Catherine de Medici was born a couple hundred years after the time setting of this series (I'm sure they will get to her in subsequent seasons), but seeing the stylish costumes, lavish palaces and impeccably graceful aristocratic Italian women made me want to reach for any fragrance that reminded me of this era and of Tuscany. That meant my vintage bottle of Gio Armani parfum as well as Caterina de Medici by I Profumi di Firenze, a noble floral fragrance, if I ever smelled one, and a floral fragrance in the truest sense of the word. Notes are rose, lily of the valley, iris (a very Florentine choice) and chamomile. Caterina de Medici smells clean, elegant, fresh and crisp--nothing risque in this bouquet. No scandalous jasmine nor darker, mysterious oriental notes that might take our imaginations to places that these Renaissance ladies weren't even allowed to speak of.
Caterina de Medici smells timeless, in a way, because it has a purity about it. It's the way in which I imagine perfume smelled in those days, long before aromachemicals. We think of fragrances such as Chanel No. 5, with its synthetic aldehydes, as smelling "old-fashioned" or "vintage," but before aldehydic fragrances there was just the luxury and purity of flowers.