Tuesday, May 31, 2011

To celebrate the Natural Perfumers Guild's 5th Anniversary - 25% off membership - until June 15th, 2011

We're going to have a fun inter-Guild blogging event tomorrow,  June 1st, to celebrate the 5th Anniversary of the Guild. 21 Guild members are participating, and we're going to share our stories of our path to natural aromatics and natural perfumery. It should be a run read, clicking from member blog to member blog and taking in the bios of the members.  I'm really looking forward to it!
The Guild has many benefits  associated with 
membership, from networking with others in the community to discounts on raw materials, educational programs, group buys and much more. Next week we're having an Online Marketing chat with the perfumers, and it will be archived and made available to all Guild members.  I'll cover public relations, press releases, blogs and branding, and Larry Marsala will speak on google rankings, meta tags, search engine optimization and techie stuff.

A 25% discount on the yearly membership fee will be given to new members who join  between May 31 and June 15, and use the coupon code F035CE8C9A .
UPDATE: I heard from several new member applicants that the "continue" button isn't working.  There is a call into the webmistress, and hopefully, we'll have this fixed tonight.  In the meantime, feel free to contact me if you wish to have me process your application.



PS: Check back tomorrow for the Guild blogging event to celebrate our 5th!

Sunday, May 29, 2011

Ask the Perfumer - Sunday, May 29, 2011 - until 10 PM EST

I wish some folks would ask me about natural isolates.  What I have to say, with my limited, but growing knowledge, might surprise you.  I'll be here, on and off, throughout the day.

Thursday, May 26, 2011

21 Guild members will take part in a blogging event on June 1st, 2011 to celebrate the fifth anniversary of the Guild

21 Guild members are set to blog on June 1st, the fifth anniversary of the Natural Perfumers Guild. It's going to be a fun, intimate event to let us get to know each other better, and you're all invited in for a peek. The theme is fun and the logo is bubbly, like a fizzy, diffusive top note!

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

So Simple, So Elegant- Why Didn't Anybody Think of This Before? Banish the Bain Marie! Plus, a giveaway for helping name this new process.

Sometimes students say the darnedest things, and sometimes those gems turn your head around when you think about the process of making thick, pasty aromatics pourable.

Michael Singels, a student from California, and a longtime member of the Yahoo Natural Perfumery group I host, posted about a new, simple process in the student chat group for my perfumery course that literally made my mouth drop open.  I have read every post on the NP group for almost nine years, and I've been on many other forums, and I've never seen this.

Ready for this?  What to do instead of using a bain marie process to warm up thick aromatics so they can become liquid and mobile for use, or transfer from one bottle to another? First, for those who don't know what a bain marie is, it's a water bath. It can be as simple as heating some water in a cup and placing the bottle with the thick stuff in it, or as complex as a true "double boiler" type of set up for a large bottle or container.  The idea is to immerse the (closed) bottle up to about the neck until the aromatic is fluid, then remove it and pour it as needed.  Problem? If you heat the water too much, the bottle may burst.  Never happened to me, but I have heard of it. Second, it's messy, with water dripping - hot water - plus, some may get into the receptacle you're pouring into if you're not careful.  Not good. But the absolute worst problem is that the water usually destroys the label of the bottle.

So what did Michael devise?

He heated rice, put the rice in a mug, inserted the bottle into the hot rice. Simple. Elegant. Clean.

Here's Michael's description in detail:
I basically just cooked the rice at low temp in the oven to dry it out, maybe 200F for about 20-30 minutes.  I tried microwaving it once before heating in the oven and it clumped together a bit because of some of the moisture left in the rice.  
After it had been heated in the oven, I just popped it in a mug and heat it for a minute on normal setting for the microwave, stir it up, and set the bottle or jar in it until it is gently heated and more fluid.  If the rice isn't warm enough after a minute, I will stir and pop back in the microwave for another 30 seconds.  I haven't had to dry it in the oven again, the one time was enough.
Also worth noting, it will burn if you cook it in the microwave too long!  

I got the idea from the old pillows filled with rice that you heat to apply to back, joints, etc.  There may be a better material than rice to use, but it is what I could think of that I had on hand.
OK, I think we need to come up with a name for this new method.  Bain michael? That suggests bath.  Well, it's a "dry" bath. I'm stumped.  Can somebody help by suggesting a name for this? Leave your comments before May 27 noon and you'll be in a random draw for a mini of one of my perfumes, your choice. 
And the winner is, chosen by random.org is ruhkewda who suggested "Mike's Rice Device", LOL.  I love it. Of course, with the randomness of human nature, the French will use their choice, there's the nod to Maria the Jewess, and just a lot of fun stuff in the mix.  I hope everyone had a good time, and Ruh, you have to post here to claim it.  If it isn't claimed by Sunday, it'll go to somebody else.  But Mike's Rice Device will be enshrined as the first, most random name of all for the discovery ;-)

Sunday, May 22, 2011

Sunday, May 15, 2011

Ask the Perfumer - Sunday, May 15, 2011 - until 10 PM EST

Half way through May, and oh my, so much to do!  Still, I love to make time to answer your questions about perfumery.  I'll be here until 10 PM tonight, so ask away.

Sunday, May 08, 2011

Ask the Perfumer - Sunday, May 8, 2011 - until 10 PM EST

Happy Mother's Day to all the woman in the world, who, in some way, give motherly love to others.  It's in our nature, we are here to give comfort and guidance.  Each Sunday, my motherly ways come in play with this forum.  So, ask mama! ;-)

ETA: The link to a CaFleureBon article on scented memories of our mothers, including one on my mother.  I just got back from visiting her at the nursing home, she's doing fine.

Sunday, May 01, 2011

Ask the Perfumer - Sunday, May 1, 2011 - until 10 PM EST

I got a late start today because I had to get the lilac blog posted.  May certainly is the time for lilac thoughts, and lily of the valley, too, eh?  Several bloggers are taking part in a blogging event for Natural Perfumers Guild member Dawn Spencer Hurwitz's new perfumes Muguet de Mai and Muguet Cologne (yes, two!) that are botanical accords of the lily of the valley flower, only available in synthetic form prior to this.  You can leap from blog to blog starting at Cafleurebon.

Lilac Alchemy and the Cooperative International Effort

Disclaimer:  It has come to my attention that Douglas Stewart of Scentsual Antiquities has a link to this blog post, perhaps implying that he is endorsed by me.  This is not the case, and I have no affiliation with him, and would wish he would take the link down, as it is deceptive.

I have taken down the entire post because the two advising me were revealed to not have the real information or research validated.  This happens sometimes, and I regret any false data that was stated.