The name would bring to mind a safari in the African savannah, even though not spelled "antelope", but that is decidely not my image of Antilope by Parfums Weil, a fine fragrance by the well-known fourrier company. Still, even though launched by a fur house, Antilope is not a parfum fourrure, at least in the fetishistic sense of the term.
Let’s see: Antilope in its vintage version (the fragrance launched in 1946) is a floral aldehyde chypre that begins old-fashioned , dry and powdery , with a top note of pure flowers smelt at a mountain top like Ma Griffe. But hey, this is a chalet in the French Alps we are talking about and the effect is decidedly elegant and sophisticated , not natural. The house of Weil has an illustrious history of bringing out fragrances which speak of luxury, exotic hides, glorious landscapes of fantasy and glamour.
Think Capucine or Claudia Cardinale decked in Yves Saint Laurent on the slopes and at the chalets of Cortina (hey! Italian mountain , a technicality….) in "The Pink Panther", the first movie in the series in 1963. Picture Claudia sprawled on a tiger fur rug batting her lashes seductively and a little drunkendly at David Niven telling him about the “frasari…safrari…wild animal hunt” her father took her to. Then a fruity/herby note appears , like humble chamomiles. Sweet and innocent for a moment. Claudia will pass out from champagne before any carnal promiscuity. The fragrance ends with moss and wood, not distant, but elegant like in a reverie.
Very dry. Chic. French. Or not-so French. But of that attitude…….Maybe it's just the clothes and the setting, maybe it's Antilope.
Notes for Weil Antilope:
Top: neroli, bergamot and aldehydes
Heart: clary sage, rose, lily of the valley, jasmine, carnation, iris and violet
Base: sandalwood, vetiver, patchouli, tonka, amber, oakmoss and musk.
The vintage Antilope is assuredly richer and more nuanced than the reissued, sharper and more sanitized floral version. Excellent in Eau de Cologne and Parfum de Toilette (depicted).
If you like Madame Rochas or Caleche and wished they had a rougher texture than ever prim gentleness; or love the bitterness and swag of Cabochard and the "fresh" clarity of Ma Griffe, but find them too harsh to wear; Antilope is a great middle-ground.