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Black Licorice Soaps Are Ready!

Black Licorice Soaps Are Ready!

Even witches need to bathe from time to time, and what better soap than Black Licorice?

I am thrilled to share with you that my colourful, limited edition Black Licorice soaps are ready (after the customary curing time of 4 weeks), and are available online for you to order. If you love this dark, sticky candy with its sweet and mysterious aroma, you will love Black Licorice soap!

These special-edition soaps make quite an eye candy with all the colourful botanicals that I used to dye it in shades that allude to the colourful Allsorts licorice candy. It is witchy and haunting in both its appearance and scent.

For those familiar with my Black Licorice perfume, this is a bit different fragrance, more dark and similar to the European style candy, with hints of Sen-Sen candy.

 
When these run out of stock, I probably won't be bothering with the fancy, colourful designs... I made 4 different styles and they are all gorgeous! So if you love the colours you should get them now!

Black Licorice Soap

Black Licorice Soap
Yesterday I made a 2nd batch of Black Licorice limited edition soap.
The monochromatic top hides a very colourful interior. Just wait for the slice reveal - et voila!

Layers of colours in two different techniques. I used only natural colorants and I love the result even though the alkanet root is not as purple as I hoped. I even added some indigo and titanium dioxide to brighten it a bit, with no success.
The other colours are red madder root, yellow-orange anatto seed, black activated charcoal and white titanium dioxide. One is a "pointy peaks" technique; and the left overs went into the rather wobbly stripes. By then the soap batter was too thick for anything fancy and some of the colours didn't have sufficient amounts for a while layer, while others had too much. so I just filled up with whatever was on hand. It's not as exciting as the pointy peaks but the colours are still pretty and vibrant and look very much in the spirit of Halloween 🎃 đŸ‘»
Will be ready October 29th - just in time for Halloween 🎃 đŸ‘» đŸ•·
The scent is named in the same manner as one of my perfumes, yet has a more realistic licorice-candy character.

Perfumes to Honour the Dead

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October 31st marks a special time of the year, from astronomic point of view: Tonight marks the halfway point between the Autumnal Equinox and the Winter Solstice. This is the entrance to the darkest part of the year. It is the night when the barriers between this world and the world of the dead or the spirit world are very thin, allowing passage from one realm to the other. 

Even if you don't celebrate Samhain, Hallowe'en or Dia de los Muertos (Day of the Dead) - this night is a befitting time to remember our ancestors, far and near. Light a candle to those we don't remember because they died before we were born, or we were too young when they passed. And for those who were near and dear - this can be done joyfully by preparing their favourite food, or wearing their perfume. 
Incense and scents in general, for their invisible presence, have historically been the gateway for the underworld, the spirit realm and divinity. Many cultures still use incense in their rituals related to death, funerals and memorials. 

The Egyptians were especially elaborate about their preparations for the last journey: They would pack their dead's chambers with all their belongings, including vials of perfumes and cosmetics, and most famously - ensured the body stays as true to form as possible through a meticulous process of mummification, which involved many fragrant aromatics, such as myrrh, pine resin, cedar, cinnamon, juniper and later also frankincense (in the Roman era). 

In both China and Japan, incense is burnt daily in domestic altars, to honour the ancestors. In China it is mostly a sandalwood based incense, and in Japan incense sticks of many complex aromatics. In India, incense is burnt on the funeral pyres, to help elevate the spirits of the dead to higher realms, and also to mask the intense smell of burning flesh. Of course, the wealthier the deceased is, the more incense can be burnt. I've even read of using sandalwood as the fuel for pyres of the richest people. 

Tobacco is used by the First Nations to communicate with the spirits - almost as a key to their world.  It is also believed that offering tobacco will tell other plants that we're seeking their help and guidance. The Cree people would bury their dead holding tobacco and sweetgrass incense, and also personal belonging that would be considered as an extension of themselves, such as their pipe. 

The Mexicans use copal incense to show the ancestors' spirits the way back into our world for their annual visit, so that they won't get lost. Marigold flowers adorn the graves and portals through which these spirits are expected to enter. This tradition is rooted in the Aztec customs of giving the Gods offerings of maize (corn), or else - copal moulded to the shape of maize foods, such as grains or ears of corn, and even tamales and tortillas. They also buried the dead with pieces of "jade" - copal resin painted in green, as food for their last journey. 

Some of the practices are kept alive today, and others faded away while others disappeared because they seemed to have very little hold in our current reason-obsessed culture. However, one thing is for certain: when you bring forth a scent or an aroma associated with a beloved person who has passed away, you're making that person alive, even if just in your memories. 

Tonight I will slice a red grapefruit and uncork a bottle of Old Spice in memory of my grandfather. These fond memories and the love our ancestors poured into us are eternal. 

Happy Halloween!

Clarimonde by Ayala Moriel
Clarimonde, a photo by Ayala Moriel on Flickr.
Wishing you a bountiful trick-or-treating night, and reconnecting with the spirit world...

Tonight I'm celebrating with Dreaming Parallel, the perfume I created last year for the Clarimonde project. There are 2 bottles remaining from this haunting limited edition of half-faded roses, dark violets, musk, turn of the century patchouli and cloves, carnation, narcissus and dragon's blood (it's an actual plant resin, which is as red as blood and which I've ground and tinctured especially for this vampire-perfume). The last 2 bottles are presented in a little hand-painted wooden coffin.

And, you got a couple of hours still to take advantage of free shipping on my website for orders of $100 or more :-) 
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