Candle of the Day: Bois d'Hiver

Bois d'hiver organique, originally uploaded by David Chantoiseau.

Today I was burning tealights of Bois d'Hiver at my table at Portobello West. It's been a while since I burnt it and doing so brought endless comments from passers by about how great the whole area around my table smelled (just from two tiny tealights).
Burning Bois d'Hiver for me is like visiting a place that is very familiar yet mysterious. Making that candle with Nikki of Gabriel's Aunt brought a dream of mine alive. And I just love it when it's that time of the year of cold, snow, storms and I can burn this candle and feel cozy at home while being reminded of forests, fireplaces, ancient temples and old-world pomanders.

The Virtues of Bathing

Bath, originally uploaded by lady eighty.

Hot bath water
No place to throw
Insects singing all around

The time leading to the holidays can be stressful and strenuous both mentally and physically. Lots of work to get done before the long winter break. Many parties and social functions to attend and/or organize. Even Holiday preparations such as shopping, cooking and baking can take a toll on your health and stress you out if you’re not careful.

Being in the midst of the holiday rush myself, I’ve found that simple little rituals really help to ease out the stress and balance out the overall intensity of these past two months. Giving yourself a little attention, quietly, and being mindful about yourself in the midst of this chaos – even if just for a few minutes – can make all the difference and might save a lot of trouble (i.e.: fatigue, headache, back pain, meltdown or whichever way your system tends to cope with the stress).

Soaking in a hot tub in the evening is a great way to relax and also get your body nice and tired before bedtime. It allows to wash off the worries of the day along with the dirt. In Japan, bathing in the evening is an important ritual that all member of the family take part of. Everyone washes before entering the bath, and all use the same water, which is of course very hot! It is also customary to use whole plants (i.e.: Shoubu, a type of iris) or fruits (yuzu) in the bath depending on the season. These plants are believed to help maintain one’s health.

Traditionally, the Japanese bath tubs are made from wood such as hinoki - a Japanese cypress with a very pleasing aroma. I found these awesome bath salts at Daiso (a Japanese twonie/100 yen store located in the Aberdeen Mall in Richmond, BC), which smell wonderful and surprisingly natural (especially knowing their price). I particularly enjoy bathing in the soft light of candles, especially scented; and my Bois d’Hiver candles make a beautiful compliment to this woody bath soak.

The virtues of bathing go beyond basic hygene practices. The sound of the water flowing into the tub and swishing around is relaxing and calming. In the soft light, you mind can relax and put behind all the day's worries and stress and ready itself for a peaceful slumber. The act of washing and bathing brings awarness to every part of the body and to the body as a whole. Bathing with your partner can also be a shared time of relaxation and intimacy (schedule and bath size permitting...). And of course you could also argue water's many symbolic meanings of a source of vitality, a place where our life began (the womb), and purity.

Scented Candle Collection

Ok, ok, ok. I'll admit it: I'm in love. With my candles.
This is a whole new experience for me - enjoying scented candles. I burned to the bottom both Bois d'Hiver and ArbitRary and I'm struggling to not dip into the stash for retail.

Clearly, I'm not the only one who thinks they are amazing: The ArbitRary candles are completely sold out and will not be in till next week. Bois d'Hiver has only 2 candles left in stock. And the first shipment of White Potion has already several candles pre-ordered. One of them is going straight to Noam Gagnon's Pilates Studio, where it will enhance the breathing techniques of the students and guests, and of the Pilates maestro. When I decided to create a candle version for White Potion I had Noam in mind, so I’m glad he’s the first one to fall in love with it (head over heels, if I may add).

You may want to know now - how do these candles smell?
Bois d’Hiver is the first candle I wanted to create. I really enjoyed other woody and foresty candles (i.e.: the very fresh woody Noel candle from Annick Goutal, and Into the Woods by Origins - a discontinued candle; as well as the more smoky Diptyque’s Feu de Bois & Essence of John Galliano). But I wanted to create my own, all natural candle. Bois d’Hiver already smelled like how I would like a candle to smell. However it was everything but easy to translate into a candle. The first version had too much fir and was just not right in every possible way including colour, texture, and both cold and warm throw. The final version is perfect, with a beautiful balance between the fresh woody coniferous notes, festive spice notes and incensey notes. In a sense, it combines all the classic scents of Christmas: incense in Midnight Mass, spicy cookies and eggnog and fresh green Christmas tree - but without smelling like a cliche. I was surprised at how well the incense notes come out once the candle is burnt. It smells like a dream.

White Potion is creamy and soft and smooth floral. It is very gentle and sweet and such a luxurious treat to burn. It contains plenty of tuberose floral wax, which makes it, well, floral and tuberosey (floral wax is the by product of creating floral absolutes and contains whatever fragrance is left in the flower and did not want to leave the wax). It also has coconut and tonka bean, ylang ylang, grapefruit and bergamot. It really is like burning perfume in your space and makes the world seem luscious and creamy. It’s a very romantic candle, but to me could also be great as a meditation candle, as it is very soothing.

And of course - you already know about ArbitRary - an invigorating citrusy candle with juicy lime, nectar-like jasmine with basil and hay. I’ve burnt this all summer and burnt it down very fast. I’ve run through these candles faster than any other kind of candles (I still have a few from more than a year ago).

A new candle will come out in mid December, based on Roses et Chocolat parfum. The first version was divine but I want it to be even better!

News from the Nose

Get Seduced into Winter By Sahleb Perfume & Roses et Chocolat Tea

Dear Fragrant Friends,

Fall and Winter 2008/2009 holds many delicious surprises at Ayala Moriel Parfums!

There is Sahleb, a smooth iris perfume inspired by the winter pudding-beverage in the Middle East; Roses et Chocolat Tea - yes, it's as good as it sounds if not better! - and two new candles to light those dark nights and add some fragrant spark to your home.

Please read on for all the full scoop:

Sahleb: Orchid, Pudding and now also a New Perfume

Ayala Moriel is proud to introduce: Sahleb - the perfume version of a Middle Eastern winter favourite. This scrumptious pudding beverage, flavoured with rosewater and crushed mastic resin is offered by street vendors straight from a copper caldron throughout the cooler seasons across the Middle East. Served warm and topped with coconut, pistachio and cardamom, Sahleb has become an essential part of winter and a way to make even the gloomiest street corners cozy and home-like.

The creamiest orris root from Italy was used to create the smooth texture of this starchy and soothing pudding-beverage. A hint of the finest rose otto from Turkey, coconut and butter essence and crushed mastic resin complete the exotic flavour, and finished with a hint of vanilla and nutty ambrette seed Sahleb is ready to seduce you into winter!

Top Notes: Coriander Seed, Rosewood, Mastic Resin

Heart Notes: Orris, Rose Otto, Butter

Base Notes: Ambrette Seed, Coconut, Vanilla Absolute

Sahleb is an exclusive and extremely limited edition – only 11 bottles were made, two of which are already taken! I hope that with your support we will be able to find and obtain more of that special orris butter to make more in the near future.

We are almost sold out of samples (only 2 left). Each bottle of 9ml parfum extrait contains 20% orris butter with 15% irone (the molecule that makes it smell so creamy, dreamy and violet-like), retailing for $160.

Available on AyalaMoriel.com and for limited time only also on b-glowing.com.

Click here to read “Orchid, Pudding, Perfume” - behind the scents with Sahleb perfume.

Update: We are completely sold out of samples for Sahleb, but still have 9 bottles in stock!

Tea Time with Roses et Chocolat

Some of you were fortunate enough to have a sip of Roses et Chocolat tea with me at the Portobello West Art + Fashion Market in September. Now the tea is ready and packed in a cute tin and tied with a hot pink ribbon – the best gift you can give yourself this fall!

Roses et Chocolat tea is made of two specialty black teas from China: Fu Hao, and Rose Congou, flavoured with organic damask rose, vanilla, anise, and, of course – chocolate!

The chocolate flavour comes from real and pure organic cacao nibs – which are cracked cacao beans. They are sugar free and full of nutrients – and as Newport Yoga Blog notes, this tea is an excellent way to get your chocolate kick but without the side-kicks to badly influence you or your figure...!

Roses et Chocolat gained immediate following at a unique High-Tea event last Sunday hosted by the High-Tea Girls Heather & Moj. I can easily attest to it’s beauty by the fact that it’s not even a month on my tea-counter, and my personal 2oz tin is nearly empty…

Roses et Chocolate Perfumed Tea - Ingredient List:
Special Grade Premium Fu Hao Black Tea (China)
Premium Rose Congou Black Tea (China)
Raw Cacao Nibs, certified organic (Peru)
Damask Rose Petals, certified organic (France)
Vanilla Pod, certified organic (Madagascar)
Anise Seed, certified organic (Turkey)

Roses et Chocolat is the 4th collaboration with Inner Alchemy Tea Co. - a Vancouver Based company that specializes in high-quality, wildcrafted and organic teas and herbs.

For more information and serving suggestion, visit SmellyBlog.

Light the Night with Two New Candles

The past year at Ayala Moriel was dedicated to one secret mission: turning some of our most haunting perfumes into candles and teas!

It all started with Bois d’Hiver last winter. Nikki Sherritt and I started working on the candle than, and took a little break in the summer to bring to you the citrusy sunshine of ArbitRary candle. So it wasn’t till NOW that we finally have what we wanted: a beautifully burning winter candle with a touch of fir absolute and orange blossom floral wax. Bois d’Hiver is everything the perfume is about – in a candle form. Imagine stepping into a cabin after a walk in the snowy forest – your hair is messy with fragrant coniferous needles and inside there is a warm spicy brew burning on the fireplace, and the room is filled with the scent of incense and myrrh yet with no smoke to burn your eyes. This is Bois d’Hiver – foresty, spicy and incensey in the best possible way. I was so excited to light it yesterday night, it filled an entire floor with a magical scent of outdoorsy coziness.

Another candle that was in the making since the summer is White Potion – a tuberose-centred creamy white floral candle that is made of a combination of precious tuberose floral wax, ylang ylang, virgin coconut oil and tonka bean. To call it an aphrodisiac would be an understatement.

A fourth candle in the collaboration with Garbriel's Aunt will launch later this winter. Stay tuned to hear all the details… For now, I’ll just keep you on your toes…

Body + Soul Magazine Features Gaucho Perfume

Body + Soul Magazine's November 2008 issue features Gaucho perfume. You can click here to read Beauty Basics: Pure Perfumes by Courtney Humphries - or search for it in the glossy magazine that will be out on newsstands shortly before October runs out.

As a gesture to our Body + Soul readers, with every order of Gaucho, you will receive a complemetary Gaucho Tea in our gift-wrapped 1oz tins (while quantities last).

* Gaucho is the little rectangle green-juiced flacon on the very top left of the photo (the bottle looks different from the rest of my line).

New Retail Location: Spa*Habitat

Ayala Moriel Parfums are now availabe in Spa
beautiful new location in West Village in uptown Dallas, Texas. This upscale organic spa has a full range of beauty and relaxation services in two location (Plano and Dallas). The new Dallas location offers a unique all-natural and organic Scent-Bar, featuring five of Ayala's original natural perfumes: ArbitRary, Espionage, Finjan, Tamya & White Potion. In addition, you can also scent your home with our beautiful ArbitRary soywax candles and get treated with some Immortelle l'Amour perfumed tea while you shop.

Gift Making Workshops at the Studio

During the fall and winter, I invite you to join me at the studio for a series of inspiring workshops that will help you get ready for the holidays with unique hand-scented gifts and holiday menus and recipes.

You will leave each workshop with gifts ready to go under the tree, that you have made yourself and smell wonderful!

The workshops offered include, among others:
Can’t make it for your desired workshop on our calendar?
- Contact us to book your own private workshop with a group of friends (up to 6 people). (778) 863-0806. We’ll do our best to accommodate your schedule and help you get ready for the holidays in a fun, relaxed & inspiring way!

Workshops can be booked in advance online here.

Chocolate Truffles are back!

At least there is one known advantage for the cooler weather: the chocolate won’t melt!

This is the time of year when chocolate truffles can be easily shipped across the country without getting spoiled.

Pick your flavour and we will make a special batch for you of 40-50 truffles at a time of a flavour of your choice. These can be either served at your home or business for holiday parties or wrapped individually in gift boxes to pass on to special friends and colleagues. All flavours are sold for $60 a batch.

Holiday Party & Open House December 21st

Come celebrate the holiday season and light the first Hannukah candle with Ayala.

Perfumed teas and truffles will served in abundance (naturally) as well as other aromatic and seasonal treats, including, of course – the infamous Sahleb pudding-drink!

This party is a wonderful opportunity and a cozy environment for you to meet other local perfume lovers who shares your passion of natural perfumery, and experience our new line of candles, Sahleb perfume, and more.

When: December 21st, 6pm-10pm
Where: #314-1230 Haro Street, Buzz #295
RSVP by December 15th or call (778) 863-0806

Hope to see you all soon!

Warm regards,

Ayala Moriel Parfums
My SmellyBlog: SmellyBlog.com
Tel.: (778) 863-0806
Address: 1230 Haro Street, Buzz #295,Vancouver, BC
Hours: Mon-Fri 8:00am-4:00pm; Sundays & evenings by appointment only
Address: PO Box 93589 Nelson Park, Vancouver, BC, V6E 4L7
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