Ashley & Co Tartan & Spice $50. Cinnamon, clove, almond and apple combine in what Ashley & Co refer to as waxed perfume. The warm fragrance of this locally hand-poured long-lasting candle is designed to “hint at Christmas”, but still suit other occasions.
George & Edi Cedrus $39. It is not hard to imagine how the Wanaka makers would have dreamed up this resinous woody limited edition in front of the fire before summer arrived in the mountain-backed lake town. Cedar, citrus and sandalwood are at once bracing and enveloping. Buy the boxed candle with a matching room spray for $85. Visit georgeandedi.com
The Aromatherapy Co. Vanilla Bean & Pear $35. A gentle fragrance, avoiding the sickliness of some synthetic vanillas thanks to its essential oil blend, this makes for a harmonious choice for the home. A matching large room diffuser costs $42.99 or both come as minis in a set for $34.99.
Abbey Rose Mistletoe Kiss $75. Pine is spruced up here with berries and green apples or try the earthier Corsican mix of pine with lemon, amber and spices. These large NZ handmade soy candles come smartly boxed, with a smaller size selling for $45 in a velvet bag.
Archipelago Winter Frost $70. This American candle comes in a fancy silver box with a rhinestone accent. The scent is a perennial blend of white birch, green needles, sage, moss, clementine and amber.
Cire Trudon Bougie Gabriel $169. This French heritage brand has four Christmas choices in gilded glass. Our pick, Gabriel, is redolent of candied chestnuts with notes of warm woods and leather. Nazareth is spicier, Gaspard features mandarin and sandalwood and Bethleem is a woody floral underpinned with musk.
Ecoya Sweet Fruits $55. The rose gold glass container nicely matches the pretty summery scent concoction within. Sugared pink grapefruit, guava and passionfruit is underpinned with rosewood. Ecoya’s alternative Christmas fragrance is Fresh Pine, which returns this year in silver glass. Like Sweet Fruits it can be had in a smaller size for $29.95 or a mini reed diffuser for $34.95; all boxed for giving.
Diptyque Epices et Delices $106. Gingerbread, honey and star anise make for a mouth-watering aroma. French designer Pierre Marie is responsible for the illustrations on the metallic red candle container and its box. Diptyque’s other seasonal specials are Le Roi Sapin, a crisp pine fragrance, and Un Encens Etoile, a mix of spice, incense and vanilla. All three come also in minis sizes for $52.
Jo Malone London Deluxe Orange Bitters Candle $365. A 2016 addition to the Jo Malone Christmas collection, this poured into porcelain Orange Bitters candle is much bigger than returning favourite Pine & Eucalyptus. (The latter housed in glass is $115, or $795 for a 2.5kg whopper.) Despite the name, Orange Bitters isn’t a sharp scent, being softened with plum, amber and woods, which also makes it an appealing cologne. From Jo Malone, Britomart and Smith & Caughey’s Queen St.