Thursday, March 17, 2011

Versace- Gianni Versace 1982 (vintage EDT)

Can I just say how much I hate referring to perfumes from the 1980s as "vintage"? With this out of the way, we can move on and talk about the 1982 original Versace feminine perfume, originally named Gianni Versace (not to be confused with Versace Woman, Versace, Versace Homme and who knows what else). It's one of those perfumes you smell and know with certainty they don't make them like this nowadays. Well, of course they don't- Gianni Versace is a full-bodied floral chypre, loaded with oakmoss. Good luck finding anything that smells even remotely that wicked.

The opening of Gianni is decidedly green and aldehydic. It's what some would call "dated" and others would proclaim "classic". I think it's charming but try to avoid the husband's company for the first five to ten minutes, just in case. Later it becomes full-on floral, almost extravagantly so, and you can smell and see each and every flower in the blend. Almost touch it really, as though it was an elaborate floral carving on your wall. No, this Versace perfume is definitely not for the meek. It enters the room like a diva, commanding attention and giving everyone else the stinkeye because they cannot possibly measure up to her standards.

Eventually things calm down a little. A wood-patchouli-oakmoss with a touch of leather. It's not any less femme fatale and still wears the eye shadow of the 80s, but you can feel and see the bone structure of this perfume. It's not quite patrician, but it has its fine moments and is a delight to wear.

Notes (from
Top notes are aldehydes, spices, fruity notes and bergamot; middle notes are carnation, tuberose, gardenia, orris root, jasmine, lily-of-the-valley and narcissus; base notes are benzoin, leather, sandalwood, amber, patchouli, oakmoss, incense and myrrh.

Like just about any big perfume from that era (and the designer himself), Gianni Versace has been among the dead for years now. Lovers of chypres and 1980s perfume who happen upon a forgotten battle would do well to scoop it up as it's come harder to find.

1982 and 1985 Gianni Versace perfume ads via
Debbie Harry for Italian Bazaar by Patrick Demarchelier, 1980
Versace fashion ad photographed by Richard Avedon, 1987


  1. This was first perfume I ever bought as a young woman. It became my signature fragrance. Women liked it (and men loved it!) I was heartbroken when it ceased production and I've never found another fragrance I've liked as well. Reading this makes me very nostalgic... (and a little sad.)

  2. I first purchased this perfume in Milan it has always been my favourite. I searched all of for it when on holdiay in different airports to find it but then found stopped making. I would love it to be manufactured again.

  3. My very sophisticated aunt visited England fron Los Angeles.She was wearing the most beguiling scent.she had worn the perfume at the oscars when her husband a famous cinematographer won the coveted Oscar.The sent was glamour personified.I just can't understand why it isn't still being sold. it is the most wonderful perfume to wear.Ant woman wearing it will constantly be asked what perfume sheiks wearing.Please let's have it made again it beats any perfume from house of creed or Hermes. Love joils

  4. I have a bottle of this, unused. Considered putting it on Ebay as I know I won't use it now.

  5. This perfume was the first gift I received from my husband and I have saved the empty bottle. I can still smell the fragrance when I take the stopper off but sad that it's not produced anymore. Does anyone know which of their newer fragrances might be closest to this one?

  6. I,like all of you fell in love with this scent a long time ago. It was bought for me in a Perfumaria in Florence Italy in 1987. When I returned to the USA I continued buying it until I could no longer find it, even online. This was my "signature scent", I was identified by it, everyone commented and complimented me, both women and men, and they always asked what it was. I know it has been retired for many years, but, can anyone tell me the name of one that comes close, I would love to try it. Many thank, Anna


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