Scenting The (Snow) Globe: Olfiction perfumer creates the smell of Christmas

Get your snow shoes on and experience a fabulously scented, festive performance, as the world famous Globe Theatre is transformed into ‘The (Snow) Globe’ with fragrant help from Olfiction and perfumer, Pia Long

Pia is the co-founder of Olfiction – a UK-based fragrance consultancy that work with suppliers, contract manufacturers, brands, retailers and fragrance industry organisations. As well as creating fragrances and scented products, and aiding existing fragrance houses to shape and better define themselves in the marketplace, Olfiction can also help evoke specific moods (or seasons) by scenting spaces – and this one couldn’t be more festively fragrant!

Olfiction says: This Christmas, world renowned performing arts venue, cultural attraction and education centre Shakespeare’s Globe will show Christmas at the (Snow) Globe. As part of their dedication to making performance accessible, the production will have an audio described performance with a set touch tour for visually impaired visitors. To enhance this aspect of the production, Shakespeare’s Globe commissioned Olfiction to create fragrances which evoke all of the sensations and scents of Christmas.

The team at Olfiction created accords of Snow, Christmas Tree, and Pomanders as well as a finished fragrance which combines all of these elements.

Talking about the experience, Olfiction Perfumer, Pia Long, said: ‘A Finnish person being asked to make the smell of a Nordic Christmas? Absolutely!

The challenge of doing things that are very well known by people is harder than it seems, because if you don’t get it right, it is as though you have ruined something that is personally important to them. It’s a fun challenge to make something that if you give the scent to someone, they will smell it and say ‘that’s Christmas!’.

I particularly enjoyed making snow because it is so abstract, more like a sensation than a smell – and it’s not until you think about it that you realise there is a smell. I’ve always felt that some aldehydes smelled like snow. That was the most fun to do as a perfumer – it’s something that you know and you don’t, because it isn’t as though there is a snow essential oil!’

Snow Globe

A sensation of cold crisp air and frozen earth.
‘As though you are walking into a snowy landscape and take a big lungful of snowy air, it’s got the snow but also the frozen ground under the snow. I wanted you to sense that there are trees in the background. It’s very much a Nordic landscape on a crisp winter morning when it’s well below zero.
Notes: Aldehydes, Juniper, Cyclamen, Black Pepper, Cold Effects

Yule Tree

A picture-perfect Christmas tree.
‘I wanted to do a spruce as it’s growing, ready to be your Christmas tree – so here are the fresh young shoots as well as the smell of the Christmas tree when you bring it into your house for Christmas. So, it’s Nordic spruce, not a typical pine – the smell is more delicate and leafy, there’s almost a fruitiness to it and it’s absolutely the smell of Christmas for me. It’s not Christmas until you have the real live tree in the house. The tradition was that you would go and physically fetch your tree on Christmas Eve, and you’d go to cut it down from the forest as a family.’
Notes: Fir Balsam abs, Cypress, Elemi, Labdanum, Amber, Oakmoss, Pine

Pomander

A traditional orange pomander dotted in spices.
‘For this accord, I wanted to capture an orange pomander with cloves, but I’ve also thought of the Christmas stockings stuffed with clementines and gingerbread – the whole idea is combining citrus and spices. There’s a bit of floralcy in this as well – I added carnations and orange blossom – to make it a bit more sophisticated.’
Notes: Cinnamon, Clove, Nutmeg, Orange, Orange Flower, Clementine, Mandarin, Carnation, Patchouli, Amber

Danish Christmas

This fragrance captures all of the sensations of the individual accords, in a wearable perfume that can be used by the actors and ushers as well as to scent the decorations and space.

‘I wanted to take slices of each of the accords. Up top you’ve got the aldehydes from Snow Globe, and the spice and citrus from Pomander. From the Yule Tree, I’ve taken the resins and balsams and the ambery side, with some of the woodiness, so the complete fragrance is this warming and cosy Christmas hug. I’ve added a slight gingerbread note in there as well, to evoke the feeling of baking Christmas treats and festive cosiness.’
Notes: Aldehydes, Orange, Clementine, Mandarin, Jasmine Absolute, Cedarwood Atlas, Carnation, Cinnamon, Orange Flower Absolute, Clove, Nutmeg, Benzoin, Incense, Sandalwood, Patchouli, Fir Balsam, Labdanum, Oakmoss

 

 

About the Show:

‘The Globe Theatre stands empty, the stage bare, the Christmas tree undecorated and we need your help.

Someone has stolen the magic of Christmas from Snowdrop, the fairy who stands watch over our wooden ‘O’ during the winter months. Comedian Sandi Toksvig and her merry gang need your help to find it and bring it back to the Globe.

Sing along to classic Christmas songs with the tremendous Fourth Choir, prepare to make paper chains to decorate the theatre and get ready to harness your belief in the spirit of the season to help restore some festive cheer.

This is a show for the entire family so tell everyone you know to put on their favourite Christmas jumpers and join us for the most heart-warming of gatherings.

Help us spread the cheer further. In the spirit of storytelling and gift giving, we’re inviting audiences to bring along a brand-new children’s book as a present to put under the Christmas at the (Snow) Globe tree, which we’ll donate to local charities that support children and young people.

Created and directed by Sandi Toksvig and Jenifer Toksvig, Christmas at the (Snow) Globe will have integrated BSL for every performance.

There will be captioned performances on Sunday 22 December at 2.00PM and 6.00PM, and the audio described performance will be on Saturday 21 December at 2.00PM, with a touch and scent tour on the stage at 12 noon.

Last Orders for Xmas 2019: this Thursday!

If you’re in a festive flap over those last-minute gifts, we will gently remind you that our last day for ordering before Christmas is this Thursday, 19th December 2019. But flap no further, as we have all your gifts sorted in a fuss-free (and fabulously fragrant!) way…

We’ve made ordering online a complete breeze, with a number of handy gift guides suitable for every age, fragrant taste and budget. Have a browse through some of them now, and get your gift list checked off at the click of a button!

How to buy fragrance at Christmas
Let’s start at the very beginning (as the song goes) – because trying to work out exactly what will suit whom best can be a bit of a headache, we know. That’s why we’ve done all the leg-work for you and curated selections of scents with particular types of people in mind, and perhaps with a little something to tempt you, too. One to point bewildered relatives at when they demand to know what you want!

When you just can’t decide which scent someone would love: Luxury Gift Boxes
If you know your loved one adores fine fragrances, and always likes trying something new, have a look at this list of ultra-luxe boxes you can buy at surprisingly affordable prices. There’s genuinely something to suit everyone here – masculine, feminine and gender-neutra – the ideal way to discover a new house, with lavish perfume gift sets from only £14! The Perfume Society’s beautiful selection of single-house perfume boxes really come into their own when you need exquisite curations, with scents to match every mood and personality. Here are some of our favourites…

Looking for that perfect fragrance gift..? Then look no further than the truly decadent and globally adored AMOUAGE. Delve into this collection of TWELVE women’s fragrances for £50 (P&P*). A perfumista’s dream…

And for every female fragrance Amouage creates, happily you will find there is a male counterpart. For £50 (+P&P*) it’s the perfect fragrance gift for Men with TWELVE AMOUAGE Men’s fragrances. There won’t be any disappointed faces (or knowingly unscented necks) this Christmas!

A fabulous gift from this ethical and unisex scent name, with EIGHT FRAGRANCES to fall in love with, you will simply swoon at the sunshine-filled scents of Sana Jardin. Just £30 (+P&P*)

A powerhouse of a brand and the original olfactory innovators, this is a great Escentric Molecules Discovery Set to explore for men and women. With EIGHT FRAGRANCES, it’s hard to pick just one favourite. Just £25 (+P&P*)

For that guy who’s always hard to buy for…
Be they a loved one related to you by blood, or a life-partner whose answer to ‘what would you like this Christmas?’ is usually ‘Oh you, know… anything will do’ (at which point you could happily draw blood!); we’ve already had the most fabulous feedback to our Mr. Scentastic Discovery Box. Whether you are planning cliff-top walks, a trip away, cosy nights in or some dress-to-impress evenings, there’s a fragrance for every occasion in this collection. From a 6ml MUGLER ALIEN MAN as well as a very generous  30ml DEAR BARBER WITH CONFIDENCE fragrance, we’ve also added incredible niche fragrances from perfume houses such as Maison Francis Kurkdjian, Prosody, Hugo Boss, BulgariLalique and more. All these, and two grooming extras, for £19 (or £15 for V.I.Ps) (+P&P*)

So what are you waiting for? There’s a whole world of fragrant adventures to switch people’s noses on to – we know many people who have ordered several as gifts and then come back to order another for themslves (including one chap who emailed us to say he’d got NINE of the Mr. Scentastic boxes for his friends, and then orederd two for himself to keep!)

*All orders are £3 for postage and packing.

Scented christmas trees & more from Maison Francis Kurkdjian

Maison Francis Kurkdjian has pulled out all the stops this season, offering new and exciting ways to scent your home (and yourself!) From fragrant Christmas trees, scented caligraphy cards and the most goregous candle, there’s also excellent news for fans of a certain best-selling fragrance who’d believe in going big or going home…

There’s no doubt that perfumer Francis Kurkdjian is one of the most stylish people we know. From the exquisite fine fragrances and accessories that have made him world famous, to his personal flair when designing the so-chic boutiques and decorating his own (of course ultra fabulous) Parisian apartment. Borrowing a little of that effortless élan for some French contemporary style, Maison Francis Kurkdjian invite you to come inside and ‘…plunge into a unique universe where the art and pleasure of giving become one. Fragrances and candles wait patiently by the Christmas tree, the theme chosen by Francis Kurkdjian, as the quiet and elegantly dressed witnesses of the season’s celebrations.’

‘O Christmas tree, o Christmas tree, how lovely is thy fragrance…’

Mon beau Sapin, the iconic holiday candle by Maison Francis Kurkdjian, now comes in a dark green colour adorned with a fir bough decorated in white and gold. Its generous, characteristic smell of a balsam fir, slightly resinous, slowly guides us towards a reassuring forest. This candle, with its specific wintery enveloping fragrance brings the finishing touch to the joyful holiday mood and memories past.

Maison Francis Kurkdjian Mon Beau Sapin Candle £55 for 190 g, at Selfridges new MFK counter

 

If you’re one of the many (many!) fragrant fans of the iconic Baccarat Rouge 540 extrait de parfum, or you know someone who is, get ready to squeal quite a lot. A whopping great supersize-me version of the fragrance has been created especially for Christmas, standing proud at 200ml, and definitely subscribing to the belief that bigger is better.

‘Baccarat Rouge 540 was born of the encounter five years ago between Baccarat and Maison Francis Kurkdjian, two luxury houses with a shared passion for know-how. Baccarat Rouge 540 tells the story of how gold is magically transformed into red, a process whose secret is known only by Baccarat. Blended with 24-karat gold dust and gradually fused until it reaches precisely 540 degrees, Baccarat’s transparent crystal slowly dons a dazzling red hue.’

This fragrance has been a world-wide best-seller for a reason: it smells incredible – we know exactly where a certain member of The Perfume Society team has been because she trails this everywhere she goes. It’s available as an eau de parfum in the clear crystal bottle and as an extrait de parfum in a deep, ruby red bottle; and if this is a present for someone you love, it’s certainly not only Santa that’s getting snogged under the mistletoe this year!

Maison Francis Kurkdjian Baccarat Rouge 540 extrait de parfum £590 for 200ml at Harvey Nichols, Selfridges, John Lewis, Les Senteurs, Harrods & franciskurkdjian.com

Thursday to Sunday there will be caligraphy on specially scented Christmas cards at the new Maison Francis Kurkdjian Selfridges counter. And they are also offering a mini Mon Beau Sapin candle as a free gift with purchase. (We absolutely will not judge you if you decide to keep this for yourself. The person you’re buying the gift for will never know, right? Right. And we’ll be doing the same, so…)

Finally, if you needed another reason to pop across to France (with the car, we think, for this one…) before Christmas, then look no further than the wonder that is a scented Maison Francis Kurkdjian Christmas tree! Sadly these are not available in the U.K. this year, but those seeking the ultimate in festive fragrance can delight in them at the following stores:

Perfumed and fireproofed Nordmann Tree, 100/120 cm:
Green natural tree from 145 euros*
Flocked tree with natural dusting from 185 euros*
Flocked integral white tree from 205 euros*
*(Suggested retail price excluding delivery)

Order from Parisian shops Maison Francis Kurkdjian:
Boutique Saint Honoré – 5 rue d’Alger, Paris 1er – +33 1 42 60 07 07
Boutique Marais – 7 rue des Blancs-Manteaux, Paris 4ème – +33 1 42 71 76 76

The mere descriptions, let alone gawping at these pictures, makes us feel instantly more stylish; and we find that theme of the Holiday tree on all accompanying boxes, gift sets, tissue paper and bags – illustrations and images drawn by Kurkdjian himself and created by his design team. So if you’re searching for that perfect present for someone special, hankering after treating yourself for a change, or heavily hinting to loved ones (we find choosing the Print Screen option and circling the ones you want in red while mouthing ‘THOSE PLEASE’ works really well); you’ll find that ‘…everything at Maison Francis Kurkdjian comes together to create a wintry harmony where an eye for detail lies at the heart of the creative process.’ Naturellement!

By Suzy Nightingale

How to buy perfume as a present – for friends, family, and yourself!

The C word. No not that one. Okay well, sometimes it is that one (especially at this time of year) when suddenly the Halloween decorations have been torn down and now you’re supposed to hurl yourself into crowds of equally stressed shoppers, frantically trying to buy ‘The Perfect Present.’ What FUN! Well worry not, because we suggest you start here and do at least some of it from the comfort of your sofa/desk/bed…

How to buy fragrance at Christmas? Where do you even begin? Well, right here with The Perfume Society‘s everything-one-click-away guide! From nervous noses to designer divas and fashionably scented gents, we’ve got something to suit everyone – and a way for yout to treat yourself, guilt-free, too!


If you already know what they love:
Great! Well done you. Why not have a look at matching products available, such as a gorgeously decadent bath oil, rich body cream or even a fragranced hair mist. Or how about a special limited edition bottle of their all-time favourite? [Psst! We have a stunning selection to show you in our soon-to-be-published Christmas edition of The Scented Letter magazine, so watch this space…] It’s often possible to find travel-size versions of perfumes at this time of year, and if you really wanted to push the boat out – how wonderful it would be to book a night in a nice hotel or day spa trip, and add the ticket/voucher to the box of mini sizes in a golden envelope!

If they want to try something new:
There are times when one tires of always having the same fragrance, though, so if they’ve expressed an interest in branching out, take a look at our genius Find a Fragrance online tool. We were thrilled to get a shout-out on Nick Gilbert and Thomas Dunkley‘s Fume Chat Podcast, recently, in which they suggested our Find a Fragrance as THE best way to choose a new scent to suit you. completely free to use, and will guide you with six (SO acurate) suggestions of what to try next. The fragrances suggested will have a similar character or style to the ‘old favourite’, perhaps share some similar notes or even the same perfumer. And it *really* works.

When you’re not sure what they like:
A Discovery Box is definitely the way forward. Bursting with luxurious and often hard-to-find mini, try-me size scents and decadents beauty extras, each box is specially curated around a theme, with a particular kind of perfume-lover in mind, or simply showcases some of our favourite fragrant launches. There’s also an amazing array of Brand Boxes, where each house has put together some of their best-sellers for you to try. We have overwhelming feedback that so many of you have already found something completely new – and scents you’d never heard of – in these boxes, and many people go on to get themselves a full-size bottle having fallen in love by happenstance.

Take a look at just some of the scented selections we have on offer – and as we currently have an amazing limited-time offer of a FREE La Montaña Winter Orangess candle for any two boxes you buy, it’s the perfect time to treat yourself, too, isn’t it…?

Are they uniquely bohemian? Here are cult names and iconic new launches from the best niche houses around… Niche Collection Three Discovery Box £19 / £15 for V.I.P Club members.

Fashion-forward and on the look out for the latest trends? This has thirteen new fragrances to try, plus beauty treats! #FROW Discovery Box £19 / £15 for V.I.Ps

 

Are they more classic – all about the costumes dramas, historical biopics and adore museums? Try Fragonard 5 x Eau de Toilette Discovery Set £20

Are they arty & modern – always off to see the latest contemporary exhibitions and stylishly attired? Choose Tom Daxon Discovery Collection One £45

Adventurous types and sun-seekers will love this ready-to-go holiday kit of must-try travel size fragrances. Globetrotter Discovery Box £19 / £15 for V.I.Ps

For someone who’s had a tough year, and everyone who needs to de-stress, give them The Feel Good Box £19 / £15 for V.I.Ps

Bright young things who don’t want to smell like everyone else will fall for this brilliant British house in the Floral Street Discovery Set £14

Those party-goers and socialites will want one of these to make an entrance at their next big ‘do’, so gift The Fragrance Wardrobe Discovery Box £19 / £15 for V.I.Ps

Cool urbanites with their own sense of style will warm to this great niche house that everyone’s been talking about. Kierien NYC Discovery Set £15

We have so much more in our shop to tempt you, and over the next few weeks will be bringing you more guides of How To Buy for particular people, but hopefully this little peek at possible perfumed gifts will get you thinking – and solving some of those present-buying woes right now…

By Suzy Nightingale

Fragrant advent calendars – grab these before they go!

Advent calendars were once very humdrum affairs. In my day [adopts Monty Python-esque Yorkshire accent] they were all flimsy cardboard with inedible chocolates formed into ‘novelty’ shapes, or simply a pictures of a snowflake or somesuch. How times change!

The past few years have seen beauty companies and retailers festooning advent calendars with fragrant wares, and the trend sees no sign of stopping. Many of them seem to sell out in the blink of an eye, too; so if you see something that catches your eye (and nose) below, we suggest you get in quick…

Penhaligon’s A Fragrant Countdown Advent Calendar: £350

Penhaligon’s say: ‘For those who’ve been uncommonly nice, only the Penhaligon’s Advent Calendar will do. What fun – behind each door hides a fragrant surprise! The only question: can one resist opening them all at once?’

Includes
30ml: Halfeti Body & Hand Wash, Empressa Body & Hand Lotion, Endymion Body & Hand Wash, Luna Body & Hand Lotion, Juniper Sling Body & Hand Wash / 10ml: Cairo, Cousin Flora, Cousin Matthew, Heartless Helen, Terrible Teddy, Elisabethan Rose / Artemisia 5ml, Blenheim Bouquet 5ml, Iris Prima 5ml, Juniper Sling 5ml, Luna 5ml, Orange Blossom 5ml, Quercus 5ml, Empressa 5ml, Endymion Concentre 5ml / Rose Lip Balm 15g, Violet Lip Balm 15g, Maduro Leaf Candle 75g

 

Molton Brown Limited Edition Advent Calendar: £175

Molton Brown say: ‘Count down to the Christmas cheer with our luxury advent calendar, brimming with beloved bath and body icons, home fragrances and beyond. Explore 24 decadent treats, each individually wrapped and presented in a grand Art Deco-inspired box calendar with a hand-tied grosgrain ribbon.’

Includes
3 x 75ml Festive Bauble: Bizarre Brandy, Vintage With Elderflower, Muddled Plum
2 x 50ml Body Lotion: Bizarre Brandy, Muddled Plum
3 x 7.5ml Eau de Toilette: Bizarre Brandy, Vintage With Elderflower, Muddled Plum
1 x 40ml Alba White Truffle Hand Treatment
2 x 50ml Fine Liquid Hand Wash: Re-charge Black Pepper, Fiery Pink Pepper
4 x 50ml Bath & Shower Gel: Jasmine & Sun Rose, Coastal Cypress & Sea Fennel, Rosa Absolute, Vetiver & Grapefruit
3 x Mini Scented Candle: Coco & Sandalwood, Delicious Rhubarb & Rose, Russian Leather
1 x 50ml Purifying Shampoo With Indian Cress
1 x 50ml Purifying Conditioner With Indian Cress
1 x 40ml Heavenly Gingerlily Hand Cream
1 x 50ml Body Oil: Rosa Absolute
1 x 50ml Suede Orris Hair Mist
1 x 50ml Mesmerising Oudh Accord & Gold Bathing Oil

Acqua di Parma Advent Calendar: £325

Acqua di Parma say: ‘Offering a surprise for every day of Christmas, Acqua di Parma presents its 2019 beauty advent calendar. Featuring a miniature version of the signature scent Colonia, it also includes Blu Mediterraneo, Le Nobili and Signature of the Sun miniatures. With roll-on vials, bath and body products, and a special surprise for December 25th, it will keep you invigorated this winter.’

Includes:
Acqua di Parma don’t want to spoil the surprise by listing all the contents, but really, anyone who loves the house will be thrilled by the contents, we’re sure!

Diptyque Advent Calendar £320

Diptyque say: ’25 little pleasures, and so many lucky charms to discover every day before the holidays. The 2019 Advent Calendar brings together in a colorful setting emblematic products in various sizes. It features candles, eau de toilette, eau de parfum and skincare products.’

 

Rituals Advent Deluxe: £89

Rituals say: ‘With The Ritual of Advent Calendar, you can enjoy a luxurious Rituals product behind every window. This is a great way to count down the last 24 days to Christmas and treat yourself or your loved ones to a special moment each day.’

Highlights include:
The Ritual of Namaste Hydrating Ampoule, Ritual of Namasté Velvety Smooth Cleansing Foam, The Ritual of Dao Parfum d’Interieur, The Ritual of Ayurveda Body Cream, Advent Mini Candle Private Collection – Sacred Saffron, Sweet Jasmine Mini Fragrance Sticks, Amsterdam Collection Body Mist, The Ritual of Namasté Pure Face Oil 5ml, The Ritual of Dao Night Balm, The Ritual of Happy Buddha Shower Scrub.

Jo Malone London Advent Calendar: £320

Jo Malone London say: ‘Uncover a scented treat behind every door, including much-loved Blackberry & Bay Cologne (9ml) and English Pear & Freesia Body Crème (15ml) alongside new additions to the line-up such as Bronze Wood & Leather Cologne Intense (9ml).’

 

Home for Christmas: seasonal smells fragrance experts love

Christmas is undoubtedly the most fragrant time of year – smells of fir trees, crackling fires and deliciously spiced foods helping us feel cosy, even if we’re actually rather stressed and craving sunshine. Nothing uplifts and comforts us quite like being surrounded by your favourite seasonal smells, and so, we wondered, what do three of our favourite fragrance experts most associate with the scent of Christmas…?

Michael Donovan, MD Roullier White, founder of St Giles fragrance
‘There are so many – sloe gin, sprouts (it’s the only time that my family ever ate them, probably why I adore them now), and my mother made rather elaborate pomanders from oranges with cloves… Drakkar was my very first Christmas gift of fragrance! I remember the warm plastic of my favourite light-up Santa – he went in the window to welcome us home and I could smell him every time I came through the door. Apricot brandy was my grandmother’s favourite tipple and smells delicious, and we always had little fruits fashioned from marzipan. My father’s ‘Grey Flannel’ and my mother’s ‘Madame Rochas’ were worn, scent for special occasions only! The smell of a new album – the vinyl and paper of the sleeves as we always received records for Christmas  – I miss record sleeves.

My grandparents ran a small grocers – ‘Donovans’ – and at Christmas they made individual Christmas lunches for sale, which was great for those who were on their own or were on a budget. The turkey was, consequently, so enormous that it wouldn’t fit into the industrial oven and the door had to be tied, half-closed, with string. The bird was cooked on a very low temperature for about 8hrs overnight and the smell permeated every corner of the building and was utterly delicious. I am a long-time vegetarian but I still remember it as my most delicious smell and laying in bed, salivating…’

If you’d rather smell of something more appealing than sprouts, might we suggest the magnificent St Giles fragrance, The Writer (well it would be our favourite, wouldn’t it?) With gloriously fresh ginger and rosemary absolute amidst a fizz of aldehydes, clary sage and rhubarb, the resinous heart wraps frankincense in leather and a darkly inky base resounds with castoreum absolute, creamy sandalwood, cedarwood from the Atlas mountains and driftwood. So perfect for a fragrant pick-me-up at any time, but most especially right now, don’t you think…?

St Giles The Writer, £130 for 100ml eau de parfum
Try it at Selfridges or stgilesfinefragrance.com

Viola Cserkuti: perfume & cosmetics history curator, student perfumer, skincare & beauty specialist
We first met Viola at a vintage fragrance event in London, where she showed her extensive (and endlessly fascinating) collection of perfumes. Being obsessed with history, vintage clothing and all things fragrant, she told us her childhood scent memories of Christmas (pictured, above)…

‘Growing up in Hungary and celebrating Christmas with my family holds the most vivid scent memories for me. In my early childhood, I remember the potent smell of sparklers, the satifying smoke after they glittered away, and the occasional burnt fir sap as they were attached to the Christmas tree. Also, paraffin church candles and our special Hungarian Christmas chocolates – Szaloncukor – had such distinctive scent. They came in many flavours but the original retro ones were filled with fondant icing. The icing for the Szaloncukor had a cold, sweet, alcoholic scent with a vanillary chocolate and fake fruit aspect that filled the room with an eccentric medley of fragrant delights, coming from the church candles, burnt chemicals and cheap victorian era confectionary…’

Carlos J Powell: aka mega-successful perfume vlogger Brooklyn Fragrance Lover

Carlos is known for his passionate reviews about perfume, sprinkled with in-depth knowledge delivered in a down-to-earth completely approachable, and often humourous way; and for his adorably cheeky cats, ‘Jean et Claude’, who can often be found knocking fragrances off shelves and chasing them around the apartment floor. His views recently topped 6 million, with over 35k subscribers around the world tuning in to hear his weekly updates. So, what are the wafts of Christmas that transport Carlos the most?

‘The smell of Christmas for me growing up was Pernil – Latino roasted pork shoulder with tons of garlic – and… lasagne! I am Dominican, but grew up with an Italian stepfather. So I wish you Feliz Navidad y Buon Natale!’

Written by Suzy Nightingale

Last safe posting dates for Christmas? PLUS gift-guide round up

We know you’re likely caught up in a flurry of fairy lights and mild festive panic, but this is a gentle reminder that The Royal Mail have suggested the latest recommended posting dates before Christmas this year – something to keep in mind if you’re ordering online and want to wrap and post the presents to loved ones…

Tuesday 18 December – 2nd Class / Royal Mail Signed For 2nd Class

Thursday 20 December – 1st Class / Royal Mail Signed For 1st Class / Royal Mail Tracked 48hr

Friday 21 December – Royal Mail Tracked 24hr

Saturday 22 December – Royal Mail Special Delivery Guaranteed

Do check with other postal service providers for their last-posting dates, and consider ordering and sending your gifts well before the final deadlines, as there’s always a last-minute rush, and nobody wants to be disappointed at Christmas!

We’ve made ordering online a complete breeze, with a number of handy gift guides suitable for every age, fragrant taste and budget. Have a browse through some of them now, and get your gift list checked off at the click of a button…

How to buy fragrance at Christmas
Let’s start at the very beginning (as the song goes) – because trying to work out exactly what will suit whom best can be a bit of a headache, we know. That’s why we’ve done all the leg-work for you and curated selections of scents with particular types of people in mind, and perhaps with a little something to tempt you, too. One to point bewildered relatives at when they demand to know what you want!

For perfume-lovers who have everything
We’re SO delighted to have got the Master Parfums Pocket Quiz £11 in stock in time for Christmas – it’s a brilliantly addictive card game developed by a former professional fragrance trainer, with questions on each card in differing categories and ideal for any level of knowledge, from complete beginner to absolute addict. This will definitely liven up the dinner table!

Luxury Gift Boxes
If you know your loved one adores fine fragrances, and always likes trying something new, have a look at this list of ultra-luxe boxes you can buy at surprisingly affordable prices. There’s genuinely something to suit everyone here – masculine, feminine and gender-neutra – the ideal way to discover a new house, with lavish perfume gift sets from only £14!

Stocking-fillers
Pocket-friendly options for smaller gifts to stuff the stockings of lucky people – from perfume-related jewellery to mini-sizes of scents they love or would like to try. There’s even suggestions of must-have gifts that no self-respecting perfumista could do without (and which everyone would thank you for being thoughtful enough to buy), with prices starting from just £5

Overseas
Sadly, due to postal restrictions on fragrance, we can currently only ship products within the United Kingdom (we do not ship to The Channel Islands), BUT do not despair – scent lovers living abroad can be gifted a full year of award-winning fragrant reading for only £20, with an International Subscription to The Scented Letter Magazine.

Let them choose
A fuss-free solution for those uncertain about what to buy that perfume-loving someone, The Perfume Society Gift Card is available in denominations of £15, £25 and £50 and can be redeemed across any item in our SHOP section of our website: our magazine or copies of The Perfume Bible, VIP Subscription, Discovery Boxes and more. Includes FREE UK DELIVERY!

Still confused?
If you just can’t decide, or have just left it a bit long to send them something yourself – buy them a VIP Club Membership, a £25 gift that last all year! You get unrivalled access to exclusive perfume events, a year’s free electronic editions of The Scented Letter magazine, a fabulous Discovery Box to choose from, monthly VIP offers from top fragrance houses and incredible prize draws only Club Members may enter..

Whatever you send loved ones – or treat yourself to for a change – we hope you’ll agree we’ve managed to put together a great selection of gifts with everyone in mind. It really is our pleasure to seek out and gather together hard-to-find, unusual and brand new scented offerings each year. Fragrance is a joyful, mood-lifting and constantly thrilling thing, so no wonder it makes a perfect (and so thoughtful) gift to show you care.

Happy scent-sharing season, everybody!

Written by Suzy Nightingale

Fish & fragrance?! Sarah Baker Perfumes pops up at Fin & Flounder

It’s quite possibly one of the most unusual Christmas pop-ups we’ve seen, but niche luxury perfume brand Sarah Baker Perfumes is collaborating with Fin & Flounder, the premium fishmonger and oyster bar on Hackney’s fashionable Broadway Market.

On Saturday 8th and 22 December, Sarah Baker Perfumes and Fin & Flounder will be offering the public a Christmas special package deal: a luxury Sarah Baker fragrance of their choice, six oysters and two glasses of champagne for £120 (the fragrances usually sell for £120 on their own, so this represents a bargain for shoppers who like to be lavish!) In addition, the fragrances will be available to purchase separately at £100, and a range of fragrances in handy travel atomisers at £20 – perfectly sized for stocking-stuffers.

[NB: Those of you not already familiar with Sarah Baker can read all about her journey to founding her own niche house in the recent Fashion, Fragrance & Feminism issue of The Scented Letter Magazine, in which she kindly invited us into her studio to gaze in wonder at her fabulous personal fragrance collection (a must-read for fans of ultra-niche scents!) for #ShareMyStash]

While this Christmas collaboration might seem a peculiar one for perfume, it came about when artist and founder Sarah Baker was creating a new image for the launch of her ‘Motif Collection’ in Belgium in November. Baker wanted ‘…to create a campaign image referencing the Flemish traditions of 17th-century still life paintings as an homage to the city.’ In keeping with this tradition of memento mori paintings, she sourced the best quality—and best looking—fish from Fin & Flounder, already being a fan of the fishmonger’s beautiful window displays.

‘After the massively positive response to the image we created in Antwerp, it seemed only fitting to go back to the source and do something with Fin & Flounder since their fish are really such an integral part of what makes the image work,’ explains Baker.

The fishy collab also makes more sense when you know the theme behind her latest release, Atlante, ‘With its sea-breeze fresh combination of notes —yuzu, seaweed and ambergris—inspired by the wild ocean.’ Shoppers visiting Fin & Flounder will be among the first to try this new fragrance. And if you can’t make it own for the next two Saturdays’ full-on boujee fish and fragrance experiences, you’ll be able to buy all the Sarah Baker Perfumes at Fin & Flounder during its usual weekday opening times until 22 December 2018.

Written by Suzy Nightingale

What to give far-away loved ones…? A full year of fragrant reading for only £20!

We’re overjoyed that we can now offer overseas subscribers an International Subscription to our digital downloadable magazine, The Scented Letter. It’s THE perfect Christmas gift to send far-away loved ones who adore fragrance, because it’s only £20 with no overseas postage worries, and last ALL YEAR!

All you have to do is click a button and we’ll do the rest of the work for you…

Buying an International Subscription gives your lucky gift-recipient six 60-page ONLINE editions a year of this beautiful, multi-Jasmine Award-winning magazine: the only one of its kind for perfume-lovers.

Because of the way our system works, when you click Add to Cart it will send us an e-mail – and we’ll follow up for payment. (If sending this as a gift; please let us know in an e-mail to us if it’s for someone else.)

Entirely dedicated to the world of perfume – and aimed at the perfume-lover – we’re delighted to showcase in The Scented Letter the work of many of the leading creatives in fragrance writing and photography (both from the blogosphere and print).

We take full advantage of our privileged access to all the leading ‘noses’ (from Thierry Wasser to Jacques Cavallier-Belletrud), perfume houses, bottle designers and more to ensure that The Scented Letter is your finger on the pulse-point of everything that’s happening in the scented world.

Below is a glimpse from some recent issues – or to see what they’re getting, or why not make yourself a cuppa and enjoy a FREE fuller taster of the magazine here

The Scented Letter Magazine International Online Subscription £20 for a FULL YEAR

CHANEL N°5: cloaked in red for Christmas! See 5 fabulous installations

This season, the iconic glass bottle of CHANEL N°5 donned a fiery cloak of red, and perfume lovers have been going wild collecting their favourite fragrance in this newly hued flacon.

CHANEL say: ‘A symbol of ultimate femininity and synonymous with this festive time of year, the emblematic colour evokes a dynamic sense of confidence, desire and indisputable opulence…’

Now, in celebration of this limited edition, CHANEL focus once again on Mademoiselle’s lucky number, ‘with five breathtaking red fragrance bottles lighting up locations around London in the lead up to Christmas.’ Definitely the most sophisticated take on Christmas lights we’ve ever seen!

‘Beginning with its debut in Berkeley Square on the 14th of November, the five bottles will then intermittently appear on New Bond Street, in Spitalfields and Duke of York Square, before concluding the adventure in Covent Garden.

Designed in 1921 by Mademoiselle Chanel before subtly evolving over the 20th and 21st centuries, the simple, geometric lines of the bottle and facetted stopper are as distinctive as the scent it holds. A model of minimalism and modernity, N°5 stands up to the test of time, adding to its mystery and depth each year.’

They really do have to be seen in person to be fully appreciated – we certainly welcome this sophisticated take on Christmas lights (and, of course, they’re the perfect backdrop for an ultra-stylish seasonal selfie!)

Location dates
14th – 16th Nov: Berkeley Square
16th Nov – 3rd Jan: New Bond Street Boutique
26th Nov – 27th Dec: Spitalfields
3rd – 16th Dec: Duke of York Square
9th – 23rd Dec: Covent Garden

Written by Suzy Nightingale