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Thursday, March 15, 2007

Scented Love

For years I have had a love affair with Diptyque candles.......

The minimalist white box and chic Parisien address on boulevard Saint Germain was the epitome of good taste. Those in-the-know would instantly recognize the subtle scent of Baies wafting through a party or the freshness of Tilleul in a powder room. Diptyque was always fashionable, yet a bottle of Veuve Clicquot.

But, lately I've had a bit of a wandering eye (or should I say nose?)

First it was the Etro candle in the dark maroon and gold embossed box that I got for Christmas. Misto Bosco was a bright red candle scented with tangy and sweet wild berries and a hint of crushed pine needles with a gold engraved cover.

Then, for my birthday, my friend Barbara gave me the most amazing Gingerlily candle by Molton Brown in a thick frosted amber glass holder. Not only was the candle gorgeous, but the packaging was unbelievable. The rich, textured paper box had a metallic sheen and a grosgrain ribbon pull with another ribbon inside holding the candle in place.

Slowly but surely I was being lured to the dark side. But, my fall from grace did not happen until I received a mysterious black box sealed with a satin ribbon and a cluster of blood red roses, branches and dark berries. Inside I found a candle scented with exotic Japanese incense, balsam, and musk in a jeweled-toned burgandy glass. No card. Just a crest and the words Aedes De Venustas embossed in gold.

I went out in search of Aedes De Venustas (Latin for "Temple of Beauty") and found myself at 9 Christopher Street at a seductive little shop selling rare perfume and home fragrances from old world brands such as Santa Maria Novella and Carthusia to modern yet exclusive brands like Ulrich Lang and Agraria. So many beautiful things to choose from. It was enough to make me blush.

At that moment, I realized that Diptyque may have been my first love, but I just wasn't ready to settle down.

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