Our sweet friends Diana and Donna of The Jewels of NY invited us over for brunch this past weekend. We shared with them our Grandma’s recipe for Lemon Pound Cake and they served a delicious asparagus and gruyere strata and a colorful carrot and beet salad with yogurt dressing.
Click over to see our interview where we discuss what ingredients inspire us to make perfume this Spring, and what we look forward to cooking.
This week I’ll be sharing photos from our trip to Hawaii. In January, my little family (that is, my husband, 9 month old son, and I) decided we’d try this big experiment. I own my own business and my husband is a Community Organizer at an art museum so our schedules can be pretty hectic – working at night, working on the weekends, etc. I never did get a real maternity leave, though I can’t complain as I have the freedom to create my own schedule. Anyway, if there’s one time during the year when things slow down juuust a little, it’s January. And with the record snows this year, we made the leap and decided to leave for a whole month. My beautiful friend MeiLi has a daughter just a few weeks older than our son, and we had the amazing luck of staying with her in Kula, on the slopes of the volcano Haleakala. The sweeping views down to the ocean every morning still haunt me.
I had the pleasure of sitting recently with the perfumer Yosh Han, who read my aura as part of a feature with Bergamot (Yosh’s Ginger Ciao is featured in the October box, Indian Summer). I went into it so casually, thinking what a fun morning it would be. Yosh really shocked me by being so dead on with the things going on in my life right now! A true clairvoyant. Thank you Yosh : )
Name: Jen Altman
Occupation: Purveyor of Talismans and Potions at Cisthene. Photographer and writer.
Hometown: Heartland, USA
Where do you currently reside?: Asheville, North Carolina
Favorite MCMC fragrance: LOVE and KEPT – I’ve been wearing one on each wrist and behind each ear.
When did you first start wearing perfume? What fragrance was it?: At 16 my mother bought me a bottle of Trésor by Lancome. Whenever I smell it today, I think of hockey games and boys, and high school and happiness…
If you were a plant, what would you be?: My nickname is Juniper for Donovan’s “Jennifer Juniper” so that would have to be it.
What’s in your refrigerator right now?: Highland Gaelic Ale, Irish Cheddar and homemade Black Rose Jam
Three words that describe you: Myth, love, fire
Whitney opened the boutique Myrtle in the Echo Park neighborhood of Los Angeles in 2011 and has been an avid supporter of MCMC ever since. With a focuses on female designers, the shop carries brands like Ermie, Mary Meyer and Samantha Pleet. I’m hoping 2013 is the year I get to visit LA and if so, Myrtle is on my list!
Name: Whitney Bickers
Occupation: Shop Owner, Myrtle
Hometown: Westerville, OH
Where do you currently reside?: Los Angeles, CA
Favorite MCMC fragrance: On myself I like HUNTER, but in the air, I love LOVE! I frequently add a drop or two to the water when I’m steaming clothes here at the shop.
When did you first start wearing perfume? What fragrance was it?: The first fragrance I remember having was a wax perfume that came in a plastic locket with a Barbie doll; I loved it and always wanted something like it. I finally tracked down a grown-up version in Narciso Rodriguez’s For Her, which really makes me laugh. The first perfume I ever bought for myself was Red Jeans at the Versace store in Venice, Italy. I was in high school and I felt SO sophisticated!
If you were a plant, what would you be?: I am one of three girls and when I was a kid, we had three trees in the front yard. The Bradford Pear was “mine” and that’s probably fitting because the fruit is tiny.
What’s in your refrigerator right now?: Butter and eggs (I love to bake) and leftover pizza (bf’s fave)
Three words that describe you: Night-owl, clothes-horse, worry-wart
Susannah came by my studio last year wearing an awesome large brimmed hat and told me about Freda, the new shop she opened in Marfa, TX. I’ve always wanted to visit Marfa and then she told me about all of the hot springs in the region – sold! A special piece of trivia: there is only one perfume brand sold in all of Marfa, and it’s MCMC at Freda.
Name: Susannah Lipsey
Occupation: Shop Owner, Freda
Hometown: Bryan, TX
Where do you currently reside?: Marfa, TX
Favorite MCMC fragrance: I can’t choose just one! Dude No. 1, HUNTER, and NOBLE.
When did you first start wearing perfume? What fragrance was it?: I started wearing perfume when I was in Junior High. I think it was Happy by Clinique and then Calvin Klein’s CK1. Mall purchases – yikes!
If you were a plant, what would you be?: These days, probably a yucca.
What’s in your refrigerator right now?: Marfa Maid goat cheese, avocados, eggs, and Oregon Chai latte
Three words that describe you: Honest, expressive, perceptive
A bit belated, but when Hurricane Sandy hit the NY area last month, it wreaked havoc on the Ananda Harvest. 150 trees fell across the entirety of the property, damaging fences, and creating huge clean-up and restoration expenses. The GARDEN fragrance was created to benefit the Ananda Harvest, and since Sandy, MCMC has donated $1,200 to their relief efforts.
The Ananda Harvest is a farming initiative upstate, in the town of Monroe. Run by a loose organization of friends, anyone is invited to visit, learn about farming and sustainability, and lend a hand throughout the growing season. A variety of vegetables are grown in the garden – sugar snap peas, kale, garlic, lettuce, hot peppers, tomatoes. Local high school kids have been invited to visit and learn about farming and nutrition, and the goal is for the garden to sustain a local ashram and yoga center.
On a related sidenote, NY Heartwoods has been using trees felled by Sandy to fill a demand for local wood products.