Perhaps you’re not familiar with Footlight Parade of 1933 with Ruby Keeler and Jimmy Cagney? This was the movie that came to mind when I ran across Tom Ford’s Shanghai Lil the other day.
The reaction of other bloggers to this scent has been rather like that of Cagney, Lil is irresistible they say and highly original. I was a bit less struck by the fragrance’s originality since I recognized the lily top notes as being similar to my Gardenia Petale’s, the Van Cleef & Arpels fragrance from some years ago. They probably share a high end floral material, although the green side of the floral is stressed in Shanghai, and not so much in Gardenia Petale which eventually devolves into a vanilla lily of the valley note. Continue reading