Kevin Guyer

Basenotes Dependent
Nov 16, 2006
According to Luca Turin, and other sources, Pierre Bourdon reworked his own 1985 creation, Green Irish Tweed into Cool Water in 1988.
So I ask, was Creed's Orange Spice also created by Mr. Bourdon at some undisclosed year, and then reworked by him into Kouros in 1981?
Creed claims that Orange Spice was created in 1950, but one of Basenotes esteemed Creed afficiandos, hirch_duckfinder just stated in another Creed thread that, "In fact, an historian and several other knowledgable fragrance enthusiasts have not seen any evidence whatsoever that they made fragrances before the 70's. Luca Turin made his opinion of their claimed history clear in his and Sachez's "Perfumes The Guide" and has not been sued."
Orange Spice and Kouros are just too close to be accidentally/coincidentally related, IMHO. I know it has been rumored that Mr. St. Laurent admired Orange Spice before Kouros was created, but does anyone have a bottle from the 1950s that would disprove my theory as Bourdon only began working professionally in the mid-70s.
Thanks for indulging me and any information leading to an answer to this question.
This has been nagging me since I smelled Orange Spice a few years ago.
 
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DULLAH

Basenotes Dependent
Oct 25, 2007
I'll buy the story off the strength of Pierre Bourdon's level of taste and execution, in pairing with the vacuum of pre-1980 CREED info.
 

Buzzlepuff

Basenotes Plus
Basenotes Plus
Dec 27, 2005
Well we all wonder what is truth and what is fiction about Creed's history. How much is marketing creative story telling and how much is actually fact. My first bottle of Orange Spice was purchased in the mid 1990's so I am little help.

Somebody should ask Mr. Bourdon himself! Does anyone here know him personally? I understand he has retired. He should put together a book that explains the evolution of the fragrances we all know and love from his past years of experience. His early history and close friendship Edmond Routnitska and his early work for Roure Bertrand would turn up very interesting foundational developments of the growing perfume industry in the 1970's.

But the real Creed history is a perplexing issue. Who knows what is real there.
 

shamu1

Basenotes Dependent
Feb 25, 2009
This has the potential of being a fascinating thread, but unfortunately no one seems to really know what Creed's history really is, other than the Creed family itself, and I dont' have much faith in them revealing the truth. I think the fact that information about Creed pre-1980s seems practically nonexistent speaks volumes.

Although I have yet to smell Orange Spice, I am an ardent Kouros fan, and like Ruggles, I'd love to know the truth about the origins of these two scents.
 

StylinLA

Basenotes Dependent
Aug 9, 2009
It was a funny shock to try Orange Spice. I shot it onto a sample card and recoiled laughing. Right out of the bottle- it shares a lot with Kouros, that's for sure. I haven't given it a longer test wear, so don't know what kind of dry down it has.

Any lover of Kouros has to give it a shot, just for the big grin when you first spray it out. What do I know, but the 1950 date seems a stretch. It may just be me, but I have a tough time imagining my dad's generation using something that intense in the 1950s.

As for Creed's mysterious history, the optimist in me tends to think they may have made small batches throughout the years, but probably didn't burst out as a main stream perfumer with any real retail presence until the 70s. It's certainly not impossible, but some of their older scents (Orange Spice excepted) just seem like they're from an earlier time. RSL, REL, TABAROME, AMBRE CANELLE.

You'd think we'd have one really old cranky Basenoter who would remember them from the 50s or 60s. OR, someone who remembers their dad always wore Epicea, Vetiver or Cuir de Russie.
 
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zztopp

Basenotes Dependent
Apr 2, 2006
According to a Basenoter (I forget her nick), Fleurs de Bulgarie has been listed in Empress Eugenie's official bio as a commissioned scent.

To think that no Creed scents existed before the 1970s is too unbelievable...maybe they didn't exist for commercial consumption. Also, the oldies have probably been reformulated.

BTW, does the fact that you made an effort to create this thread indicate that you like Orange Spice ?
 

Kevin Guyer

Basenotes Dependent
Nov 16, 2006
According to a Basenoter (I forget her nick), Fleurs de Bulgarie has been listed in Empress Eugenie's official bio as a commissioned scent. BTW, does the fact that you made an effort to create this thread indicate that you like Orange Spice ?
Interesting tidbit, is this official Empress Eugenie bio something that's easily found? And, yes, I do like OS and actually find it much more wearable than Kouros.
 

StylinLA

Basenotes Dependent
Aug 9, 2009
To think that no Creed scents existed before the 1970s is too unbelievable...maybe they didn't exist for commercial consumption. Also, the oldies have probably been reformulated.

I totally agree. I'm sure they've dabbled in scent for years and years whether or not it was commonly and easily available.

I think they would have to reformulate. Those early perfumes had to combat a LOT of stench. I can just imagine how potent some of that stuff was.
 

Aaron01

Basenotes Dependent
Mar 20, 2007
To think that no Creed scents existed before the 1970s is too unbelievable...maybe they didn't exist for commercial consumption. Also, the oldies have probably been reformulated.

Weren't there pictures of Creed bottles from the early 20th that were just listed like "Eau de Cologne" or something like that? They were then relabeled into current formulations. I think you're right in that most of Creed's scents were just in house bespoke blends that weren't for public sale.
 

Kevin Guyer

Basenotes Dependent
Nov 16, 2006
Does anyone here know which year the Paris Creed store in the 8th opened? The decor makes it look like it's been there since the 70s. This certainly must be easy to ascertain. I'm going to give it a web search.
 

mrcologneguy

Basenotes Plus
Basenotes Plus
Jan 2, 2009
Orange Spice = Kouros? Not a chance. I smell very little similarity between the two. Orange Spice has an old-school, "barbershoppy" feel to it. Kouros smells much more modern chemical to me.

And the "no Creed before 1970" idea. . . umm. . . have to say, sounds like something out of the "fake moonwalk" conspiracy theory handbook.
 

Kevin Guyer

Basenotes Dependent
Nov 16, 2006
Orange Spice = Kouros? Not a chance. I smell very little similarity between the two. Orange Spice has an old-school, "barbershoppy" feel to it. Kouros smells much more modern chemical to me.
I find Orange Spice's relationship to Kouros akin to that of GIT and Cool Water: one is done with an expensive mix of ingredients and the other is done with much cheaper materials. I think they're beyond close to each other; like big brother, little brother close.
 

Indie_Guy

Basenotes Dependent
Dec 13, 2003
I find Orange Spice's relationship to Kouros akin to that of GIT and Cool Water: one is done with an expensive mix of ingredients and the other is done with much cheaper materials. I think they're beyond close to each other; like big brother, little brother close.


I agree. One also has to admit as evidence the similarity between Creed's Original Santal and Montblanc's Individuel--also created by one Pierre Bourdon...
 

the_good_life

Basenotes Plus
Basenotes Plus
Jun 2, 2006
I've been intrigued by this question since Turin established the GIT-Cool Water link. I would not be surprised. As to Creed history, we've been over this so many times :)
Other niche brands have shown that you can create a line of dozens of perfumes out of nowhere in very short time. So it is not impossible that Creed truly only started in the late 60s. On the other hand the style of some fragrances is clearly old-fashioned, though I do not buy most of the dates floating around - e.g. Vintage Tabarome is mid 20s earliest (post-tabac blond and habanita). It is possible that Creed produced (or had made for them) generics following the trends of the day, but this would have been a negligible side of their tailoring business. I simply do not believe that a tailor catering to the courts of Europe, travelling from court to court with his entourage to take measure of kings & queens had time to waste on concocting perfumes in the back room. David G. Williams in Perfumes of Yesterday draws a compelling picture of Victorian perfumery as widely based on the coyping or slight modification of standard prescriptions from handbooks by pharmacists etc. with professionalization driven by ionly a handful of pioneers like Guerlain and Rimmel. Whatever Creed may have been selling at the time has little to do with their current offerings, I believe. I'm also sure that Bourdon is not the only pro that master perfumer Olivier Creed has made use of. I would not be surprised if numerous other better-known noses were behind Creed perfumes.
 

Kevin Guyer

Basenotes Dependent
Nov 16, 2006
the_good_life and Indie_Guy, thanks for you votes of confidence on the Boudron/Orange Spice connection. The plot always thickens with Creed inquiries, but never congeals. I tried to Google the opening date of the Paris Creed boutique without any luck. Any ideas? Thanks again for becoming part of this search for the beginning of Creed's perfumery origins.
 

narcus

Basenotes Dependent
Mar 9, 2005
I would not be surprised if numerous other better-known noses were behind Creed perfumes.
I would be very surprised if this was not the case ! Michael Edwards might know more, or one of the giants like Givaudan, Symrise or Firmenich. But to my knowledge it's been in the contract of perfumers / perfume labs never to release the name of the noses behind orders executed.

That has changed a little after one or the other 'outsider' had started to introduce a few important perfumers to the public (guess who). But to this day Creed seem to claim doing everything in-house, and their magical talent seems to be heritable, a god-given like imperial crowns. :rolleyesold:
 
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zztopp

Basenotes Dependent
Apr 2, 2006
I would be very surprised if this was not the case ! Michael Edwards might know more, or one of the giants like Givaudan, Symrise or Firmenich. But to my knowledge it's been in the contract of perfumers / perfume labs never to release the name of the noses behind orders executed.

That has changed a little after one or the other 'outsider' had started to introduce a few important perfumers to the public (guess who). But to this day Creed seem to claim doing everything in-house, and their magical talent seems to be heritable, a god-given like imperial crowns. :rolleyesold:

That would explain why most Creed fragrances are so awesome. Don't you agree Narcus? (That most Creed fragrances are awesome) ?
 

the_good_life

Basenotes Plus
Basenotes Plus
Jun 2, 2006
That would explain why most Creed fragrances are so awesome. Don't you agree Narcus? (That most Creed fragrances are awesome) ?

I don't know what narcus is going to say, but in my book the last awesome Creed was Bois du Portugal (1987). Royal Delight (1993) and Neroli Sauvage (1994) are excellent, if not quite awesome. I haven't been blown away since. Even great noses produce a lot of mediocrities.
 

zztopp

Basenotes Dependent
Apr 2, 2006
I don't know what narcus is going to say, but in my book the last awesome Creed was Bois du Portugal (1987). Royal Delight (1993) and Neroli Sauvage (1994) are excellent, if not quite awesome. I haven't been blown away since. Even great noses produce a lot of mediocrities.

I would easily add Feuille Verte (2006) to the list. Perhaps your tastes have changed and you are now looking for some more woody/ambery/oriental frags.
 

scentsitivity

Basenotes Dependent
Jan 17, 2007
I doubt that Creed started making fragrances as late as the 70s. Perhaps for broader public consumption, yes.

A lot of these wouldn't make sense to have been created in the 70s and beyond. They feel as if they come from an earlier period.
 

Carlos

Super Member
Aug 12, 2006
Until Creed gives a real release date for Orange Spice there is no way to know. Indeed Kouros could have been released first, unless there is someone here that can personally vouch for a bottle of Orange Spice before 1981.
 

the_good_life

Basenotes Plus
Basenotes Plus
Jun 2, 2006
I would easily add Feuille Verte (2006) to the list. Perhaps your tastes have changed and you are now looking for some more woody/ambery/oriental frags.

I can't judge what I'm not meant to wear. It was never sold in Europe, as you surely know. I tried some from a mini-vial, but it wasn't enough for a full evaluation. Anyway, a perfume house pursuing a policy of keeping the really good stuff super-limited and ultra-expensive can kiss my behind, whether it's Creed, Guerlain or whoever else. As to my taste, it is simple, like Oscar Wilde's.
 
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DULLAH

Basenotes Dependent
Oct 25, 2007
Allow me to insert another possibility, that Bourdon's relationship with Oliver was in part founded by Bourdon's admiration for Orange Spice.....if indeed Orange Spice is the 1950's technicolor marvel we find it to be. I would love to know more of Pierre Bourdon's initial contact and early dealings with Olivier Creed.
 

Bigsly

Basenotes Institution
Feb 20, 2008
There are several reference books on perfume bottles as collectibles (your local library might have one or two). Guess how many Creed bottles you will find in them?
 

kbe

Fellow Soujurner
Basenotes Plus
Nov 12, 2006
I am of the opinion Creed may be much better at advertising than most realize. Possible benefits over controversy to their claims as to when they actually introduced or began their fragrance lines could be well thought out by the Creed Ad department. It might just be in their best financial interests to not say a word clarifying any controversial statements they have made both in advertising and in media releases about their fragrances.

Controversy definitely sells and some savvy firms know this is a proven way to increase sales. Controversy produces both negative and positive interest and those states of mind in the public appear to work hand in hand to increase revenues.

Consider that Creed is almost always in the headlines in a number of Basenotes threads and enjoying the benefits of continual controversy. My bet is Creed has one or more of their employees reading and evaluating every post about Creed here and on other fragrance sites as to the monetary effectiveness of their advertising and published history.


http://www.affiliateasshole.com/2009/08/12/using-controversy-to-generate-sales/
 

Bigsly

Basenotes Institution
Feb 20, 2008
The thing I find so funny is that if they did create a frag for this or that dignitary, then what happened? From the history, or lack thereof, it would seem that they were terrible frags that nobody wanted, and perhaps the dignitary was nice enough to just have a servant put it in the storage cellar, never to see the light of day again. However, some of them would have seen the light of day eventually. On the other hand, if the frags were so great, why wouldn't they want to make some money on that part of the business, like other companies did? It does not pass the smell test, pardon the pun !
 

Kevin Guyer

Basenotes Dependent
Nov 16, 2006
Consider that Creed is almost always in the headlines in a number of Basenotes threads and enjoying the benefits of continual controversy. My bet is Creed has one or more of their employees reading and evaluating every post about Creed here and on other fragrance sites as to the monetary effectiveness of their advertising and published history.
Controversy may be an inexpensive way to keep your name out there if you don't have the money for an ad campaign, but it has a much shorter shelf life than positive reinforcement. Controversy is like the news, it gets old very quickly. Who wants to be the Lindsay Lohan of fragrances, anyhow?
 

kbe

Fellow Soujurner
Basenotes Plus
Nov 12, 2006
Controversy may be an inexpensive way to keep your name out there if you don't have the money for an ad campaign, but it has a much shorter shelf life than positive reinforcement. Controversy is like the news, it gets old very quickly. Who wants to be the Lindsay Lohan of fragrances, anyhow?

Creed appear to have a mix of both positive ad reinforcement aimed at more knowledgeable fragrance users and to a lesser extent the general public while at the same time not openly discouraging the much more limited controversy about the veracity of their fragrance history. Only Creed know to what extent both approaches are working.
 

Ekove

Basenotes Dependent
Mar 26, 2010
Ok, I have been holding up from mentioning this story for a while....but I suppose I will have to. Note I can not disclose any names, specific dates, places or events. Merely due to the fact I can not be accounted for their accuracy.

I personally know someone in the fragrance business, who has ownership of the "flagship" of many of the big houses in a certain country. I'm not sure how else to explain that. You know when you ask a house like say, YSL, to bring their products to a country, and you'll be responsible for the distribution?

Anyway, I've heard this story from one of his siblings; He was at a perfume event while working for one of the big designer houses, around the 80s or 70s. Oliver Creed was there, at his creed table which had, according to his sibling, only a single completed perfume, putting aside the conceptional/rough work. Now he liked that creed perfume and ended up offering to distribute it in said country. Of course, that single perfume was the only one that creed was readily able to produce, and distribute initially. My guess is that perfume is Creed Cologne?

Now if this story is true, and I shall check with him next time I see him, it does not prove creed did not create perfumes prior to 1970s. Orange Spice could have been made before Kouros. However, the question is, when and why did Pierre Bourdon smell orange spice, or get a bottle of it, then copy it. And most importantly, why would he even bother to copy something not very well known at the time?

I did not hear the story first hand so a lot of things are probably missing. I just thought it'd be interesting to share. And that said person perhaps could let me know a lot more about creed history. He is certainly a fan of the house, so no biased crap here.
 

Indie_Guy

Basenotes Dependent
Dec 13, 2003
1950 Creed Orange Spice (X)=1981 YSL Kouros (Pierre Bourdon)
1985 Creed Green Irish Tweed (Pierre Bourdon)=1988 Davidoff Cool Water
2003 Montblanc Individuel(Pierre Bourdon)=2005 Creed Original Santal (Olivier Creed[prob. Pierre Bourdon])

Orange Spice. Kouros. Which came first? I mean are we to believe that Olivier stuffed Pierre Bourdon into a DeLorean and sent him back in time where he saw Olivier's dad with beakers in hand, rockin' it out in 1950 with the groundbreaking "technicolor marvel" of Orange Spice (to the fanfare of crickets), before adding, "I guess you guys aren't ready for this, but your kids are gonna LOVE IT!"? LOL

I'm craving some Huey Lewis right now.
 

the_good_life

Basenotes Plus
Basenotes Plus
Jun 2, 2006
It does seem that people inside the business (the ones I have talked to about this) don't take Creed history seriously at all. For one, because they probably know things about Creed of the kind you just reported, but also because they are all quite cynical about the preponderance of bullshit in fragrance marketing per se.

Ok, I have been holding up from mentioning this story for a while....but I suppose I will have to. Note I can not disclose any names, specific dates, places or events. Merely due to the fact I can not be accounted for their accuracy.

I personally know someone in the fragrance business, who has ownership of the "flagship" of many of the big houses in a certain country. I'm not sure how else to explain that. You know when you ask a house like say, YSL, to bring their products to a country, and you'll be responsible for the distribution?

Anyway, I've heard this story from one of his siblings; He was at a perfume event while working for one of the big designer houses, around the 80s or 70s. Oliver Creed was there, at his creed table which had, according to his sibling, only a single completed perfume, putting aside the conceptional/rough work. Now he liked that creed perfume and ended up offering to distribute it in said country. Of course, that single perfume was the only one that creed was readily able to produce, and distribute initially. My guess is that perfume is Creed Cologne?

Now if this story is true, and I shall check with him next time I see him, it does not prove creed did not create perfumes prior to 1970s. Orange Spice could have been made before Kouros. However, the question is, when and why did Pierre Bourdon smell orange spice, or get a bottle of it, then copy it. And most importantly, why would he even bother to copy something not very well known at the time?

I did not hear the story first hand so a lot of things are probably missing. I just thought it'd be interesting to share. And that said person perhaps could let me know a lot more about creed history. He is certainly a fan of the house, so no biased crap here.
 

Ekove

Basenotes Dependent
Mar 26, 2010
Well, what difference would it make anyway if the true history of creed is revealed? They're still ripping people off at $280 a bottle. While the best ones are worth $150 at best.

Then you get the limited edition BS. People argue that those limited edition like Windsor and Vintage Tabarome make little profit for a company as large as creed. Maybe....But they hype they make in the fragrance community is enormous.

Creed is just good marketing all around. And let's face it, most of their creations are not that bad. They're just twice as expensive as they should be to keep up with their marketing.

Creeds used to cost a few dollars in the 70s/ early 80s as far as I know. So much for a house that only made perfumes for royalties. But maybe it's inflation, who am I to judge them?

Though the question right now is, is Pierre Bourdon a fan of Olivier creed or is it the other way around? I'm just waiting for creed to rip-off Iris Poudre.
 

Bigsly

Basenotes Institution
Feb 20, 2008
"...are we to believe that Olivier stuffed Pierre Bourdon into a DeLorean and sent him back in time where he saw Olivier's dad with beakers in hand, rockin' it out in 1950..."

Where did the OS 1950 date originate? When was it first stated? If I could bet a nice sum of money on it never being proven (that it's from 1950 or thereabouts), I would.
 

zztopp

Basenotes Dependent
Apr 2, 2006
"...are we to believe that Olivier stuffed Pierre Bourdon into a DeLorean and sent him back in time where he saw Olivier's dad with beakers in hand, rockin' it out in 1950..."

Where did the OS 1950 date originate? When was it first stated? If I could bet a nice sum of money on it never being proven (that it's from 1950 or thereabouts), I would.

Cale.it probably has the most accurate Creed launch dates. They even state the reformulation years (for e.g., REL was reformulated in 1805): http://www.cale.it/fragranza-scheda.asp?idtarget=1&idmarchio=2&idprofumazione=162
 

Bigsly

Basenotes Institution
Feb 20, 2008
I'm not sure what you are trying to communicate, zztop. Are you claiming that Cale.it has the relevant historical documents in their possession, or has examined these documents (if they exist)? If not, what are you claiming?
 

zztopp

Basenotes Dependent
Apr 2, 2006
I'm not sure what you are trying to communicate, zztop. Are you claiming that Cale.it has the relevant historical documents in their possession, or has examined these documents (if they exist)? If not, what are you claiming?

Enough with the historical documents mate! :p
I am claiming cale.it may know something that we don't (unless they have fabricated these dates by themselves). If Creed are fabricating launch dates, there's no need to provide a 'reformulation date'...the original fib would be fine.
 

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