Scenting Television's Mothers

09th May, 2015

Mother’s Day is a time to show the one who sired you how much you love and respect her. Mums come in all shapes and sizes, and I thought I’d have a go at scenting a few of my favourites from the world of television. 

They’re not all model parents, but they have a special place in my heart. 

Morticia Addams – The Addams Family

Surely one of the greatest TV mothers of all time? 

Devoted to her children and their happiness, best friends with her husband, timelessly stylish and fully in touch with her sexuality. We can all learn a thing or two from Morticia. Anyone whose children have that much self-confidence is doing something right. 

I see Morticia wearing Nevermore from Frapin – an incredibly dark, boozy rose with flecks of blood. A no-nonsense Gothic powerhouse for a woman who knows what it’s about.


Lucille Bluth – Arrested Development

Ah, Lucille. A real matriarch. Few have been able to judge so harshly using only a facial expression. 

Lucille is a sublime mix of ruthlessness, snobbery and self-obsession with the ability to become giddily excited at something as simple as a (questionably) effective disguise. 

A terrible mother in so many ways – at once cold, distant and overbearing (quite a feat, really) but you can’t help but admire her power and confidence. 

She is also rarely spotted without a martini in hand and, for that reason, she would have to wear Kilian’s Vodka on the rocks. (This is a Russia exclusive, but it manages to capture the smell of ice-cold vodka really well.)


Aunt Polly – Peaky Blinders

Aunt Pol is one hell of a woman – handy with her fists, good with a gun, never without a cigarette and still able to look excellent in her fineries when the occasion calls: she’s an all-rounder. 

Tobacco Rose from Papillon Artisan Perfumes seems to perfectly encompass her strength in femininity. A huge, blood red rose with a rich earthiness and a whole load of animalic castoreum. Magnificent. 


Cersei – Game of Thrones

Let’s be honest, we all know who is (or was) really in charge in King’s Landing. The Queen Regent is brilliantly threatening, seductive and poised. Never off her guard or without a glass of wine in her hand. 

Still, underneath the fierce, incestuous grabs for power there lies a strong devotion to her son and (most of) her family. 

Etat Libre d’Orange’s Divin Enfant has the right balance of outward beauty and inner darkness – and that orange blossom would be DIVINE in the Mediterranean air of King’s Landing.


Rachel Green – Friends

I have endless time for Rachel Green. She gave up her privileged life in favour of good friends and hard work. And she had to put up with Ross Gellar who, let’s face it, was mostly awful. 

Throughout the show she still maintained her all-American preppiness, scoring a job at Ralph Lauren (Outfitter to the WASPs)

Safari by Ralph Lauren is very much in line with her rich girl preppy side, but perhaps with a hint of her adventurousness. The name, at least, may appeal to her better nature. 


Leslie Knope – Parks and Recreation

Nobody has ever made having it all look so much fun. Leslie Knope is a fuzzy ball of sunshine – always full of energy, bursting with affection for her friends and family with an  uncanny ability to create new compliments. 

Like the other mother’s on this list, however, she is not one to cross and will defend those close to her to the ends of the earth. I can only give her Sunshine by Demeter Fragrance Library, because that is what she is. And she is not afraid to admit it. 

And there you have it – my perfume picks for a few of my favourite fictional mums. Who would you scent? Did I get any wrong?


And don’t forget to treat the matriarchs in your life this Sunday! 

About the author: Callum Langston-Bolt

Callum Langston-Bolt worked for several years in fragrance after accidentally landing a job in a perfume shop while studying English. From the West Country he has been settled in London for seven years. His interests include fragrance, film, wine and dogs. He helps run the monthly fragrance meet-up Perfume Lovers London with Odette Toilette and Laurin Taylor.



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      • lapel roll | 9th May 2015 17:11

        According to QI the 'mother' in mothering Sunday refers to "Mother Church", not mothers in general. However, you can't give a bottle of scent to a building.

      • Grant | 9th May 2015 18:21

        Yes that is correct. Though Mothering Sunday is in March. "Mother's Day" is a secular holiday invented in the US in the early 19th century, which other countries adopted or merged in with existing traditional celebrations. From wikipedia (I agree this isn't the always the best of sources, though it is the easiest..):

        "The celebration of Mother's Day began in the United States in the early 20th century; it is not related to the many celebrations of mothers and motherhood that have occurred throughout the world over thousands of years, such as the Greek cult to Cybele, the Roman festival of Hilaria, or the Christian Mothering Sunday celebration (originally a celebration of the mother church, not motherhood). Despite this, in some countries Mother's Day has become synonymous with these older traditions"

      • furrypine | 10th May 2015 11:28

        Edina Monsoon from AbFab.

        Something glitzy and overpowering, I'm thinking vintage Poison by Dior. Or something faddish that she was told is the new thing, like a bottle of unfiltered bog water from the foothills of Himalaya. It's authentic, sweetie!

      • Guest 3 | 13th May 2015 04:08

        The one "who sired me" was my father, not my mother.

      • CallumBolt (article author) | 20th May 2015 17:17

        Down with gender-norms. Down with the patriarchy.

        But yes, you're quite right.