Monday, December 20, 2010

"Mother--How Vicious!" The Age Old Allure of the Perfume Cabinet


A few weeks ago, I came across this wonderful clip on youtube. It's from an early Joan Crawford movie, a silent called Our Dancing Daughters, released in 1928. Crawford was quite a dancer, and her earliest films made the most of that energy, casting her as carefree, hedonistic flappers.

As a friend reminded me, this wasn't the last time Joan would be featured alongside perfume. Eleven years later, she played cut-throat, gold-digging perfume sales associate Crystal Allen, who sells perfume to rival Norma Shearer's husband, then steals his heart. Our Dancing Daughters presents a different angle; perfume is still alluring, but not the weapon of adultery. It's all about fun and fantasy:

7 comments:

Angela Cox said...

My goodness what a gal , so Joan was quite attractive when she was young? I think I spotted a Nuit de Noel but it's a bit fuzzy . My husband just passed and said "that wall wouldn't be big enough for you ".I love the silk drawers too ! According to my late Mum two of my aunts were flappers addicted to cinema . I can see my late aunt Beatty sewing flappers clothes and horrifying the neighbours ,"decent" working folk ! I wonder what the naughty fragrance was ?They don't look like they do much sailing at that sailing club . Heavens images of Jeeves and Wooster keep passing in my mind. I really love that art-deco wrap . If there is a period of fashion I love it's the 1920s . Well Brian and Abigail have a great holiday and here's wishing lots of fragrant delights !

Karin said...

Wouldn't we all love to know what perfumes were on those shelves!

brian said...

Yes, Karin, I know I would.

brian said...

Angela, I wouldn't dare show this clip to my SO. He'd laugh me out of the room. How quaint those little shelves would look to him.

tarleisio said...

So far as I recall, the Twenties were a huge decade for...decadent Orientals. To think - each and every one of those glories laden with...civet, opoponax, labdanum, styrax, oakmoss, ambergris, musk...

As if wondering which bottles lurked on those shelves isn't bad enough, now I think of the contents...and suddenly, I feel faint.

Joan Crawford epitomized 'flapper' long before she became known as the 24K b****, or even Mommy Dearest...and I have to say - she was devastating!

FruitDiet said...

Crawford is actually THE reason I started wearing Youth-Dew. When I had the bath oil I'd take luxurious Youth-Dew baths and try to emulate that scene from The Women where she's in the tub.

brian said...

I've never tried the bath oil in the bath. I always wear it. Does it work well? How much does one use?