Toboggan by Brisson

Toboggan 1945

07.08.2013 - 10:59 PM
Helpful Review

Cinnamon Stars Over Paris

While I was visiting Grasse, I was fortunate to step into the past and admire the beautiful vintage perfumes inside a museum. With many of these treasures I have asked myself what these scents actually would smell like or what stories they could tell me. Unfortunately, as you know, that is not possible in a museum.

Now I am holding a real museum's piece in my happy hands and am thrilled to have the opportunity to smell it. With a sense of awe and respect, I am carefully holding the bottle ... with the awareness that there are maybe only three left in the world and that I acquired the Christmas Edition of the signature perfume of the house Brisson. Is it possible that the scent is still preserved? Yes, apparently this is possible because whoever had this scent before me, took good care of this treasure.

Alas, I was not able to learn much about this fragrance. From 1945 to 1950, the house Brisson was located at 65-67 Champs-Elysees in Paris. During that time only four perfumes were created. "Toboggan" was the first and was the signature perfume of the house Brisson.

Why the scent was named "Toboggan" I cannot say with any kind of certainty. That there was one of the first toboggans in Paris, or maybe was it the first toboggan ... could possibly be a reason. A toboggan was a large slide construction, built like a wooden tower. Even today there are these slides in Vienna or in Munich during the "Oktoberfest" - now, of course, in their modern versions. A conveyor belt transports you up and after a few steps, down you slide, all around the tower. Another meaning of toboggan is simply a sled, and those are depicted on the perfume's original packaging which was also amazingly well preserved.

Paris 1945. The first Christmas after the war in the liberated city of Paris. Most is still in ruins, rubble and ashes. The survivors are gathering new hope. The joy to have come through it all and to look forward into a new future. There was not any luxury, nor could it be expected. But the need for it was tremendous. This longing revived the fashion industry and the perfumery world. Creative noses returned to Paris, as did Elsa Schiaparelli and many others. Pierre Balmain opened his first atelier.

But now to the fragrance itself. Whether the Christmas Edition is exactly the same as the signature perfume, I am unable to say. In my opinion this particular scent matches the feeling of Christmas very well.

As a nonprofessional, I can only try to describe the scent in broad terms:

There are most likely aldehydes in the top notes. After a few minutes, while sniffing at my arm, I am perceiving mainly carnations and cinnamon. Perhaps a little rose is hidden somewhere. Oriental, warm and spicy this scent comes through. No sweet notes, only dark magnificent flowers sprinkled with cinnamon ... as if a thousand little cinnamon stars were spraying upon a flower garden. The base notes remain warm without animalic tendencies. I suspect patchouli and sandalwood.

Except for the top notes, this perfume reminds me very much of "Cinnabar", however considerably more delicate and finer.

On me, the sillage was only average as was the longevity, but on my mom those lasted a lot longer. Must have to do with my scent-devouring skin.

Now I have become even more eager to seek out further vintage scents ... except those from my immediate past, I mean the ones that I knew in my youth. This particular scent here brings to me happy fragrance moments from a time where my existence was not even planned yet. It gives me profound emotional impressions of a time and a place long ago.

(I have submitted a photo which is not yet in the System. Who wants to see it, must wait a bit.)
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