The Diary of A Nose

Since I’ve built a career in the world of scents, I am always interested to hear what has inspired some of the world’s most renown olfactory experts. Jean-Claude Ellena, the official perfumer of Hermès, shares his thoughts on perfume in his new memoir and I think this will be the perfect summer read for me.

A scent is such a personal thing, capable of transporting you to your past, of kindling fantasies… out of thin air. It is quite a task (one that I love) to create each candle, capturing the essence of the candle’s namesake (Peony, Vetiver, Wild Fern…). And so, in the name of research, I am looking forward to sticking my nose into this memoir by Jean-Claude Ellena, the official perfumer of Hermès: “The Diary of a Nose: A Year in the Life of a Parfumeur“. Available now from Rizzoli.

Per the Rizzoli website:

An intimate exploration of inspiration and creativity, from the “parfumeur exclusif” of the house of Hermès. Where does inspiration for this visceral art come from? How does one capture the essence of emotions, of desire? Jean-Claude Ellena has a sublime gift. As “parfumeur exclusif” (or “the nose”) for Hermès, he elevates fragrance to an art form. A “writer of perfume,” his concoctions are as finely composed and evocative as a haiku. He is also a conjurer of sorts: “I create an illusion that is actually stronger than reality . . . you enter the scent and follow the path.” The Diary of a Nose is a collection of Ellena’s meditations on the world of scents, and what stirs his creation of some of the world’s most desired fragrances. Inspiration can come from anywhere—a market stall, a landscape, or even the movement of calligraphy. Though each smell has its own distinct character, a gifted perfumer creates olfactory experiences that are intensely personal and unique, that blossom on the body and leave a trace of us lingering after we have left a room. Seductive, delicate, and elegant as any of Ellena’s creations, The Diary of a Nose seeks to capture the most elusive facets of this rarefied and mysterious art.

About the Author

Jean-Claude Ellena has been the exclusive perfumer to the house of house of Hermès since 2004. Over the course of his career he has created some of the world’s bestselling fragrances, including “First” from Van Cleef & Arpels, “Eau Parfumée au Thé Vert” from Bulgari, and “Déclaration” from Cartier.

Mother’s Day: Inspiration And Advice From Famous Moms

image courtesy of Huffington Post

With Mother’s Day this weekend, I’ve been thinking back on great advice mom has given me over the years and about how motherhood has changed me personally. I really enjoyed flipping through this slideshow, chock full of inspiration from famous moms like Tina Fey, Meryl Streep, Hillary Clinton, Amy Poehler, Natalie Portman, J.K. Rowling and many others.

Jena Pincott has just published a gorgeous new quote book for moms called Mom Candy: 1,000 Quotes of Inspiration for Mothers. The collection is filled with delightfully relatable musings from interviews, memoirs, poems and more by notable women.

What’s your favorite quote about parenthood? Share it with me on Facebook or Twitter. And Happy Mother’s Day!

Botanical Illustrations by Angela Dalinger

Image courtesy of

We turn to nature for candle inspiration often and are always looking for ways to bring the outdoors into our home. With an obvious weakness for botanicals, we fell for these sweet illustrations of potted plants and flowers by German illustrator Angela Dalinger. The 28-year-old illustrator and painter makes her own books and prints and makes them available on her online store. Check out some of the other illustrations and photographs on her tumblr for a nice dose of fresh energy.

Last Minute Father’s Day Inspiration

image courtesy of

With Father’s Day coming up on Sunday, I always find myself scrambling for ideas up to the last minute. Does the same thing happen to you?

One sweet idea is giving him something homemade, made with love. For my husband, I love the idea of my daughter and I baking the cute sugar cookies pictured above together, and found this easy enough recipe from Martha Stewart.

Since you’re probably here though as a fan of ours (lucky us!), did you know we have a pretty new masculine candle, Vetiver? Earthy, rugged and altogether masculine with notes of vetiver, light musk and ozone. It’s actually one of my favorites as well, so now you can share your passion with the man in your life!

Check our site for a list local retailers if you want to pick this up near you, though we recommend calling first to make sure it’s in stock!

Here’s to a wonderful Father’s Day and spending a beautiful day with the ones we love.

A Few of our Favorite Pinterest Accounts

Image courtesy of, via Gigi Guerra's Pinterest

Have you all been as sucked in by the Pinterest craze as we have? Once we started, it was like falling down the rabbit hole! So much inspiration, and truly something for everyone. We’re still learning the ropes and would love to hear from you with things you’d like to see more of from us. More behind the scenes? More candle beauty shots? More pure inspiration? Let us know via Twitter @LinneasLights, and we’ll do our best to feed your cravings.

In the meantime, we wanted to share some of the Pinterest accounts we’ve come across recently that always brighten our day:

Madewell creative Gigi Guerra has style we admire:

And some of our favorite bloggers:

Who else should we be getting to know? Can’t wait to hear from you and in the meantime, here’s a little love from us:

Happy “Take Our Daughters & Sons to Work” Day!

Image courtesy of our friends at MacKimmie Co. & Storied Lens

Linnea’s Lights is such a family affair with our tight-knit mother-daughter team, and our small staff is just like extended family to us here in Indiana. It seems only natural that we’d love celebrating Take Our Daughters and Sons to Work Day each year, and I always look forward to sharing my passion with my own daughter, Hannah.

I found out a bit more about the origin of this special day on the Take Our Daughters & Sons to Work foundation’s site and this recent article about how to make the most of the day, over on Forbes. Designed to be more than a career day, the Take Our Daughters And Sons To Work® program goes beyond the average “shadow” an adult. Exposing girls and boys to what a parent or mentor in their lives does during the work day is important, but showing them the value of their education, helping them discover the power and possibilities associated with a balanced work and family life, and providing them an opportunity to share how they envision the future and begin steps toward their end goals in a hands-on and interactive environment is key to their achieving success. Each year, we develop new interactive activities and partnerships that will assist us in taking girls and boys to the future they dream of.

Do you have fond memories of joining your parents for a day at the office? Is this something you’ll participate in with your own children?

Fig Leaf

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As a child, fresh figs were always on the menu for the most special occasions and are still one of my personal favorites. Lynn always made sure to serve these at birthdays and over the holidays, so I’m reminded of those good times when I bite into a fig to this day. Used as a sleep aid by the ancient Greeks, the fig leaf candle’s subtle and exotic scent will fill your room with the comforting aroma of sweet figs, Mediterranean lemons, amber and sandalwood. While never having traveled to the Mediterranean, the fragrance is what we dream it would be like. Sophisticated yet simple, this candle is the perfect scent for snuggling in and daydreaming of warm, blue coastlines.

Pick yours up today from Orange and Pear.