Like Doc Elly said, I don't recommend practicing with expensive things from the get-go either. I just mean this with regard to practicing the physical part of mixing, not about what oils go well together. Leave those expensive absolutes and EOs for a week or two until you have mixed and diluted some of the more affordable oils. Just some frugal advice.
If you are absolutely in a rush, then at least start your handling and mixing with the cheaper ingredients before you move on to the more expensive ones.Sidenote
: it would be 9 parts alcohol to 1 part fragrance oil, not 10-1. I imagine that is just a thought typo on your part, though.
And I don't think that the alcohol would get much in the way of letting you smell the fragrance. Most EdTs are at that concentration and they hardly smell of alcohol.
What concentration do you want your final product to be? Ideally, that is the concentration that you want to dilute your ingredients to. But you would not want to add pure alcohol after you have diluted it. That would throw off some of the calculations.
As for the actual dilutions...I feel like all those math classes should have resulted in better mixing measurement skills for me, but I am really not good at visualizing this stuff. I recommend using an Excel spreadsheet if you can. If you are going for a 10% EdT in your end result, I think that diluting all the ingredients to 10% would be ideal. Once you decide on an idea for a recipe, you can figure out based on the concentrations that you want.
If all your ingredients are prediluted to 10%, then the alcohol content of the mix result will always be 90% as long as you only use those oils that are at 10% dilution. So in effect, you would only have to worry about the proportions of oils/absolutes with regard to each other.
We can start a math thread if you want.
Hopefully, some of the experts can chime in with some more recommendations of what to do.
Remember that there is no shortcut to experience, and no substitute, so it's best to approach something patiently and thoughtfully.