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Thread: Newbie Intro

  1. #1

    Default Newbie Intro

    Hi, I'm Melanie. Been around here for a few months, actually, reading and learning from everyone, while also trying to sort-of-methodically increase my repertoire of fragrance experiences. I'm also building a collection of natural fragrance materials and am learning about them and working my way through experiencing the notes singly as much as is practical. This will all take many years, of course.

    I'm 32 and I have a small store and a somewhat larger website where I've been making and selling natural soaps and simple skincare basics for people with dry or sensitive skin. I left my job with the Forest Service last fall and have made the "soap hobby" a full-time thing since then.

    I'm an eclectic person, always have been, but I've been fascinated with herbs and plants for many years now. Where most people were looking for medicinal uses, I was always more into scent and culinary use, so I've been sort of on my own for a long time. It's great to finally have some places where people who revel in their sense of smell can relate! Most of my family has allergies, so I've spent the past many years sneaking around with my love of perfume and fragrant plants. Now that I have my own shop, I have a "safe place" to explore and revel in scent without having to listen to my husband cough and wheeze and grumble about it.

    Of course as a soaper/skincare product maker I do have a few years experience with formulating fragrance for my products. I don't use "bottled" fragrance for anything I have, everything is a blend of various elements put together by me to match my internal vision. But there is so much to learn, so much, and I have barely dipped a toe in. And I'm enjoying the process a lot.
    ~Melanie Teegarden, Owner
    Althaea Soaps & Herbals
    504 W. Oakland Avenue
    Johnson City, TN 37604
    423.943.6974
    www.althaea.biz/

  2. #2

    Shycat's Avatar
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    Default Re: Newbie Intro

    Live the dream!
    Please, spritz responsibly.

  3. #3

    Default Re: Newbie Intro

    Hiya! Okay, where's your website, and do you ship internationally?

    bonni
    "Love is when a girl puts on perfume and a boy puts on shaving cologne and they go out and smell each other."
    -Karl, age 5

  4. #4

    Default Re: Newbie Intro

    Very nice introduction! Welcome and please enjoy your stay!


  5. #5

    Default Re: Newbie Intro

    Welcome!

    [smiley=beer.gif] [smiley=2vrolijk_08.gif] [smiley=vrolijk_26.gif]
    Everything passes. Everything changes. Just do what you think you should do.
    --Bob Dylan

  6. #6

    Default Re: Newbie Intro

    Hi Melanie,
    Thanks for the introduction, and welcome!

  7. #7

    Default Re: Newbie Intro

    Quote Originally Posted by bonni
    Hiya! Okay, where's your website, and do you ship internationally?

    bonni

    Hi Bonni,

    The website for my shop is www.althaea.biz , and I do ship internationally although it takes strategy to keep it from being expensive to ship. Japan's been the worst, but mainland Europe isn't too bad usually.
    ~Melanie Teegarden, Owner
    Althaea Soaps & Herbals
    504 W. Oakland Avenue
    Johnson City, TN 37604
    423.943.6974
    www.althaea.biz/

  8. #8

    Default Re: Newbie Intro

    Quote Originally Posted by Shycat
    Live the dream!
    Trying, trying! As my husband likes to remind me on my more nervous days, if worse comes to worst I can always keep us fed by foraging in the woods behind the house. Thank goodness for all my years of studying plant uses...at least I know I can keep us fed on cattails and daylily tubers.
    ~Melanie Teegarden, Owner
    Althaea Soaps & Herbals
    504 W. Oakland Avenue
    Johnson City, TN 37604
    423.943.6974
    www.althaea.biz/

  9. #9

    Default Re: Newbie Intro

    Hi, Melanie!

    I'm new here, too. I loved reading your introduction. How lovely that your work is something you love and are passionate about. I'm going to check out your website. I have never crafted any of my own fragranced products, but I think I am going to dip a toe in this summer myself. Sounds like a very satisfying occupation you have!

    :-)

  10. #10

    Default Re: Newbie Intro

    Quote Originally Posted by sherrie11
    Hi, Melanie!

    I'm new here, too. I loved reading your introduction. How lovely that your work is something you love and are passionate about. I'm going to check out your website. I have never crafted any of my own fragranced products, but I think I am going to dip a toe in this summer myself. Sounds like a very satisfying occupation you have!

    :-)

    Hi Sherrie,

    I hope you have as much fun as I've been having. As my husband says, I get "disproportionately excited" over scent experiments when they go well.

    It really reminds me a lot of cooking, a longtime passion of mine which is lately taking a remote backseat to fragrances. You have to sample a lot of things to get a handle on what's possible, and to be able to pick apart the constituent parts. And you have to practice enough to be able to get what's in your head to manifest. But like cooking, if you sample enough variety and practice enough of the basics, I think you can get to the point where you can try something, know what's in it and have a pretty good idea of how to achieve it. Also like cooking, once you're to the point that you can figure that sort of thing out, you probably also have a good idea of how you'd do it differently to suit your own tastes a little bit better.

    I'm just starting to be able to pick out notes. I've noticed that the list of ingredients going into perfumes can vary quite a bit from one source to another, and that kind of mystifies me...are perfume companies giving out contradicting information to different sources, or are various "experts" just giving their opinions on what's in there? Not really sure, probably a combination of factors. I've also noticed that this site seems strongly biased toward originals rather than later alterations of things, but that makes sense as later alterations often have more to do with practicality than with original vision, although I wonder about the exceptions.

    So far, I haven't had any horrible blending "flops" although I've had many things that were just kind of "eh" to me. I've had some things that were successful on a technical level, that I didn't like personally but that other people were enthusiastic about. I've had a few things that were really exciting to me, but really, I have to admit that a lot of it is a surprise still...I can't predict what's going to happen when I mix things, not very specifically. So the work continues.
    ~Melanie Teegarden, Owner
    Althaea Soaps & Herbals
    504 W. Oakland Avenue
    Johnson City, TN 37604
    423.943.6974
    www.althaea.biz/

  11. #11

    Default Re: Newbie Intro

    Gorgeous looking line of products!

    You might want to look into some bar shampoos and maybe conditioners, too. Could give Lush a run for their money.

    bonni
    "Love is when a girl puts on perfume and a boy puts on shaving cologne and they go out and smell each other."
    -Karl, age 5

  12. #12

    Default Re: Newbie Intro

    Quote Originally Posted by bonni
    Gorgeous looking line of products!

    You might want to look into some bar shampoos and maybe conditioners, too. Could give Lush a run for their money.

    bonni
    Oh trust me, I've been working on it! The things that are lovely on skin tend to be less-lovely on hair, though. I have a lot of hair that's long and curly, so I mostly use myself as a guinea pig. Once I find a formula that keeps me happy, I'll be putting it up for sale. So far, though, I find that bar shampoos make the hair feel sticky and overdry, no matter what I do. And liquid shampoos are either very unnatural or very expensive to make. But I persevere.
    ~Melanie Teegarden, Owner
    Althaea Soaps & Herbals
    504 W. Oakland Avenue
    Johnson City, TN 37604
    423.943.6974
    www.althaea.biz/

  13. #13
    Lean in closer, dear
    Quarry's Avatar
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    Default Re: Newbie Intro

    Quote Originally Posted by AlthaeaSoaps
    *As my husband likes to remind me on my more nervous days, if worse comes to worst I can always keep us fed by foraging in the woods behind the house. *Thank goodness for all my years of studying plant uses...at least I know I can keep us fed on cattails and daylily tubers.
    And garlic mustard and arrowhead roots and ... native plant enthusiast here, Melanie. If you need any recipes, I'll look them up in Pat Armstrong's Wild Plant Family Cookbook for you! ;D
    Welcome to the basenotes ecosystem.
    In a world where 6 million people are added each month, every landscape matters.

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