Hello and welcome! Please understand that this website is not affiliated with Coty in any way, it is only a reference page for collectors and those who have enjoyed the classic fragrances of days gone by.

The main objective of this website is to chronicle the history of the Coty fragrances and showcase the bottles and advertising used throughout the years.

However, one of the other goals of this website is to show the present owners of the Coty perfume company how much we miss the discontinued classics and hopefully, if they see that there is enough interest and demand, they will bring back these fragrances!

Please leave a comment below (for example: of why you liked the fragrance, describe the scent, time period or age you wore it, who gave it to you or what occasion, any specific memories, what it reminded you of, maybe a relative wore it, or you remembered seeing the bottle on their vanity table), who knows, perhaps someone from the current Coty brand might see it.

Also, this website is a labor of love, it is a work in progress and is always being updated with new information as I can find it, so check back often!

Thursday, April 16, 2015

Ambre Antique by Coty c1905

Ambre Antique was launched in 1905 by Coty. Pronounced "Ahm-ber ahn-teek", it was described as the "fragrance of splendour and conquest, the thrall of legendary queens."


Fragrance Composition:



So what does it smell like? It is classified as an sweet amber oriental fragrance for women.
  • Top notes: bergamot, carnation and neroli
  • Middle notes: rose, heliotrope, jasmine, incense, labdanum, olibanum, opoponax, orris concrete, violet
  • Base notes: sandalwood, Indian musk, ambergris, patchouli, Tibetan civet and Mexican vanilla

Ambre Antique made use of two Firmenich bases: Iralia and Dianthine. Iralia lends a sweet, floral woody note, while Dianthine suggests a spicy carnation bouquet.



It was available in Parfum extrait, toilet water, cologne and talc.


Harper's Bazaar, 1916:
"One may rise to the supreme heights of luxury and possess the hand carved masterpiece of the famous Lalique the intaglio bottle which holds the Styx of Coty at seventy five dollars another gem is Ambre Antique at twenty five dollars and seventy five cents."

Advertising Copy, 1936:
"As exquisite gifts, they convey a tribute to loveliness as delicately as a bouquet of flowers, but of unfading fragrance— constantly renewing the charm of a rare and understanding compliment. AMBRE ANTIQUE-fragrance of ancient Egypt— for the woman of enigmatic allure, incomprehensible, aloof."

The New Yorker, 1937:
"Consult Coty, the magnificent, for amber (Ambre Antique), as usual, and for unadulterated chypre."


Bottles:


Coty had his friend Rene Lalique create a fabulous flacon to house the precious perfume. Made up of frosted glass and molded with Grecian maidens, it is a gorgeous piece fit for anyone's collection.




Briar Stopper Flacon:

Rene Lalique designed this flacon in 1911, and it was later made by Coty's own glassworks after 1920. The clear glass bottle is tall, with a square base, and features a frosted glass stopper molded with the "briar" motif. The bottle was originally made to house the various Eau de Toilettes, but the design was later adapted to include different sizes including a miniature versions to house parfum. The miniature size is dubbed "Petite Modele" and debuted in 1936 and held 0.27 oz.

In the 1920s, the boxes had messages inside reminding the owners of the bottles that "These exquisite crystal flacons are hand-cut in the Paris ateliers of COTY - Care must be taken in placing them on the dressing table to avoid breakage of the corners."




Banded Bottles with Frosted Stoppers:

The bottle has an embossed band along the upper part and a frosted glass stopper molded with flowers and ridge details. People have mistakenly attributed this bottle to both Lalique and Baccarat, however, the bottle does not appear in either companies catalogs and was not one of their molds. It was made by Coty's own glassworks in France. The parfum bottle was available in three sizes: 1/4 oz, 1/2 oz and 1 oz. The bottles were discontinued in 1932. The 1/4 oz bottle itself was discontinued in 1934.




Yellow Mimosa Print Packaging:

In 1935, the Coty floral parfums were packaged in new limited edition ensembles featuring mimosa prints on yellow backgrounds. The following perfumes were included: Muguet, Oeillet France, La Rose Jacqueminot, Ambre Antique, Lilas Pourpre, and Violette Pourpre. Eventually, the other Coty perfumes were added to the packaging design such as Emeraude, L'Aimant, and L'Origan.




Moth Stopper Parfum Flacon:

One of the first bottles used was the Rene Lalique designed bottle that featured the double moth frosted glass stopper. This bottle was originally designed by Lalique for the Coty fragrance Muguet in 1912, but was later used for almost all of the Coty fragrances.

This bottle was also made by Baccarat in 1916, mold number 307. These bottles should be acid marked Baccarat on the base. The Baccarat bottle can be found standing at 3.25' tall.

This was later made by Coty's own glassworks and will be marked "Coty" on the base. The Coty marked bottle holds 1.6 oz of parfum and stands 3.25" tall, it was housed inside of a green leather covered box.

The moth stoppered bottle was finally discontinued in 1961.

This bottle shape was adapted in 1916 originally for L'Origan for travelling by the usage of an inner glass stopper and a gilt brass screw cap, this bottle was made by Baccarat, model number 291. In 1928, these flat, square shaped crystal bottles were available in French leather cases. These bottles held Emeraude, L'Origan, Chypre and Paris. I  have seen these bottles with L'Aimant labels too.








Fate of the Fragrance:


Ambre Antique was discontinued at some point but was still listed for sale in a 1949 newspaper ad.






However, the world was treated to limited-edition reproduction bottles of Ambre Antique which were reissued in 1995, under the license of Coty, by a company called Private Portfolio, which produced 3,500 Lalique-designed flacons of the fragrance that were then sold at the exclusive Neiman Marcus, Harrod's, and Bergdorf Goodman department stores. Each bottle held three ounces and retailed at $350.  These bottle alone are worth several hundred dollars to collectors.



I have an original invitation to purchase the re-edition, the first page reads:
"Paris 1910, It was a wondrous era. In the loveliest of cities, Art Nouveau was at its height and artists were never more inspired. All would be swept away by the enchantment of Ambre Antique, a sensuous fragrance by master perfumer Francois Coty. Unavailable since 1915, Ambre Antique ...in a limited edition flacon, based on an original design by history's most famous designer of crystal, Rene Lalique...can be yours again."
The Rose Sheet, 1995:
"Private Portfolio: Benckiser subsidiary reintroducing 85-year old Ambre Antique fragrance in limited edition. A total of 3,500 bottles of the scent, which will be available in late October in Neiman Marcus and Bergdorf Goodman, will be produced worldwide. Ambre Antique is the first in a series of six limited edition offerings Private Portfolio will be relaunching from the Les Parfums Classiques de Francois Coty collection. The updated version of Ambre Antique is a "modern re-creation" of the original formula with "crisp top notes" of citrus and berries, a heart of rose and ylang-ylang and a "classic Oriental base," Private Portfolio says. The "faithful rendition" of the original flacon is etched with profiles of four women in flowing Grecian gowns. A 3 oz. eau de parfum in the limited edition flacon is priced at $350. The fragrance is also available in a 1.7 oz. edp spray for $90 and a .25 oz. purse spray for $40."

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