Thursday, September 30, 2010

An Aromatherapy Party

My friend (and client) Angela Eaton recently mentioned that she was planning an "Aromatherapy Party" for some friends.  I asked her to share about it with all of us, and bless her dear heart, she has!

Hello, fellow Aromatherapy Enthusiasts!

I recently mentioned an aromatherapy party I planned to Marge, and she asked that I write it up in a blog post so that other folks could hear about it.

I have been into aromatherapy for about six years. I’m not certified as an aromatherapist, but it has crossed my mind. I’ve made room sprays and massage oils for friends over the years, keeping a close eye on safety information. My friends loved them all, but never quite got into aromatherapy themselves. I wanted to share my hobby in a way that would let them play, too, so I invited them all for an Aromatherapy Party.

At about five weeks I sent out an email with the invitation and three possible dates; whichever date had the most respondents would be our party date.

About a month before the party, I decided what we would make, and I tried to do it in a way that wouldn’t break the bank. I had already decided to keep the party small for cost (I invited eleven, and after sickness and a family emergency, we ended up with 8) and for making it easy to help people with info about the oils (safety information, their effects, etc.) I looked at my kit and realized that I really only had three oils that I would think of for a perfume oil—rose, sandalwood, and jasmine sambac. I don’t buy sandalwood anymore to keep from contributing to global demand for sandalwood, and the other oils didn’t give my friends much choice, plus they’re the most expensive oils in my collection, and perfume oils take a lot of drops. So perfume oils were out.

I had plenty of oils, however, for a nice room spray, bath salts, and a massage oil (tangerine, blood orange, clary sage, peppermint, bergamot, chamomile, geranium, black spruce, four kinds of frankincense, three lavenders, etc., plus dozens of samples). In all, I have thirty oils, but I would be comfortable having a party with a minimum of ten. Then, I ordered the rest of what I needed. I ordered the bottles I needed from, which has great prices and a ton of selection. I had purchased from them before and bought 1 ounce spray bottles, but I thought they were 2 ounces, so that’s what I bought for the party. If I were to do it again, I’d keep the room sprays at 2 ounces, but I’d make the massage oils an ounce so that people would be sure to use it all. I had not quite enough fractionated coconut oil for each person, so I ordered more of that, and I added grapeseed oil because one of my friends has a terrible nut allergy.

Two days before the party I bought supplies for a cheese tray, paper plates, napkins, spoons, paper bags, and Epsom salts. I also bought fun fruity sodas like guava, mandarin, and pineapple, which were a nice non-alcoholic option for the afternoon (one of the guests brought amaretto sours).

The morning of the party, at each place at the table, I set:
·       A paper plate with bath salts
·       A spoon for mixing the salts and oils
·       Latex gloves (no one ended up using them, but just in case)
·       A notecard for writing down recipes
·       A pen
·       A 2-ounce bottle with a dropper, filled with either fractionated coconut or grapeseed oil
·       A 2-ounce spray bottle filled with water (I used our filtered tap water. Technically, I know I should have used distilled, but I told them to just stop using the spray if it grew any mold, plus I knew from making them previously that they tended to use the sprays up quickly.)
·       A paper bag filled with two cups of Epsom salt (years ago I had purchased little metal containers for bath salts before I realized that you need two cups for a proper bath, so we put the scented salts in the little container and supplemented with unscented salts in the paper bag)
·       A printout of dilution ratios, figured for the 2-ounce containers (the bath salts can take X drops, etc.)

In the middle of the table were mint julep cups with scent strips and pipettes. I also had cute Japanese paper and packing tape to make labels for the items. I decorated with irises and the plates and napkins were purple to match.

The party was set from 1-4 on our back patio. A party like this could be done inside, but outside with maximum ventilation was best. As everyone arrived, they set their appetizers and desserts on our dining room table to go with my cheese and fruit tray. We ate and chatted for about an hour.

We went outside to the aromatherapy table and I explained what items were at their place setting. Then I opened my kit and started handing oils around, explaining that some were acceptable only for room sprays (the citruses), some for massage and bath salts. I showed them how to use a scent strip, and how you could create a blend using scent strips (one drop per strip, then mixing and matching) before you committed to a blend.

Then we handed around all of the oils and smelled them. My girlfriends were a little hesitant to actually start mixing the oils into their carriers and salts, but I encouraged them and they got started. They asked questions about different properties, and we mixed for about an hour and a half. It was great fun to share concoctions.

When things were starting to wind down, I went and got a few of my favorite aromatherapy books, and they got a real kick out of the Gabriel Mojay’s book. The extremely specific blends for certain maladies were useful and amusing, and a few friends made more blends based on the book.

We wrapped up around four. Everyone said they had a marvelous time and asked if we could have another party, maybe one where we made cleaning products. I said maybe I’d make it their Christmas gift.

I hope this inspires you to have your own aromatherapy party!
~Angela E.

My comments - what an absolutely GREAT idea!!!
Thank you so much for sharing it with us all, Angela!!!


Andy Wright said...

Wow! What a great idea! I hope this spans to other communities as a unique social event. We can definitely use this person's event experience as a base line for all those to come!

HJ said...

I adore this party idea and have decided to incorporate this concept into my bachelorette/hen's day early next year. I get to share my love of aromatherapy with those I love! :-)

Many thanks for posting this!