Continuing with the theme of DIY and home distillation, this is my latest easy to make distillation unit showcasing today’s distillation of Frankincense Dalzielii from Nigeria. A gorgeous looking resin that yields a superb essential oil.
I have been told on occasion my instructions here could be clearer. Though I’ve been meaning to rewrite some of them or do video tutorials, I just haven’t found the time. Luckily, my Aromatherapist friend Robin Schiller-Kessler took the initiative, built my “Magical Couscousiere” still, and recorded the process step by step. I named it the […]
While we fashion our tools and equipment by mimicking Nature’s processes and rhythms, the art and artistry of a thing is drawn from within us, independent of the tools we work with.
This rather lengthy video demonstrates how one can make a simple and effective distillation apparatus with easily found parts. With an understanding of the underlying principles of distillation, many common household vessels can be used to distill essential oils from aromatic plant material. The Moroccan “Couscousierre” is likely my favourite kitchen pot to work with […]
Gratitude to Christianne L’Esperance for shooting, editing and posting this video. It shows how easy it is to distill essential oils at home. In it I share some of the basic principles, terminology, dos and don’ts, easy to access parts and where to get them. Though by no means a step by step walk through, I […]
Besides exploring the rich array of aromatics in Madagascar, meeting farmers, harvesters and exporters, my host and I hope to build a small distillation unit with the goal of training local artisans to produce high quality essential oils and direct more of our Western dollars to their communities.
For those who will be in South Central Ontario this weekend As promised, I will teach a distillation workshop this Saturday in the Apothecary’s Garden at the Teaching gardens in Churchill Park Hamilton. It will be part of the Hamilton Herbal Weekend. Short notice, but it will keep you limber. You will learn How to distill essential oils […]
Artisan essential oil distillers make up an underground and grassroots movement that we have invoked, called into being, with our need for transparency, quality, ethics and sustainable practices in our essential oil market.
I want to thank everyone for their generous donations to my work with indigenous harvesters and efforts to establish fair and sustainable trade of resins and other fragrant/medicinal materials. I could not have met and worked with Civet farmers, Somali resin co-op managers or the resin harvesting women of the Samburu tribe without your financial support. This influx was unexpected and heartwarming. Much more than money, I was bolstered by the appreciation and warm moral support for these ventures. It makes me feel like change is possible in our world. That we can all work together to make this a better place for everyone, plants, animals and people. It felt like a net of love that somehow appeared under a crazy idea and a leap of faith. My deepest and most sincere gratitude to you all!
Professor Dagne has a good stock of Frankincense essential oils at the moment, which isn’t always the case, and I am buying a nice selection from him while i am here. The purchase will help support his work with local flora, and selling them to my customers and peers supports my projects with the resin harvesters and Civet farmers in Africa
First night in Addis Ababa Ethiopia, reclining in a hammock, chewing on some Chaat and gazing at the moon at 2,355 meters above sea level. She feels closer somehow. Supporting a huge halo, I’m comforted by her unchanging presence no matter where in the world i might be. The blend of fragrances in the air […]
Spiritual and physical alchemy are not distinct paths, but one the reflection of the other. Each making the other possible. Two sides of one coin. We are transformed along with the materials, relationships and processes we engage with. Lead to gold baby. Lead to gold.