A Handmade Holiday Gift Guide

[embed]http://instagram.com/p/vzvWAhP-5Q/?modal=true[/embed]I feel that these days I begin every blog post with an apology for not having written in a hot minute. This post will continue that tradition. I'm sorry. It's been since August. I've missed you too. First things first for my regular customers: Sweet Tea Apothecary will be having a Cyber Monday sale. It will be the last sale of the year so it's a great time to stock up. You can get 30% off all bottles of perfume with code TDAY14 on Monday December 1. This offer applies to all bottles (not samples, solids, or candles). Secondly, on Cyber Monday I will also be debuting a SUPER limited number of solid perfume compacts seen in the lead picture. I only have five ovals and four round so it's first come first serve. Unlike the ones I used to sell these are just compacts for your purse or vanity, not jewelry. The last thing you should know is that when STA returns from a scheduled close from December 15-January 5...Victoria, Clara, and Maynard will no longer be in stock. This is to make room for new perfumes and colognes. You'll still be able to order them but they will probably become a seasonal fixture in the Spring and Summer and will no longer be included in sample packs.

Onward to the gift guide!

This has been the year of Craft Shows for me. I participated in a bunch in cities like Seattle, San Francisco, Los Angeles, and New York. Here are some of my favorite vendors that I bought from, worked with, or talked to.

Jewelry

I traded perfume for this beautiful necklace by Heron and Lamb.

Glass cluster ring by Urban Revisions

I have a black lace necklace like the one above by Topiary Designs. I love her, she is my show buddy.

Ladies

 

Red Prairie Press, handmade clothes. I have this print in a t-shirt. Love her sweaters and pocket dresses too.

Men

Treat yourself to fine leather goods by Hammer & Hyde my booth mate at Renegade NYC.

Baby

Love this food print by Katie Copeland Illustration.

Lord and Little makes adorable toys, pillows, etc for babies. They don't have a lot up in their shop right now but check out the adorable Christmas decorations in their other storefront Haus and Home.

Baby girl about lost her mind when I presented this bear made by Finkelsteins.

Home

My uncle loved these little planters by Concrete Geometric. The ones I got had gold paint along the edges.

DIY terrarium kit by makerskit.

Food

I love pickles. ESPECIALLY THESE ONES. They also have cauliflower, green beans, beets, onions, carrots. So yum. These are also show buddies, very nice people. Buy some Pernicious Pickles.

T-We Tea is both delicious and hilariously named.

HAPPY HOLIDAYS EVERYONE! Thank you as always for being wonderful and supportive. I'm so happy to have met a lot of you over the course of my travels. See you in 2015!!

Labor Day Sample Sale & Other News

It occurred to me that some people might want to try my perfumes but find the cost of trying before buying cumbersome. So I give you the $1 sample sale. Since it's Labor Day, and as we all know the entire point of Labor Day is to have sales (/sarcasm), I figured it was a good time to try this out. If successful I'll do more of these sample sales in the future.

I've been lazy and promise to do a full write up of all my California shows (spoiler: Unique USA is amazing and if it's in your city you need to do yourself a friggin' service and go). But East Coast, it is now your turn! I will be doing my first East Coast show in Brooklyn, New York on September 13 & 14 as part of Renegade Craft Fair. I'd love to meet you!

Lets see what else? My label printer broke so I have returned to the old days where I have to manually cut out and tape shipping labels which is a huge pain. Hopefully Dymo gets their act together and responds to my request for repair. I've also been working hard on some new perfumes and hope to get those out in time for the holidays. I guess that's it on the business front, summer is a more easy-going time of year. Hope it was wonderful for all of you!

 

Best in Salon at the Seattle Fragrance Salon!!!

I'm so excited! I love participating in shows because I love meeting people and talking perfume. It's the easiest and best way to get feedback as you can tell a lot from a person's facial expressions after a whiff of perfume. I decided to participate in the annual Seattle Fragrance Salon put on by TasteTv for two reasons 1. because I was 9 months pregnant last year and couldn't participate and 2. sounded like a fun way to get my name out there with other perfumers. I'm so glad I did, STA was awarded Best in Salon, Most Unique, Best Aroma, and Best New Product. *Puffs up chest* Hooray! I'm energized and ready to start on new perfumes (so many ideas) and hit the craft show circuit this summer. Thanks everyone for patronizing my shop! taste awards 2014

So apparently scammers on Amazon sell my stuff?

I was alerted to a shop on Amazon (I'm not going to link because why give them more attention) that is selling my three perfume sample pack for $27. That's triple what I charge, but more importantly, they did this without my permission. No heads up. Just straight up took my work and put it on their site. That is all kinds of effed up. 

The moral of this story is there are three places you can buy Sweet Tea Apothecary perfume: my Etsy shop, my website, or me in person at a craft show. Anywhere else online is a scam.

29! Discount! I Love Exclamation Points!!!

I turn 29 today (well in a few hours as of this writing, I didn't want to stay up til midnight). 28 was a great year for me - Sweet Tea Apothecary exploded thanks to Dead Writers, I regained my passion for writing and have been working on some great projects, and I had a little baby who is already cooler than I am (she has baby sunglasses and baby Toms shoes). As I did last year, I'm offering a discount corresponding with my age, 29% off; I think we can both agree that it will be in our best interests if I live to be 100 ;)

UPDATE:Etsy runs on Eastern time so please use my website link if you would like to take advantage.

Anyway, 29% off whatever you want now til April 25th. You can visit my website, or my Etsy shop, whatever you prefer. Just enter code STA29 at checkout. Just a heads up that any orders placed between now and Sunday, April 27 will not start shipping until Tuesday, April 29. (Yours may be after Tuesday depending on the number of orders placed and what place you are in line.) Why? Oh well that's because I get to go home to LA and be happy and warm in the sun and see all my friends and family and and and....THIS WEEKEND IS BABY FREE. I get to be a person for 3 whole days!!! I probably don't have enough time to go to Disneyland, but I might just do it BECAUSE I CAN.

Thank you all, truly, for being enthusiastic, supportive customers. I'm always working on things to improve my products because you all inspire me. I APPRECIATE YOU. I'm going to lay off the caps lock key now. G'nite.

PS. If anything you want says sold out, just comment here, on FB, or email me and I'll fix it for you. Sometimes when I have sales my quantities get maxed out and it takes forever to bulk re-do them. Also, if you're in Australia or somewhere else that's already in the future and you have trouble, let me know. You get a discount too!

Gather 'round, it's history time for my new perfumes

Remember when I used to write about history? Probably not because it's been sooo long. Well, I'm about to fix that because I have 4 brand new perfume tributes to let you know about! Madame MoustacheA Perfumed Oil for Fancy Ladies & Gentlemen of Exceptional Quality

On the American Frontier you needed backbone and sheer wit to not only survive, but prosper. Eleonore Alphonsine Dumont, aka Madame Moustache, had both in stride. Originally born in France (at least that's what she claimed), Dumont was a notorious gambler hustling her way through mining camps and gambling houses in the West. She amassed a small fortune only to lose it all to a man of charm, but little substance. With dogged determination Dumont upped her gambling efforts and started her own gambling house "Vingt-et-un" (21) a saloon for stylish gents, no women, save for herself, allowed. Her charm made her the perfect, unassuming gambler, and with the addition of running a brothel, she found her fortune back in excess. When her beauty faded she became known as Madame Moustache, owing to a line of dark hair on her lip - which she wore with pride.

Madame Moustache Perfume Oil contains notes of tobacco pipe, vegan Egyptian musk, fire, and vanilla. This alluring scent is meant for fancy ladies and well kept gents, and smells like a warm campfire.

VIII: A Cologne Oil Worthy of Kingly Pursuits

Before he became the rotund, belligerent king of his twilight years, young King Henry VIII was a stylish youth deeply interested in the arts, education, sport, and was a devout Catholic called a Defender of the Faith by Pope Leo X. As the second son of Henry VII, he was never expected to become king, but when he did, he did so with lavish excess and cultivated an image of a Renaissance man. Henry VIII's obsession with producing a male heir (partly his own vanity, and partly a desire to avoid another War of the Roses) is what led to the two things he is widely known for: the English Reformation and his six wives.

England's most famous king had a soft spot for the finer things in life and was said to wear a concoction of ambergris and civet, two of the finest scents of the time. This cologne oil inspired by the illustrious Tudor has notes of ambergris, belladonna, clovebud, tobacco, bay leaf, fire, and Peru balsam.

Archibald MensiesA Cologne Oil for Explorers of Merit & Other Fearless Pursuits

Back in the 1700s there was still a large swath of Earth left unexplored, especially in the New World. Archibald Menzies was a Scottish surgeon who moonlighted as a botanist and naturalist. He was hired aboard George Vancouver's HMS Discovery that traveled around the world and is of particular note here in Seattle as they were some of the first to explore Puget Sound. Like Charles Darwin, who wasn't even born until 15 years after the Discovery expedition, Archibald Menzies documented plant life and cultivated seeds. He discovered the Douglas Fir and brought/planted orange seeds in Hawaii (still there to this day) for future ships stopping there to port (oranges helped with scurvy).

This cologne oil features blood orange, oak moss, Egyptian musk, tobacco, and fir. Dab some on your wrist and go exploring.

Beatrix PotterA Dead Writers Perfume

Beatrix Potter was the author and illustrator of the beloved children's story, The Tale of Peter Rabbit. She was born to a wealthy Victorian family and after summering in the Lake District as a child, she began her lifelong work as a naturalist and conservationist. Using the royalty money from the success of her book she bought Hill Top Farm and surrounding areas in an effort to keep the English countryside pristine.

In Peter Rabbit she wrote, “Peter was not very well during the evening. His mother put him to bed, and made some chamomile tea: "One table-spoonful to be taken at bedtime.” This perfume was created after reading these lines to my own child. Beatrix has notes of moss, blue spruce, dragon's blood, fire, earth, and chamomile. It has a wonderful green scent with the light floral of the chamomile headnote.

Let me know how you like them!

So hey, I did a podcast

Kimberly Wilson, a very lovely lady, interviewed me for a podcast on her blog Tranquility du Jour. We talk about tea, historical fiction, and of course, perfume. It was a new experience for me and a lot of fun. I was insanely nervous because I actually was 30 minutes late for the podcast because I can't read apparently and messed up East Coast vs. West Coast time and then I was afraid the baby would wake up and yada yada yada here you go. Even if you don't want to listen, there are some links to books I recommended to her so definitely check those out. I apologize profusely for the horrible, horrible vocal fry. I lived in Los Angeles for the majority of my life ok? I know I do it, but I can't stop. It is my great shame.

Off to LA!

I'm off to LA tomorrow to participate in my first Renegade Craft Fair! I'm pretty nervous as it's the largest I've participated in... and I'm following it up with the same show in San Francisco the week after because I'm crazy.

It's been a joy making perfumes for you and talking to you on here, Facebook, and via email. I hope you have an amazing holiday... and maybe I'll see some of you over the next two weeks?!

Later.

Renegade Los Angeles - Dec. 14 & 15; Booth 148 Renegade San Francisco - Dec. 21 & 22; Booth 241

EtsyRain Handmade Holiday Show Link Love

This weekend I participated in my second EtsyRain Handmade Holiday Show. I learned a lot last year and felt my display this year was much tighter, more professional...and pretty! I got so many great compliments on my display and on all my perfumes. The big sellers this year were Dead Writers (of course), Dharma Bum (I knew it would because it's one of my best), Lenore, Boleyn, Clara, and Pamplemousse. Pamplemousse and Clara were last year's favorites so I'm happy to see the newbies doing so well, means I'm evolving yay! Here's the display: sweet tea apothecary at etsyrain 2013

Now for my favorite vendors at the show! Please be sure to check out their shops, they are amazingly high quality and perfect for gifts...or for yourself.

Hasenpfeffer This shop was right next to me and all weekend, delighted children (and adults!) would literally run up and grab the toys off their ladder shelf and hug them. They make gorgeous, intricate dolls and other toys that are unique and interesting. There was one toy in particular that I loved and wanted for my baby but wasn't sure if I should splurge on it or not ($70). Every time someone picked this little guy up my heart would sink. I had to have him for my baby girl and I'm really glad I did. We named it Strawberry because it has little strawberries on it's handkerchief. Baby girl loves it!

claire and strawberry

Hammer and Paper I really wanted a gorgeous clock necklace from this shop, but it's the holidays so I didn't want to buy for myself. I'm definitely going to be back.

Deviant Decor This booth was across from me and she had all her pieces on a wall display. I'm going to order a custom one with a typewriter on it for my future booths...fits perfectly with Dead Writers.

StasiaB I just love Stasia B! She is an adorable, creative, and all around nice person. I traded some Dead Writers perfume for one of her t-shirts last year. I didn't get a chance to buy from her this year, but I'm going to purchase some of her art work for my baby girl's room. This in particular:

On to the perfumes!

Sweet Anthem Not only is Meredith the nicest person ever who routinely helps me with all sort of business topics, her perfumes are just amazing. When someone comes to my shop and doesn't find what they're looking for, I send them her way. This year her Fox perfume caught my eye (notice a trend?). This is from her familiars collection and it has black tea and beeswax...no wonder I liked it.

Sweet Anthem - Fox

Rebel and Mercury This shop makes 100% all natural perfumes and they are lovely. She also had a line of candles which looked so pretty on her display.

Rebel and Mercury Candles

There you have it! My favorite Etsy shops that presented this year. I'm going to be at Renegade LA and SF so I'll do posts for the shops I find there as well. Enjoy!

Holiday Schedule!

This holiday season I am participating in three craft fairs, two of which are out of state. That said, this year I'll be closing up shop while I am away. If you are interested in perfumed Christmas shopping, please note the dates below. If you are an international customer try to get your order in by mid-November to ensure your parcel gets to you on time.

Shop Closures:

November 27 - December 1

December 11- January 5

 

Find me in person:

November 28/29 - EtsyRain Handmade Holiday Show Seattle

December 14/15 - Renegade Craft Winter Market Los Angeles

December 21/22 - Renegade Craft Winter Market San Francisco

If you experience package loss or damage, please let me know no later than December 10 so I can get a replacement to you in time for Christmas! After that date I will be unable to send you a new package until I return in January, sorry in advance for the inconvenience.

Thank you all for being such amazing customers! I hope you have a great holiday season, whatever you celebrate!

Smell Dead Writers & All My Other Perfumes This Holiday!

As many of you know, I've been moving at a snail's pace since my baby was born in May. Well I'm happy to announce that I've been feeling much better and have more energy so I'm going to be ramping up production again AND hitting the craft show circuit this winter! For any fans in Seattle, Los Angeles, or San Francisco, save yourself a step and stop by Sweet Tea Apothecary's booth to check out all my perfumes in person. I will be at the following shows selling perfumes and ready to chat:

Seattle EtsyRain - November 29 & 30

Renegade Los Angeles - December 14 & 15

Renegade San Francisco - December 21 & 22

I will try to make Renegade Brooklyn next summer for any East Coast fans out there. If you know of a good craft fair in your city, drop me a line. I'm always looking for new opportunities.

Just a note about what's coming up

First off, thanks to everyone who has been checking out my new site! It's already been more successful than I could have hoped and the cost of starting it has already been paid off. So yay! If you haven't seen it yet, now is a good time because I have a 20% off sale going on until April 15. Just use code GrandOpening20 at checkout at sweetteaapothecary.com Next. My baby is due next month!! I'm going to put my Etsy store on hiatus during that time. You will still be able to shop at sweetteaapothecary.com but there could be a lag time of up to two weeks depending on how many orders I have and how I am feeling. I will put a big note about this on the site once I figure things out. I just bring this up because if you know that you want to buy something as a gift or you're thinking about getting bridesmaid gifts or whatever, make sure you do that by mid-May. Watch, just because I say all this the baby will be rude and not come til June. Fingers crossed for early.

Hope everyone's spring is nice and flowery!

Sweetteaapothecary.com is here...and well...just look at it!

Today is the grand opening of sweetteaapothecary.com! Hooray! There are three super cool things going on right now to celebrate such as a discount code for 20% off, a giveaway, and three saucy new perfumes. Get in on the action, here. So what does this new site mean? A couple of things.

My Etsy shop is not going away, but I am going to be focusing more on sweetteaapothecary.com. Why? Because I have a lot more control over it, better features that make my life easier (and cool technology such as the giveaway!!). Etsy is rad, but I'm growing and need to stay with it. Other cool thing: with my new site, if something sells out you can pre-order it instead of having to check back 24/7. Technology!

This blog will still exist, but I am going to be migrating some of my old posts to the new site. I will also post less on here and more on the new site's blog. So if you're interested in following that one, you can RSS or bookmark. The link for the new blog is here.

If you're a regular customer, you may be wondering what the deal is with the new site's layout. So glad you asked, because I think it is far superior.

1. Sample packs come in collections now. I still have the "You pick 3" pack, but now I have the honest to God complete pack so you don't have to add or subtract anything if you're a perfume junkie. There are also different perfume sample packs that correspond with themes. So if you want Unisex/Men's, there's a pack for that. Historical Queens? Check out the Pomp & Circumstance sample pack. Only care for Dead Writers? The Dead Writers pack is extra awesome because it has two brand new perfumes!! Basically, there's a lot more pack options which will help minimize confusion on both the customer's end as well as mine, and will allow for me to make packs ahead of time so I can speed up processing times. Sample packs are still free to ship domestically (sorry international friends).

2. You no longer have to look in 5 different places to find each version of the perfume you want! Each perfume has one page that gives the perfume's details and story. There is a drop down for 5ml, 15ml, and Solid. AND THAT'S IT!!

3. You can sign up for newsletters so you know about all the sales, promotions and giveaways. Speaking of giveaways, if you've already checked out the link above, you know that we don't have to do a ghetto Etsy convo and maybe I still have something for you. The giveaways are now automated and winners will be notified via email. At that point you can give me your address and boom...I ship you your freebie. I also have the technology to do rewards programs...but baby steps on that one. I'm amazed I've gotten this much done. And before I forget, if you do sign up for the newsletter, I will only be sending them when stuff is going on. So if there's a sale, giveaway or new perfume being released, you'll get an email. I promise not to email you every time I have a thought. That's what Facebook is for as I'm sure those who follow have already figured out.

I think that's it for now. I've had a migraine all day and I'm up past my bed time so please forgive the rambling. Hope you like the new site, and even if you don't or you see something wrong...drop me a line. Feedback welcome :) Just not about my pictures. You guys know I'm terrible at photography. I had a meltdown about how much I suck at taking pictures today so I think considering, they turned out pretty ok enough.

Now I'm done. G'nite.

Huge Milestone...So Let's Give Stuff Away!!

sweet tea apothecary perfume giveawayMy Etsy shop says that it opened in March of 2012. That was when I opened the account, yes, but I didn't begin selling until July of that year. So here I am nine months later reaching a milestone I thought would take me YEARS to accomplish. My shop hit 1000 sales :O I'm still in shock. It's thanks to awesome repeat customers, people who decided to try perfume from the internet on a whim, and some random, much appreciated press I've received. To say thank you, I'd like to give away some bottles of perfume I've had at the ready. These bad boys have been bottled for five months...which means they smell ahhhhh-maaazing. They are the last bottles I have that feature the old labels...so they're like historic and stuff!!

Here's what I've got:

2 bottles of 15ml Remy

2  bottles of 15ml Antoinette

2 bottles of 15ml HRM Victoria

3 bottles of 5ml HRM Victoria

1 bottle of 10ml Thoreau

UPDATE: All the bottles have been claimed but I'll be doing another giveaway in the next two weeks for samples of the new girls Lenore & Boleyn as well as some other full bottles. There will be advance notice as I will post here, on FB, and Twitter in the days leading up to it.

That's 10 bottles of perfume to be given away!! If you'd like one, send me a convo on Etsy letting me know which you'd like and your address (only taking requests via Etsy so it's easier to keep track). It's first come, first served so if the one you want is no longer available, I'll let you know what the alternatives are. I will post updates to Facebook periodically. If you don't end up getting one, don't despair. The new website I'll be launching soon will have more giveaway opportunities.

Once again, THANK YOU!! Thank you for letting me run my own business doing something I love.

Sneak Peek at the New Website

This weekend I closed my shop to get caught up on orders, finally work on some new perfumes, and build a new website. Also, relax. It turns out I was a tad burnt out. Who knew averaging 300+ orders a month for 2 months while in the third trimester of pregnancy would be tiring? I KNOW NOW. Anyway, I feel loads better. And am really excited to show you a snippet of the new website. It's got scrolling pictures! It's got a fully integrated blog! It allows me to send newsletters! So many things!

sneak peak at new Sweet Tea Apothecary website

I've got all the nuts and bolts in place just have to figure out how shipping works and add in my products. Also, maybe jazz up that white background? IDK you can't see everything in this screenshot but whatever. I'll be launching soon, with new perfumes announced, so stay tuned.

New Labels are Here! And I'm Back Open for the Time Being

Dead Writers by Sweet Tea Apothecary 2I opened at 10:30am with 30 bottles of 5ml Dead Writers and 10 of the 10ml bottles. The 10s are long gone, and last I checked, there were 6 bottles of 5ml left. So I'm guessing it will sell out again but don't worry! I have glass bottles and plenty of oil in stock so if it does sell out, it will be back within a few hours or tomorrow. I also added a bigger tin of solid perfume for Dead Writers. It's now a 1/2 ounce. Changes due to everything going on:

First off, I'm no longer offering 10ml bottles of anything. They weren't as popular and they're actually way more expensive (the glass bottle part) than any of the others. Instead, my shop will now have the following three sizes of everything: 5ml, 15ml and 1/2 ounce tins of solid perfume. The Dead Writers solid perfume is $5 more than the other solids. Why? You might ask. It's because it's just so much more popular that I go through the oil a lot quicker. Supply and demand and all.

With the size changes comes pricing changes...again due to supply and demand. All 5ml perfume oils are now $20. The 15ml bottles are $30. All solid perfumes except for Dead Writers are $10. I think that makes everything a lot easier and will better allow me to cover costs of oils because they be expensive y'all.

New female labels sweet tea apothecary

Lastly, I have new labels and they're so pretty! And easy to cut out. And easy to edit. Basically. My life is going to be much easier now. In this post you'll see what the Dead Writers and the feminine labels look like. I still have to fix the male labels (Maynard and Thoreau) but they look like the girl labels only a different color and font. The solid perfume tins for the feminine perfumes will also look like the Dead Writers solid featured above just in that pretty shade of mauve with the fancy Art Deco script.

Hope you like everything!

I'm Not Really on Vacation

Nope. I am working round the clock right now to restock. I sold out of pretty much EVERYTHING today. Awesome for me, inconvenient for you. For which I apologize. Dead Writers was featured on Laughing Squid and io9 today and my shop exploded.

Here's a recap of what happened:

My husband and I were assembling a crib for our baby due in May. So domestic! Then all of a sudden our shouts of frustration at New Zealand pine wood that wasn't connecting correctly were interrupted by the sound of the Legend of Zelda (my ringtone) repeatedly. I was getting emails about sold orders. I had checked my phone at 12:30pm and had 150 views and 2 sales (typical slow day). At 1pm there were 800 views and 15 orders. I found the culprit to be Laughing Squid and thought, well alright. Makin monnnnaayyy. Two hours later the Legend of Zelda started assaulting my ears again because my friends informed me it made it to io9. At this point I put my phone on silent. The day ended with 8,000 views, 85 orders and wholesale inquiries.

NOT BAD! Anyway, I decided to put the shop on vacation so that I don't get completely overwhelmed. I'm a one person operation and 7.5 months pregnant so gotta be responsible. Normally I'd power through it, but I was already low on shipping materials and sample bottles. Hopefully I'll be back up in a few days and you can get your fix on some sweet, sweet Dead Writers. If you're new here, take a look around. I have tutorials on how to make perfume, historical awesomeness, text message conversations with my brother, and IMs with my husband. You know, interesting things.

Treat Yo' Self Two Thousand Thiiiirteeen or a Guide to My Perfumes

I haven't been writing. Here's a brief synopsis of why. *On January 29 a blog post on BookRiot, followed by The Huffington Post, about my Dead Writers perfume went viral. Nearly 400 orders were placed in my shop between then and the end of February. To put that in perspective, my previous high was 87 orders in one month...at Christmas. Usually, I get anywhere between 30-50.

*On February 16 things began to slow down to a more manageable pace (no longer working from 9am - 2am!) and my friends and family flew to Seattle to give me a baby shower! It was grand! We made onesies, everyone but me got really drunk, and my 13 year old cousin not only drew the phrase "Breast Milk Pump," but drew an anatomically correct picture that was correctly guessed in roughly 7 seconds. During this weekend we watched Parks and Recreation, specifically the episode where Tom and Donna take Ben on an excursion of self-pampering they dub, "Treat Yo' Self." This became the mantra of the weekend.

Should I get this bacon Bloody Mary? Treat Yo' Self.

Should I buy a new wardrobe even though I won't fit into anything within the next month? Treat Yo' Self.

Should we order the $100 per person chef's tasting menu? TREAT YO' SELF!

I'm one of those people who gets easily distracted by connections I make in my head and then don't voice until 10 minutes into the conversation so everyone's like, "What? How long have you been thinking of that? What kind of mental acrobatics did you do to arrive at this point?" Here it is:

I've been getting a lot of new customers to my shop who want advice on what perfumes to try. Most of them are intrigued by handmade perfume and wonder what it's like. Others are just nervous about buying perfume they've never smelled over the internet which I totally get. If you want to Treat Yo' Self to some fine perfume (see what I did there?) here is what I usually recommend.

First off... my top three selling perfumes are Dead Writers, Remy, and Georgiana. (That alone helps some.)

Antoinette: Do you like to smell like a bouquet of freshly picked Spring flowers? LOOK NO FURTHER. The jasmine, tuberose, moss, and bergamot work together to ensure that even if the winter makes you feel like you're waiting for the guillotine, you'll be transported to the Hall of Mirrors. History!

Clara: Are you a single lady who likes to hit the clubs and (gasp!) show a little ankle?! Then the sexy sandalwood and tuberose combination in this perfume will make you feel like a silver screen siren. No really. This one is basically a sex perfume. If you're trying to be sultry, this is the one you want. One warning though: I am a migraine sufferer...this is my one perfume that I can't wear because the smell is too heady for me. If you get headaches easily, don't do this one.

Dead Writers: Do you wear patches on your elbows and sit in dimly lit rooms drinking black coffee or tea smoking packs of clove cigarettes (Djarum Blacks)? If this describes you, or you're just the type of person who prefers a "dirty perfume" then put some of this on before you head out to work on that novel at the local coffee shop. Dead Writers is musky and has a stale smoke smell. It is lightened by some vanilla and heliotrope (a flower that in combination with the vanilla smells like a sweet milk creamer you might add to your tea). If you've never had a musky perfume and want to live dangerously without smelling homeless, go for the Georgiana. More on that below.

Georgiana: Are you a lady who dresses for dinner and... I can't think of anything clever, basically you are Dowager Countess Maggie Smith elegance. Georgiana literally smells like a cup of Earl Grey tea. It's my most subtle perfume and has a soft, sultry, smokiness that is perfect for an evening on the town. I wear this one when I want to be fancy. If you were interested in the smokiness of Dead Writers but don't want to overdo it with the musk, then Georgiana is the one for you. The bergamot really brightens it up and it smells more feminine.

Maynard: Do you want to smell like the frontier? Maynard has a bunch of old timey ingredients (sassafras, gin, the sweat of men who founded cities) and somehow smells like clean root beer. What does clean root beer smell like you ask? Like Old Spice and root beer... but BETTER. That's what. A gentleman friend took home a sample of Maynard from the aforementioned baby shower and told me yesterday that he "smells like a BOSS and gets looks from all the ladies." That's not to say a lady can't wear this one. I wear it sometimes when I want to be the Boss. (I'm never the boss though, guys :( Too meek.) Basically if you enjoy root beer and like to smell shower fresh, May May be your pick.

Pamplemousse: Do you like to smell like a summer cocktail, not because you're an alcoholic but because you just enjoy the scent? If you live in San Francisco, specifically the Mission, then you've heard of a restaurant called Beretta. They make a drink called Pamplemousse that is basically grapefruit juice, gin and St. Germaine (might have champagne too, can't remember). Once I discovered this drink, my weekends for the rest of the year I lived there were booked. This perfume makes me think of happier times when I wasn't pregnant and could drink delicious grapefruit cocktails and sit in the sun. On the skin: Pamplemousse has an intense grapefruit citrus smell for about 20 minutes to an hour which then melts into this amazing honey tea scent. All of my perfumes have layers and this one is probably one of my favorites to just sit there noting the smell of my wrist over the course of 8 hours.

Remy: Do you like to smell like honey and the Egyptian market? Perhaps you like something light, a bit powdery, and suitable for everyday wear. That's Remy. I wear this perfume every day. The saffron and sandalwood gives it a slight exotic spiciness that is balanced out by sweet, sweet honey. Behind Dead Writers, this is the top seller.

Thoreau: Are you a gardener who likes to take the scent of earth and tomatoes with you wherever you go? This perfume is unisex and smells like a forest or a freshly tilled plot of garden, depending on your nose. The clary sage ingredient further has a head clearing property to it - if you're a headache person, this one might be nice to sniff. If you like to smell like greenery, this one's for you.

HRM Victoria: If you're into pomp and circumstance and like a sugar scent, Victoria is your go-to. It smells like lavender and melted molasses. This one is closest in scent to what you might find at a Bath and Body Works...but there are three all natural ingredients in this one: French Lavender, Amber, and Vanilla. At BBW there would probably be at least 15 ingredients you can't pronounce. The scent is very sugary, but the lavender gives it an air of regalness (word?). Lavender was, after all, Queen Vic's favorite scent.

There you have it, my perfumes in a nutshell. Also, my new labels are done I'm just trying to figure out how to get them to print correctly using Windows 8. So if you order, you might get a label a bit different from what you see in the photos. I'm hoping to have better photos soon too, baby steps people.