Spring Flower (Creed)

It's spring somewhere on planet earth, although not here in Connecticut. Nevertheless, I can't help myself, and must perversely poke and prod through several summery fragrances, just to sidestep the dreary dregs of November. Have I told you how much I dislike November? After the ragged-red blaze of October (our most glorious month), the battleship grey of our eleventh age sets in, its sky of bleach bone and ashen woods leaving little material for romantic imaginations. Enter Creed's Spring Flower.

I approached Spring Flower with more trepidation than any other Creed I've tried, simply because its reputation precedes it. It's not widely loved. Supposedly created for Audrey Hepburn, sometime during her twilight years, Olivier apparently invented the modern fruity floral in crafting Spring Flower. The word on the street says he created it in the eighties, then released it to the public shortly after Audrey's death. I'll admit that, of all the Creed taglines, the Hepburn association rings the most hollow. It's not that I don't believe Creed manufactured this scent for her. I just find it very difficult to believe she actually wore it.

Fueling my doubt is the scent itself, vulgar pink bottle and even more vulgar pink box aside (Spring Flower exhibits the WORST packaging graphics I've ever seen, with that un-readable gold font set against blotched soap-texture cardboard). Having read the often-misleading Perfumes: The Guide, and Luca Turin's two cents, I expected a twangy burst of citrus off the top of Spring Flower, followed by a sugarbomb peach note and some dreadful candyfloss drydown.

No such luck - Spring Flower's opening is indeed twangy, comprised of a piercingly sharp lemon and green apple accord, with hints of melon and pear fading in and out of the bitter melange. That top note is pure chartreuse made scent. Slowly, like overexposed Polaroids, shy peach and red apple notes appear, broadening that nasal-splitting shank of watery "fresh" with softness and subtlety. Dewey-sweet jasmine and rose elements accompany these fruits with sheer velvet-petal effects, and their delicate floral smell, not literally of flowers, but rather of the water sprayed on flowers in a greenhouse, lifts the sour apples, their aqueous green mist, and brings the main thrust of this perfume into soft focus.

And what is the main thrust, you ask? Freshness. Pure and simple. Spring Flower is bright, watery, sour, fruity, green, and all things fresh, from start to finish. It never gets definitively sweet, always remains bright and cheerful, refrains from becoming a full-on bouquet, and lacks the sycophantic qualities of your average designer fruity floral. It doesn't smell friendly, it doesn't smell nice, but it does't smell cold and forbidding, either. There is a high-pitched musky note lurking in the composition that lends Spring Flower a few extra hours beyond its call of duty - expect at least five hours out of it. Is it worth the sticker shock for a 2.5 ounce bottle? Perhaps, although it isn't the greatest bang for your buck (Original Vetiver is more remarkable). Is it feminine? It's not really feminine, but I'd say it's safely unisex. Men and women could wear Spring Flower without either gender feeling uncomfortable, and I imagine they'd interpret it similarly.

Ultimately there isn't anything out of the ordinary going on with this fragrance, except that it's made with very high quality materials. That makes a difference. I never feel like I'm treading a chemical bath with it on. It may be an unremarkable idea, but the execution is amazing. That makes a difference! Give Spring Flower a try when you get a chance. I'm considering a bottle for whenever spring returns to my neck of the woods.