January 23 , 2013
Carla Fracci Perfumes
By Raphaella Barkley

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Having grown up studying classical ballet and then dancing professionally, I knew that Milan born Carla Fracci is a one of the world’s greatest ballerina's. She appeared with the London Festival Ballet, the Royal Ballet, Stuttgart Ballet, Royal Swedish Ballet, and was principal guest artist of the American Ballet Theatre. Carla Fracci is renowned for her highly artistic interpretation of the romantic roles and Giselle was her greatest success; she danced it with many great partners like with Nijinsky, Rudolf Nureyev, Mikhail Baryshnikov and Erik Bruhn. Her unforgettable Giselle with Bruhn was filmed and is available on DVD. She was a true prima ballerina in her long career and one of ballets first super stars. Now, her line of fragrances is created in conjunction with Luciano Soprani.

When I found out that she would be showing her line of fragrances at Esxence Milan, my heart paused and I was filled with great excitement. She was only there the first opening day and of course, I did not know this at the time. When I first laid eyes on her, she was stunningly beautiful and she was surrounded by a stylish entourage. I was already aware of Carla Fracci Giselle and her original signature scent titled Carla Fracci as I had purchased those years earlier around 2004. I was anxious to explore the other fragrances. 

Finding the official notes of the early fragrances of Carla Fracci and Giselle are almost impossible, but does it matter? No. These fragrances used to be sold at Macy’s and Nordstrom’s and Dillard’s. A search on-line produced numerous discount sites, not one had any notes listed. 

Giselle, the fragrance, is warm, spicy, and feminine with luscious notes, creamy, summery and sexy. It is full of warm light. It is simply beautiful. Giselle is no longer listed on her website but the fragrance is still available on the internet. Giselle is officially classified as a Floral/Fresh, listed under “White Flowers”, in Michael Edwards latest edition of Fragrances of the World. 

Carla Fracci, her other fragrance, is a brilliant white floral of tuberose and ylang-ylang, very, very pretty, not cloying or sweet, I actually visualized yellow sunshine when this hit my skin, and it is simply gorgeous. It is white and yellow, all at once, singing of summer days and nights, a flirtatious fragrance but not too young or coy. The sandalwood is what brings it all together and keeps it from being too sweet. Both fragrances stay close to the skin making them very intimate. Carla Fracci, according to Michael Edwards in his latest Fragrances of the World Edition, is classified as a Floral Oriental/White Flowers. 

Dora Truong spoke of Carla Fracci: “The search for Ylang was fulfilled with this gorgeous white flower scent. The notes list passion fruit, tuberose and Ylang on top with a heart of freesia, jasmine and just a bit of lily. The bottom is musk that I hardly notice with heliotrope, sandalwood and vanilla. The release was in '03 and this could be the end of the line. I plan to buy another bottle because this was one I truly loved.” 

The bottles of both fragrances evoke the tall and graceful lines of ballet dancers and both fragrances are just as fluid, a dreamy Pas de Deux, melding into one's body. The fragrances take position just as a ballerina would and floats about the dreamy center stage as she is carried by her partner, she promenades, is lifted and turns. 

For now being “discounted” fragrances, they are extremely well made and last for a very long time-I purchased the first two scents back in ’04 and they are still fresh. A little smile forms on my lips, secretly knowing, my little discount "find" smells deliciously oh-so expensive. These are great deals on beautiful perfumes that are no longer available.

Medea by Carla Fracci is a Fleur Oriental/Classical Gourmand, not the “Floral Fruity” that some reviewers have it classified as. Medea was launched in 2006. Top notes are freesia and citruses; middle notes are orange blossom, jasmine, lily-of-the-valley, tiare flower and rose; base notes are amber, coconut, musk, vanilla, peach, caramel and precious woods. Medea is pure passion, a dramatic perfume that evokes magic, myth and deep love. This is also my new favorite of the line. 

The first scent, Carla Fracci, appeared in 2003, and was followed by Giselle (2004), Medea (2006), Salomé (2007), Odette (2008) and Hamlet (2009). 

The most recent release was Aurora in 2012, which was inspired by the ballet Sleeping Beauty and is a very pretty and soft scent. “In a vibrant breaking of a spell, like a long-awaited kiss, Aurora makes a luminous and scintillating appearance, with the sparkling and toning scents of Bergamot and Pink Pepper. A delicate but passionate awakening gently comes to life: the rich and intense floral notes of Rose of May open up, illuminated by romantic Violet and the velvety notes of White Peach. As in a performance of enchanting beauty, soft and delightful touches of Heliotrope are enriched by the boisé character of Cedar Wood and the seductive vigor of Musk”. Carla Fracci Aurora, the fragrance inspired by the fairy tale of the beautiful sleeping princess, lights up the awakening of every day and, like a delicate but passionate kiss, caresses the skin with its romantic floral rose violet bouquet.”

Carla Fracci Aurora is classified as an oriental/floral perfume for women composed of romantic and charming notes. It blends bergamot and pink pepper along with hearty floral notes of rose, violet and peach. The powdery base is made of musk, cedar, heliotrope and leather.

I have not had a chance to smell Odette, which is the juxtaposition between black and white. The perfumes of Carla Fracci come in assorted sizes and coffrets. Currently, there is no American distributor and the current scents are only available in Europe at selected boutiques.

All of the these fragrances are befitting the glamorous Italian Prima Ballerina. 

Cara Fracci is an Italian woman of great strength, true style and passion and her line demonsrates the quality and passion. The fragrances are all artistic, well made and this was just one of the many highlights of Esxence Milan for me.  

Brava Carla Fracci!

​Carla Fracci Perfumes

Esxence Milan, The Scent of Excellence

​Special thank you to Annalisa Cacciatori of Luciano Soprani for her patience and support.