There are clear parallels between the creation of fragrance and of jewelry: the celebration of natural materials, for one, and the awareness that what is being made is not just to be admired but worn.
When fragrance nose Daniela Andrier thought about what a new scent for Tiffany & Co. would smell like, she thought about iris butter, one of the most expensive substances used in perfumes. But she wanted to remove some of its heft and headiness and express only its lighter side.
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To do that she worked with the raw ingredient as though it were a gemstone. “The idea was to facet it and keep only its quintessence, its brightness,” Andrier says. So, after iris rhizomes (horizontal stems) were grown for three years, then dried, the extracted material went through a partial distillation technique at the fragrance house Givaudan that removes the resinous aspects from the extract and keeps the slightly powdery, budlike qualities.
The result is called Iris Fraction, and when mixed with patchouli and musks it yields a long-lasting yet fizzy floral aroma.
The iris is a flower with a long history at Tiffany & Co. The company’s chief gemologist, Melvyn Kirtley, says that an iris brooch made with, of all things, sapphires from Montana won the grand prize at the Paris Exposition in 1900. Now Tiffany’s newest floral expression is housed in a glass bottle fashioned after two of its iconic diamond cuts: the modern Lucida on top and the 82-facet Tiffany yellow diamond on the bottom.
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Andrier associates the Tiffany brand with American romanticism and “Breakfast at Tiffany’s: yellow cabs on Fifth Avenue, Audrey Hepburn, diamonds, a black dress.” Perhaps her latest liquid, which comes in a blue box of its own, will be added to the list.
From: Town & Country