One glance at social media or magazines is enough to know that Summer is all about wedding fever, and instead of following the usual path of suggesting fragrances for those getting married, or their guests, this year we thought it would be far more interesting (and relevant for more people!) to look at traditional symbols of the first five wedding anniversaries and match them to gorgeously summery scents.
It doesn’t matter if you look at these to purchase for yourself, or as a gift for friends and family you know are celebrating – whatever the reason (even if there’s no anniversary at all), these fragrances are stunning enough to warrant your further investigation.
So, how did the whole wedding anniversary symbol thing begin? It is thought that wedding anniversaries have long been celebrated with particular symbols pertinent to the year being marked. The tradition is thought to have begun in the Middle Ages, which the wedding venue Gosfield Hall rather solemnly remind us is probably because ‘…in those days, a lot of people didn’t live long enough to reach these milestones, so it was something to celebrate if they did.’ Nowadays the embittered cynics among us might ponder if the tradition continues apace because many marriages don’t live that long, so every milestone is worth noting. But let us banish such poe-faced reflections and focus instead on the always happy-making topic of fragrance, instead. Here are the first five such milestones, with descriptions of the symbols via weddingplanner.co.uk, and suggestions for the most suitable scents to celebrate…
1st Wedding Anniversary – Paper
Scent Suggestion – Diptyque L’Eau Papier
‘One year of marriage is symbolised by paper because a new marriage is like a blank sheet of paper and still delicate. It also helps that it offers budget-friendly gift ideas, as a couple in the first year of marriage might still be managing their budget after the wedding!’
What is the scent of paper? That’s how every Diptyque creation begins: a blank sheet, a pen, ink, ideas. Fabrice Pellegrin was tasked here with conjuring up diluted ink and artistic brushstrokes. Powdery mimosa and white musks are mistily ethereal, with a rice steam accord adding to the sense of paperiness and roasted sesame for the inkiness. Alex Waline’s pointillist label completes a modern masterpiece that couldn’t be more Diptyque if it tried.
From £90 for 50ml eau de parfum diptyqueparis.com
2nd Wedding Anniversary – Cotton
Scent Suggestion – Juliette Has a Gun Musc Invisible
‘Traditionally your second wedding anniversary is represented by cotton. This is because the threads of you and your partner’s lives are becoming ever-more interwoven, like making cotton (cute, right?).’
‘A fluffy scent as comfortable and unfussy as your favourite old jeans,’ Romano Ricci promises with this powdery-musk bliss. ‘As appropriate at work as on a casual date.’ We’d wear this anywhere, to be honest, it’s simply sublime to snuggle up to, dreamily blending radiant jasmine absolute with almost nose-tinglingly soft cotton flower, resting on a featherbed of soul soothing white musk. Want a scent to wear every day, not only for an anniversary or special occasion? This could be your new go-to.
From £90 for 50ml eau de parfum Johnlewis.com
3rd Wedding Anniversary – Leather
Scent Suggestion – MEMO French Leather
‘No, that’s not why! Leather was traditionally used as a protective layer against bad weather, so the third anniversary is about security and shelter. Leather is also long-lasting, as your marriage will be.’
Deceptively nonchalant, this is a leather to wear when you want it to be your saucy little secret rather than up front and personal for all to see (and smell). The leather here is subtly slipped in to a bouquet of roses, with a background of lime, pink pepper, clary sage, juniper and a rounded, woody base. We see this being shared by couples who love a G&T, and enjoy communicating via exaggerated pouts and deftly arched eyebrows.
£230 for 75ml eau de parfum harveynichols.com
4th Wedding Anniversary – Fruit & Flowers
Scent Suggestion – edeniste Love Lifeboost™
‘At four years your marriage is blossoming and ripening, so it is represented by fruit and flowers…’
Having worked with top neuroscientists to prove the efficacy of the way our brains react to the scents, this one proffers ripe cherries, green leaves, radiant jasmine and tuberose with a duo of roses feel like a wearable giggle of delight, the smooth, woody dry down a hug that keeps going. We also adore the the description the house gives this scent, saying it’s ‘A gesture of scented self-care that twists the traditional ideals of love…’
£68 for 30ml eau de parfum in our shop
5th Wedding Anniversary – Wood
Scent Suggestion – Cochine Tuberose Absolute & Sandalwood
‘Wood is the symbol of a five-year marriage because of its source: trees. Trees are a symbol of strength, wisdom and time – all things a solid marriage has. Trees also have roots and at 5 years your marriage is now deeply established.’
Passionately luminous, this glows with happiness! Exclusively created with master perfumer, Maurice Roucel, this is the scent of exotic and unforgettable nights. Feminine, alluring and intriguing tuberose notes combine with rich leather and sandalwood in this intoxicating, utterly addictive fragrance. Inspired by travel and long summer evenings in the tropics, our unique fragrances capture the very essence of romantic escapism.
£110 for 50ml eau de parfum in our shop
Written by Suzy Nightingale