Home fragrance, it delights the senses, adds ambiance to any room and is perfect for gifting, so what better time of year to talk to the “king” of home fragrance himself? Harry Slatkin. Founder and creative force behind Homeworx with Harry Slatkin, Harry joins us to discuss his upcoming Today’s Special Value, a beautiful festive three-wick candle trio, and what makes home fragrance so evocative.
You’re known as the “king” of home fragrance and show such a passion and love for it, how did your journey into the world of scent begin?
“By accident. While I always had a passion for scent, home fragrance in particular as I grew up with it being a necessity for my mother when she entertained, I ended up working on Wall Street and was mildly successful. One evening I went to dinner with a friend, Vera Wang. At the end of dinner, she said “Har, you’re too creative and Wall Street will kill that in you”… well, the rest is history – and more stories!”
Have you always been inspired by fragrance in general?
“I always had a great sense of smell but over the last 28 years being in the industry and working with master perfumers it has become defined and allowed me to smell deeper and more passionately.”
Where do you take your inspiration from when creating a fragrance?
“I’m inspired by my surroundings and my reading and I absorb it all into a story I want to tell… I don’t create scents, I create stories with chapters.”
Christmas is fast approaching! What scents are synonymous with the festive season for you?
“While I think your favourite scents will always put you in a festive mood, I do like the changes of the season and I like my scents to tell that story. We are very lucky to work with perfumers who can actually capture the scent of fallen leaves or pinecones after it’s rained or create the sense of cold air… all very magical moments to layer into the story of the season.”
We’re very excited about the upcoming Set of three Seasonal Three-Wick Candles TSV here at QVC UK, can you tell us more about the scented candles included in the collection?
“White Birch, Frosted Holly and Season’s Greetings all create the festive story of the holiday-winter season. We need this more now than ever since we are all spending so much time at home and will for quite a while. It has the magic of a fresh snow fall and the majesty of the covered trees, air that is crisp-cold, looking out of your windows on a magical chilly night with a great fire roaring and a wonderful glass of wine, the festivity of all the decorations set in the house and holiday music in the background. Again, not just scent but the story of scent.
The outside design captures the times gone by of happy, calm, holidays with family and friends. All three scents evoke these magical stories and all the fragrance notes dance in the story of scent.”
Where in the home would you place these three candles?
“Throughout the house, all are made to be combined so front hall, living room, kitchen, bedroom…”
What is it that makes scented candles so comforting?
“Our keenest sense is our sense of smell so it goes directly to our brain and can change our mood – so this set will make us feel happier, festive and lift our spirits.”
A lot of people have turned to home comforts to help them through this year. Along with the calming act of lighting a candle, do you have any go-to self-care rituals to help you relax at home?
“Our favourite time of the day for my wife and I is cocktail time. The day has come to a grinding stop and our home seems to have a sense of calm, so sitting and having a cocktail and relaxing and chatting is our calm… but always with a scented candle to complete the mood.”
Fragrance has the amazing power to transport you to a certain time or place. If it could do this physically, sending you to a particular moment, era or location, where would you go?
“To be honest, London is my favourite place to visit so if scent could transport me to my beloved Claridge’s Hotel with yummy sandwiches, scones and of course, my English breakfast tea with cream, in my room, while I await to come to the QVC studio to do my TSV in-person… and then fish and chips with mayo for dinner, that would be a dream. I look forward to that happening in the hopefully not-too-distant future… I need my hot mustard supply to bring back home!”
What have you got in the works (or Worx!) for next year and what are you most looking forward to?
“When we launched at QVC in the UK it was a test and we sold everything out. It takes me nine months to produce scents, so with the help of QVC we have been working very hard to bring wonderful, new and exciting creations for the seasons. So, so many surprises to come now and I am very appreciative for the reception of the UK customers enjoying my products and their wonderful comments on my Instagram.”
Thanks Harry! We look forward to what you have in store for 2021 and can’t wait for the upcoming TSV, which launches here at QVC UK 21:00 this Sunday, December 7th.