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Monday, April 25, 2011

Pacifica French Lilac and a prize draw!

By Beth

Pacifica Perfume was not a fragrance line that I've ever paid to much attention to until the other day when my husband and I were shopping at our local Whole Foods in University Heights. Spring has clearly begun here in Cleveland, with daffodils and bluebells blooming everywhere and this is the time of year that I find myself craving single floral scents probably because that's what's constantly in the air! So I stopped by the pretty display of Pacifica products and what caught my eye immediately was a pretty little flacon of French lilac perfume.

I adore lilacs, probably because they are such a romantic old fashioned flower and they remind me of my mother who was so very fond of them because of their blowsy, fragrantly happy natures! She had a beautiful crystal vase that had been her mothers and is now mine that was cut crystal, narrow at the bottom and tall but wide on top just like a parasol. Lilacs and old fashioned snowballs and roses are just beautiful arranged in this vase and for me seeing her create her beautiful bouquets are very personal childhood memories that I treasure.

My new house came with many wonderful foundation plantings including a lovely magnolia that’s about to spring into blossom at any second but my absolute favorite is the huge lilac that is getting ready to bloom outside of my second floor bedroom window! It’s an tenacious old bush with a lot of personality. I can’t wait to throw open my windows the first day that it blooms and let it fill the house with it’s sweet scent! I wasn’t moved in here last year for that so I don’t even know what color it is and I’m so excited!

So you can imagine that upon seeing the little tester of perfume quietly marked “French Lilac” I was immediately overcome with some of those memories and very curious. I sprayed myself with a bit of it and I found it to be absolutely lovely, with just the right touch of heliotrope and nectarine, ylang ylang and oakmoss , enough to convey the memory of such a sweet and special flower. What I wasn't prepared for though was my husbands response. He absolutely loved it and bought it for me on the spot. He said that it was literally one of the most romantic fragrances that he'd ever smelled and I could tell that it brought back memories of his own of being a child on his grandparents farms way out in Medina county where the lilac bushes practically grow like weeds because they have so much room and so many old front porches to ramble around. Whatever the reason, I have been wearing it ever since!

It's a green enough fragrance to be a little bit cool if necessary, but Pacifica's French Lilac has a surprisingly passionate heart. I’m amazed that it’s such a gorgeous little perfume because it’s also one of the most reasonably priced ones that I wear, checking in at about 20 dollars a bottle. Like all of their other fragrances, it comes in a solid perfume which is very nice, as well candles, body butter and a finely milled soap and I encourage you to splurge and try them all. French Lilac is a very sexy fragrance to enjoy this spring and so far I've worn it with cotton, lace and velvet. It’s lovely as a room spray and for fun why don’t you try spraying a bit of it between your sheets for your next romantic evening! I’ve got a bottle to give away just in time for mother’s day and I’d love to know some of your most wonderful lilac soaked memories! Please leave me one in your comments and I’ll enter you in the drawing!

And to start off your day just right, here’s a wonderful little bit of Rachmaninoff!

Delightfully you can find Pacifica Perfumes at almost any Whole Foods location or at

Photo of lilacs courtesy of

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Blogger tmp00 said...

I was just talking about lilac with the kids at ScentBar and how we don't have it here and how much it's part of our childhood memories (since like almost everyone we aren't from here)

I'll have to seek this out at Whole Foods!

12:16 AM EDT  
Anonymous Jiyin said...

I grew up in LA, and as Tom notes, there isn't much lilac in these parts. So my first memory of lilac is very recent -- a friend of mine mentioned how much she loved lilac, and sought out a perfume that would mimic the scent of the lilac in her grandmother's garden. That got me curious. I went to the Descanso Gardens, where they have a special lilac garden, and oh! it turns out that they smell wonderful! My friend never found her smell-alike perfume, but perhaps the Pacifica one will be it.

Please enter me in the draw, and thank you!

12:54 AM EDT  
Blogger The Gastronomic Goddess said...

I was never very good at hide and seek games at my childhood neighbors' house simply because of the row of fragrant lilac bushes that bordered one side of their property. When all of the other kids found elusive hiding spots, I always tried to "hide" right around the lilac bushes so I could inhale to my heart's content and marvel at their lacy and frilly nature. Needless to say I always ended up being found very soon, but it was always worth it. :-)
Please enter me in the draw and thanks so much for the Pacifica perfume tip!

1:33 AM EDT  
Blogger Madelyn E said...

Dear Beth, Thank you for sharing the wonderful memory of your mother's lilacs . I will look forward to checking the Lilac Pacifica scent you referenced.
I love lilacs . the gorgeous distinct 'purple hue" dainty sweet little buds and mostof all that cool heady familiar lilac scent. When I lived in Syracuse the presence of lilac blooms was a welcome sight following a long winter . I planted purple, pink and white colored lilac bushes in my garden. What joy that was .
I would love to be entered in the drawer !

2:17 AM EDT  
Anonymous Natalia said...

Lilac... the smell of spring in town where i grew up. The lilac bushed started blooming all together of them and the air was filled with their strong and unmistakable aroma. We had to look for 5-petal flowers (as opposed to regular 4), once you find one on the branch you snip it off, make a wish and eat it.. it's supposed to come true :)

3:39 AM EDT  
Blogger Isa said...

As I live in a Mediterranean city the lilacs are a little hard to see, but when I go on a trip to the countryside I take photos of them. They are so beautiful!

My boyfriends's mother loves picking flowers and she usually brings me some for my house. Two weeks ago she gave me a lot of lilacs which smelt wonderfully.

I'd love to try the Pacifica perfume. I'm sure my boyfriend would love it too. Thanks!

4:44 AM EDT  
Blogger rosarita said...

I adore lilacs and my mother would do the same as yours and cut huge bunches to bring indoors and scent the house. My old house had a white, light purple and my favorite, dark purple, bushes in the yard. This scent sounds wonderful! Thanks for sharing your memories.

5:19 AM EDT  
Blogger cate said...

Thank you - a beautiful piece to read - evocative and soothing and so perfectly accompanied by the music and beautiful images. It has lifted out of my apathy and created a deep craving for this wonderful fragrance.

5:46 AM EDT  
Blogger Peacecat said...

Thanks for reviewing the Pacifica fragrance. I have a coupon for their website, but wasn't sure what their stuff was like. This one sounds very nice. I adore the scent of lilacs. My husband loves the smell too and keeps talking about getting a lilac bush or two for the yard.

7:20 AM EDT  
Blogger Tucasam said...

Lilac is the reward for sticking it out all winter in the northeast. I have enjoyed it since childhood. I used to pile the clusters of my favorite bush, the darkest purple I could find, and bury my face in them for a smellcation. It lasts longer than rose and the smell is incomparable. I have been searching for a lilac perfume that smells good as a perfume...not like a car freshener, drawer liner etc. Do not have whole foods here yet. Please consider this entry.

9:15 AM EDT  
Blogger StyleSpy said...

I wore Sha one day last week, from what I think may be the last bottle on the planet, and was wondering what I was going to do when it's empty. So thanks for this. I was also thinking that there aren't really very many lilac fragrances out there and wondering why that was.

9:25 AM EDT  
Anonymous ashron said...

Sounds lovely! I dont think of myself as a floral person and then suddenly Ill be blown away by a perfume-like Un Lys for instance. I feel similarly towards lilac. Would love to try this. Thanks!

10:09 AM EDT  
Anonymous Marie said...

I love lilacs because where I'm at they bloom around my mother's birthday on May 30th. My mother once told me that her mother had a bit of a strained relationship with lilacs because when my mother was born many of the guests that came to my grand parents' home to ccngratulate them on the birth of their daughter brought bouquets of lilacs, and the scent of the flowers became really strong in the heat of that summer day in their small home. So, lilacs remind me of my mother. I'm not really a spring or summer person, but the smell of blooming lilacs has to be my favorite thing about this time of year.

10:18 AM EDT  
Blogger Prettywitty504 said...

We just went to look at a house for sale yesterday, and my significant other remarked that the selling point for him was the big lilac bush along the driveway. I have a small bouquet of them next to the bed right now! I would love to try the fragrance, thank you.

10:30 AM EDT  
Blogger Karen M said...

Lilacs always remind me of spring and my childhood. We had a large lilac bush in my backyard when I was growing up, large enough to be practically a tree to the young me - I used to climb in it. As an adult, I'm now lucky enough to have one in my own backyard, and I'm patiently waiting for it to bloom, along with my wisteria, and my cherry and apple trees.

10:49 AM EDT  
Blogger JoAnne Bassett said...

I love lilacs...growing up there was a giant bush of them near the house. They were the lavender colored ones and extremely fragrant. We would bring huge bouquets into the house and the scent would waft into the windows. A very fond memory indeed.

There is a lilac farm 50 miles from Los Angeles, CA. Check it out! Here is the link.

10:59 AM EDT  
Anonymous london said...

Lilac is my mother's favourite and always reminds me of her. I'd love to be entered in the draw. Thank you

11:12 AM EDT  
Anonymous Aparatchick said...

Tucasam, it's the reward for making it through months of rainy winter in the Pacific Northwest!

I miss the wonderful smell of lilacs, the shrubs that everyone seemed to have in their yard when I was a child, and the gorgeous purple flowers (though I like the white, too).

Any of you who live in Washington or near Portland, Oregon are lucky to be near the Hulda Klager Lilac Gardens - not to be missed if you love lilacs!

11:47 AM EDT  
Blogger Fernando said...

Some years ago, a huge ice storm killed many of the trees in our back yard, and together with our neighbor we replaced them with a row of lilacs. In Maine, they bloom in May, and I've always associated their smell with the end of classes, graduation, and the promise of summer.

11:57 AM EDT  
Blogger Nina Zolotow said...

Scented lilacs are very rare in Northern California. I used to assume they couldn't grow here. But miraculously my next door neighbor has a large bush of purple lilacs in his back yard, and every spring (around Easter), he trims it back. And he always remembers--bless him--how much I love them, so he always presents me with a beautiful bouquet of gorgeous lilacs to scent my house. I put them in a vase and move the vase from room to room as I go about my daily activities.

12:28 PM EDT  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Thank you for the great review of one of my own personal favorite scents! To me, Lilac is the quintessential scent of Spring.
Brook Harvey-Taylor
Pacifica Founder

12:42 PM EDT  
Blogger kathleen said...

I love lilacs. I was out jogging, and stopped by my neighbor's lilac shrub, to have a whiff. A couple of hours later, I found her on my doorstep, with a big bouquet. She said, I saw you stop for a sniff, and thought you might like some. My house, smelled beautiful, for days.

1:10 PM EDT  
Anonymous Thalia said...

Living in Los Angeles, I've always thought of lilac as one of those exotic East Coast/New England things, like blue jays (we have scrub jays), sledding, and maple trees turning in the fall.

I'd love to enter the draw!

1:19 PM EDT  
Blogger woodgirl said...

I didn't grow up around lilacs, and I don't think I've ever smelled the real thing, but I love some of Pacifica's other perfumes. Please enter me in the draw!

1:42 PM EDT  
Anonymous hotlanta linda said...

Lilacs were few where I was in Chicago as a kid, but being near some at a botanical garden was heaven!!

1:57 PM EDT  
Blogger Laurie Brown said...

I love lilacs, and the lilac season never lasts long enough for me. I've gone to the extreme of seeking out early and late blooming varieties so I can have the scent as long as possible!

2:17 PM EDT  
Blogger odonata9 said...

Love lilacs, but don't have a specific memory of them. Living in San Diego now, I do miss them this time of year. And Pacifica is a great line - I have Lotus Garden (which is very similar to Un Jardin sur le Nil, and need to buy Tibetan Mountain Temple (straightforward incense), Indian Coconut Nectar and Brazilian Mango Grapefruit. Most Sephoras have them as well.

2:57 PM EDT  
Blogger Beth Schreibman Gehring said...

I just love you guys...I knew that there had to be other lilac fans out there besides me! This is really a wonderful little perfume ,very direct and sweet. Thanks so much for sharing your lilac scented memories...they're all so truly beautiful!

3:59 PM EDT  
Blogger lyrical said...

If anyone would love to grow lilac but doesn't think they have the room, there's a variant called Dwarf Korean Lilac which is just starting to bud in my garden right now. Beautifully scented!

Please enter me in the draw.

4:28 PM EDT  
Blogger AbsintheDragonfly said...

Lilac perfume AND Rachmaninoff!!!

Can I please pretty please be entered?!?

I adore lilacs, they remind me of my grandparents homestead, where they had heirloom lilacs in 4 colors.


4:28 PM EDT  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

she does a really nice job with a lot of these... i have the rollerball in this... but have you tried her new california star jasmine? it's a sunny, happy scent for those who love jasmine! not super-duper indolic, but lovely just the same.

lilac draws me back to ny state when i was a kid = we had a lovely spray of it in the driveway. i love lilac and wisteria.


4:36 PM EDT  
Blogger Balutakat said...

When I was desperately poor and living in Detroit, lilacs blooming in the yards of abandoned houses were my go-to flower. I'd put them in Mason jars around my apartment and the scent became the smell of hope for me - the smell of things which bravely blossom in the saddest places. Thanks for the memory boost! Katherine B.

4:40 PM EDT  
Blogger lovethescents said...

I love lilacs on my tree and on my person! What a wonderful way to welcome far my favorites are En Passant and Highland Lilac of Rochester.

Please enter me the draw :-)

5:20 PM EDT  
Blogger Ducks said...

My mother always told stories about the boy she went to Prom with -- her first love, who brought her an enormous bouquet of white lilacs when he came to pick her up for their big date. I don't know enough about him -- just that he passed on somehow and that she ended up with my dad a year or two later. But I've always thought lilacs must be the most romantic of flowers. Sadly, the real thing sets off my partner's hay fever, hee hee!

5:40 PM EDT  
Blogger Alice said...

I don't remember Lilacs from my childhood in East Texas. There were lots of flowers, but no Lilacs. I would love to try the Pacifica French Lilac; please enter me in the draw!

7:37 PM EDT  
Anonymous zeram1 said...

I remember the patch just outside of my house that my mother would tend to her lilacs and roses. Please enter me in the draw as well.

8:21 PM EDT  
Anonymous Tiara said...

When our village underwent a makeover, the developer planted Miss Kim lilac bushes on the corner. I loved passing by those on the way to school to pick up my children and resisted the urge to cut some off to take home!

9:16 PM EDT  
Blogger zboudreaux said...

I've been very curious about this brand. The packaging aesthetic and their message all make it seem like 100% natural perfume but... is it? I know lilac is very difficult to extract. Does anyone have more information? I'd love to sample this regardless. thanks for the draw!

9:47 PM EDT  
Blogger Undina said...

I do not have any specific memories of lilacs (other than the one mentioned already by somebody else in the thread - namely, looking for a 5-petal flower, making a wish and eating it) but I love these flowers and yesterday in Whole Foods I tried the perfume you reviewed (before reading this post) and unexpectedly liked it. It lasts on my skin for at least 6 hours.

10:07 PM EDT  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Lilacs are so beautiful; there are some blooming right now on my block, and whenever I pass by, I stop to drink in that sweet, glorious aroma.

I would love to try the Pacifica scent! :)

11:56 PM EDT  
Blogger a.k.a. Warum said...

I adore lilac. Where I grew up it blooms in the beginning of May, and my Granddad who was born in the beginning of May too always had fresh lilac in the house.

In the Spring I walked to the University and on my way there was a wall of lilac of four different colors -- light lilac, dark purple, white and dark wine color. I would always stop and get my head into the bush to inhale the smell.

My boyfriend got me lilacs in Spring as well.

I remember liking Pacifica Lilac very much when I tried it some time ago.

12:07 AM EDT  
Anonymous L said...

We used to play hide and seek in my grandmother's lilac bushes. Love that smell! Thanks for hosting another draw!

2:09 AM EDT  
Blogger Proximity said...

After it rained, my brother and I used to shake the water from the lilac bush's flowers into our mouths. It smelled so good, we thought it must taste just as good. It smelled so good, it fooled us into thinking we could taste the smell of lilac. We kept this up until eventually I got a bug in my mouth .... I guess we weren't thinking about possibilities like that.

8:35 AM EDT  
Blogger Dink said...

I live in Medina and so I will have to go out "to the country" to search for these lilacs you mentioned. Love the smell of lilacs and need to find a place to plant one in our yard. Such a beautiful, old-fashioned smell. I will be looking for this at Whole Foods, too. Thanks for the recommendation.

10:13 AM EDT  
Blogger ScentScelf said...

I've quietly enjoyed the Pacific Mountain Lilac for a while...and the Tibet Mountain Temple, which works as a lightly spiced/incensed vanilla on me. I love that they come in solids which actually function pretty well, too.

I was entertained and fascinated by your husband's response. I have seen that sort of reaction in my spouse once (Magie Noire), and love hearing about it with other couples. As for lilacs...such potent ties to childhood, and generations before...I love visiting the layers of history in a lilac in bloom every single year.

11:19 AM EDT  
Blogger Nancy said...

Count me in the draw. Thank you.
I grew up back east and loved the lilacs in the spring time especially their heady aroma in the early morning. And to think I can find a lovely lilac at Whole Foods! Worth a trip down town.

11:37 AM EDT  
Anonymous maggiecat said...

I grew up in Illinois, just outside of Chicago, and remember multiple, lovely lilac bushes in our backyard. My mother was talking about their scent, reently, saying she missed it, so I bough her a candle for Christmas - I bet she might like this perfume as well! (Thanks for the Rachmaninoff!)

1:40 PM EDT  
Blogger Lexi said...

Lilacs! Lilacs!

Lilacs shout the coming of Spring when I was in the midwest growing up. I loved as the scent of purple flooded the backyard. Heady. Green. Beautiful! We would gather than up in bouquets for the kitchen tables.

12:45 PM EDT  
Anonymous Felicia said...

Stealing lilacs from the neighbors' lilac tree in the back lane at night! As an adult, too. For shame, I know...

2:17 AM EDT  
Anonymous Lys said...

Lilac (lillà in my language) is one of my favorite flowers, and for sure it's the most delicate and tender I know together with the violet.
Looking at those graceful blossoms, smelling their sweet scent, I'm carried back to some beautiful memories from my childhood, when I used to go for a walk with my grandma during the spring afternoons: she showed me many plants and flowers, and I clearly remember those lilacs along the way, spreading their joyful fragrance all around.
Lilac, to me, will always be associated to a slight feminine elegance..there's something pure and magical in those little and waxy blossoms, so I'm not surprised that fairies use to hide among lilacs foliage, as tells a legend..
I think there are too few lilac perfumes around, so I'd be really glad to try French Lilac from Pacifica: the heliotrope and nectarine accord sounds wonderful and unique.
Thank you for the opportunity :)

4:36 PM EDT  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Where I used to work, I would tak after-lunch walks through town. I'd pass by a full hedge made of lilac bushes. When they were in full bloom, the fragrance was incredible! It's always been one of my favorite notes. I'd love to be entered in the drawing!

10:41 AM EDT  
Anonymous tika maxx said...

My mother had a huge pinkish-purple lilac bush, oh the smell reminds me of warm spring/summer days when I was a child. Feeling safe and warm and the world was only as big as my backyard, which was big enough!

7:42 PM EDT  
Blogger Lindy Lee said...

Growing up in Chicago, I remember the two beautiful large lilac bushes we had in our backyard and inhaling that gorgeous scent every spring and summer. To this day, lilacs are this baby-boomer's favorite flower. The mention of them takes me back to a time when we didn't have a care in the world.

11:59 AM EDT  
Blogger Lindy Lee said...

Growing up in Chicago, I remember the two large, beautiful lilac bushes we had in our backyard and inhaling that gorgeous scent every spring and summer. The mention of them, nostagically takes me back to a time when all you did as a child was play, without a care in the world. To this day, lilacs are THIS baby-boomer's favorite flower.

12:07 PM EDT  
Anonymous ENZO from TYO said...

I just brouht this back from Honolulu.
This reminds me of Hawaii!

9:02 PM EDT  

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