Yvonne Ellen review – Autumn’s Mummy

This week we launched our amazing Yvonne Ellen collection, where quirky designs are matched with luxury fragrance to create extraordinary home fragrance products. Whilst we absolutely adore this range already, it’s important to see how much others enjoy it too – so we’ve teamed up with guest bloggers to get their honest reviews on this exciting new range. Please keep reading for our lovely review from Laura at Autumn’s Mummy Blog!

 


 

Hello! I’m Laura, a parenting and lifestyle blogger at autumnsmummyblog.com. When I’m not running around after an excitable toddler or working, you can usually find me writing about my life and the things I enjoy. At the end of a long day, there’s nothing I take more pleasure in than lighting a candle and relaxing with a good book.

Recently, I was asked to review the new Yvonne Ellen range for Wax Lyrical. The range comprises of candles and diffusers, which I was very excited to try out. At the end of a long day, there’s nothing quite like chilling out on the sofa with a soft throw, a good book and a candle. With Yvonne’s knack of combining traditional and contemporary design in a wonderfully quirky way, I knew they would be to my taste. Indeed, I was not left disappointed!

 

Design

Eagerly unwrapping the parcel when it arrived, I was delighted by the boxes that the products arrived in. With bold patterns and animals on them, the designs are beautiful and luxurious. They would make a wonderful gift!

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Yvonne Ellen Votive Gift Set – £25.99 at www.wax-lyrical.com

 

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Vintage Palm reed diffuser – £25.99 at www.wax-lyrical.com

 


 

Diffusers

There are four diffusers in the range and I had the pleasure of testing two of the scents; Vintage Palm and Wild Jasmine. The design of the diffuser itself looks expensive. It’s a sleek, classic design that is lovely to look at but also doesn’t distract the eye too much from ornaments or photographs in the room.

Vintage Palm

Vintage Palm is presented in blush pink, which looks lovely in my bedroom! It smells lovely and fresh with its combination of fresh white cotton, bergamot, lemon, lime, lavandin, muguet and nutmeg. Meanwhile the base of cedarwood, musk, patchouli, vanilla and moss makes it quite a sensual fragrance; perfect for its placement in the bedroom. It would, however, work well anywhere in the home.

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Wild Jasmine

This fragrance is a little stronger, with oud, saffron, jasmine, white sandalwood and amber. The scent travels very well around a room and is very noticeable without being too overpowering. It is presented in a dark blue.

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Candles

One thing I first noticed about the candles is that all the colours compliment each other and blend well together. There are four scents; Tranquil Tide, Exotic Fig, Vintage Palm and Wild Jasmine. The colours and scents of the latter two are the same as the diffusers.

Exotic Fig

This one is my husband’s favourite. It has a slightly musky and fruity scent, featuring juicy figs, green apple, quince, sandalwood, raspberry, tonka bean and patchouli. It adds a light fragrance to the room. I wouldn’t attribute the fragrance to any particular season, making it ideal for use all year round.

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Tranquil Tide

This candle is my favourite for chilling out with before bed time. This one has a herbal fragrance with lavender, geranium, cardamom, cedarwood, sandalwood and amber. It helps me to feel very relaxed and cosy. If I close my eyes, I can almost imagine being wrapped up in a blanket in a copse surrounded by deer and hedgehogs.

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Votive Gift Set

The gift set contains smaller sized candles in the Exotic Fig, Vintage Palm and Wild Jasmine fragrances. It’d definitely be a worthwhile purchase whether you want to try out all the scents in smaller sizes before committing to the large candle, or don’t want or need as much burning time. I haven’t got through them all yet, but they’ve gone down quite slowly over several nights. As such, I’d say that they’re great value for money.

All of these candles both look and smell great together too!

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Overall, this is a modern range with beautiful designs that looks and smells great and will be enjoyed in any room of the home.

Making the most of nature’s bounties – even in small spaces!

National Gardening Week

Today brings the start of National Gardening Week – a time to celebrate the beauty of the natural world and discover how we can engage with it through gardening, enjoying the multitude of benefits that it brings. Whilst a beautifully curated rose garden or allotment full of homegrown vegetables may remain a pipe dream for many, there is no reason you can’t work on green projects within a smaller space, and in this blog post we’re going to explore some of these available opportunities.

Woman kneeling in garden, repotting into a medium size turquoise glazed pot.

The benefits of gardening

Did you know that working your green thumb has been proven to have some pretty amazing effects on the body and mind? For example, a 2006 study has shown that gardening could reduce the risk of dementia by 36%, being exposed to garden soil can strengthen your immune system and simply being outside in the sunshine (don’t forget your suncream!) increases your levels of Vitamin D, leading to an increase of calcium which makes your bones stronger. Studies have also been done on the restorative effects that gardening can have on our mental health, and it is suggested that depression and stress can also be combated by gardening. With such a plethora of opportunity to introduce some natural growth into your life, you absolutely can begin to reap the benefits of gardening in a smaller space, even with only a couple of backyard pots to play with – windowsills can be utilised for smaller spaces!

Deciding what to grow

Whatever you choose to grow will be determined by the benefits that you want to experience and the size of the area you can dedicate to it, but rest assured there will be something for every space! Even with a small patio/yard (and even without) it is still possible to engage with your green fingers and grow something green… or something red, purple, orange… Plus, depending on what you choose to grow, you may even be able to eat your efforts!

A fresh, green salad of small leaves is adorned with edible viola flowers
Viola flowers make a beautiful addition to any salad

 


 

key plant and flower benefits

The main benefits and reasons for choosing specific plants and flowers can normally be broken down into the following categories:

Beauty

From bold and beautiful dahlia blossoms to the delicate petals of peonies, the outstanding beauty of many plants is a grower’s primary reason for choosing to cultivate them, and with such a diverse collection of flowers and seeds available for purchase there is undoubtedly a favourite flower for everyone just waiting to be discovered. If your favourite colour is yellow, why not try growing some sunflowers from seed, or planting daffodil bulbs in preparation for next year.

Bright yellow Alstroemeria (Lily of the Incas) blossoms, tinged with spots of dark red.
Alstroemeria (AKA Lily of the Incas) produces stunning blooms and is well-suited to container gardening

 

Fragrance

Second only to beauty, the fragrance of flowers and plants is another primary consideration when deciding what to grow. Whilst rose is undoubtedly the most famous fragrance of all flowers, the more delicate scents of sweet pea and honeysuckle are also very appealing, and lavender and chamomile flowers are not only highly perfumed but known for their benefits regarding sleep too! Aside from flowers, there is also a huge variety of fragrant herbs that can be grown in very little space – some popular choices are basil, sage and coriander.

Pink roses bloom in a temperate garden.
Roses are world-renowned for their sweet fragrance and are available in a myriad of varieties

 

Flavour

Perhaps flavour is not something you would immediately consider when deciding which flowers you’d like to cultivate, but thanks to an increasing trend around the world adorning your foods with edible flowers is becoming the norm, and luckily there are many different varieties to choose between! From peppery nasturtium flowers and citrusy begonia blossoms to put in your salad, to the highly perfumed petals of rose and violet (perfect atop a cake or summer pudding), we are just beginning to explore the possibilities of edible flowers. But please, do your own research and be confident in what you are growing and its safety when eaten, some gardening websites have dedicated sections regarding edible flowers which can be a great source of information and inspiration. And let’s not forget that there are all manner of different vegetables (and even some fruits) that can be grown on a smaller scale – there isn’t much that can match the satisfaction of eating a homegrown salad that you have just picked fresh from your yard.

Courgette flowers lie on a rustic wooden table
Some smaller courgette varieties can be grown in containers, and the flowers make a perfect snack!

 

Wildlife

Whilst choosing what to grow is determined largely by our own personal preferences and the benefits that we want to gain, it is always a good idea to consider how we can benefit more lives than just our own. Inviting wildlife into your garden via the plants and flowers you choose to grow is massively beneficial to all; not only do you get to see beautiful species of bees, butterflies and bugs that perhaps you weren’t already familiar with, but you are providing a vital source of food for many of these insects. In a time where lots of our natural land is being flattened in favour of retail or housing developments and delicate ecosystems are being destroyed, keeping just a couple of butterfly and bee-friendly plants on your patio can form a lifeline for some buglife, and there are options to grow in all sizes of container. Sweet william and common jasmine are just a couple of Bee-Friendly approved plants, and the highly fragrant and beautiful blooms of buddleja are a firm favourite for butterflies, of which some cultivars can be grown with success in a pot.

3 small birdhouses sit on a fence, with purple clematis vines dangling between.
Birdhouses offer vital sanctuary for many species of smaller bird, and don’t take up much space

 


 

Inspiration for your small spaces

Now that we’ve looked at some of the reasons that might help you decide what you want to grow, let’s look at some ideas to help bring your small space to life!

 

Ideas for a windowsill

Small pots of aromatic herbs are growing on a sunny windowsill

Herbs are excellent candidates for windowsill growing. They take up little room and are generally easy to grow. Seeds are cheap and there are many different varieties to choose from. Depending on what type of food you enjoy, you could also choose to grow herbs that compliment that cuisine. For example;

    • Love Italian food? Why not grow your own basil for a fragrant punch, perfect for making your own pesto or freshly torn on top of pizzas and pasta dishes
    • If Eastern cuisine is more your thing, grow some zesty coriander. The leaves are delicious when sprinkled into curries, and the roots can be used to make an authentic Thai green curry paste!
    • Mint is a popular herb throughout many cultures, although it is surely enjoyed best when freshly picked and served in a sauce over new potatoes
    • Parsley pairs perfectly with garlic and mushroom dishes, and is utterly delightful when chopped finely and paired with other aromatic herbs in a Middle-Eastern grain salad, tabouleh
    • Chives give a milder onion flavour than their full size relatives, and are perfect for adding a little bit to almost any dish. This fragrant herb can also be used to make chive butter, perfect for many fish dishes.

Pea shoots are easy to grow and are great for adding a bite of sweet, pea flavour to salads, stir fries, sandwiches and other dishes. All you need are some dried marrowfat peas from the supermarket, some compost and a small container to grow them in – plastic tubs that mushrooms/strawberries come in are perfect, if they don’t have drainage holes just punch a couple out. Simply fill your container with an inch or two of compost, sprinkle the dried peas on top in a well-filled (but not overcrowded) layer, sprinkle another centimetre of compost on top and water thoroughly. Place your container on a windowsill and water when necessary, hopefully you will start to see shoots within a week – and they will be ready to harvest within a couple more! To pick, pinch off the shoots from just above the bottom set of leaves, this should allow for a second growth.

Sprouting veg is becoming a popular addition to trendy salads and cold dishes, and is another crop that’s perfect for growing in small spaces. Try growing mustard and radish sprouts for a punchy kick, or broccoli and cabbage sprouts for a more subtle, but equally delicious bite.

Salad leaves can be grown with success in small containers, and regular picking will ensure a continuous crop throughout the season. There are so many different varieties available you will find yourself spoilt for choice, why not try something new this year?


 

Check out our Pinterest board!

Visualisation of an iMac with a Pinterest board on screen showing gardening inspiration.
See our Pinterest board for some great gardening inspiration!

 

Now that you’ve been inspired by some ideas for a windowsill – if you want to dream a little bigger then head over to Pinterest and take a look at our board, Gardening in Small Spaces. It’s full of tons of great ideas for small-scale gardening, including instructions for herb and sprout-growing mentioned above, inspiration for edible flowers (and the delicious dishes you can create with them!), flowers that are particularly attractive to pollinators and much more. Take a look now and see what you’re inspired to grow this National Garden Week!

 


 

Bringing the outdoors in!

If you love the scents and beauty of the great outdoors but aren’t always able to enjoy gardening – why not bring some of the wonderful fragrances of the outdoors into your home? Here at Wax Lyrical we are celebrating our 10 year partnership with the Royal Horticultural Society and all the fantastic home fragrance products that we produce for them, where classic botanical illustrations are combined with modern design and luxury fragrance to create this best-selling range, all from right here in our factory in the English Lakes.

A collection of candles and diffusers produced by Wax Lyrical, Made in England.
Have you seen our RHS Violet collection – new for 2018!

RHS Fragrant Garden comprises a collection of true-to-life classic floral fragrances, from sweet Wild Honeysuckle and Sweet Pea, bright Freesia and Violet, through timeless Rose and English Lavender and a further four fragrances – there is certainly a favourite for everyone in this wonderful collection.

RHS-Lineup-2018

We offer a wide variety of products across these 9 fragrances, including our original wax-filled glasses and tins, reed diffusers, room mists and now wax-filled ceramic vessels – adorned with colourful botanical illustrations from the RHS Lindley Library – so you certainly won’t struggle to find a floral fragrance you love in a product that suits your lifestyle and your home.

Spring Cleaning to Spark Joy!

Small change = big change

With National Spring Cleaning Week just around the corner, we thought we’d take a look at the process and advantages of de-cluttering, and how small changes in your house can create big changes in your life…

Messy home office full of clutter
Home offices and studies are particularly prone to issues with clutter and disorganisation.

In order to keep a tidy house we first need to bid farewell to our old clothes, books, memorabilia and discard all else that does not spark joy – but how can a good spring clean benefit more than just your home?

An untidy home can easily become a stressful environment, bombarding us with excessive stimuli which makes it more difficult to relax, distracting our attention from what we should be focusing on and even inducing feelings of guilt or embarrassment – how often have we apologised for the state of our home upon the arrival of unexpected guests, or hastily shoved clutter into a drawer or cupboard in an effort to appear more organised?

With enough chaos found in the outside world, your home should be a haven – somewhere you can relax, clean open spaces that allow you to focus on what’s important and a place to be creative and productive. Luckily, unlike other common sources of stress (careers, relationships etc.) clutter is a problem easily remedied.

 

Tidy house, tidy mind – our 10 top tips

Set of six sticky notes titling the steps to organising your belongings.
Easy steps to discard what you no longer need or want.

Once you’ve decided to take the first step and clean out your clutter, these 10 tips should make your tidying process easier:

  1. Visualise your goals

    With an image fresh in your mind of how your surroundings will look once you’ve removed all of your unnecessary belongings you’ll find it much easier to work towards these goals. For example, if you have a bookshelf or sideboard that’s constantly covered in clutter, imagine how much better it will look when its contents are reduced and reorganised; motivation should readily follow if you have clear goals in mind.

  2. set your schedule

    Although it may seem feasible to dedicate a whole day to cleaning your entire house, the reality is that most people will struggle to remain focused at tidying for more than 2-3 hours at a time. It is much better to set aside a few hours over a couple of weeks and remain highly motivated and efficient every time you de-clutter, instead of burning out and feeling even more anxious about the mess you just made!

  3. BE REALISTIC WITH YOUR expectations

    Nobody is perfect or keeps a perfect house, despite what you may see in some home and living magazines. Whilst a clean, tidy and organised house is something that most of us can achieve, make sure that you’re not aiming for perfection or you may end up disappointed.

  4. complete each task in full

    Once you’ve sorted through your clutter and decided what you’re not keeping and how you’re going to dispose of it – do it straight away! Don’t put aside bags of clothes that are destined for a charity shop or the tip, take them on the same day, and if that’s not possible then at least put them in your car ready to be taken. If you have belongings to be donated to a friend, get in contact and arrange to meet up. If you’re not proactive about disposing of your clutter it’ll continue to build up and you’ll remain stressed.

  5. don’t buy before organising

    Although it is very tempting to stock up on trendy storage solutions before undertaking a big clear out, until you’ve throughly sorted through your belongings you won’t know how much storage you’ll actually need, and might be surprised by just how much you throw out. Wait until you’ve collated all of the things that you are going to keep and take it from there.

  6. break down sorting tasks into types, not rooms

    Whilst it may seem a good idea to tackle your mess room by room, tidying in this manner is likely to leave you finding multiples of items and confusing your process. It is much better to gather ALL of your belongings of that type (clothes, books, beauty products etc.) and sort through them all methodically.

    Kitchens are an exception to this as the majority of belongings normally found in a kitchen are unlikely to be found elsewhere in the house. However, ensure that everything kitchen-related is gathered up from the entire house before sorting.

  7. if you’re keeping it, find it a home

    The key to maintaining a tidy house is to make sure everything belongs somewhere; this ensures that when spaces start being untidy it’s a simple process of returning everything to its rightful place to restore order. If you do not have a home for every item you will soon find yourself getting cluttered again, something to be avoided at all costs.

  8. if it doesn’t spark joy, throw it out

    By holding an item in your hands and asking yourself if it sparks joy you should be able to sort through and throw out considerable amounts of belongings that you were previously unsure about. It’s the pinnacle process of the KonMari method, and highly effective. Be as brutal as you can, the more you get rid of the easier it gets, and the better your chances at keeping your house organised.

  9. don’t be afraid to ask a friend or relative for help

    It is much easier to be objective about your belongings if you have to justify keeping them to someone else. Pick someone who will be honest and not just agree with you when you want them to. If you truly want to keep an item (particularly sentimental keepsakes) you will fight for it, and if you can be talked out of it then you probably never needed to keep it anyway.

  10. better finished than perfect

    Rome wasn’t built in a day, and your organised and clutter-free home is going to take some work too, so don’t feel like a failure if you find yourself tidying up again next month. Instead, realise the progress that you’ve made and relax in the knowledge that after a big initial cleanse you’re in a much better position to keep your home in order from now on. Reap the benefits of a clean and tidy house and keep on top of clutter now that you have a far more efficient system for dealing with mess and disorganised spaces.

     

    3 more steps to an even happier home

     

    A bright and airy office room, with minimal furnishings.
    A clean and tidy home – easily achievable

Now that you have a downsized, organised and tidy house how else can you improve your surroundings for even more health and psychological benefits? With a little consideration for the following three ideas, you can transform your home from just a tidy space to a living, breathing and beautiful oasis.

 

1. Light

Whilst we are not all fortunate enough to have big south-facing windows in our homes, or even much sun, simple changes to the way you light your house can have a big impact on your mood, and it is very often overlooked. Simply changing your lampshades from dark angular pieces to round and pale shades will diffuse light gently and result in less harsh shadows and bright lights, with a more even spread of light for a more relaxing atmosphere. Also consider additional light sources such as floor and table lamps, to spread the light around the room and avoid dark spots.

Candles are ideal for lighting small areas, and you can easily adjust the level of brightness by combining different types of candle; tealights, votives and other small candles can be used on their own or in groups, and larger multi-wick or pillar candles will provide higher amounts of light. Using a mix of candles allows you to customise your light level according to the time of day, time of year, your mood and much more – the possibilities are endless!

Burning candle in a cosy room.
Use candles to gently light your home

2. Life

Adding greenery to your home has been proven time and again to have a multitude of benefits – from air-purification and deterring illness to improving concentration and boosting health. We are seeing a resurgence of indoor gardening, with some people looking to fill their home with plants to boost their health and mind and others simply enjoying their beauty.

Small houseplants in white pots on a tidy shelf.
Small plants are readily available (check your supermarket next time you shop) and easy to look after – there really aren’t many reasons not to keep them.

With an abundance of indoor (and outdoor) plants, pots and accessories now available to us, there is no reason to not bring some greenery into your home – and you might be surprised at how much of a difference they make to your surroundings. Some of the best low-maintenance air purifiers (according to a NASA study) are:

  • Spider Plant (Chlorophytum Comosum Vittatum)
    A fan of bright, indirect sunlight, spider plants will send out shoots with flowers that eventually grow into baby spider plants or ‘spiderettes’. Spider plants are one of the easiest to look after and are a great houseplant for beginners.
  • Peace Lily (Spathiphyllum Sp.)
    Easy to grow, these plants will flower for much of the summer. Just be aware that those flowers (like all flowers) do contribute some pollen and floral scents to the air. Put peace lilies in a shady spot and keep the soil moist without overwatering.
  • Snake Plant (Sansevieria Trifasciata)
    This is one of the hardest houseplants to kill. Although it does need to be watered occasionally, it generally prefers drier conditions and some sun. It is one of the most powerful air-purifiers and can remove harmful chemicals such as benzene, formaldehyde, trichloroethylene, and xylene from your environment.
  • Aloe Vera (A. Barbadensis)
    In addition to being easy to care for, aloe makes some serious health claims. The plant’s leaves contain a clear liquid full of vitamins, enzymes, amino acids, and other compounds that have wound-healing, antibacterial, and anti-inflammatory properties.

    3. Fragrance

    Filling your home with fragrance can massively enhance your mood, and also fulfil a variety of different purposes. Scents can conjure many memories: remember sweet peas from your Nanna’s garden, fresh sheets drying in the summer sun, or fresh citrus fragrances when making lemon curd with Mum – did you know that smell is the strongest sense tied to memory?
    Picking scents that bring you happy memories is a great way to improve your mood when at home, and with such a variety of fragrances and products available you are sure to find a favourite (or two)!

    As the UK’s largest manufacturer of home fragrance products, here at Wax Lyrical we believe that there is a favourite fragrance for everyone. See below for an introduction to a couple of our most popular collections:

    Fired Earth – Fragrant tea flavours and aromatic wood notes are blended in this exquisite collection, inspired by the timelessly classic colour palette of Fired Earth. From the oriental delight of Black Tea & Jasmine to the sweetness of Chai & Lime Blossom, the grassy notes of Earl Grey and Vetivert and bright and refreshing aroma of White Tea & Pomegranate, any fragrance from our Wax Lyrical Fired Earth collection is sure to delight every sense.

    RHS Fragrant Garden – A beautiful collection of fragrant favourites from around the garden, from classic British scents such as Rose and Sweet Pea, to the more contemporary aromas of Freesia and Violet, every budding gardener and botanist is certain to love anything from our Wax Lyrical RHS Fragrant Garden collection.

    Have you seen our Pinterest board?

    To complement this blog post we’ve created a Pinterest board with loads of helpful tips and ideas for how to best approach your spring clean, inspirational organisation ideas and great examples of beautiful, clean spaces. Please click here to see the board.

IMac screen showing a preview of a Pinterest board page.
Spring Cleaning to Spark Joy on Pinterest!

Scents and Scents’ Ability

Of all the senses, smell is the one that’s most likely to teleport us straight to a moment in time or inspire a particular feeling, often before vision or hearing have even registered the source. For example, we’ve surely all experienced that hit of pleasure on stepping out of the home when someone nearby has been mowing the grass. The sweet aroma might not necessarily have happy memories (not everyone is enraptured by the thought of the school football or hockey field), but it’s almost universally loved as a smell.

There could be evolutionary motors at work here – it’s a good survival mechanism to have a long memory for aromas, especially those that are associated with danger or a good feed. But as science learns more about the effects certain smells have on the way the body functions, we’ve started to build up a picture of the complex relationship humans have with certain scents.

We thought we’d have a sniff of some aromas that have been strongly associated with good things. From stress relief to a good night’s sleep, we could be about to find out that beautiful aromas aren’t just pleasant – they might actually be able to help us. The following links between aromas and physical effects might not have been conclusively proven, but they’re certainly strongly suggested – and there’s no harm in trying!

Lavender – sleep easy

Lying awake in bed, watching the clock progress through 1, 2, 3 a.m. – it’s frustrating and can affect you for days after. Unfortunately, many of us experience this a few times a month, and for some, it’s an every-night experience.

If you’re at your wits’ end trying to snooze in the evening, why not give lavender a try? The scent is believed to get you in the right frame of mind for a better night’s sleep. While we’d never recommend sleeping with a lit candle, you could burn lavender candles during the evening, and scented reed diffusers can be placed in the bedroom for a constant lavender scent.

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Citrus alert!

Which meaning of “zest” came first? The “vim and vigour” sense or the “sharp tang of lime, lemon or orange peel”? It turns out that it probably makes no difference, as they both belong in the same family. Yes, that wonderful fruity aroma you get when you cut or squeeze a citrus fruit might also be giving you a shot of energy and alertness, too. You don’t even need to eat or drink it. There are plenty of ways so get that citrus hit without having to continually juice orange and lemons, too – it’s a scent that translates wonderfully to candles and diffusers for a taste of summer – and perkiness!

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Vanilla … nice

You’ll already know the scent well if you’ve made cookies, cakes or even your own ice cream – vanilla is something of a staple in cooking, the essence or oil something you’ll always have in the kitchen cupboard. But it turns out there’s even more to vanilla than its sweet, subtle flavour – it’s also been observed to lift the mood, and makes some people feel relaxed when they sense it. There’s certainly something comforting about vanilla, from those first experiments in the kitchen to strolls down the promenade, but there could be even more to this humble pod than meets the nose.

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Coconut calm

The Bounties might always be the last remaining Celebrations, but aromatherapists don’t dismiss the tropical fruit quite so quickly. That’s because they believe it has a calming effect, slowing your heart rate slightly and dulling the fight-or-flight instinct, which can be the cause of anxiety in some. Just thinking about the aroma of coconut can transport you to another place, perhaps a palm-fringed beach where all your cares are washed away. But it’s much better to not have to imagine it – setting up a coconut-scented diffuser could transport you there every time you waft past it.

Gingerly does it

The health benefits of ginger are well-known, from its anti-inflammatory effects to dealing with nausea. But what about the mere scent of ginger? Well, it is said to inspire a sense of invigoration in anyone who smells it, which sounds convincing if you’ve every walked into a home where there’s mouth-watering ginger being stir-fried. And thanks to gingerbread cottages and lebkuchen, the scent of ginger is also evocative of Christmas, which is sure to instil a sense of warmth that will uplift you. Try it in a candle for the full fresh-from-the-oven sensation and soak up the cheer all year round.

All that jasmine

Could jasmine be the ultimate feel-good scent? It’s certainly been feted for centuries by Eastern cultures thanks to numerous medicinal claims, including stress and anxiety reduction, increased alertness, helping with cramps and, yes, as an aphrodisiac. While we can’t back up any of those claims with science, there’s no doubt that jasmine is among nation’s favourite scents. If filling your home with one of nature’s most wondrous aromas doesn’t lift your spirit, perhaps nothing will. Try it in a candle or diffuser – we can guarantee guests will notice.

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And don’t forget Cinnamon

It’s lovely on a savoury pastry or a pancake, and delicious in an apple pie, but cinnamon might even have benefits beyond the taste buds. That’s because a mere sniff of the sweet spice is thought to give an instant boost to our ability to respond to visual stimuli and even improve our attention span and memory. Stick that in your pie and smell it!

*             *             *

The examples above are just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to positive psychological effects of nature’s aromas. But as a starting seven, you can’t go wrong bringing these scents into your home, whether you’re looking to perk up or drop off.

Festive Fragrance: Gold, Frankincense and Myrrh

Everybody has their own favourite festive fragrance, whether it’s gingerbread fresh from the oven, the smell of a real pine Christmas tree or delicious mulled wine. There are also the more luxurious scents at this time of year – rich nutty scents, the delicate Snowdrop, and our personal favourite, Gold, Frankincense and Myrrh – we love it so much, we chose it as our signature scent for the Christmas season!

This fragrance takes aromas from different fragrance families to give you a luxurious, deep, rich scent; from the zesty highlights of lemons and oranges, to cooling peppermint and herbal patchouli culminating with the sweetness of vanilla, creamy caramel and soft white jasmine.

Colony Gold, Frankincense and Myrrh Large Scented Candle Jar
CH0894
£18

 

Colony Gold, Frankincense and Myrrh Classic Scented Candle Jar
CH0794
£16

 

Colony Gold, Frankincense and Myrrh Scented Pillar Candle
CH3894
£11.99

 

Colony Gold, Frankincense and Myrrh Scented Reed Diffuser
CH2294
£12

 

Colony Gold, Frankincense and Myrrh Scented Reed Diffuser Refill
CH2894
£11.50

 

Colony Gold, Frankincense and Myrrh Scented Spheres
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£7.99

 

Colony Gold, Frankincense and Myrrh Scented Candle Glass
CH3694
£6

 

Colony Gold, Frankincense and Myrrh Scented Pot Pourri
CH3594
£6

 

Colony Gold, Frankincense and Myrrh Scented Votive Candle in Holder
CH0694
£2

 

Colony Gold, Frankincense and Myrrh Scented Votive Candle Refill
CH0594
£1.80

 

Colony Gold, Frankincense and Myrrh Scented Refresher Oil
CH0994
£3.50

 

 

Introducing Eric – our resident elf

Now some of you might have seen that we had a new member of the Wax family last year – his name was Eric the Elf. He loved making mischief around the office, in our shop and our factory last year – maybe you saw some of his tricks on Facebook, Twitter or Instagram?

Well, he’s back again to cause more havoc! What do you think he’ll get up to this Christmas? Above is his first photo this year – a cheeky selfie with our tealight advent calendar in the background – we know it looks like a house, but we hope he doesn’t think he can live in it!

In case you missed them last year, here are a few shots of Eric… being Eric!

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Catch up on all of Eric’s escapades by following our Facebook, Twitter & Instagram feeds and stay up to date with our adventurous little #elfontheshelf!

Oriental Fragrance: Assam and White Cedar

Oriental scents (also sometimes known as “spicy” scents) are one of the more luxurious fragrance families, giving you all the richness of the orient in one scent. Often complimented by other fragrances, these types of scent can create all sorts of different atmospheres for your home. For Summer, we’ve crafted a beautiful soothing fragrance using the scent of Assam tea with the woody element of white cedar, along with hints of lily, violet and grapefruit; all these aromas come together to make our Assam and White Cedar scent from the Fired Earth Collection. The deep blue colour which features on the design of this scent, particularly the colour of the candle jars themselves, matches the Fired Earth Woad Blue paint colour – perfect if you really want to go all out and match your home decor to your home fragrance.

Our Assam and White Cedar scented candle tin was part of the collectable tin range which we’re proud to announce won this year’s Home Fragrance Gift of the Year 2016 Award – any of our Fired Earth candle tins make ideal gift for those hard-to-buy-for people (and they also make a lovely treat for yourself).

Fired Earth Assam and White Cedar Collectable Scented Candle Tin
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£12
 

Fired Earth Assam and White Cedar Luxury 2 Wick Scented Candle Jar
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£35

 

Fired Earth Assam and White Cedar Gift Boxed Scented Candle
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£20

 

Fired Earth Assam and White Cedar Fragranced Reed Diffuser
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£22

 

Fired Earth Assam and White Cedar Fragranced Reed Diffuser Refill
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£14

 

 

Autumnal Scents to Suit the Season

Now the temperature’s cooling off and the woolly hats are coming out, it’s time to give your home’s scent an overhaul with our warming Autumn fragrances. From the ever-popular vanilla to the cosy cinnamon, we’ll have a scent which your entire family will love. Below is a run down of what scents suit which room in your home, so you can enjoy the scents of Autumn even when you’re snuggled on the sofa.

Hallway

 

Deep and rich fruity scents are an ideal welcome into your home for your nose – it gives different levels of fragrance and a gorgeous blend. Our target=”_blank”>RHS Fragrant Garden Fig & Plum Large Reed Diffuser is perfect for placing on a table in your hallway, letting you scent this space without needing to worry about an open flame.

Living Room

 

When you think of a living room in Autumn, the word “cosy” springs to mind. We think the perfect addition to a cosy room is a spicy scent, such as RHS Fragrant Garden Vanilla & Cinnamon or Toasted Cinnamon from Colony. Light one of these candles to be the perfect partner to a relaxed evening on the sofa with a movie and a steaming hot chocolate – what could be better!

Dining Room & Kitchen

 

You may think a fruity or gourmand scent would suit a dining room or kitchen, but we like to mix it up and go with a wood based scent, such as Oriental Wood from Fragrant Escapes. The richness of wood really embodies the feeling of Autumn and it lets the homey food you’re cooking and eating speak for itself.

Guest Room

 

We all like to impress our guests when they visit, so why not give them something to smile about as soon as they walk in the room. Our Fired Earth Assam & White Cedar scent gives you a luxurious tea scent mixed with the woody elements of cedarwood, ideal for Autumn. If they like it, you have a sure-fire Christmas present to buy – the candle tin did win Gift of the Year after all!

Bedroom

Your bedroom is your haven, especially in the colder months when there’s nothing better than snuggling up under the covers, away from the world. Snowdrop is an ideal scent, as it gives you the soft white floral scent with a slightly woody base to bring some richness to the scent. It’s soothing and delicate with a hint of sandalwood to help you relax and stay that way.

Got the Autumn bug? We have a whole host of other Autumn scents just for you!

Myth Buster: Room Fresheners

As much as we love our scented candles and reed diffusers, we understand that sometimes you just want a quick blast of fragrance to refresh a room for a short period of time, such as a guest room when people are visiting for a few days. Our room mists, scented sachets and scented spheres are the ideal way to fragrance these spaces – but as they’re not as well known as candles and reed diffusers, and we’re often asked a range of enquiries. See our most frequently asked questions about our room refreshers below – first off, room sprays:

Are your room sprays family-friendly?


Being water-based, our room sprays can be used around children and pets without any worry. They’re also often used to refresh clothing and bedding. Saying that, please take into consideration who is in the room before you start to spray – anyone with asthma can have negative side effects from any sort of sprays.

What’s the best way to use a room spray?

If you’re needing a quick burst of fragrance, room sprays are ideal, whether it’s to boost a scent that’s already in the room or to add an additional fragrance. Our room sprays are formulated to create fine mists, rather than heavier droplets. Often less expensive than reed diffusers or candles, they’re great value for money as you’ll usually get around 1,500 sprays per bottle!

Do I need to do anything special when I’m storing my room spray?

Like with all of our products, we’d always recommend storing them out of direct sunlight, as this may discolour the liquid.

Next, we move onto scented spheres…

What are scented spheres?

You’re not the first (and won’t be the last) person to ask this – they’re basically little beads of reed diffuser oil which can be displayed in a variety of ways – from the scented sphere jars you purchase them in, to our clear glass vase from The Diffuser Bar to one of our hurricane vases. They diffuse their scent in a similar way to a diffuser.

I’m concerned about the safety of using these with young children in the house.

Don’t worry – we’ve thought of that. We’ve added an odourless bittering agent to our spheres, so that pets and children will be discouraged from putting them in their mouths. This bittering agent is often added to washing-ups liquid and fabric softener for the same reason – one drop added to a swimming pool would make the water taste disgusting, hence why only a few parts per million are needed in our products.

My scented spheres don’t smell anymore, why is this?

As with our reed diffusers, the fragrance throw depends on a few factors – room temperature, placement, draughtiness etc. Depending on how long you’ve been around the scent, you could just be used to it, therefore you don’t smell it as strongly. If this happens, try popping the lid back on your scented spheres jar and using a different scent in that room for a little while.

Lastly, some common questions on scented sachets…

What do I do with scented sachets?

Scented sachets are really easy to use and can scent those smaller spaces in the home that otherwise get overlooked. Remove the plastic packaging around the sachet and place wherever you wish – drawers, wardrobes, cars, even travel luggage! The paper of the sachet has been designed to allow the scent to flow through.

Why can’t I smell my scented sachet anymore?

The scent of these sachets will slowly fade overtime but will vary depending on the environment it’s placed in. Somewhere dry and cool will help the fragrance to last longer than somewhere hot and humid.

There we have it – the last of our myth buster blogs. We hope they’ve been of use, but if you have any other burning question to ask, let us know, we’d love to hear from you!

Myth Buster: Optimise your Oil Burner

Oil burners have been one of the more traditional ways of fragrancing your home for a number of years, but that doesn’t necessarily mean that they’re any less popular than the more modern methods on the market today. See our top tips and frequently asked questions about using oil burners to see if one has a place in your home.

How much burner oil do I need to use in one sitting?

The answer is, very little! You actually need to add some warm water to the top of your oil burner before adding a few drops (depending on the strength of scent you prefer) of your favourite refresher oil.

I’ve seen people using some fragranced laundry balls in their oil burners – can I do this with your oil burners?

We can’t say this enough – please do not use any products which have not been formulated to be used in an oil burner. This is extremely dangerous and you need to put your safety first, no matter what the rest of the Internet says!

Why do you say to use an unscented tealight in an oil burner?

When releasing scent in an oil burner, it’s best to use just one scent, rather than trying to spread two scents around your home using one oil burner. It will give you a truer scent if you use an unscented tealight.

How do I use wax melts/wax tarts?

Wax melts are really easy to use – add an unscented tealight to your oil burner and pop your chosen wax melt into the top of the oil burner. Simple! When you want to change the scent, simply scoop the melted wax tart out of the top of the burner and replace with a new one.

Do you have any more questions about our oil burners, refresher oils and wax melts? Contact us and we’ll do our best to help you out.