Home scent is much more than just making your home smell good. A well-scented home will literally make you feel at home.
Think of every indoor space you’ve walked into that’s made a scent impression, Whether it’s a hotel lobby, your grandmother’s kitchen, a church or temple, a friend’s holiday home. You may not recall exactly what it smelled like, but you remember how it made you feel.
MY CONNECTION TO SCENT
I have been passionate about scent from a young age because I have always been surrounded by sandalwood.
My family own Indian sandalwood plantations up in the far north of Australia. My dad started growing sandalwood because the forests in Mysore where sandalwood grows natively have been recklessly harvested to the point where sandalwood is almost extinct in the wild. So our plantations are one of the only sustainably sources of this sacred tree.
What has always fascinated me about our hero ingredient is that science is only just catching up with what the ancients knew intuitively thousands of years ago when they started using sandalwood for worship and medicine.
WHY IS SANDALWOOD A BIG DEAL IN THE WORLD OF FRAGRANCE?
Perhaps one of Sandalwood’s most prolific uses is in fine fragrance and aromatherapy where it not only acts as a sleep aid and a dreamy base note but importantly, it is a fixative that binds scent to the skin and other natural fibres. It has the slowest evaporation rate of all essential oils, which means that other synthetic fixatives used in mainstream fragrances are often not required when authentic sandalwood is involved.
Buddhist monks use sandalwood to connect with the divine. And Vedic meditators almost exclusively use sandalwood for its ability to help you focus.
Indian sandalwood was declared a royal tree in 1792, and five tonnes of sandalwood were burned on Gandhi’s funeral pyre to send him to the next life.
The scent of sandalwood is also similar to the pheromone androsterone, and has been used as an aphrodisiac by generations of lovers – in fact a poem from 2,000 years ago describes two lovers entwined, drunk on the scent of sandalwood.
MY TIPS ON SCENTING YOUR HOME
1. Pick a scent that reflects how you want to feel in your space
Look for citrus and fresh floral notes such as grapefruit, lime and rose.
Fresh, crisp scents, which have the smallest molecules, such as citrus and fresh floral notes should be reserved for spaces where you want to feel uplifted and alert such as the office or kitchen.
MOOD BALANCING SCENTS
Look for green, soft woods and rich floral notes such as pine, coriander, basil and jasmine.
Clean, balanced scents such as green and rich florals are great for the bathroom as they give a feeling of cleanliness and calm.
Look for woody and spicy base notes such as sandalwood, cedarwood, cinnamon and cardamon.
Sensual and earthy scents such as woods and spice are wonderful for creating a calm atmosphere – perfect for the bedroom as a sleep aid or aphrodisiac.
2. Furnish your home with natural fibres
Homes that are well-furnished with high quality timbers and fibres are by their nature infused with beautiful scent. Solid timber furniture, genuine leather, linen, cotton and wool will holds naturally powerful scents. By virtue of these naturally fragrant materials, your home is going to take on a subtle and beautiful fragrance.
Natural fibres will also bind with other natural molecules and meld with the scents in your home to create unique and beautiful synergies.
Jardan is renowned for its sustainable designer furniture in Australia.
Find Jardan's Perth store at:
488 Stirling Highway
Peppermint Grove, WA 6011
Thursday comes in a range of configurations, the Jardan website will allow you to select your preference then further customise fabrics and finishes.
3. Use high quality incense
Every day, without fail, someone will come into Heartwood and say, “It smells amazing in here!’ That’s because we burn our incense every day. It caries a pungency and immediacy that cannot be achieved any other way.
So how do you identify high quality incense?
- Look for a solid stick of pure rolled plant material. Avoid incense that is rolled onto a bamboo core, which is usually coated with an un-aromatic filler and then 'dipped' in perfume.
- White smoke. Pure incense burns with a whiter smoke or an elegant 'cloud' as the ancients used to call it.
- If someone is pedaling sandalwood or other incense cheaply it’s probably too good to be true and you are buying a counterfeit product.
4. Make the most of your candles
When burning a candle you need to trim the wick every time, so that the fragrance is not impeded by the burnt wick.
You also need to let the candle burn right to the edge, to avoid it pooling in the middle and wasting the divine scent.
5. Develop rituals around scent
In the Middle East, Africa and most of Asia and India, aromatics are so important because they are tied into rituals of worship that take place in the home. There is a certain reverence around scent and ritual so I love creating my own rituals.
Whenever I clean the house, I burn a stick of incense to smoke out all the demons. I visualise them being carried away in the woody cloud. I also burn incense when I go to bed, when I do yoga, and when I sit down at my desk – so you can imagine my house is very fragrant.
Some people cannot have a bath without lighting a candle or need to hear the gentle trickling sound of a diffuser as they go to bed. The world is your oyster.