There wasn’t a scrooge in sight as Christmas came early at Smuggler’s Cove last night when local luxury candle designers Owen Drew launched their new Christmas collection at a special festive themed event supported by Handelsbanken.
The Birkenhead based firm toasted the launch with specially created seasonal cocktails and festive nibbles at the atmospheric Albert Dock venue which had been decked out to perfection by the talented team from the Festive Decorators. The team were joined by Gerald Dickens, Charles Dickens’ Great –Great Grandson to celebrate the launch of their flagship Christmas candle; the ‘Eighteen Forty-Three.’ This unusual fragrance has been designed to celebrate the year Dickens launched his most famous novel, A Christmas Carol. Described by Owen Drew founder Drew Cockton as a real ‘marmite’ fragrance, the candle is a world away from traditional festive scents and is filled with the atmospheric aromas of a Victorian Christmas.
Life in Dickensian Britain was grim; if you were extremely lucky, you might live to the age 45. Most people, however, died in their twenties and many children didn’t even reach their 5th birthday.
It might seem strange, therefore, that the luxury fragrance brand has chosen this era – synonymous with filth and squalor – as the inspiration for its upcoming Christmas Collection but Owen Drew has done just that.
The award-winning brand made headlines earlier this year by releasing the most expensive candles in the world, retailing at an eye watering £750.00 a piece. But their latest creation, ‘Eighteen Forty-Three’ – Inspired by the year Dickens wrote ‘A Christmas Candle’, is dividing opinion, with consumers either “loving” or “hating” the fragrance.
“The Christmas candle market is completely saturated by candles smelling of vanilla, cinnamon and pine. We wanted to create something different, something special”, creative director and founder Drew Cockton, 32, explained.
“Eighteen Forty-Three is a nod to the sights, sounds and smells of a Victorian Christmas. Roasted chestnuts and dark rum blend with the fragrance of open coal fires and spices from the then mighty British Empire”.
Gerald Dickens, who has branded the candle an “olfactory delight” and a “masterpiece”, commented that if Dickens were he alive today, there’s no doubt that his Great-Great Grandfather would LOVE this marmite candle.