A Busy Lavender Week

With all the lavender harvesting, drying and wreath making going on around here, things are in full swing for what’s coming up next: my first juried craft show! Up to this point I have only participated in craft shows at schools and community centers, but this year I have decided to do something different.

The Windfall Fine Art and Handcraft Market takes place in Antigonish NS in September at the Keating Center on St FX campus. It is a juried show, which means that you apply to have a spot and then your work is judged on its merit, originality and suitability for the show. I applied and was accepted! Yay me!

So now I have to make sure I have enough merchandise to sell at this well advertised two day show. I have been making my products in larger quantities than before for the past few weeks and I’ll give you a sneak peek at a couple of my most popular items.

I make this whipped Lavender Body Butter that is becoming more and more popular each year. Most of my customers are looking for natural products and this really fits the bill without additives or chemicals. It contains shea butter, coconut oil, avocado oil and lavender essential oil. That’s it. I as well as several of my customers use this body butter as a facial foundation cream. It takes a few minutes for the skin to absorb; its well worth the wait because you’re using pure food grade cream. After several months of use, people agree that their complexion has never been smoother and more nourished.

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Filling jars with body butter in my kitchen.

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An afternoon’s work ready to be capped and boxed.

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All set to go!

One other item I have been making the past week is wreaths. They have to be made while the lavender is fresh and then it dries right on the wreath. Dried lavender is too fragile for all the manipulation required for wreath making. People ask me all the time if the dried lavender smells good and I have to tell them that no, it has no smell. In order to have that wonderful lavender scent, the flower has to be squeezed or crushed, releasing the essential oil that is contained therein. You can’t really do that with a dried lavender wreath or bouquet because you would destroy it. So these things are purely ornamental.

The wreaths you see here are still in the process of drying. Once they are completely dry I will embellish them with dried miniature roses and some grasses.

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First the fresh lavender is put into little bundles.

 

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Then it is wired onto a grapevine wreath form.

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Et voila! One finished wreath.

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Here are some of the wreaths, almost dry now, and soon will be ready to embellish with dried mini roses and some grasses.

There are several other items in the works: lavender and wheat eye pillows, sachets, tub tea and a few more. I’ll keep you posted.

What a busy week it’s been!

Lavender Repels Mosquitoes

I like scents. Its just a fact of life; I wear perfume every day, use scented hairspray, body cream, hand cream and shampoo. That is, unless I’m going to a school or the hospital or a government office, because in Nova Scotia those are ‘scent free’ zones.

And I’m pretty sure that somebody up there is getting me back for wearing all those scents.

See,  I am the mosquito queen. Everywhere I go, people are thrilled because the mosquitoes are eating me. I might smell nice but I am being eaten alive, ensuring that  everyone else can enjoy the day. Its gotten to the point where I don’t want to go outside except in a screened in area, and even then those little buggers manage to find me. It must be the scented products I wear, flaunting protocol in this scent free province.

Well, not any more!

When I worked at Pure Lavande in Quebec, I informed everyone of the properties and benefits of ‘la lavande’. I distinctly remember telling them that the scent of lavender keeps bacteria, mice, and mosquitoes away. And that it is anti spasmodic, anti bacterial, anti fungus, well you get the picture. But it is a repellent to mosquitoes! I just remembered my own advice.

So this morning, before going out to weed my garden, I sprayed some lavender ‘Bruine d’Ambience’, or room spray over my hair and body. I know its not meant for bodies, but hey, I’m desperate and the weeds are taking over.

It is now a half hour later, the garden is weeded and I am BITE FREE!!! The little buggers stayed away – Well, they might not like the smell of lavender but I do.

So my next plan of action is to change all my smelly things, like shampoo, body lotion and hair spray over to lavender scented ones.

And to all the hungry mosquitoes out there, “Hahahaha! Go find yourselves someone else to feast on.”