My husband came home today and placed a tiny bottle and a piece of paper wrapped like a scroll on the counter – a birthday gift to me from his friend, Julie. I was immediately intrigued by the tiny bottle with an amber colored residue, and charmed by the hand-written letter (you know Osmia and hand-written notes…) on salmon colored paper.
Running my thumb over the sides of the bumpy bottle, I began to read:
“A belated birthday gift…
I found this bottle about 20 years ago – among other bottles – at a construction site in Hamilton, Ohio – near my university.
A little research revealed that this is a perfume bottle – art deco style – from around 1875. “Lady Lillian” perfume (which is imprinted on the bottom and cap of the bottle) was made in San Francisco around that time period.
The other bottles I found are from around the same period – late 1800s – things like “Lysol”, aspirin, and “Bluing” liquid. These bottles were likely from the same household – all of the other bottles were quite utilitarian.
I imagine then, that this woman in history led a very practical life, save one indulgence – her perfume.
Despite the hardship of this time, she maintained a special place for her perfume, her femininity. It speaks to how valuable this was to her – and now very likely to women of our time. You are creating this indulgence for women now – in this time – creating a meaning and a moment for their beauty.
I thought this bottle ought to be in your possession as a symbol of the value what you are doing has on all of the women it touches.
What an utterly thoughtful note, from a uniquely lovely woman. And it could not express my hopes for Osmia any more perfectly: that our products and perfumes help create subtle yet meaningful moments of indulgence in your every day. Moments to be protected and cherished no matter what other circumstances – those that make up the thing called Life – surround you. This little bottle will find a special place to live, where I will see it daily and remember all it stands for – past, present, and future. Thank you, Julie.
With and love and sweet gifts from us to you,