Fleur de Chine not lasting that well, although I can smell it throughout the whole day. Not overwhelming sillage, but it’s there. May 19, 2015 at 12:13pm Reply

          • Karen: Fortunately it is soooooo beautiful that I’m happy to reapply frequently! May 19, 2015 at 5:35pm Reply

  • TJ: I just discovered this site and love your reviews. This one made me run to Nordstrom to try. They said this perfume is discontinued. There was no tester, just one giant bottle left for a discount of $275. So disappointed. October 9, 2015 at 3:10pm Reply

    • Victoria: That’s too bad that they decided to discontinue it. It was one of their best. October 9, 2015 at 5:06pm Reply

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  • Ninon in Recommend Me a Perfume : August 2017: Oh my! I’ve wondered about this one for ages. I will get my hands on a small vial 🙂 August 17, 2017 at 5:55pm

  • Ninon in Recommend Me a Perfume : August 2017: Thank you! I tried Ormonde Woman many years ago, when I was new to niche. I will be sure to try it again. And thanks for the Coty rec–Ma Griffe… August 17, 2017 at 5:52pm

  • Ninon in Recommend Me a Perfume : August 2017: Thank you so much! I actually just received a mini of vintage Niki Saint Phalle parfum this week and it is heavenly! I’ve been wondering about Zelda…I will be sure… August 17, 2017 at 5:50pm

  • rosarita in Recommend Me a Perfume : August 2017: Still relatively easy to find at discouters/eBay is Niki de St Phalle, a classic softer chypre. Estee Lauder Private Collection or Aliage also. For a more modern yet vintage feel,… August 17, 2017 at 4:23pm

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