Ephemera Guide: Living the Gloom Life

It’s the most wonderful time of the year.  Hello dearies, to say that I’m jazzed about the upcoming holiday is a bit of an understatement. I started prepping for our annual Halloween party in July. This year’s theme is Master & Margarita, and I had to be seriously talked out of getting a four-foot tall…

The Queen of the Poison Garden: Atropa Belladonna

When I was a girl, I went for a walk in the forest with my family. While prancing about, as I was wont to do, I came across a bush of the most beautiful berries surrounded by flowers that looked, to me, like small purple bluebells. I was young, but I remember the allure of…

Ephemera Guide: Witches, Britches, & Bad Bitches

The keystone of a decade and a half of my life was ballet. I was entirely devoted, and I still have the dancer’s feet to prove said devotion.Being a muscular country kid, and on the short side, I didn’t fit the lead roles occupied by the Primas. Instead, as a plucky Sujet Danseur, I played…

The Poisoned Garden: Datura

Remember kids, the most toxic plants are often the most innocent-looking and alluring. Datura is a girly sweet-floral, but its other names give away its true nature (Devil’s Trumpets, Hell’s Bells, Poisoned Moon Flower).

The Chemistry of Death and Desire

What does a fleshy tuberose, cooked Brussel sprouts, chocolate, the musk of human sex, faeces, and a decomposing body all have in common?

An Apple of Whale Poop a Day Keeps The Black Death at Bay

If you are a lover of perfumes, you have many joys, one of them is getting to explain the mystical substance known as Ambergris to the unsuspecting.  Aged Ambergris (literally grey amber) has an earthy mildly marine sweetness. Think of warm, sea-salted skin after a day of sailing.