Perfume Review: Jean Patou 1000
1000 was created for Patou in 1972 by Jean Kerléo (who is now the president of the Osmotheque). The story goes that it took the perfumer ten years to perfect the formula and that “1000” refers to thousand different submissions that were rejected before the final, perfect scent was decided upon. 1000, categorized by Michael Edwards as Floral Rich Bouquet, combines the notes of bergamot, coriander, eucalyptus, angelica, osmanthus, rose, jasmine, violet, sandalwood, patchouli, vetiver and civet in a blend of incomparable smoothness and elegance.
The House of Patou described 1000 as “the essence of extravagance”, hinting at the considerable cost of the ingredients and the luxurious feel of the composition. This extravagance however is of the most refined kind, the chic, supremely elegant extravagance that comes easily to a select few, lucky to be born with natural good taste and/or “old money”, and that is otherwise practically impossible to fake. Oxymoronic as it sounds, the extravagance of 1000 is inconspicuous. When I smell 1000, the words of Coco Chanel come to mind: “Some people think luxury is the opposite of poverty. It is not. It is the opposite of vulgarity.”
Chanel also insisted that “luxury must be comfortable, otherwise it is not luxury”, and this philosophy was clearly followed by the creators of 1000. The smooth scent envelopes a wearer like the second skin, the way some very expensive and very elegant silky gowns do. From the shimmering, green top accord of bergamot and angelica, scattered with icy sparkles of eucalyptus, to the generous, lavish, heartbreakingly beautiful heart of golden osmanthus, slightly indolic jasmine, sweet rose and powdery hint of violet and iris, to the rich, darker, discreetly animalic base of woods and amber, 1000 is an absolute, utter perfection. The notes are blended seamlessly, not a single one is out of place; the scent has no sharp corners, it is soft and creamy and thus, even though it is a Rich Bouquet indeed and a Perfume with capital P, it is incredibly easy to wear. I may have compared it to a silk evening gown, but 1000 does not seem out of place worn with a much more casual outfit; this graceful scent is marvelously versatile.
I will finish the post with yet another quote by the Queen of Elegance, Chanel:
"I love luxury. And luxury lies not in richness and ornateness but in the absence of vulgarity. Vulgarity is the ugliest word in our language. I stay in the game to fight it."
1000 is available at Bergdorf Goodman, where 2.5oz EDP Spray retails for $180.00.
The image is from bergdorfgoodman.com.