Portia’s Gucci Timeline

Hey ULG Crew, What the hell is a Gucci timeline? I have long loved the word Gucci. Next year, 2021, Gucci is 100 years old! As I was growing up in the 1970/80s it was a fashion leader and the style magazines were full of it. Though the brand had survived to the 1980s it didn’t hold the same cachet and while I studied fashion it was held up as a “what NOT to do with your company.” They released Gucci No 3 and it never registered with me. Around 1988, my mate was working as a squirt bitch in town, putting himself through uni (University was still free in Australia at the time but he kept himself). While buying a bottle of CHANEL Antaeus from him he slipped a full tester bottle of Gucci No 3 in as a GWP! Well, my mind was officially blown. This was my first inkling that scent is totally unisex, even though I’d been nicking Mum’s Shalimar, No 5 and Samsara while living at home this felt different. A step towards something. My partner at the time and I drained that bottle. It also put Gucci back on my radar.

Through the late 1980s and early 1990s Gucci became a laughing stock. They lost their seat at the table and went into rapid decline. It seemed like they were chasing fashion, not creating it.

In the 1990s Tom Ford jumped into their womens fashion, then fashion director, then in 1994 he took over as Creative Director of Gucci. By 1994 we were already taking notice of the changes there. They still made fabulous shoes. My pair of 1995, bought in Rome, loafers are still going strong two half sole replacements later. They are comfortable, sturdy, beautiful and still hold pride of place on my shoe wall. I wore them non-stop for 15 years, they were my walking, dancing, business, travelling shoes of choice. Nothing said change like the release of Gucci Envy in 1997 and then in 1998 Gucci Envy Men. This was, and still is, one of the best ever mens fragrances. We all went absolutely apeshit for it. The clubs, malls, streets and restaurants were a coruscating mass of gorgeous people wearing this spicy woody oriental. WOW! Suddenly Kouros, Jazz, Le Male and Armani Pour Homme were so old fashioned and dated. You’ll notice I have a BNIC 100ml in the photo. I went through 100ml really quickly, then during another 50ml it got DCd. I panic bought this 100ml and haven’t had the heart to open it. I have also gone through another couple of bought from FB Sale Docs 50mls.

There were some other fine releases during this time. Who can forget the bottle and BWFness of Gucci Rush from 1999. What a perfume, so many happy memories. I also owned a bottle of Gucci Pour Homme, from 2003 with the brown juice, but it rarely got worn. I moved it on to someone who was really sad that they’d DCd it. He was grateful.

In 2007 Gucci by Gucci was released and I have loved its honeyed white floral fruitchouli wafts ever since. I went through a bottle but its replacement never got worn. In 2008 Gucci by Gucci Homme came out and flopped. I buy it for my business friends. It’s tobacco, pine and violet is unusual enough to be interesting but not overpowering or show pony-ish. It can be had for a song at the discounters nowadays and suits everyone I’ve given it to.

I have a bottle of 2010 Gucci Guilty. It was given to me by a friend who thought she was going to love it but it gave her headaches. Jasmine and lilacs set in a fruitchouli/vanillic amber diva of a fragrance. It’s a solid perfume, nothing earth shattering but pleasant and lasts all day into the night. Every time I wear it though people notice my fragrance and go out of their way to tell me how good I smell. Really good pick me up for blue days.

Gucci has been slowly diminishing again. It’s become a deplorable fashion circus and for years it released safe mainstream platitudes instead of perfume. I had given them up as an expensive, poorly timed joke and then in 2017 they release Gucci Guilty Absolute! Like, WTAF! Where did this cutting edge, niche like, behemoth of a fragrance come from. WOW! The 2018 Gucci Guilty Absolute pour Femme version is awesome too, grab some, it will blow your mind. Also in 2017, can we please have a chat about Gucci Bloom. SO GOOD! The bottle, the scent, even the flankers are clever and fun. Tuberose in myriad forms is always going to be a winner for me. Did someone at Gucci remember how to creative direct a perfume? YAY!

Now they’ve released their modern, aqueous, expensive line of cash grab elitist crap and I’m yawning. They’re not all awful but after suddenly getting back into the scent game so splendidly I was expecting a lot more. Loads of people love them, have at it I say.

You will also notice in my photo there is an Eau de Gucci Concentree from the early 1980s. I bought this not long ago from eBay. It’s an aldehydic floral leaning towards green bulbs, quite light compared to other offerings of its day but rich and tapestried like very little of today. So beautiful. WAY too precious to wear very much but I love it.

So that’s my love affair with Gucci in a rambling, ranty nutshell.
Which ones have you loved or loathed?
Portia xx





30 thoughts on “Portia’s Gucci Timeline

  1. Such a roller coaster. In the 80s I was smitten by Gucci No 1 and owned it in all its forms. I didn’t realise at the time that it was created by Guy Robert who gave birth to other favourites of mine like Madame Rochas, Amouage Gold and Caleche. I suppose its nearest smellalike could be Nina Ricci’s L’Air du Temps, but the Gucci was the glamorous, sophisticated cousin. Sometimes I feel tempted to buy a bottle on eBay, but then remember that bottles would turn horribly quickly (virtually overnight!), so I wouldn’t trust a purchase now; I will just have to remember it affectionately. I also used to wear No 3 when I wasn’t wearing No 1. Those were the days.


  2. Had one of the Gucci Floras, Tuberose I think. And now I happily own Memoire d’un Odeur after lusting after it for half a year. Its fleeting on me but it makes me happy! I definitely want to test the newest Bloom flanker as well!


  3. I had a bottle of Gucci Guilty and Flora a while back. They were likes, but not loves. However, I treasure what is left of my bottle of Envy. I got it from a swap many years ago. I wear it occasionally during spring and summer time and I will be very sad the day is gone. Absolutely beautiful!


  4. What a long and tumultuous relationship with Gucci! My encounters were more sporadic: as a teenager, I loved a bottle of Nobile and also was given a mini of No 9 which I used for “fancier” occasions and then to perfume my closet space. Last year on a visit to London, a sales associate handed me a blotter of A Song for the Rose, which was quite lovely. I haven’t heard much about it since.


      • Apparently it’s in Gucci’s version of a more “exclusive” line, The Alchemists’ Garden. As I remember, it was a very wearable rose with woody notes (when I looked it up, sweet musky notes are also mentioned). I liked it enough to keep the blotter around (with a nice floral design and the name printed on it in gold cursive). Can’t think of a similar one as a comparison, but my guess would be that it’s out there for less exclusive prices (at least, I’d hope).


  5. Hey Portia

    I had a bottle of Gucci Accenti and then Envy became my signature scent for a good while when it was released. I loved it. It felt so right for the time.


  6. Hey Portia, I have Gucci The Alchemist’s Garden Tears of Iris…it is soooo good, but doesn’t last long; bottle porn. Other Gucci’s I have include: Memoire d’une Odeur (love), Gucci Guilty Absolute (love, but don’t wear much) and Gucci Guilty Love Edition for Him (did not like but will try again…the bottle is green so if anything, I have a green bottle!).


    • Hey there Hajusuuri,
      There is some serious love for Tears Of Iris, is it a bit like Caron Pour un Homme?
      That bottle for Gucci Guilty Love Edition for Him is so damn beautiful. If I had more spending money right now it would DEFINITELY be in the collection.
      I really need to buy a decant of Memoire d’une Odeur. It just doesn’t hold up under department store fragrance department atmosphere.
      Portia xx


  7. Lovely to hear your experience with Gucci and how their quality and originality kept changing over the years.
    I don’t own any Gucci but I bought Guilty Absolute pour Homme for my dad last Christmas.


  8. I loved Rush for Man and hated the counterpart. My vSO wore Envy that I bought him – I liked but didn’t love it… I wonder if it’s still somewhere around, I’ll need to check. The woman’s Envy didn’t work for me. I really liked 2010 Guilty and planned to buy a bottle once it gets to discounters… but then I jumped into the proverbial rabbit hole, so I was too snobbish to buy that perfume when I could hunt Amouage or SL… :) I should check if I still have a sample of Guilty somewhere… Though, most likely, it was re-formulated a couple of times since the release.


  9. Gucci Bloom and its variations are my favorites, with the original Gucci Bloom being the best of the ‘blooms’ IMHO. Gucci definitely saved itself from a meltdown there in the 80’s and early 90’s fashion wise.


  10. Ooh, I liked Gucci by Gucci and though I have a mini somewhere, had forgotten all about it, so thanks for the reminder! I know someone who smelt fab in Guilty, and someone else who really rates Bloom, which I keep meaning to try myself.


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