Wednesday, May 14, 2014

Mon Image by Lucien Lelong c1933

Mon Image by Lucien Lelong: launched in 1933. The name Mon Image, is pronounced MOHN-EEMAJH, and means "my image" in French.

Fragrance Composition:

So what does it smell like? It is classified as a spicy floral fragrance for women, it was described as "piquant" and had a noticeable tang of crisp carnation. A hint of carnation here to give a top floral note against a background of sandalwood.
  • Top notes: Vietnamese cinnamon, Zanzibar cloves, lilac, almond
  • Middle notes: French carnation, Tunisian orange blossom, Grasse jasmine absolute, heliotrope, Grasse rose absolute, Parma violet
  • Base notes: spices, Madagascar vanilla, French labdanum, Java vetiver, ambergris, Tonkin musk, Mysore sandalwood, oakmoss, benzoin, tonka bean

Having a bottle of Mon Image parfum, I was able to detect the soft scent of the "mellis accord". Mon Image may have been built around a special base called Melysflor, a Firmenich base that is the equivalent of Givaudan's Melittis accord. These two bases known as "mellis accords" were made up of benzyl salicylate, patchouli, spicy clove (via eugenol) and lily of the valley (traditionally via the aromachemical hydroxycitronellal), cinnamon, woody notes and coumarin (a crystal derived from tonka beans ).

Melysflor was also used in Jean Patou's Moment Supreme, Voyage a Paris by Corday, Elizabeth Arden's Blue Grass and Dana's Tabu. 

The New Yorker, 1935:
"It is blessed to give or to receive — Opening Night that makes you feel like the star of the performance . . . Mon Image, so piquant and arresting . . . Gardenia, a perfume "in the grand manner"..."

Marie-Claire, 1937:
"Mon Image by Lucien Lelong: perfume for brunettes."

Drug and Cosmetic Industry - Volume 44, 1939:
"LUCIEN LELONG Lucien Lelong has introduced sachet in five of his fragrances, Impromptu, Indiscreet, Mon Image, Opening Night and Whisper. The sachet is highly concentrated and comes in a handsome crystal bottle with gold cap."


Mon Image parfum was contained in a luxury cubist influenced Art Deco flacon of clear crystal. The bottle features a stacked shape body with three horizontal-cut ribs on each side having slightly rounded corners. The bottle has a tiny glass inner stopper and a glass over cap that has an intaglio of the "LL" logo in a square on the top (the miniature bottles do not have the inner glass stopper and overcap, but a single stopper). The bottle was presented in a cardboard box covered with mirrored glass panels. 

  • Ref. 250 - 1/8 oz (1 dram, considered the miniature) glass stoppered bottle stands 1 5/8" tall.
  • 1/4 oz brass screw capped bottle stands 1.75" tall.
  • Ref. 500 - 1/4 oz bottle stands 2.25" tall.
  • 1/2 oz bottle stands 2.75" tall
  • 1 oz bottle stands 3.5" tall.
  • stands 6" tall

The bottle used for the Mon Image parfum may be the only example of a perfume bottle not designed by René Lalique but manufactured in his works at Wingen-sur-Moder. Lalique had created two bottles for Lucien Lelong, in 1930 and 1931, and during this time, they had become friends. Since Lelong's fragrances at the time were simply named "A", "B" and "C", the bottles had no other name, but Lalique's "draped dress" design of 1930 (used for the "skyscraper" presentation) remains Lelong's most memorable bottle. 

Soon afterwards, Lelong decided that he personally would design all future bottles for his perfumes and he did so between 1932 until 1950, when he retired. In 1933, as Lelong had designed the costumes for Marlene Dietrich in "The Scarlet Empress", he decided to dedicate a perfume to her and it was said to be "Mon Image."  Lelong, who was notoriously cheap, handed the design over to a mediocre glassmaker and all the first bottles leaked. Out of pure friendship, Lalique went out to help him and to produce the bottles until 1936.

 Life, 1934:
"The exciting floral odor of "Mon Image," Lelong's newest perfume in a mirror bottle."

Woman's Home Companion, Volume 65, 1938:
 "Mon Image" in the famed mirror box ... "a reflection of yourself in fragrance." $2.50 to $100."


Other bottles are the atomizer flacon which held 2.5oz of Perfumed Cologne. This bottle stands 5" tall.

Fate of the Fragrance:

Discontinued, date unknown. Still being sold in 1958.

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