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There’s something comforting about the smell of a bookstore, the nostalgic memory of opening a novel and embracing the scent that comes with the pages before engulfing yourself in the story.
Now Powell’s City of Books, the popular Oregon-based bookstore, has released a unisex fragrance, named “Powell’s by Powell’s,” that puts that exact scent in a bottle.
With hints of violet, wood and biblichor, the $24.99 perfume aims to replicate the smell of old paper that “creates an atmosphere ripe with mood and possibility, invoking a labyrinth of books; secret libraries; ancient scrolls; and cognac swilled by philosopher-kings,” according to the product description on Powell’s website.
Since launching the product for pre-order on Sunday, Powell’s has already received 1,225 orders. The response has been “so overwhelmingly positive” the bookstore is placing a second order with their supplier, Powell’s spokeswoman Emily Brodowicz told CNN.
Powell’s was inspired to capture the scent of books to give bibliophiles, who missed bookstores after they temporarily closed due to the coronavirus, something comforting to remember.
“Powell’s by Powell’s is a wonderful reminder of one of the many things bibliophiles love about independent bookstores like Powell’s, especially at a time when local and independent retailers are taking a sustained hit from Amazon and other giant online retailers,” store owner Emily Powell said in a statement.
“Our customers love the serendipity of discovery while browsing our vast collections, the recommendations of our knowledgeable and enthusiastic staff members, our support for writers and creative expression, and of course, the distinctive scent of new and used books,” Powell said. “In these strange and stressful times, Powell’s by Powell’s is the perfect gift to spark positive memories for booklovers everywhere.”
The fragrance comes in a 1-ounce bottle set inside a faux book that can be put on display or on a shelf nestled among other books. The scent, which is being sold in limited quantities, is available online and in-store at Powell’s Burnside, Cedar Hills and Hawthorne locations.