Bois d’Argent by Annick Menardo for DIOR La Collection Privée 2004




HI there APJ,

Iris season has begun, the yellow water irises have bloomed and now I am waiting to see some bearded irises. I find the iris to be one of the most stunning flowers allowing itself to be photographed and painted over and over without getting bored. The colours are all over the spectrum and I find it difficult to choose a favourite. However, I love the shape of the bearded iris the most.

Now when it comes to perfumery, I always found the iris note to be cold and aloof, almost unbearably so. I tried and tried through the years to come to terms with this much loved note. I have even bought a bottle here or there of an iris centric perfume in hopes of finally getting it – only to be disappointed and then pass it along.

I do not know if it is age or reason that has brought my nose around, but at the moment I cannot seem to get enough of iris. I do believe that I am finally understanding that I like the warmer treatment of iris and tend to shy away from the cold renderings.

Bois d’Argent by DIOR La Collection Privée 2014

Bois d’Argent by Annick Menardo

Bois d'Argent Christian Dior FragranticaFragrantica

Parfumo gives these featured accords:
Top: Yemenite frankincense
Heart: Somalian myrrh, Indonesian patchouli, Florentine iris absolute
Base: Amber, Woody notes, Honey, Leather, White musk

Last summer I picked up Christian Dior Bois d’Argent, created by Annick Menardo in 2004, which is part of the La Collection Privée. I sprayed it on in Nice and was taken aback of well this perfume worked in the summer heat. It was never stifling, nor suffocating. I packed it up as soon as we found out we were moving and did not spray it again until January of this year. It was winter and a wet cold set into my bones. The only way to stay warm was through olfactory stimulation. Bois d’Argent is warm and cuddly in the cold. The vanilla is played up with the iris and myrrh making it a slightly sweet, but not too sweet treat.

It has been in heavy rotation ever since January and now that Rotterdam is finally warming up I can say that I am enjoying Bois d’Argent even more. The perfume starts off with a blast of incense and a tinge of myrrh. The incense is warm and not overly done which can be a bit much. I find that myrrh rounds certain perfumes beautifully. The iris is smooth and warm and only slightly powdery. The powder aspect is less detectable now in the warmer weather. Instead of powder I am getting a lovely dry down of woods, incense and iris. Bois d’Argent is elegant and refined but not so much so that I cannot wear it on a daily basis. It keeps me centered and calm and ready to face the day with a smile and positive energy.

To be honest with you I can forget about the notes. This is smooth sailing and I do not need to think about what I am wearing. Rarely do I get compliments when I wear perfume. However, I do when I wear Bois d’Argent.

Further reading: What Men Should Smell Like and Olfactoria’s Travels
DIOR stores and some larger department store countermand airports carry the DIOR La Collection Privée line
Surrender To Chance has samples from $3.25/ml

Have you tried Dior Bois d’Argent? Now that I am open to and looking for some iris scents to try, can you recommend some to me? I would love to hear what you have to say about iris and how you like it or do not like it.
Sandra x

(Ed: All the Iris photos by Sandra. Beautiful.)

20 thoughts on “Bois d’Argent by Annick Menardo for DIOR La Collection Privée 2004

  1. I love iris but have not tried this one!!! The only Diors that I have tried are:
    Miss Dior Originale
    Grand Bal
    Cuir Cannage
    Oud Ispahan
    Pure Poison
    Cologne Blanche
    As for iris scents, the best one out there is Santa Maria Novella Iris. But, I also love Yves Rocher Iris Noire, Guerlain Metallica and Guerlain Ode. I really like Lentheric Miracle, Lubin Amaryllis, Parfum d’Empire Equistrius, Prada Infusion d’Iris, Van Cleef Bois d’Iris. I have many others but they are just okay to me. These are my faves.


    • Hi Gina, You have tried a couple of really good Diors. I adore Cuie Cannage. You have me really curious about the Santa Maria Novella Iris. I have added the others on your list to my tro try list. Thank you so much for your recommendations. Sandra xo


  2. Love iris. Irisssss!
    Hardcore iris…Iris Silver Mist similar to Xerjoff Iriss, quite carrotish but interesting. I found Tauer Pentachord White to be in a similar vein.
    Chanel La Pausa is much softer and more feminine, I own the bucket size.
    Prada Infusion d’Iris is nice, non offensive.
    Have you tried Atelier Des Ors Iris Fauve? My new favourite, so elegant.
    I might like iris a bit!
    Your flowers are beautiful too…


    • Hi Jackie b, your enthusiasm is infectious! Inhad a quick sniff of Irisss and Iris Fauve at Harrods on the weekend. I was so overwhelmed that I did not give them any skin time. I really must give La Pausa a good try one of these days. Sandra xoxo


  3. Hi Sandra,

    I can’t enough iris at the moment either.
    I’m wearing Iris Poudre today in fact. I also love the old version of 28 La Pausa and prefer the Absolu version of Prada Infusion d’Iris.


    • Hi Tara, You smell gorgeous today! Another vote for La Pausa, will try again soon. Thank you for your list of favorites. Sandra xoxo


  4. If you like this, you will like Cleef Bois d’Iris, too which is quite similar. In fact, I got Cleef Iris first and later when I got Bois d’Argent, it instantly reminded me of Cleef Iris. I also have mostly disappointing experience with iris creations. I am madly in love with Dior Homme original formula that is Iris masterpiece and Cleef Iris and Bois D’Argent are also I enjoy. Most iris fragrances have been disappointments including Lutens Iris Silver Mist because it has strong carroty aspect. I like the lipsticky side of iris and not the vegetal/carroty side. I must also say Cleef Iris and Bois D’Argent do not seem typical iris fragrances to me. The vanilla, the warm woody aspects are quite dominent. If you did not tell me these two have iris when I first smelled them, I don’t think I would have detected iris in them. The iris in these two is neither lipsticky nor carroty and you usually encounter one of these two aspects in most iris fragrances.


    • Hi Fazal, I hear you on your iris views. I struggled for a long time with SL Iris Silver Mist – kept thinking that I needed to love it. I do tend to like warmer perfumes rather than cool perfumes. Thanks for recommending Cleef Iris – sounds lovely. Sandra xoxo


  5. I struggle with Iris. I can appreciate them, but not wear them or reach for them often, and I have longed to find the carrots and dirt smell appealing. This, however, sounds perfect for me. My late mother just loved Irises, and I now have my childhood home which is surrounded by all the Irises she planted over the years, dozens and dozens. I’m going to give this a try.


    • Hi Shiva-woman, I can just imagine that your childhood home and its iris garden are a dream. Do give this a try! It may be the one. Sandra xoxo


  6. Hi Sandra, I love all things iris and have many. I fell for Infusion d’Iris all over again and can’t get enough! Heure Exquise is my HG iris. For an incensy iris I wear the bone dry Dzongkha. A warmer iris is Acqua di Parma Iris Nobile, have you tried it? If not, happy to send you a sample.I never tried Bois d’Argent and will surely try it after reading your lovely review.


    • Hi Hamamelis, great list of perfumes there. Loved Dzongkha. Must smell Heure Exquise and Aqua di Parma again. Are you in the Netherlands? Does Portia have your email address? Sandra xoxo


      • Hi Sandra, yes I am in the Netherlands (I went to highschool in Rotterdam!). I do think Portia has it, so if he could pass it on please feel free to contact me. Ofcourse I can include some Heure Exquise and Dzongkha if you wish!


  7. I love my irises in Guerlain. Like you, I tend to find the treatment of iris quite aloof too. I have been interested in Bd’A and how Dior deals with this note.


  8. Love warm iris scents! My favorites are Hiris by Hermes and Iris d’Toscane by L’occitane, hard to find but gorgeous if you do. Oh, and Terry de Gunzberg Ombre Mercure!!


    • Hi Robert H! I have added your recommendations to my to sample list. Loved Hermes Hiris but have not smelled it recently. Sandra xoxo


  9. Great review, and now I want to try this! I like Miller Harris’ Terre d’Iris and L’Artisan’s Dzongkha. I have just acquired Van Cleef’s Bois d”Iris but haven’t tried it yet, so I look forward to that. I also have an unopened bottle of Guerlain’s Insolence EDP. As you can see, I have been sort tiptoeing around iris! I like it but there are other floral notes I find more compelling. It does grow on one, though; check in with me in a few months and I may have become obsessed with iris, lol. I love these suggestions in the comments and will have to try some of them!


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