Part 1: No. 19 Eau de Parfum
Chanel No. 19 Eau de Parfum is to me a very "posh" perfume. It's powdery and elegant, and I can imagine the kind of woman who would wear it. Very controlled, very posh, but still young and beautiful. I think some kind of successful woman or rich woman. Personally I really like the Eau de Toilette and I wear it myself (I find the EdT works better on a man's skin). But first let me describe what it smells like.
This perfume has a gorgeous iris/orris root note. It is well known that the type of iris used by Chanel, iris pallida, comes exclusively from a specific field in Grasse (exclusive to Chanel, it previously used to be from Florence, Italy)... and iris butter (made from roots which are dried for at least 3 years) itself is one of the most expensive perfume ingredients on earth, with the best quality (80% purity) costing around £70,000 (or $105,000) per kg. So what you get here is a wonderful iris note. This is an iris note surrounded by rose (also exclusively from Chanels field in Grasse), lilly-of-the-valley, and some green oakmoss and soft sandalwood. I would describe the Eau de Parfum as a "soft" fragrance. Soft but powerful. It smells expensive. The EdT is brighter, greener and more "alive" somehow. This one is very calm and controlled, but very beautiful. If you thought the EdT was too "green" or "sharp", this EdP is more controlled and powdery. In a word, it smells like expensive "perfume". So I would expect a woman who was rich or wealthy to smell like this. But it's a wonderful smell, and iris is definitely one of my favourite notes in perfumery.
Part 2: A tale of two sisters... Chanel No.19 & Jacomo Silences
Now, I want to compare between Chanel No. 19 and Jacomo Silences, as these perfumes are often compared together. Let's first start by saying that No. 19 was first, and so most other "similar" perfumes are descended or "inspired" by that one. But there is something about Silences that I like, which No. 19 doesn't have... and that is an entirely different character and personality. From the start these two are very different. Put it this way, if they were "sisters", then No. 19 (the older sister) would be the wealthy, successful rich woman of society. She has married someone rich, she lives in a nice, expensive house, she hosts dinner parties wearing her perfect black dress and pearl necklace and earrings. She hangs out with rich, wealthy people in society. She has perfect white skin, like a Greek statue, perfect hair, perfect nails. Perfect life. But, she is cold, she is quietly unhappy. She has everything but she feels like she has no control. Like her rich, successful life has been "planned" for her by others. She smiles for guests, and laughs politely, but when she takes off her makeup at night in her mirror, she sometimes wants to cry.
Her younger sister is Silences. This one you could call a "free spirit". She is an artist and was once a beautiful model. She is a painter. She lives in a small, cute house by the river. She goes for a run every morning with her dog. She does not take everything in life too seriously, but she enjoys every minute of her life. She spends most of her time outdoors, in nature. She loves being in nature, running, painting, enjoying the different seasons. She loves who she wants, and she lives each day to the full. Cooking, being artistic, with the dog, out in the woods. She has no regrets in life. She does not have the money that her older sister "acquired" by marrying a rich man. She does not smell so expensive like her older sister, but she has character, and a big heart. She does not want anything more in her life, and she is happy.
To me these are the differences. They are both green, both have an iris note, but this note is unbeatable in the Chanel, and is powdery, floral and smells clean, polished and expensive. The Jacomo smells "greener", like you are in the forest outside, with the smell of herbs and green leaves which the Chanel doesn't have. Basically, if you are an "active" person, or if you have memories of childhood in the countryside, then you will like and enjoy Silences. But if you want to smell the smell of "perfume", or want something "posh" or "expensive", then go for No. 19. Both are great choices. I think the Jacomo is a little more relaxed and carefree, but if you want to impress or are in a very formal situation, then go for the Chanel. Both are masterpieces!