Wednesday, August 20, 2008

Scenting the Women of Mad Men: Betty Draper

How do you scent the woman who is the epitome of beauty for the 1950's? Who has the sort've Grace Kelley good looks that should make her husband utterly adoring of her, instead Betty is faced with a husband who continously has affairs with woman that quite frankly the opposite of her character and looks, ex. Midge, and is chomping at the bit of the role of mother and wife. She is living the 1950's dream life for a woman, but as you watch her realize how much that role did not give fruit to happiness or fulfillment. Watching Betty is watching a woman realize that all those expectations she has of herself and from everybody else does not fit. She is sexually unhappy in her marriage, not exactly the greatest mother, and is beginning to realize the only time she enjoyed herself to degree was working, as a model, but still work. At first I wanted to scent Betty in Chanel N. 5, but realized that scent is just way too soft for her, instead I looked towards another highly aldehydic scent but one that has an edge, Lanvin's Arpege, I think I rather enjoyed the irony of scent that is based on the love between a mother and a daughter. A role that Betty has great deal of problems being the daughter of a woman who only commented on Betty's looks and now the mother of a daughter, whom she is repeating the same behaviour with. But then again Arpege is not a very maternal scent, it is womanly with just a hint of sadness from the use of violets, and stronger than expected with the use of woods.
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Rose said...

Arpege does seem apt! It does have a darker edge to it than No.5

It's interesting only thinking in terms of scents that would have been available at a time.

It also makes me think about what I might have worn then- and I can't decide at all! I guess I would still have liked the Guerlains. My Mother wore Vent Vert then and that also seems like it might have suited me.

Jenavira13 said...

I thought I would keep with the shows authenticity and only go with scents in the era.