There are a lot of things we imagine Martha Stewart’s homes smells like. Fresh-baked cookies. Expansive, cedar-lined closets. Dozens of fresh-cut flowers in every room. But now we know for sure what they smell like, and it was worth the wait to find out.
“Maine is in a beautiful woodland on the top of the mountains, on the sea and the woods. So I would say that that really is seaside, woodland and all those scents come wafting through the house at all times of the year. Just the beautiful natural scent,” she tells PeopleStyle. “And my farm is grass. Grass and flowers. I live on an 150 acre farm, it’s all grass and flowers and it changes all the times. It’s extremely natural.”
To that list, she can add a new collection of home fragrances she just launched at Macy’s, with scents inspired by her gardens that include “Cool Cucumber Water,” “Fresh Lemon Basil” and “Mission Fig” and come in lotions, candles, diffusers, soaps and more. She expanded her “hobby” of developing beautiful scents by bringing in perfumers from Grasse, France, to visit her properties and develop fragrances that are “as natural as possible, ” she said. “I think bringing in the outdoors is sometimes very nice, but you don’t want it to be very overpowering. These are mild, gentle, natural — a combination of all my favorite things.”
She tested them all herself, and said her personal favorite — as well as the one that got her the most compliments — is the Calamondin orange, a special varietal she had brought up from Southern Florida (and which she “actually just ate this morning!”). She counts the “freshness of the orange and the freshness of the cucumber” among her three favorite scents, the third being the fragrance she’s worn for more than 50 years.
“I’ve worn my favorite perfume, Fracas, since I was 19 years old. It’s a combination of hydrangea and tuberose and it’s a most beautiful scent,” she says. “I only wear that, morning, noon and night.” (A least favorite smell? “Burned hamburgers, greasy potatoes — ugh, horrible!”)
If you ever happen to have Stewart coming to your house for brunch, be advised: “I don’t like stinky homes,” she says. That means nix the overpowering laundry detergents, don’t spray too much room spray in one place, and above all, don’t mix too much of a good thing. “Stick to one scent at a time,” she advises. “We wouldn’t want it to be the holidays and have this beautiful Winter Evergreen in one room and then Fig in another; you’re going to confuse people and yourself.” And if all else fails and you need to get the place smelling great, quickly? “Bake an apple!”
Like most of us, Stewart has plenty of scent memories — a “freshly lotioned baby” reminds her of love, while gardens remind her of happiness — but there’s one smell she associates with her pal and dinner party co-host, Snoop Dogg, that may surprise you. “He’s like the cleanest human being!” she says. “He’s impeccably groomed. There’s no scent that I can associate with him other than clean.”
Pick up Stewart’s fragrances at Macy’s now (and hope one of them comes with an invite to her next dinner party with Snoop) and tell us: What’s your favorite scent? Do you agree with her home philosophy?