The scent of home

The spring season is the perfect time to talk about scents. After many months of gray cold weather with almost no natural scents, if you put aside the crispy smokey air, I crave the emerging smell of tiny flowers, the earthy scents of early growths, the grass and the soil.
But what I want to talk about are the scents in our homes. I feel - apart from the occasional posts on scented candles - we talk rarely about the scents, smells, odors...
Truthfully my feelings about homes are very fast decided upon entering for the first time, smelling the rooms, the entrance, the scent of the place. Some are heavenly, soft, clean, perfumed!
Some less so!

I will try to help you get the best scent into your home! And I will be very frank with you!
The first thing I notice usually is the lack of fresh air. Open your windows often if you can!

There is a scent to everything, starting at carpets, mattresses, linens, upholstery, the mud room, the sneakers, the laundry, the coats, the closets, the pantry, the kitchen and bathrooms, bedrooms and more.
If you pay attention everything in your home adds to the potpourri of scents.

It is not the fried fish smell which accounts for bad odor alone!
Make sure your shoes are aired and dry before you bring them into your storage place. Keep them in the garage until then. Stuff them with newspaper to dry, clean them regularly! There are small odor protectors available which help a bit, but sneakers by construction tend to smell rather bad....Some can be washed and air dried!
Do not keep your shoes in your bedroom closet! Unless you have a walk in closet its not at all good hygiene.

Do not over stuff your closets! Keep it loose, dry cleaned items should be aired and the cover removed before hanging back! Wash your cloths, especially undergarments, t- shirts, jeans regularly. Do not use them more then a day or two without changing!
You can use cypress or lavender sachets to help keep closets smelling fresh. A window is great addition to a newly planned walk in closet.
One of the worst offenders is moth powder or moth balls! I avoid them like the plague! Once your cloths smell like them you can hardly remove this offensive odor! You smell like it too! How often have I smelled this on the street!

Bedrooms: Wash your linens regularly! Open the window every day for several minutes, even in winter!
Vacuum and un - dust often!
Have your scented candles at bedtime, but do not forget that the smoke adds to the distress for our lungs. People with allergies beware! Soy candles burn cleanest of them all.

Many bedrooms have bathrooms attached. Keep the bathroom dry!
Used laundry should be washed soon, do not keep a hamper longer then a day or two! Germs grow in moist and dark environment! They smell! Use ventilation, again, fresh air is key!

If you do not have a window make sure to keep the door open and use an extra fan if needed!
Powder rooms:

Keep it clean! Have ventilation! Soaps and lotions add to the fresh scent, add small sachets, filled with lavender or your essential oils of your choice. I love bergamote and orange! There are endless options to perfume a room! But the basic cleanliness will be always more important. There is only so much you can do to camouflage an existing odor!
Living rooms,family rooms: Vacuum often, keep dust at bay, open the windows, less clutter makes it easier! Book shelves and cabinets are often overlooked, so open doors and air them.

Clean upholstery after the winter! Have it done professionally or wash slip covers. Do not just use those spray bottles!!!

Do not let your family walk in with their street shoes. Use slippers or shoes dedicated to the house.
Have fresh flowers, but change the water regularly! Rotten plants smell bad!
Open your windows often!
Clean spills and accidents immediately!

A good ventilation is key, especially in many of today's open floor plans. Keep a dry and clean pantry. Clean the refrigerator at least once a month! Sort out your garbage and remove recycle items to to garage or the bins outside the house.
Change your garbage liner and take meat, fish and cuttings outside to your garbage bin. Don't let it sit in your garbage in the kitchen.
Open the windows!
Boiling orange peel, ground cinnamon, vanilla, ginger and cloves. Lavender and herbs potted in your kitchen will smell yummy. Even a bowl overflowing with lemons can smell divine and make you at least imagine your home is lemon fresh!

Keep it neat and dry. The winter with snow and slush makes often for a moist mat! Try to pay attention to this area! It is the first impression,even for the nose!
Do not pile shoes next to the door! Keep your coat closet aired, take out unused coats and jackets, have them cleaned and store them away after the season.
A lovely scent will welcome any visitors!
More useful tips can be found here and here! Another out of this world tip comes from here!

And do not forget your personal hygiene! Nothing will ruin the efforts to have a wonderful smelling home as the smell of an unwashed and neglected person.
Excessive sweat is offensive and although I have heard stories of people going au natural, I personally think it's one of the harshest things to do to our fellow humans!
Think about it! Teach your children, they need to learn to be clean and neat! And it's not only about hiring the right cleaning lady...
It begins with us! We represent ourselves and our homes! And it's all in the details!
Now to the perfumes....
I love those scents, candles, room sprays! And fresh flowers any time!

I hope you will find yourselves in wonderfully scented homes, airy, fresh and inspiring, ready for the coming season!


All images as indicated, via Elle decor and google images and this site.


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