Ask the Perfumer Feb 3, 2013

by | Feb 3, 2013 | Anya's Garden Perfumes, natural perfume | 14 comments

I have always had an active dream life, including lucid dreams with scent, color, sound.  We’ve discussed this, since many share this phenomena, on the Yahoo Natural Perfumery group I host.  Natural perfumers tend to be in touch with all their senses, and the subconscious can’t help but bubble up, waft up, with scented images and yes – real smells – during our sleep.lucid-dreaming-2

I’ve always been one to share my dreams upon waking.  First times I remember doing this was when I was a young bride, and there was a nine-year stretch between ages 23 and 32 that they were also psychic dreams, many events coming true within a day or two of the dream.  I don’t know why they stopped, but my dream life has been so rich, I don’t miss the psychic dreams.13-Interesting-Facts-about-Dreams-bubbles

Do you dream and actually smell scent in the dream? Last night, in my dream world,I was at a dinner part in Coral Gables and lots of tasty hors d’oeuvre were passed around, and I could smell and taste each one.  A friend showed me a little metal carafe with vegan cardamom sauce and said I could mix it with some of hte vodka there.  I found a new vodka, vinyl flavored/scented! Think Barbie doll scent.  I thought this trend towards infusing vodkas with all kinds of stuff like bacon, glazed donut, horseradish, gummi bears and smoked salmon had gotten out of control.  Then I remembered that the actor Alan Cumming released a perfume that smelled of human sex and sticky adhesive tape.  I remember smiling when I got a sample of it.Georgi-Waffle-Flavored-Vodka-and-Popcorn-Vodka

Then I woke up.

Do you have scented dreams? I’ll bet you do if you work with aromatics.  In the meantime, yes, this is the usual Ask the Perfumer Sunday, please ask a question and I’ll see if I can help you.


  1. Eileeen Jackson

    Good morning Anya, It is a beautiful day! I am glad you are bringing the subject about Dreams. In Metaphysics dreams relates to feelings and it is what we call the Moon. The first thing I notice it is today you sent this page with a darker blue border color but it is still aqua of hopes and dreams. For me it tells me time of change after an ending. But then if I apply the same system to perfumery what would it be? What would be the forms? In Astrolgy we use archetypes, what would be the archetypes in perfum world? I hope this is not too dificult to answer, but this was something I start searching for about a week now and I started searching under Art forms since our minds communicates with shapes. I don’t know how to translate this Art forms to perfumery or what is the bridge.

    • Kim

      Hi Eileen, I do a lot of work with archetypes and energetic healing, even though I have been a healer for around 30yrs, natural perfumery is new to me. I have acquired this passion from my years blending aromatherapy and natural products for my clients. I have made aromatherapy products and have a range of products developed to affect the mind, emotions and psyche, with a focus on DNA and cellular healing, this is my specialty area. I feel your perfume archetypes would be the actual flowers or botanical substance. If you could use your imagination close your eyes and breathe deeply, then go within a flower or botanical ingredient you can begin to fully embrace it from its energetic signature. From this point thoughts memories, shapes, feelings and colors may arise out of the mind to represent the aromatic substance. This I expect may be experienced different for many and will depend upon your cellular memory and even your ancestral lineage memory, which may very likely surface.

      This is the way I work with what is called ‘proving a remedy’, (used in manufacturing flower essences, gem elixirs and homeopathy, It helps determine what a vibrational flower essence or remedy can be used for, if little is known about it.) we learn to intuit or feel it within our whole being as we become the essence (energy of the plant, flower etc). This is something that one would need to experiment with, observe and take notes, even share with others to get feedback on specific aromas.
      This is the approach I use when i am making my natural perfumes, I find the intuitive approach far superior over an intellectual one in creating a balanced aroma.
      I’m definitely not an expert on this from a perfumers perspective as I am a newby. I’m not sure if this makes sense but it might be a way to begin creating that bridge for you.
      All the best, Kim

      • Eileen Jackson

        Hi Kim,
        You are awesome! And you are right. I never thought to artribute “the actual flowers or botanical substance” to designate a signature. I have been studying Astrology Western, Vedic, and other healing arts too (12 years with a teacher), but specially Astrology. This art is really new to me even if I’ve been browsing it since 2003. It just that I been reading about forms from Edmound Rounitska and he mentions about “forms”, then Mona Di Orio in an interview mentions forms too. After I wrote this I browse a little bit more online then I thought if they refer to the perfume families as “forms”.
        Thanks again Kim

        • Kim

          Your welcome Eileen, you have also taught me something about perfumery terminology, which I know little. Enjoy your exploration, its what I love best about developing natural products, creating something that inspires deeper wisdom and an art form that arises from the heart. The core of our full potential and joy. Warm regards Kim

  2. Anya

    Dear Eileen:

    Today is the first time I ever wrote “I’ll see if I can help you” and it must have been prescient because I’m stumped by your question. Let me think about and get back to you. Any readers out there that wish to comment, it will be appreciated.


    • Eileen Jackson

      Thank if not is ok. It is like you know this is my therapy and I spend lots of time studying. I don’t go thru the kit and waff. I even look at the gas charts of the and expanded your forms with colors and pictures because the natural language of the mind is forms….basically 4.

  3. Susan

    HI Anya,
    I haven’t ordered my small bottles yet. My initial question a few weeks ago was: “Are the 2 dram “dropper” bottles on our supply list the ones with the glass dropper in the lid or is the 2 dram vial just called a “dropper bottle?”
    Well, looking through the npi student archives, there was a lot of discussion of evaporation of diluent and whether to use glass dropper lids because of chemical degradation of the rubber part, or to use dropper insets or to use droppers set aside for each EO etc. Has anyone found a better alternative for the 2 dram dropper bottles? I do not want to lose precious oils through evaporation or wonder about dilution percentages down the road. Any updates or suggestions relative to this is topic is heartily welcomed. Thanks!

  4. Anya

    Hi Susan:

    I urge you to take part in the student Yahoo discussion group. The readers here don’t know the details of the supplies and materials, and by asking in the student group, you’ll get students chiming in and all the students can see the answers, rather than me answering it here, which isn’t the right forum, and limits my student audience.


    • Susan

      Thanks Anya,
      I posted my questions to the group.
      I dream in color but will have to pay more attention to scent while I work on my studies.

  5. Priya

    What a delight hearing about your dream, Anya! Dreaming is one of the joys of being alive, I think – it’s amazing that we are all able to create in full, vivid detail all sorts of sensory experiences that we think we could never create in waking life. I had a dream a few months back in which I was engaging in a lovely lavender-scented foot bath beside a couple of amazing women (as it happened, Michelle Obama was in the mix). There was a drift of coarse salt and basmati rice at the bottom my wooden foot bath, which I played with with my toes, such a pleasure. I was so struck by the experience that I immediately wrote down my sensory impressions, and later that day I worked on creating the soak experience in real life (sans Michelle Obama!).

    Anya, I have a question for you about lucid dreams and aromatics… I too have lucid dreams. I love having them and have worked on my dream life through journaling and other techniques. I’ve read that aromatic herbs can support creative dreaming and lucid dreams in particular – I recall mugwort and Labrador tea are said to be useful. I have mugwort herb and have been meaning to make an herb pillow with it for a while, and I have mugwort essential oil (very high in thujone, I know!) that I’ve yet to put to use… I was wondering if you have any favored aromatics for indulging in creative dreaming? If so, how do you use them?

  6. Anya

    Hi Priya

    Thanks for stopping by and welcome to the Guild. I just uploaded your link (among others) to the member’s page today. I also added you to the private yahoo group for Guild members, so check your email for the message from there.

    Lucid dreaming is easy, but I never try to program a dream. Instead, if I have something I want to “solve” or make a decision, I do meditation as I fall asleep and sometimes I get great insights. They always come just as I fall asleep or as I slowly awaken.

    When I spoke about the nine-year period of psychic dreams, I forgot to mention I decided to keep a journal then. I still have it somewhere. I find, however, when I keep one, and I have to write everything when I wake up, i get exhausted because I have so much to write down, sometimes two full pages, single-spaced. I gave it up.

    Mugwort is very good. I don’t use it anymore, as I feel I don’t need it. Mugwort brings on fantastical dreams, like science fiction, or another dimension.

    Have you ever read Thomas Edison’s dream story? Or other writers, inventors? Many find the answer in their dreamworld.


    • Priya

      Thank you for the welcome, Anya!

      I’ve never actually had any luck with trying to program or control a lucid dream. For years I had a person from my past keep appearing in my dreams; I decided I wanted to ask him what he’s doing in my dreams, so when I became lucid I found him and asked – and he refused to answer! Which was true to his character, really. 🙂 I’ve had many a creative insight in dreams, but usually it’s a question of being receptive to what’s there rather than looking hard for something specific.

      I don’t think I’ve ever read Edison’s dream story, but I will look it up!

      Back when you used to take mugwort, did you drink mugwort tea at night? I also wonder about mugwort eo in a diffuser.

      If you’ve already gone to bed, sweet dreams!

  7. Sanayah Mahomed

    Greeting from South Africa Cape Town.
    My name is Sanayah Mahomed. Years of searching for this exotic ABISHAG PERFUME . A client of mine gifted me with this Tiny bottle of ABISHAG PERFUME about 20yrs ago. Ever since I have been LOOKING. I have kept my empty bottle hoping to find it. I eventually gave up. Until this evening after watching months of The Turkish series RESURRECTION ESTUGRUL. I googled and to my delight I came across your story. How can I purchase a bottle of ABISHAG. Do they make body creams etc. Looking forward in hearing from you
    Sanayah Mahomed

    • Anya


      I do not have any for sale, I only have a tiny bottle myself.


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