I know what I don’t want my house to smell of. Nappies. The leftover curry in the bin. That weird aroma that washing has when it’s been (incorrectly) hung up to dry by a man.
But what I’ve never been clear on is what I do want it to smell of. I’m not sure about flowers. They’re too, well, floral. As though you have something to hide. I like more indoorsy scents, like wood, and spices. Fruit even. So guess what I’ve been testing for your delectation? Some gorgeous scented candles that don’t smell like up-market Febreeze.
The Santissima Amafli Candle by Jonathan Ward (£35 at www.jonathanwardlondon.com) is ‘inspired by the discovery of a forgotten church in high summer’, which I find both ludicrous and fabulous all at the same time. Ludicrous because who has this ever happened to? And fabulous because once you smell the candle you kind of get it, as it is both incensy and fresh. Double wick too. Nice.
Next is Timothy Han’s Tobacco & Jasmine Candle (£38 at www.timothyhan.com). Don’t worry, it doesn’t smell like someone having a fag out the back door of a florist. The tobacco is the plant rather than a pack of B&H, but it’s enough to give the citrussy, jasmine scent a patchouli kind of vibe rather than anything too sweet. The gorgeous jade-colour glass makes it look really special too.
And now for something Cuban. No, not a cigar, a ‘magnificent forest’ (I love these descriptions). Geodesis Havana Candle (£22 at www.notonthehighstreet.com) – this is properly woody, but not overpowering, with a little bit of citrus in to stop it smelling ‘Pledge’. A real house-filler, and it comes with a cute lid to put the candle out without plumes of smoke going everywhere.
Moving on from woodiness, anyone fancy a cocktail? I do. But as it’s 10am, I’m making do with MALIN + GOETZ’s Mojito Candle (£37 at uk.spacenk.com). Lime, mint, pepper… it sounds so wrong, but it smells so right. Lovely and fresh.
And finally, one of my all-time favourites: Jo Malone’s Pomegranate Noir (£38 at www.jomalone.co.uk). They say it’s ‘raspberry and plum spiked with pink pepper’. But to me it smells of leather-bound books and poshness. Now surely everyone wants their house to smell like that?