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Sidmouth
Devon
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  Nobile 'Estratto'

A little Christmas magic

18 October 2019

Christmas has always been a time of opulence, fantasy and magic. This year, niche fragrance house Nobile combines the skills of four Italian craft traditions into one very special luxury gift...

I. More than a mere bauble...
High in the thickly wooded Piedmont mountains close to Savona in northern Italy, a recluse conclave of artisans have guarded the art of hand-blown glass for the past 800 years. Originally accessed only via a steep single file mule path one mile high, these ‘stranieri’ (foreigners), of Sephardic origin, founded a commune on a lonely mountain top called Altare or ‘high place’. To preserve their art, they never mixed with the local populace and never intermarried. In fact, even today it is said in Altare, “to master the art of glassblowing, it is essential to obtain a grandfather who was a master.”

The treasured product of these highly-skilled “craftsmen of light”, the glass blowers of Altare, has been garnered by Nobile into a single luxury perfume bottle - the “gli Estratti” range. Master glass workers, Constantino and Francesca at Sandro Bormioli Altare (SV), have based the production of this special bottle on two traditional techniques: hand blowing the “lume” of the borosilicate glass, and creating the fused glass plate ‘bullseye’. With skill to move the molten glass mass, these master craftsmen then create a unique product, each varying from the other in the small details of each individual blowing. The end result is a beautiful and unique 120ml glass bottle, the first of four luxury techniques that Nobile have embodied into this one special gift.

II. Add some glitter...
Since the fifteenth century, Genoa in Italy has been considered the world capital for the art of ‘filigree’, the weaving of fine gold and silver threads into intricate lace-pattern jewellery. Often the threads are so fine that the workmanship, as witnessed here, utterly defies belief. Today, Giampaolo continues this tradition in his Campo Ligure (outkirts of Genoa) workshop, manufacturing gold and silver filigree using handcrafted methods of this remarkable tradition where the fine gold and silver threads are curled, twisted and soldered using flux and a blowpipe.

The neck of each Nobile ‘estratti’ range perfume bottle is decorated with no less than three exquisite Giampaolo filigree rings, the second unique artisan component of this gift, each of an exceptional and individual Arabesque design. Each ring carries an Italian hallmark.

III. Wrap it with care...
According to the legend, the first inhabitants of the Ligurian eastern Riviera, the survivors of the first Crusade, in XII century wove fine silks and damasks. For centuries now they have produced a weave of the finest silk, soft and very thick with its unique and matchless characteristics. It is mechanically inimitable, hand-woven on wooden looms, themselves dating from the 16th Century. The silks, which exit the hand loom at the rate of just seven metres per day, have been used to create the third luxury component, a hand-made silk box, the perfect container for such a treasured perfume bottle.

IV. The quintessence of luxury...
What is a perfume bottle without a perfume? Nobile 1942 are one of the world’s last remaining artisan perfumeries, creating exquisite perfume using the finest natural ingredients, hand macerated and filtered in the traditional manner. The result, the fourth component of this special creation, is a perfume of exceptional quality - rich and complex, pure and vibrant. The word ‘estratti’, used for this range of products, is Italian for “extract” and describes the perfume strength (typically of 25% oil concentration, compared to 20% Eau de Parfum, or 12%-15% Eau de Toilette), providing the power, longevity and beauty expected of a exceptional perfume.

Available now
The fragrance in this exquisite bottle, can be chosen as an ‘estratti’ edition from one of five existing Nobile ‘eau de parfum’ scents, each available for sampling at our Sidmouth shop (where a sample estratti bottle can also be viewed and examined). The five choices of fragrance are: Casta Diva, Cafe Chantant, Pontevecchio, Anonimo Veneziano, and Vespri Aromatico. Please note, each bottle is produced to order and must be ordered by 6th December for Christmas delivery (date subject to change). Price £495 plus postage and package.


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What the paper's say

Since discovering Woodforde & Co in Sidmouth, I know where to go to find my perfect perfume. This charming emporium is located in Church Street and is run by husband and wife, Jon and Jane Brewer, both of whom have an encyclopaedic knowledge and an enthusiastic passion for perfumery.

Devon Today