What’s Burning?

We went to the Botanic Gardens this weekend, it was the peak of the Iris season, which was just lovely. They have one area that is the “smelly” area. Linden, roses, yarrow, just a cornucopia of scents coming at you of varying strengths and sweetness.  Your nose smells something beautiful, and you go and hunt it down, just to have something else come wafting by that’s more pungent, not as sweet, but equally compelling.  Mother Nature does such a great job at this that I’m always hunting for candles or something that can recreate some of that in my home. Never happy with just one thing or one smell, I need the candle, the room spray, the sachets, the soaps.  A house should have smells in every nook and cranny that are different and unique to what you are trying to create, and you should get that surprise of…. What in the world did I have in here burning?

Gratuitous picture of my boys when they were just little, maybe 6 and 3. I look at that picture and think how much they have changed, but that relationship they had then, they still have. I remember reading an old Ann Landers column back when I was young and hated kids and swore I would never have any, and Ann stated she had done a poll and a majority of parents had responded that if they had the choice to go back and do it over again and not have kids, that they would not have kids.  Then I completely agreed, thinking of all the grief I had given my parents, and nobody in their right mind signs on for that in retrospect.  Now, I can intellectually understand why parents would say, well, there is no real benefit to having kids, my life would have been better in material ways had I not had them, they take from you always and never give back or feel about you the way you feel about them.  My response to that is, but of course!  That is the best journey in the world, to give all of yourself to people who can/will never return it in kind and intensity.  You will empty your life onto unworthy, ungrateful objects.  That is the magnificence of being human.

Well, plus being able to torture your children with hundreds of scents in the house. My boys put up with smells everywhere — candles and soaps and potpourri, having something constantly shoved under their noses with a demand to sniff please! and tell me whether they liked it or not.  Weird thing is, they always liked that patchwork of smells throughout the house and still do. They both have a great scent radar, and I suspect they will one day make fabulous fragrance gifts to their wives, well, once they get them..

While we were up in Estes Park this weekend, we ran across some candles and soaps I/we liked. First up  is the Pacifica line.  There were several scents there that were worthy, but our favorite was the Red Ginger. Pungent and spicy, this is just a great scent that made us both happy, which is not normal  Mr. Patty likes all the spicy, woodsy scents, and I like, well, about everything!   Others scents that are interesting — Roman frankincense, Mountain Temple (vetiver in this!), Mexican Cocoa, Mediterranean fig, Thai Lemongrass.  We just got the soaps in this because they only had the little votive candles available, but their website has candles, soaps and lotions.

The next one, I’m having more trouble finding the candle I liked the most. Capri Blue is the brand of the candle. They come in a cobalt blue glass container. My favorite scent was the Tuscan Sun, and they just had one candle left in that flavor, and I’ve searched the web, only to come up empty handed. But the Volcano scent is very nice as well. I found some of them at Aspen Bay Candle Company.

The line I’d like to know more about and get some recommendations for is the Burn. Anyone have a favorite flavor there? Any other lines that must be sniffed?

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  • Katie says:

    I’ve heard of Pacifica, but the Burn line is news to me! The last candle I feel in love with is actually a cheapie – Paddywax’s Mango/Cilantro combo. It’s so nice, and sadly for me, insanely hunger-inducing.#-o Oh, wait, there’s a local line here (well, sorta local) from Oregon called Alchemy candles, and they make a nice Amber candle. Very pretty candles, too.

  • Patty says:

    Beba, that one sounds great.

    Oh, I’m so happy you love the Plus QJ! It is so smooth, no? Just like pulling on my favorite luxurious dress, it makes me feel beautiful.

  • Patty says:

    Cheez — I’m glad you found them too! The Orange Blossom sounds amazing, I need to sniff them all now!

  • Patty says:

    Cindy, yeah, I looked up on their site and saw that, which is so exciting, and I vaguely remember seeing them before, but I didn’t think they had the big candles there or not all of them. Thanks!

  • Beba says:

    I love some candles by Trapp and Illume, but a friend that came to lunch last week gave me Trapp No.21, Amber and Bergamot and now it is my favorite.
    Patty, I am madly in love with Plus QJ!!

  • Cheezwiz says:

    What a coincidence you mention Pacifica, as I just discovered this line very recently in Whole Foods. Don’t know where I’ve been, as their stuff smells fantastic and is reasonably priced.

    What heavenly smelling products! I didn’t see lemongrass, but they had some lime-guava products which smelled wonderful. The other ones that I sniffed and loved were the Tuscan Blood orange, and Orange Blossom. Can’t wait to get my hands on the Orange Blossom candle!

    The lovliest soap I tried was French Lilac – I bought a bar on the spot because it smelled so true to me. I can’t bear to use it yet, so it’s scenting my lingerie drawer. Alas I couldn’t find any accompanying lilac candles or cream. Pacifica’s packaging is also very beautiful 🙂

  • CindyN says:

    If you have a Whole Foods, they carry the Pacifica Line–soaps, body butters and candles. At least they do in CA.

  • Patty says:

    Patricia, how do you do the oils? Are the the ones that go in a light right, or some other way? those at least sound more reasonable their their darn candles! The Balinese Woods is the one I kept looking at, and before I sprung for something, I just wanted to make sure it is worth it. Thanks!

  • Patty says:

    R, you don’t burn and you don’t do gardening? What AM I to do with you? :d I’m a firebug, but I’m a careful one, and I have the little thingamjigs that go on top to keep the smoke down. I just like the little flickery lights in addition to the smells, I just feel more at home somehow.

  • Patty says:

    No, no L’Artisan candles,Ina! I already sprung for the overpriced room spray that March was talking about! Maybe when I’m on NYC in August I’ll go sniff it and then think more seriously about it. 🙂

  • Patricia Rojas says:

    I tried some of the Burn oils, they have them at Fred Segal in Santa Monica, California. I also tried one of their lotions which I really liked, the scents I have are Balinese Woods I had the oil and the lotion in this, and it’s really wonderful, it has sandalwood, sweet amber, cinammon clove, and I think patchouli and musk, it’s to die for, I love this scent. The other oils I got were Gardinia Absolu and Hinoke Temple which is hinoke, cedar, pine, black tea, it’s incensy to me, lovely scent. The problem I had with the oils and this is a big problem, you buy them in these little silver bottles with tassles on top, very cute, but the problem was that the oils leaked out, I did not have them standing up but had them in their boxes sideways, bad idea. The oils leaks out and the bottles are not inexpensive, something like $40 for each and it might be .02 oz. So, beware. But the scents I described are really lovely and there are many more. The blog beautyhabit seems to have the lotions and hand washes I believe.

  • violetnoir says:

    Everbody thinks I burn, P, but I don’t. Guess it’s that hippy-dippy, free flowin’ kind of vibe that I radiate. 😉

    Who was the woman who set Chicago on fire? Mrs. O’Leary? Well, I must have been her in a former life, because burning candles and incense in the home terrifies me. We burn tapered candles at dinner, but that’s it.

    Can you imagine having candles on the Christmas tree? The thought just horrifies me!@-)


  • Ina says:

    Patty, I got mine as as gift but if you google it, tons of places carry the line. Another one I like that features hay (this cracks me up!) is Dyptique Foin Coupe. Oh, and if you really want to splurge, I highly recommend Aedes de Venustas candle by L’Artisan. I could go on and on…

  • Patty says:

    Marina, they are just ancient. 19 (20 in September) and 16. I’m trying to figure out how they got so big and grown. I still see them that way.

  • Patty says:

    Ina, that New Mown Hay sounds faboo. Do you get yours from Atumn? I think that’s a line she carries, or do you get them somwhere else? I love the more hay/grass/spice candles than florals. Those all sound great, thank you!

  • Patty says:

    March, Pacifica is my new favoe. We didn’t pick up the Lemongrass one this time, already spent too much money on some wood sculptures for Mr. Patty’s birthday present.

    I think I’ll ix-nay the Burns then. They are so outrageous on price,they should scratch my back for me.

  • Marina says:

    What handsome young men those two are. How old are they now?

  • Ina says:

    I haven’t tried the Burn candles but my favorite candles are: Lumiere Luxe by Monyette Paris, Loree Rodkin, VIP Room, Karen Klein Leather, Tabacchi, New Mown Hay candle (her candles have a fabulous throw!).

  • March says:

    PS Those boys make my heart melt. The Cheese and I laugh about that famous survey periodically (usually right after somebody’s been awful, and they’re not old enough to be Really Awful!) I’ve always assumed that people who’d take the effort to respond would be the most unhappy — like a lot of reviews on Tripadvisor are the disaster stories. Which are sooooo much fun to read but I’m not sure represent a perfect cross-section of travelers, y’know?

  • March says:

    Oh, I love those Pacifica soaps! One of the rare exceptions to my no-fragrance-except-on-me policy. I have the Frankincense and the Lemongrass (which I loved esp. because I couldn’t find it in a fragrance, until Mimi and Katie turned me on to the V’tae.)\:d/

    The Burn candles … I’m probably the wrong person to render an opinion. I’ve smelled them at Barneys and my local fragrance boutique, and they don’t smell any different/better unlit than anybody else’s, and I think the packaging is homely. Unlit I like the Henri Bendel ones best.