Stella McCartney Launches LILY Absolute

Jourdana ON Feb 04, 2013 AT 10:00 am

There are certain women whose life you would quite happily trade. Sat amongst a sumptuous yet surprisingly wearable Spring Summer 2013 collection it occurs to me that Stella McCartney is without doubt one of those women.

Born to rock royalty it would be all too easy to suggest that a successful career as a fashion designer simply comes with the territory and yet as soon as McCartney, who arrives looking insouciant yet immaculate wearing turned up boyfriend jeans, a cream button-down shirt and perfectly tailored navy blazer, opens her mouth, any illusions to her having success handed on a plate are at-once shattered.

Stella McCartney L.I.L.Y Absolute

Despite being in the plush surrounds of her South Kensington boutique, McCartney still somehow seems relatable and that, I realise, is the draw. Not only is she articulate, intelligent and interesting, she’s funny and witty and quick to laugh at herself. And, unlike many a celebrity (or even designer) fronted- fragrance, there’s no doubt that McCartney clearly had a very real hand in creating LILY Absolute.

“The reality of creating any fragrance for me is very much attached to memory but Lily Absolute was a whole new experience for me,” says Stella. ” I had a story in my head of a girl becoming a woman. And it felt very emotional. I didn’t feel quite the same when creating Stella.”

Revisiting the inspiration behind the original LILY scent, McCartney explained, “For me the starting point was referencing my childhood, being outside a lot as a kid and being out in the British countryside. The fragrance itself started from a seasonal point of view. I was inspired, I guess, by my love of Lily of the Valley flowers. It has become quite old fashioned, and isn’t really used in fragrance any more. . .And I like the challenge of looking at something that’s not fashionable in scent and trying to revive that.”"

Working with the nose, McCartney wanted to “capture the dew of the flower in the morning, the breeze and the air that surrounds the Lily of the Valley flower. I became quite obsessive about that.”  But the focal point of the new updated, LILY Absolute fragrance is “the darker side of the flower, the root, the earth and the moss. The shady element and the woodland.”

These darker, more sensual and almost-carnal tones, created by way of black truffle, spicy black pepper, cool oak moss, patchouli and amber, balance the fragrance. For McCartney, “it’s the perfect juxtaposition of masculine and feminine that you see in everything I create.” And that same juxtaposition goes for the bottle itself; a soft, feminine circle framed in a square of gold.

Intensely sensual, sweetly feminine, a contrast of subtle darkness and floral lights. There’s no doubt that LILY Absolute, is the latest in a line of very personal fragrance offerings from Stella McCartney. And that in itself is why, like its predecessors, LILY Absolute is destined to be this season’s fragrance hit.

LILY Absolute, £65 for 50ml EDP available at

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