I had the good fortune of living in Paris for four months years ago when the dollar was very, very strong. I read about the Diptyque boutique on the end of Boulevard St-Germain long before I walked that street and made it a point to visit it within days of my arrival. What I found was a store and an oasis. Ask to smell the candles and they will be tapped onto a velvet cushion allowing you to breathe in the fragrance from the scent that lingers in the glass jar. Once you make your selection it is carefully wrapped in white paper and a black satin ribbon. So civilied! I returned from Paris with two dozen candles wrapped carefully with sweaters in my suitcase. At twenty dollars a pop they were a bargain. Today Diptique can be found at Le Bon Marché in Paris and many other department stores nationwide. In 2008, they retail for fifty dollars. These days (and at these prices) I keep only one candle in my home - Pomander - a blend of orange peels, clove and cinnamon. The scent permeates my home and it is beautiful. The Diptique story begain in the sixties when two artistic friends opened a furnishings and fabric store that featured among others, a little known designer called Laura Ashley. It evolved into a fragrance boutique and an institution that is documented in the new book Diptyque. This beautifully illustrated book traces back the history of Diptyque and its founders, giving an elaborate reconstruction of one of the most remarkable cult brands in perfumery.