Tory Burch Talks Her Dream-Inspired Fragrance Collection And The Power Of Perfume

What do dreams smell like? That’s a question Tory Burch has answered with her first collection of multiple scents, called the Essence of Dreams Collection. “I have always been fascinated by scents and the way they can transport us or change how we feel,” Burch, Executive Chairman and Chief Creative Officer of Tory Burch, says. “This process began early in the pandemic, and I wanted to create beautiful, uplifting fragrances that would inspire us to visualize a better future—one with more love, joy, freedom, magic and peace.”

Encompassing five fragrances, Burch couldn’t limit her vision to just one. “My tastes are eclectic, and I designed these fragrances the same way I design ready-to-wear and accessories: They are tools for self-expression,” she says. “Scent is so personal; we choose a fragrance each day based on our mood, what we’re wearing, or how we want to feel. I don’t see women wearing one fragrance anymore; they’re collecting scents to alternate or even mix together. We thought about that as well; these are unique, long-lasting scents, but they aren’t overpowering, so you can experiment with mixing and layering them.”

Two years in the making, each perfume is made with the best quality botanicals and essential oils. “We worked very closely with the world’s top perfumers to create each scent,” Burch says. “My approach to fragrance was similar to my design philosophy: reimagined classics and unexpected contrasts. I wanted the fragrances to be fresh and easy to wear, but with surprising notes mixed in—florals with spices, honey, wood and saltwater. Each one is truly unique.”

The campaign, shot by artist Oliver Hadlee Pearch, symbolizes the power of shared dreams when we come together. Starring Essence of Dreams muses Imaan Hammam, Havana Rose and Alexandra Micu, it captures the joy and bonding of movement and dance. “Like scent, music can instantly transform how I feel. The Doobie Brothers’ song ‘Long Train Runnin’ in our campaign distills our message perfectly: ‘Without love, where would you be now?’” Burch says. “We were partly inspired by the 1971 Coca-Cola ad called ‘Hilltop,’ best known for its song ‘I’d Like to Buy the World a Coke.’ It was a simple message about love, community and acts of kindness.”

For Burch, fragrance is about so much more than what your nose takes in. “I have always connected scents with the people, places and moments that changed my life,” she says. “My father always wore vetiver, so I think of him whenever I smell it. My mother was an organic gardener in the ’70s, and I have incredible childhood memories of tending to the flowers, fruits and vegetables with her.”

Since she takes scent to heart, Burch seriously considered the meaning of each perfume in the Essence of Dreams Collection. “We spent a lot of time thinking about the dreams and emotions each fragrance would evoke,” she says. “Each fragrance represents a dream for tomorrow: Divine Moon, peace. Sublime Rose, love. Electric Sky, freedom. Cosmic Wood, magic. Mystic Geranium, joy. I wear them all depending on my mood, and I love to layer them throughout the day. My favorite changes every day. Right now, it’s Divine Moon; it helps me find moments of peace on extra busy days.”

Get to know the Essence of Dreams Collection:

Divine Moon

Light and airy with a touch of delicate sweetness, a blend of Lady of the Night flower, honey and citrus captures a sense of harmony. “Divine Moon represents peace; it transports me to my garden in Antigua, where I feel an overwhelming sense of tranquility,” Burch says. $125,

Electric Sky

True to its name, a whiff will make you think of the warm breeze that follows right after a storm, with its contrasting combination of cactus flower, lavender and wood. “Electric Sky is energizing and vibrant, channeling absolute freedom,” Burch says. $125,

Mystic Geranium

Sweet and serene, it’s the ultimate mood lifter. “Mystic Geranium instills joy,” Burch says. “It has this unexpected contrast of geranium leaf, bergamot and rich cedarwood.” $125,

Sublime Rose

The quintessential rose note gets a twist with a touch of blackcurrant and a warm wood undertone to add to its allure. “Sublime Rose represents love and is a new, modern twist on a classic rose; it reminds me of the garden in Paris where my husband proposed,” Burch says. $125,

Cosmic Wood

“Cosmic Wood feels optimistic and magical, with spicy notes of cardamom and vetiver,” Burch says. Jasmine completes the mystical elixir. $125,

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