Archive for the cats Category

Demeter and Hekate, new unguents!

Posted in cats, charitable donations, mandrake apothecary, natural perfumery, news, perfume on June 18, 2007 by scentedwench

I am offering up jojoba-based unguents this month, Demeter and Hekate. They are available for $25 (5 ml green glass bottle), or as a pair for $45. It is a limited run of 20 bottles of each, and I may produce them regularly, depending on the feedback I get.

Demeter is a meditation on amber, resin, chocolate, coffee, and jasmine. There is also musk ambrette as an underlying base, which marries the above with one’s skin scent. I was looking to celebrate the sweetness and the deepness of life. Demeter is one of those deities who resides in the Olympian pantheon as well as with the Earthly and even Underworldly. So, we’ve got earthy richness, as well as dizzying narcotic sweetness.

Hekate is an adventure into meditation and transcendence, from within a deep place in the earth. She predates Greek myth and when she was written into the pantheon she had many guises. Before she became known as the Queen of Ghosts and a deity of sorcery, she was a deity of the Underworld. Prior to that she was a goddess who presided over births, and a guardian of thresholds and doorways. Ah, domesticity! We see mention of Hekate dating back to prehistoric Anatolia, which, depending on your stance on prehistoric gynocentric culture’s existence, was possibly a civilization of Goddess-worshippers.

Hekate’s unguent draws from many places, geographically, and I chose to play up her sorceress and earthy traits. All witches have familiars, if you want to go stereotypical, and what better familiar to invoke than Bastet, eh. The cat goddess of Egypt was also the patroness of perfumery. Her aromatic in this unguent is the blue lotus (Nelumbo nucifera), an ethereal flower which glows with an underworldly fire. Then we look to Turkish rose, to bring Anatolia into the composition. Clary sage brings in a meditational element. Amber spikenard brings the peaks and airlessness of the Himalayas to the scent, and we cannot forget about spikenard and Mary Magdalene. Henna attar brings India’s vibrant aromatic culture to the heart and base.

Proceeds of sales go to Alley Cat Allies.

Cats have saved civilization a few times, if you think about it. They protect Demeter’s grains from rodents. They killed the vermin carrying Bubonic plague. And hey, I happen to like having two familiars 🙂 There is nothing like having a pussycat napping under the lavender when I’m out weeding my garden. She’s watching over me, of course, in between snores, and keeping me company. And then I have the one who likes to snooze nearby when I’m formulating new blends at my workbench.