Featuring my third Candles from the Keeping Room order in as many years; in retrospect, I never even reviewed the first, from 2016, because I was lukewarm on most of it. For my second order, I went real big on the fruity and clean scents and didn’t fall in love with those either, however, if you can see where I’m goin’ with this–the third time’s the proverbial charm. On the December 1st opening I focused on woodsy, wintery scents and they’re (nearly) all winners, phew!
Carol offers single scent shapes of purely paraffin wax in a dizzying array of scent types for $6.25 per 6 oz. bag. **I do wish the packaging material was plastic, rather than cellophane, because if clean, the plastic kind can be recycled–more info here.
Coconut Lavender Zucchini Fluff-“a wonderful blend of our sweet coconut lavender, zucchini and toasted marshmallow…a new twist to lavender.” With lavender-coconut milk, I’ve pretty much been there/done that. Which is why I’m surprised, not only that I ordered this scent, but with how much I love it. Chewy zucchini bread creates a heartiness that the watery coconut milk truly needs to soak into to provide substance. Sprightly lavender buds folded into the bread and set with sheer marshmallow glaze form a cozy inviting fresh-baked loaf. Lavender bakery is a uniquely popular scent style, adding the spiciness takes it that much deeper. Medium strength, would repurchase. ♥
White Cedar Forest– “…top notes of black coconut, sparkling bergamot, and iridescent musk with undertones of cardamom, sprinkled cinnamon, may rose, and praline. A perfect combination of spice and musk with a touch of sugar!” Oh how these pine cones, maple leaves and star-topped trees charm my fuzzy socks off. Top notes full of candied mellow sweetness descend to rich natural spicy depths before the whole profile becomes frosted with creamy velvet musk. So smooth, it’s almost romantic. Medium strength, would repurchase. ♥
*Bourbon Pumpkin- “Rich. Heavy. Strong. Unique. Pumpkin puree, hints of lemon and coconut, cassia root, mahogany wood and clove bud. Bottom notes of sweet, rich maple sugar, toasted oak and rich dark bourbon.” Those mono-syllabic descriptors are Carol’s but she’s spot on. BP is heavy, unique and mega strong, unfortunately, not in a feel-good way. Doubly unfortunately for me, I melted this on an evening when I was hit with a severe stomach bug and I had to turn it off because I thought it was making me nauseous. Turns out, it wasn’t, but the scent didn’t help. Heady, crushed clove buds dumped into syrup that’s gone a bit off. Pumpkin is under there somewhere but it falls flat.
*I should know better than to get a spiced pumpkin scent, but the bourbon drew me in. Ah well, probably the most harmless thing blamed on bourbon in history.
Charcoal Tonka -“An unexpected aroma of sweet tonka bean and smoked woods.” I read Julie’s review of this on The Redolent Mermaid and gave it a whirl. The smoky charcoal is bold, drifting toward dense, but not completely obscuring of the other notes. And oh, those are fabulous notes. Burly woods, I guess cedar and teak, smoulder under fragrant tobacco and dark roasted tonka. I don’t know why smokey and sweet goes so well together, but I just know I like it. Intense and distinctive, it also emerges much better when warmed, would repurchase. ♥
Wood Vanilla-“This is a Un Bois Vanille Type…This wonderful fragrance is described with hints of coconut milk, black vanilla absolute, caramelized benzoin, a bitter almond, tonka bean and sandalwood.” Ooh, I got a dupe and didn’t even know it. Initially, I was surprised by unexpected effervescent citron which shortly faded into caramelized musk and fluffy vanilla. Rather a mature scent, the vanilla component is refined and not overwhelmingly sweet. It’s a light appealing fragrance, but I don’t see myself reaching to melt it often.
Carol’s generous sample melts along with her seasonal magic marker drawings make me happier than they reasonably should, but sometimes it’s the little things that do.
Beach Linen-“truly captures the scent of clothes dried on a line in the beach breeze. It has an airiness that’s incredibly fresh and is paired with the herbal, floral, and citrus notes of the best clean cotton.” I suppose this can be described as beachy, if it’s a chilly sea breeze and you washed your towels in the surf, with soap.
Green Tea and Lemongrass -“This bright and natural smelling citrus begins with top notes of orange, bergamot, and lemongrass. The heart combines jasmine and plum with herbal green tea. The dry down is a clean musk with a touch of chrysanthemum and cedarwood.” Saving this for Spring, but it smells softly tart, well-balanced and more natural than CFTKR’s Grapefruit Lemongrass. I hope it doesn’t turn soapy upon melting.
Luxurious Linen -“This sumptuous oil is blended with so many fine ingredients you will love it at first sniff. Top notes of Sun Dried Linen, Bright Citron, White Cyclamen; mid notes of Ivy Leaves, Rose Petals and Tonka Bean. Bottom notes of Vanilla Flower, Patchouli and Warm Amber.” Floaty florals and vanilla soaked amber resins combine for a mellow, much less starchy version of linen type blends. If you’re afraid of clean scents, this one seems safe.
Snowflake-“a spa type scent..natural corn mint and spearmint oil to recreate the feeling of the falling snow.” Typical mountain air notes with extra bite. On cold, I don’t get any mint, only that characteristic fake snow smell.
Spa -“This fragrance invokes feelings of a relaxing day at the spa. Fresh marine and citrus accords are blended with just a hint of flowers and musk.” It’s tough to pin down what a spa should smell like, but to me, it represents soothing fresh air. This smells more like freshly washed linens. It reminds me strongly of Yankee Candle’s Country Linen, which I enjoy but only in the candle version. If seeking a potent crisp clean, this is for you.
Santal Almond Cream–“Creamy nuances of shea, heliotrope and exotic acerola introduce this alluring fragrance as coconut and sweet almond milk seduce the senses. Blonde sandalwood and warm amber intermingle with sheer musk in the back elevating the addictive signature.” Intriguing as this extensive scent profile is, on warm, it’s mostly coconutty vanilla sandalwood whipped up with a hint of rich almond cream. ♥
Christmas Past-“Reminds me what Christmas in days gone by would have smelled like. Nothing fancy. Blue spruce and fir scents with top-notes of northern pine, a spicy cinnamon middle note and a warm woody base note. Super strong.” Carol surprised customers by slipping this Santa wax cuttable into orders. I do appreciate his old-world charm that warms my heart. But, as much as I love fir scents, he isn’t for me. Brittle dried-cut woods, dusty cinnamon, ginger, and something slightly turpentine-y; I think I’ll keep him uncut and tuck the fella into my holiday garland for ambiance.
We’re well into the new year and I still have more winter reviews to get to. As I mentioned, these are from December 1st and arrived lightning fast; therefore, I’m woefully behind on posting. I don’t know when CFTKR’s next restock will be, but I’ll update here if I find out. My focus must be elsewhere the next few weeks but February should bring reviews for the rest of my holiday purchases and my long-awaited Sniff My Tarts custom wax. *Update*-CFTKR is opening the morning of March 9th!
Anticipating any wax or fragrance orders? Still melting holiday scents, or have you moved on, do any of these speak to you? With all the snow dumped on us this week, I’m grateful for hibernating with these cozy blends.