Hidden away in the Plaza of Covent Garden is a little French perfumery that's full of beautiful things to discover. This isn't just another perfume shop, this is a world that makes you feel like Alice after she's fallen through to Wonderland. It's all dark and sexy displays, lines of delicious scents to take in, bookcases of candles and piles of perfumery bibles if you want to do your research. L'Artisan Parfumeur is a gorgeous find that I can't believe I haven't noticed until now. The traditional Parisian boutique was established in 1976 and built its fragrance house on the basis of using the purest ingredients and creating the most unique and striking scents. As I wondered around the store I saw (and smelt) so many fabulous things that I'm certain there's something for every nose and palette.
Their latest collection, Les Jardins Secrets, takes its inspiration from nature and the natural world: "L’Artisan Parfumeur is celebrated for its unique and stylish interpretations of the natural world. This selection of fragrances is inspired by the abundant richness of materials in gardens, fields, meadows and flowers in all their beauty. Each of these perfumes highlights the skill and talent of the perfumers and the extraordinary variety of materials used to create such beautiful windows into the natural world." There are seven scents in the collection, including Fleur d'Oranger (A scent for lazy summer days; refreshing and green,) Mimosa por Moi (A delicately rendered floral portrait of the mimosa tree,) and Mure et Musc (Juicy blackberries and musk; a L'Artisan Parfumeur icon.) I would literally wear any one of these scents as they're all fresh, fruity and perfect for summer.
To celebrate the new collection, L'Artisan Parfumeur are launching a very special promotion. With every visit to their boutiques (or purchase online) you'll be given a special packet of seeds which you're encouraged to plant. By documenting your seeds progress online on their facebook page or through twitter using the hashtag #jardinsecrets, you'll be able to take part in a competition to win the whole collection. The very best 'garden' chosen by the judges will be given all seven scents so the winner can smell beautiful all year round. How lovely is that? As soon as I find a plant pot and some soil (I'm not a gardener and I live in a flat!) I'll be showing you the progress of my seeds and talking about the scents in more detail. But for now, make sure you explore their beautiful website: www.artisanparfumeur.com