You might know Kate Walsh from her roles on Shondaland series staples Grey’s Anatomy and Private Practice, but did you know she has her own fragrance line? Called Boyfriend, the scent has recently expanded to candles, and we chatted with the star about her home projects, embracing coziness, and how she prefers to relax.
This interview has been edited and condensed for length and clarity.
What was the inspiration for the scent?
The Boyfriend line was inspired by a breakup with an actual boyfriend, when I realized I not only missed him but I missed his scent. I thought, wouldn’t it be great if there was a fragrance that encapsulated the typically deemed ‘masculine’ woody, amber & vetiver notes with the ‘feminine’ vanilla, & night blooming jasmine that a woman could wear and embrace that Boyfriend feeling of just being super loved up, sexy and cozy.
The storytelling aspect of the candles is a fun twist. Where did that come from?
When we were relaunching the brand, we were thinking about making it more personal. One of the things that was important was for the story to be inclusive, fun, sexy and have a little humor. We came up with characters and their “stats” if you will and built stories around each of them. We pulled names from the original perfume bottle and had a great time coming up with the personality traits listed on the candle labels.
Hygge has been having a moment— besides candles, what other items do you think make for the perfect cozy experience?
When I think cozy, it’s all about warmth: a fireplace, candles, also a hot bath is a must for me so I love bath products too, particularly bath oil and rich body creams. To get cozy, I get into PJs and comfy socks and always have a wrap or throw, and usually a cat!
When you need to relax, what’s your go to spot/activity/etc?
It’s being in PJs at home with my beau, Pablo, Billy & Rosy, some red wine and (currently) bingeing on Poldark (I am obsessed).
How are you refreshing your home for 2018? Any projects or products on your list?
I am just moving into an old apartment that I’m re-doing. I’m making it super hygge or cozy, or maybe it will just end up looking like a bordello! I’m using lots of color, rich wallpapers, fabrics and lighting. It’s an homage to love and romance and sexiness with a lot of texture, warmth which of course will be enhanced with the Boyfriend candle.
I’ve always loved decorating, even when I was growing up and we didn’t have much money and moved around quite a bit. My mom always let me do whatever I wanted in my room, (which usually meant poster paints on the walls) and later when I was an up-and-coming actress/waitress. I would go to thrift stores to decorate, which I think gave me a taste for an eclectic, warm environment. So from a young age my surroundings have always been important- having a beautiful place and feeling a vibe. That’s the reason I am hoping to expand the Boyfriend line into other home products to help others create that vibe as well.
What does “home” smell like to you?
It actually smells like Boyfriend! The candle is how I first got inspired. A hoteI I used to stay at always had a particular candle burning in their lobby. As soon as you walked in, you would be consumed with with scent and it just made you feel sexy and amazing. It was a sandalwood and patchouli, and vetiver…so romantic and sexy and somehow familiar in some mysterious way. That was what I wanted for Boyfriend and I think we really accomplished that with the candle. This Boyfriend candle is particularly special just by nature of the way it burns, it literally brings out the warmth of the Boyfriend fragrance.
They say smell has the strongest ties to memories—what memories does Boyfriend bring to mind?
The scent is almost like a sly smile, a little frisky, sexy, fun, and a little naughty but warm and snuggly too. Almost like you have a little secret that no one knows about. In life we should all be able to walk around whether we’re single or married, a sister or mother, girlfriend or fiancé and just have that feeling of confidence that comes with being loved. For those that practice meditation, it’s like the Buddha smile. And people really respond to Boyfriend. I can’t tell you how many Boyfriend fans have told me stories of people stopping them on the street to ask what that fragrance is!