On the Scent – Vintage Perfume Bottles

The second of my collections to get its turn in the spotlight is my vintage perfume bottle collection.

I don’t collect the ‘comercial’ type bottles (although I wouldn’t turn up my nose at a nice Lalique specimen). I prefer the sort of bottles that perfume used to be decanted into. The only exception is my silver topped Chanel No 5 bottle that I picked up at a market in Provence.

I have bottles mostly ranging from the mid 19th century to the 1950s and some of my favorites are pictured below.


I love the shape of the two cut glass deco bottles at the back with their over-the-top stoppers, both acquired on trips to Sydney (and yes, it rained both times). The long skinny bottle with the silver lid is a late 19th century one and the oval silver and mother-of-pearl one is a French bottle from the 1870s which I bought in the Loire Valley in France. I love the ring attachment so you could wear it on your finger.

The flat round porcelain one is a bit of a mystery, as it has no marks but I’m told it is from the early 1900s. The stopper is missing unfortunately and it looks like it once had a cord that went through the mounts on the side, but even so it still ranks amongst my favourites.

The red bottle and the little blue box are more modern from the 1980s. The red one is Murano glass from Venice and the blue one is from Limoges in France.

As you can tell I like to pick up vintage perfume bottles as souvenirs of places I’ve travelled to. They make very special mementos as each day I look at them on my chest of drawers, as I’m getting dressed for work, and I’m immediately drawn back to those wonderful holidays.

Other related posts:

A Stroll Down Lilliput Lane
Walk softly, and carry a long Hatpin
Confessions of a Collectaholic

12 Responses to On the Scent – Vintage Perfume Bottles

  1. Susan J November 14, 2006 at 12:25 am #

    Oh I LOVE the 2 little blue ones. How cute!!

  2. Tink November 14, 2006 at 7:20 am #

    Lovely collection.

  3. Glynis November 22, 2006 at 12:25 pm #

    Those bottles are beautiful…what a collection to have!

  4. Jakes March 27, 2009 at 5:53 am #

    I think way back the people buy perfume not for the scent but for the botle.

    • karooch March 27, 2009 at 6:49 am #

      Actually Jakes, perfume used to be sold separately from the bottle. you would buy your perfume in a large container and decant it into a bottle for your use.

  5. Jakes March 28, 2009 at 5:56 am #

    Thanks karooch, I never known that.

  6. Shelly Leach December 4, 2009 at 8:35 am #

    The reddish one looks like something from the orient.


    • karooch December 4, 2009 at 8:38 am #

      Actually that one’s from Murano in Venice, Shelly

  7. do pheromones work December 6, 2010 at 11:39 am #

    The perfume bottle is often meant to be a physical representation of the perfume and this perfume bottle looks fabulous!


  8. Tina Bond August 20, 2011 at 10:06 am #

    I have two perfune bottles that were my grandmothers that I know you would love. She passed away before I was born and they were old then. I have no idea how to go about finding information on them, do you. I am 50 years old now so they have been around a while. They are a matching set. Very heavy cut glass, clear, with large ornate stoppers. I would love to send you a picture and see what you think about them and if you know anything about them. Thanks for any comments you may have.

    • karooch August 21, 2011 at 6:09 pm #

      Hi Tina

      Although I collect perfume bottles I don’t pretend to be an authority on them. I suggest you find an antiques dealer who specialises in perfume bottles to seek advice from.

  9. Tina Bond August 22, 2011 at 1:04 am #

    Thank you, I will do that sometime. It isn’t a priority for me, I just love them. They are all I have that belonged to my grandmother. I wouldn’t sell them, just interested in their background. I love you collection. And I’m glad I found your thread.