The opening remarkable: A triad of lavender, jasmine and bergamot combine to a unique impression that is more than the sum of its parts; and, together with a unusual daffodil that arises a bit later and has some aniseed attached to it, it results in a delicious experience.
The drydown adds a rose - a Guerlain staple in those days, as well as a lovely gardenia impression that might derive form the bouvardia. The next arrival is a strong carnation, and there is a minty note in the background for a while. Further into the heart notes I get a herbal component - or more like a small herb garden that is growing clary sage and marjoram. I can get some anise lingering at that stage, and it has the character of toasted almond brioche at some stage. These various components are not only mixed together randomly, but each component store into the foreground to shine in the limelight an alternating fashion, like a sting quartet where each instrument has its solo parts.
A darker side arrives towards the beginning of the base notes in form of an orris root, which is given added depth by a dark musk. There is a whiff of tonka and later a restrained and fairly discreet vanilla that carries the base for a while before a woodsy impression developed towards the end; it has a touch of acacia but mostly consists if a nonspecific woodsiness.
I get moderate sillage, good projection and seven hours of longevity on my skin; the last few hours essentially as a skin scent.
The first stages of this gorgeous scent for spring evenings are of crazy-ly phenomenal beauty, but the end stages lost intensity and are a bit too subtle at times. Indubitably the quality of the ingredients is superb, and the blending, especially for the first few hours, is sublime. Overall 4.25/5.
Originally released in 1912, the same year as the iconic L'Heure Bleue, this is a variant take on that classic, emphasizing herbal rather than floral notes.
I had to look up what the scent of bouvardia was, since I have never come across its use in perfumery before. According to the internet it has the fragrance of a light gardenia, not surprising as its small tubular white flowers resemble both jasmine and tuberose.
Guerlain named this Fol Arome, which translates to Crazy Scent. It may have been an odd re-working of the L'Heure Bleue notes for him, but its scent is hardly crazy by today's standards.
This is a very rich, yet quiet, herbal bouquet, subdued, fresh and minty at first, then calming down to a combination of lavender, sage and marjoram, the scent one gets by brushing one's open palm across the upright stems of an herb garden. The guerlinade with its rose and vanilla softness is present in support.
This is masterful blending at its very best. One gets whiffs of all the notes, in different combinations, as it dries down.
Certainly unisex by today's standards and very much ahead of its time. So many simplistic scents on the market today go for an herbal vibe marjoram, basil, mint, fig, thyme, etc., but they don't possess Fol Arome's beautiful underpinnings of the freshly baked pastry vibe one gets from L'Heure Bleue. One can almost imagine pastries sprinkled with fresh herbs as a variant to the usual fruit fillings and almond creams.
This is a delicious scent, one to be sought out by all fans of L'Heure Bleue. Though re-released in 1947, it did not catch on and was quickly discontinued. Only a handful of sellers on the internet possess bottles of this rarity, but they are out there.