The lichen dye makes up the shapes. Curly green ground lichens are marinated in water and ammonia for 6 to 9 months to bring out the brown color. Sometimes the surprise is that they make a purple (if you wait long enough). But the brown is gorgeous and is permanent with no help from other minerals. It also smells really good, think of Harris Tweeds! It's perfume of a good nature. The piece is something of relational concerns, amid other relations.