Celebrating Spring

Four Scents Team


It’s the small things you notice first. When you leave work, it’s not as dark. Bird song is a little louder. The first glimpses of green.

So what defines the season of spring?

New life is the first phrase that comes to mind - after what feels like an age of barrenness, small shoots emerge, buds begin to appear, and we start to spot lambs in the fields.

What feelings does this invoke?

Optimism is the word of choice for us, encapsulating spring’s signs of lighter, longer days and the worldwide celebrations that both usher the season in and are enjoyed throughout.

Freshness combines the two – as bears, bats, hedgehogs and mice emerge from hibernation, and lime-green leaves start to unfurl, the sense of awakening and refreshment is echoed in our lives, as we feel more compelled to open the windows and even the most housework-shy feel an innate urge to blow away the cobwebs of winter.

The carpets of snowdrops, crocuses and daffodils send a shot of colour into the muted landscape; later vibrant bluebells complementing the zingy greens of the surrounding woodland. A season of flourishing, we too, are inspired to thrive and make the most of this most refreshing of seasons – whatever the unpredictable weather decides to throw at us.

The season is marked by many different celebrations around the world.

Spring Celebrations Rio Carnival Dancer

The Rio Carnival

The Rio Carnival in Brazil kicks off spring festivities – it is held the day before Ash Wednesday and Lent, 40 days of more sombre reflection before Easter. So as a last hurrah, this huge carnival (the biggest in the world) is a burst of colour, costumes, music and dancing. The first Rio Carnival took place in 1723, and has evolved over time, first with Portuguese influences and then notably the Africans introducing Samba music in 1917, which is what the Carnival is now world-famous for.

Spring Celebrations Holi Festival of Colours 

Holi Festival of Colours 

Holi Festival of Colours is celebrated in India. This ancient Hindu tradition is one of the most popular festivals, celebrated with joy and enthusiasm. Celebrating eternal and divine love, as well as the triumph of good over evil, Holi heralds the arrival of spring. It is held on the evening of the full moon in March (the Hindu calendar month of Phalguna), lasting for a night and a day. This outdoor festival sees the lighting of bonfires, singing and dancing, eating sweets and treats and most notably, throwing a brightly coloured powder known as gulal. It marks a fresh start with people from all backgrounds getting together, repairing broken relationships and making new friends.

Spring Celebrations Hanami 


Japan hosts Cherry Blossom Festivals, known as Hanami. This is not set to an exact date, as the trees bloom at different times throughout spring, generally the end of March to early May. Celebrations date back to over 1,000 years, where the blossoms, or Sakura, were admired by aristocracy and poems were dedicated to them. Today this is much more inclusive and less sedate, with people using the occasion to bring home-cooked or barbecued food, picnic and party under the trees, day and night. As the blossoms last no more than two weeks, cherry blossoms are symbolic of the fleetingness of beauty, depicting the fact that nothing lasts forever – the Japanese concept of mono no aware.

Spring Celebrations Mothers Day 

Mother's Day 

Mother’s Day is celebrated in March or May, depending which country you live in. This can be dated back to ancient Rome and Greece, but the clearest modern beginnings for this is the early Christian festival known as “Mothering Sunday”, usually falling on the fourth Sunday in Lent, when people return to their “mother church” for a special service. It wasn’t uncommon for children to leave home for work as young as 10, so it became an opportunity for families to get back together. This then shifted to a more secular festivity of appreciation of mothers. In America, a woman called Ann Reeves Jarvis, who helped start “Mother’s Day Work Clubs” to help teach mothers how to properly care for their children, held a small memorial service for her mother on 12th May 1907. Soon after, most places were observing this, being recognised as a national holiday in 1914, held on the second Sunday in May.

Spring Celebrations St Patricks Day 

St. Patrick's Day

St. Patrick’s Day on 17th March celebrates the death date of Ireland’s foremost patron saint. It was made an official feast day in the early 17th century, marking the arrival of Christianity in Ireland and the heritage and culture of the Irish in general. A public holiday, St. Patrick’s Day involves wearing green attire and shamrocks, parades, festivals and traditional music sessions as well as banquets and dances. Interestingly, this was often a bigger celebration among those of Irish descent in North America than in Ireland, which really took off in the late 20th century. The lifting of Lenten restrictions made this especially popular – especially the drinking of Irish whiskey, beer or cider. The custom of “wetting the shamrock” was historically popular, where a shamrock was put into the bottom of a cup which was then filled with your drink of choice, drunk as a toast to St. Patrick, Ireland, or those present. The shamrock was then thrown over the shoulder for good luck.

Spring Celebrations Songkran 


In April, Songkran is celebrated in Thailand, celebrating the beginning of the traditional Thai New Year. This national holiday lasts around three days to allow citizens to travel home. The word Songkran originated from the Sanskrit word samkranti which means to pass, transform or change place. Also known as the Water Splashing Festival, Songkran is held at the hottest time of year, with water symbolising the washing away of the old year and anticipates rainfall for the coming season. Buddha images are bathed, and monks and elders have their hands sprinkled with water by the younger generation to mark their respect. As well as dancing, parades and folk entertainment, the most famous aspect of Songkran is a full-on water fight, using buckets, water guns or balloons, not just giving relief from the intense heat, but building bonds and enriching religious intentions.

Spring Celebrations Nowruz


New Year is also celebrated in Iran, known in Persian as Nowruz. This begins on the spring equinox, usually on or around the 21st March. This is also a long-standing tradition, which has been celebrated by diverse communities since the reform of the Iranian calendar in the 11th century. Nowruz means “new day” and celebrates the rebirth of nature. Spring is represented on a ceremonial table, known as a haft-sin that contains seven items – these could include vinegar, dried fruit, sprouts, garlic, an apple, a traditional sweet pudding called samanu or a red Persian spice called Sumac. These all begin with the letter S and are related to the element of Fire, earth, Air and Water and the three life forms of Humans, Animal and Plants (hence seven items). Once these items are placed, families are invited to add extras, for instance, coloured eggs or coins – these remain in place until the celebrations are over. Other traditional customs involve reciting poetry, exchanging gifts, ritual dances and even fire and water, but these tend to differ between the peoples and countries that celebrate this.

It's fascinating to note that there are connecting themes throughout; new life, refreshment and gathering back together outdoors. As this links with the words that encapsulate the season – optimism, flourishing and freshness, we summarised spring with one word: Vitality. Oxford Dictionary sums this up as “the state of being strong and active: energy” and “the power giving continuance of life, present in all living things”.  Our Spring Vitality blend was created with this in mind, selecting botanicals that bring a sense of cheer, freshness and energy. Why not bring the outdoors in and celebrate the arrival of this joyous season by bringing this vibrant blend into your home? Our gentle, paraffin and paraben free products are family and pet friendly; the kinder way to fill your space with an invigorating aroma that invokes a sense of nurturing and togetherness.


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