Iris root powder, my first love…

ImageMy current stay in South Burgundy feels like a pilgrimage to my childhood… pre-exotic travels abroad that is!

Enjoying the spring scenery of the multitude of beautiful iris flowers with their Royal violet colours, lining the vineyards and their gorgeous smell when they blossom was enough for a flashback to an attic in a farmhouse in the Pyrenees where aged Iris root powder had been stored for decades…

The farmer’s daughter and myself used to sneak in there and help ourselves with a (tiny) handful of this powder which we instinctively sprayed on our (long) hair! My usually very dark hair had turned powder-white and all we were thinking about after that is what our parents would say…. And how to get rid of the beautiful powdery smell in our hair and on our arms and face! But the parents were only pleased to see that their little girls were showing early signs of feminity and coquetry…

The smell of iris powder is very specific of grandma face and body talc powders. When I started to create my own perfumes, I then realised how important this short-lived flower is for perfumery. Its roots are the most important as, once dried and turned into powder they become the best natural fixative around that adds the special touch to the perfume…

I fail to grasp how such a beautiful, sensual and feminine flower and smell can be associated with grandmas. I would rather associate it to young and elegant ladies who understand sensuality. Its scent is close to that of violet and indeed is used to create violet scents since the violet itself does not release its scent from extraction (apart from the leaves that give a green smell and not a powdery one).

Touching its petals is like touching soft velvet. You really want to stroke it, bury your nose into the beautiful  lining…. The ultimate pampering dream would be to plunge into a bath filled with those magnificent flowers.

While walking around the vineyards of Burgundy and observing those flowers, all I could think about was harvesting them, distilling their roots to create my own Iris butter! And it did remind me that Iris was my first aromatic love!

More info about iris pallida>>>

Iris Pallida in Pouilly Fuisse by I. Gelle

You can read about other first fragrance loves from the Natural Perfumers Guild members by clicking the links below.

1 Comment

  1. Pingback: My First Love

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