I’ve always been obsessed with perfume and scents. Once I began getting migraines, I couldn’t use synthetic perfumes and I discovered natural perfumes. I started my soap business, Alegna Soap®, around the same time I started taking perfuming classes, and unfortunately, I had to make a choice. Soap or perfume? I don’t have much time for natural perfume making anymore, but I still have my supplies and enjoy opening bottles and playing around.
I’ve been asked how I learned about perfume making. My first teacher was Charna Ethier of Providence Perfume. Years ago, I was her teaching assistant when she came to do her classes in NYC. When she stopped traveling, I ventured to Rhode Island to learn. I’m pretty sure I’ve taken almost every class she ever offered. I’m very sure I have a bottle or sample of every perfume she’s ever made. Charna is a born story-teller and that carries over to her perfumes. I love how she talks about “Divine” and her friend who wears red lipstick.
Julianne Zaleta owns Alchemologie, a natural perfume company based in Brooklyn. Julianne teaches in her home and at the Brooklyn Botanical Garden. As with Charna, I’ve taken almost every class Julianne gives and I have a sample or bottle of every perfume she makes. I’m especially fond of Nethermead.
I’ve wanted to travel to Berkeley California to take a class with Mandy Aftel, but it’s not in my near future. Alegna Soap® keeps me busy. Instead, I ordered her perfume workbook and oil kit. Mandy’s workbook takes a more structured approach to natural perfume making than I like, but I enjoyed it anyway. I plan on traveling to take a class with Mandy some day.
Have you ever tried a natural perfume?
Yours in Gratitude,
Lacy Carlson says
How exciting to start a new business that you can be passionate about. I think everyone should find work in what they love to do the most. I also want to make my own perfume, I am hoping to use essential oils as fragrance oils hurt my head, any idea if that will work? Thanks so much.
Angela Carillo says
I also have issues with synthetic fragrance oils. Take a class with either Julieanne Zaleta (Alchemologie in NYC) or Charna Ethier (Providence Perfume in Rhode Island). Both of them only work with natural essential oils. Mandy Aftel is in California and does classes also, but I’ve never taken one with her. Let me know how your perfuming adventure goes!