Sharing passion and love
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12
May
2017
0

A Simple Path: Asapoth’s Amanda Saurin distils her wisdom in our latest interview

Amanda Saurin has been on our radar for a while now. Not just because her beautiful flagship store is in our hometown, but also because of her joyful and inspirational approach to her business, A.S APOTHECARY – and indeed to life. Infused with Amanda’s love of plants, her organic skincare products are exquisite concoctions aimed at promoting not just beauty but wellbeing. Her range is carefully curated and each plant is hand selected to ensure only the highest quality ingredients find their way into a product. We caught up with Amanda between a trip to Cyprus sourcing plants for her skincare range and installing her new Alembic Still (a mighty-looking copper contraption for distilling), and picked her brains about what she does and why she loves it.

 

as apothecary store

 

 

  1. Welcome Amanda, thank you so much for taking the time to answer our questions. We are really excited to have you here. Can you tell us what you do and how you came to be doing it?

 

I have very unusual but incredibly satisfying work, I often describe it as an organic amble. I think we often make the mistake of rigidly defining ourselves and what we do to the exclusion of everything else, for me every experience adds another layer of possibility. The only limiting factor is the courage to leap.

 

I am first and foremost a plantswoman – I have worked with flowers, trees and herbs for over 30 years. I’m a qualified Homeopath using herbs as the mainstay of my practice. I’m also a distiller, skincare maker and most recently producer of delicious aromatics to the Isle of Harris Distillery.

 

My route to my current work has come via teaching, law and art…

organic skincare range

 

 

2. If you had one piece of advice or wisdom to pass on to your younger self, what would it be?

 

Do what your heart desires, the rest will follow. And the supplementary advice with the benefit of hindsight, if you have those 5 children you’ll never be rich but every day you’ll benefit from all that love.

 

3. What is it about the simple life that you find appealing?

 

I don’t have a simple life. I don’t think in this world right now there can be simplicity – in common with virtually all the women I know and work with, life is a complex juggling exercise and it’s disingenuous to deny it. The combination of children, partner and elderly parents precludes simplicity. What I do have is a rich and fulfilling work life that allows for the joy of simple pleasures. The plants we grow, the harvesting of Roses, Lavender and all the rest is beyond delight. Travelling to Cyprus and the Isle of Harris to pick and distil is quite simply salve for the soul.

 

4. How can we counter the pulls of content-sharing and curating images of our lives with the need for being in the moment?

 

This question is underpinned by another: how do we ensure that in presenting our curated lives we are honest? I think content sharing can be great, it can be a way of inviting people into your world, revealing the parts of your work that inspire you. However, where life becomes content led, in other words rather than taking the odd snap of something you love you feel pressure to publish a daily perfection, there is a major problem. There is a fine line between sharing for pleasure and dictating a particular look, offering reality versus a hyper-sanitised version, being inspirational and offering false aspiration. These are all in need of balance and thought. Content sharing should be secondary to living your life not dominated by creating photo opportunities. Eat the food, drink the coffee, live and take the odd photo.

organic skincare

5. Who inspires you?

 

It is no exaggeration to say that the team of women I work with are a daily inspiration – they manage their lives, their children and then they come into work and manage me. Without them, A.S APOTHECARY would literally be nothing. They grow the plants, tend the garden, help with making, organise orders, dispatch, run the shop, clean, clear, settle accounts, write engaging copy and everything else. When I walk in with a new idea they listen, help me to think it through and go for it. They are unafraid, they leap with me and offer wise counsel along the way.

 

6. What are your essential homeware items/ things you couldn’t do without?

 

Without my French press I simply could not function. I love coffee, it is a ritual that I find sets off my day perfectly.

 

I also love my pen knife which I carry everywhere I go – I use it for taking cuttings, scraping off tree resins, dividing perennials and on impromptu picnics.

 

7. What would you like to be doing in 10 years’ time?

 

I have literally no idea. I rather like the idea of buying a camper van (the GranVan) and wandering between the homes of my children creating mayhem with my grand children. I’ll still be making things and working with plants – that is a lifelong passion.

petals

8. What’s the wildest thing you’ve ever done?

 

I’ve lived a life of wildness with too many adventures to mention but actually, the consistently wildest thing I’ve done is to defy convention on a daily basis. I’ve railed against all the rubbish I see in the beauty industry, I’ve exposed the hypocrisy of green washing and championed real, honest skincare – that really is wild in this day and age.

distilling

 

So much to take away from this, thank you so much Amanda.

And if you’d like to read more in our A Simple Path interview series, in which we speak to creative and makers who share our love of a simple aesthetic and a slower approach to life, go here and here.

 

2
May
2017
0

5 Spring Cleaning Essentials to Make Your Home Sparkle, Naturally

If you’ve been gripped by the energy of renewal that Spring brings, you may be turning to your home and tackling those areas that are in need of some TLC. Brighter, sunnier days can show up smeary windows that have been curtained off throughout the Winter. Bulky woollies might need to be stored away, leaving space for fresh, lighter clothes. Now that you can throw open the windows those tired corners can get a lick of paint, and heavy drapes can be replaced by lightweight summer curtains. Spring cleaning needed be a massive task – just focussing for 15 minutes on each room can bring some Springtime sparkle into your house, and even the busiest of us can find this small amount of time for some sprucing. To get you inspired, here are 5 Spring cleaning essentials to put the fun back into housework and the beauty back into your cleaning cupboard.

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15
Apr
2017
1

A Simple Path Interview No. 3: Jane Day’s sumptuous style

Ah friends, have we got a treat for you. This is the third instalment of our interview series, A Simple Path, in which we talk to inspiring creatives who are doing more with less. This week we are joined by the lovely Jane Day from teawithruby.co.uk. Sometimes you come across a blog that is inspiring yet authentic, beautiful yet simple. Tea with Ruby is just that. Jane is an interiors blogger, stylist, writer and photographer whose gorgeous blog always offers new ways to style your home using simple, sustainable, beautiful things. She is a master of light, taking pictures that have depth, texture and an incredible stillness. There is an authenticity to Jane’s work – you know she really lives what she writes. And she’s a huge fan of linen, which makes us very happy. We love her work and had to find out more about what she does, and why she does it.

Grab yourself a coffee and savour this post – it will inspire you, and get you thinking about small changes you could make to slow your life down and be properly in the moment.

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24
Mar
2017
1

Interview No.2 in A Simple Path: Erica Lee

Woohoo! Here’s the second instalment of our interview series, A Simple Path, which explores how inspiring, creative people are doing more with less.

This month we had the absolute pleasure of interviewing Erica Lee, @thehyggewife on Instagram and creator of thehyggewife.com. We are huge fans of Erica’s stunning photography and admire her commitment to living a simpler, more intentional life. Sit back and enjoy – we think you are going to love this one.

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13
Mar
2017
0

7 Ways to Celebrate the Coming of Spring

There’s been a definite spring-like smell in the air these past few days. The evenings are stretching a bit longer, the hens are laying more, wild birds are chorusing, bulbs are pushing stems gleefully up through the earth. It’s a time to celebrate renewal and rebirth, so we thought we’d give you 7 simple ways to herald in the new season. So sit back, pour yourself a cup of tea, open a window and drink in the beautiful spring.

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24
Feb
2017
1

Introducing Our Fabulous New Blog Series: A Simple Path

We are so excited to announce the launch of a new monthly series of interviews with creatives and people who share our love for simple, sustainable living and beautiful interiors! A Simple Path is intended to be a place of inspiration, inquiry and insight into the lives and lifestyles of people who are doing more, with less. From photographers to stylists, B&B owners to apothecaries, we will bring you a smorgasbord of loveliness and fascinating ideas on how we can live life better.
Our first guest, Camilla Jorvad from the stunning Danish island of Aeroe, is special not just because she is the first in the series, but also due to her incredibly thoughtful answers and inspiring outlook on life. We sent Camilla some questions, and here’s what she replied. We think you are going to love her story (and her images). We are already packing our bags for a trip to Sigridsminde now…

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21
Feb
2017
0

9 Brilliant Podcasts to Brighten Up Your Day

If you like to listen to something while you commute, relax in the bath, travel or do the washing up, we’ve got 9 brilliant podcasts that are just the job. On a range of subjects, from books to architecture, there is something for everyone in this list. Episodes range from short bursts (perfect for listening to while you’re folding the linen) to longer segments that really delve deep into a topic. Wherever you are, you will want one of these to hand.

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13
Feb
2017
0

Come find us on Instagram!

Hello lovely folk. Hope your month is shaping up to be a glorious one.

Just a quick note to say that we are now on Instagram, so come on over and find us: @linen.beauty. We will be sharing images that celebrate our love for linen, simplicity, slow living and beautiful interiors.

lightroom linen (1 of 1)

If you know of any great Instagram feeds we should follow, leave us a note in the Comments so we can check them out.

Can’t wait to see you!

21
Jan
2017
0

Cleaning linen the old-fashioned way: Urine, sour milk and elbow grease!

If you thought doing laundry was a chore, we’ve got some fascinating historical facts about how people cared for linen before modern washing machines and Persil made an appearance. Linenbeauty.com met with textile historian and museums officer Emma O’Connor, of Sussex Past, a charity which runs several historic sites in Sussex, England, and learned some pretty eye-opening things about caring for linens the old-school way. Here’s what she told us:

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19
Dec
2016
0

7 Ways to Look After Yourself Over the Holiday Season

This time of year is hectic. All that time spent running around getting things for other people, finding costumes for Nativity plays, baking things, throwing parties and trying to keep the peace within our families. And whilst it is the season for goodwill towards others, it is so important to look after yourself as well. If you are feeling overwhelmed or daunted by all that Christmas and New Year brings, here are 7 ways to make sure you have the energy to keep going, and to stay happy.

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