I – I
In front of you, the sea. Behind, Mediterranean shrubland..
Act I Scene I
“Terralba” is the name of a small town in Sardinia. Not only it sounds beautifully: in Italian is a name full of imaginery, as “Terra” means “earth”, and “Alba” means “Dawn”. Every time we utter that word, our memories of summer vacations in Sardinia are immediately recalled. The Mediterranean shrubland – so earthy, so rough, almost wild – might seem in stark contrast with the “lightheartedness” of the sea breeze. Yet there is a moment in which the two different sensations are perfectly balanced: if you will ever have the chance to take a short break in Sardinia, when the world is still asleep, you must take an early morning hike through the shrubland. At sunrise, the salty and fresh breeze coming from the sea and the deep resinous smells of the thick vegetation would mingle and create the magic smellscape that we wanted to capture with Terralba.
Terralba is a shimmering snapshot of that dry intermediary traverse of sand-stuffed tussocks of grass, sedge and hillocky verdancy that separates pure beach from the wood, forest, road, gîtes, campsites and demi-occupancy holiday homes. Barrier, merge and Maginot line. Sometimes it is barely a strip of sand embroidered with threads of knotted grass and tough-anchored nubs of worn green that the sands gather around with scratchy debris.
Once you start wearing Terralba, it is hard to shake its memory, right from the signature opening: a radiant solar lemon and fresh and saline air of the Sardinian coast. Delphine seasons Terralba, suggesting sand and herbaceous ozonic air, a mix of metallic dampness, the ocean weeping. Her rub of salted blue-grey sky over the woody mastic, juniper and woods is wonderfully atmospheric.
Terralba was the first fragrance launched in the collection. It was created by Delphine Thierry, which is also the nose behind the creation of Montecristo. After hearing the briefs about the line, Delphine explicitly asked to create both fragrances – so different yet both allowing her to express her “free spirit” in fragrance creation: the sunset on a Mediterranean island and the set of the day in an old Tuscan mansion.