Wednesday, October 2, 2013


Update 28-12-2013: My new blog can now be found at

Hi everyone, I haven't blogged for a while as I've been quite busy preparing for an upcoming craft show, where I will be showcasing a few new perfumes and also some other products. Here's one of the new perfumes I've been working on:

It's a perfume that has a natural base of cold-pressed moringa oil, and is scented with nutmeg, ylang ylang and other special ingredients to be revealed at a later date!
I also wanted to announce that later this month I will be starting a new blog over at Wordpress, where it will be more connected to my business website. There I plan to share more on the perfume-making process, including any new and current ingredients that I learn about, educational perfume books and resources and how to use them. I will transfer a few of the more useful blog posts from here over there as well. And I will still keep this current BajanScent blog open for now as I do have future plans for this blog as well.

Stay tuned,

Thursday, August 1, 2013

Afro comb workshop

For those of us who love the beauty and craftsmanship of antique African combs - not to mention their rich culture and history (and I know there are many of us)....

Here's a quick look at two beautiful pieces:

Ashanti comb, Ghana. Early 20th century.

Kulango Comb, Ivory Coast
You'll also be pleased to know that The Fitzwilliam Museum in Cambridge is holding a series of events and activities until October as part of their Origins of the Afro Comb exhibition which is currently under way. I wrote about the exhibition just recently and why it's a must-see!
Yesterday one of the events held at the Fitzwilliam was especially for children and families and was conducted by K.N. Chimbiri, who wrote a companion piece to the exhibition entitled Secrets of the Afro Comb, 6000 years of art & culture.
She revealed fascinating and beautiful combs like the ones above that have been used over generations. Participants were asked to bring their own afro combs and to take part in actitivities around the exhibition. Chimbiri was also on hand to sign copies of her book.

Participants also got to create and admire their own afro comb prints....

There are more events to come at the Fitzwilliam, including hair braiding demos, a lecture on natural past and present, and a discussion on the art and materials surrounding the Origins of the Afro Comb exhibition.

Saturday, July 27, 2013

Dinner at Cafe Des Amis London

Last Saturday I was able to enjoy some lovely French dining at CafĂ© Des Amis, a restaurant and wine bar which serves seasonal French cuisine. The setting is warm and intimate and it's located quietly in Hanover Place just off Long Acre in Covent Garden.

Our evening started with some simple but divine fish favourites.....
....smoked haddock and salmon with carrot and lime salad and horseradish.
And also French onion soup with toasted gruyere crouton.
For our main we had...

roast rump of lamb, buttered green beans and pomme mousseline lamb jus.
And more smoked haddock...! the form of smoked haddock, crushed parsley potatoes, grain mustard beurre blanc and fried egg.
They served it with the fried egg on top.
This was hands-down my favourite of the evening.

 Then time for dessert.
 Marinated strawberries and pink muscatel sorbet.....
...and vanilla cheesecake with fig coulis. I'll definitely be back.

Thursday, July 18, 2013

Five reasons why you should see the Origins of the Afro Comb Exhibition in Cambridge

I recently took in the Origins of the Afro Comb exhibition at the Fitzwilliam Museum, University of  Cambridge in England. This exhibition truly surpassed my wildest expectations.
It runs from July to October, and I will be returning soon, so that I can study some of the combs more in-depth. This exhibition is one of those things you have to experience more than once, because there is something new to learn and see each time.
Here are a few reasons you should take in this exhibition:
 It's truly ground-breaking.
 More than three hundred amazing combs from all over the continent of Africa are being exhibited in one place for the very first time. Some of the earliest are from ancient Egypt, dating back 6,000 years. And there are also some beautifully silver-plated ones on display which were recently made to depict the journey of the Maroons of the Caribbean. 
It opens our eyes.
Ivory comb. 16th Century, Benin, Nigeria.
This exhibition reveals so much about African art and culture, pre-slavery. We are usually told that Africa did have civilizations prior to the arrival of Europeans, but to actually see up-close real examples, and the artistry and skill that would have been an every day occurrence back then is fascinating.

There are many surprises.

If you have ever thought that combs are just simple objects for grooming the hair, then you need to see ones like these, created by a 20th century artist from Edo, Nigeria. The exhibition contains different African combs of many shapes, sizes and materials. All created for different reasons - some were small-scale sculpture, others were decorative, others still were for gifts or love tokens, and others were created to denote certain status.

You can get involved.
There's a special digital interactive section where you can record your own hair journey, and also listen to the hair stories of others with African hair type.

There's more to explore.
If you're unable to attend the exhibition, or if you simply want to continue the remarkable journey of the Afro comb on your own, you can also purchase the beautifully illustrated Secrets of the Afro Comb: 6,000 years of art & culture, which was written by K.N.Chimbiri as a companion piece to the exhibition. Like the exhibition, Secrets of the Afro Comb is unique in that it's the first book on African combs written for children. But it's definitely not just a book about hair combs or natural hairstyles; the information in this book and the way it is presented is just as mind-opening for adults as well in my opinion. It covers subjects such as hair biology, world art, the middle passage, the history of Islam and Christianity; it also contains some rare, previously unpublished photographs. It's available on (pre-order until July 20th), or through the Book Depository, which offers free shipping worldwide, and also at the gift shop of the Fitzwilliam Museum.

Sunday, June 23, 2013

Tea & Chocolate

Chocolate & Lavender (source unknown.)

I created a board on Pinterest to showcase various tea and chocolate delights from around the world. Mainly anything related to tea or chocolate that captures the eye or imagination.

Wednesday, May 22, 2013

Growing a plant pot

Pineapple Plant photo copyright Dmitry Bryndin. All rights reserved.
I’ve been inspired to do this since some very knowledgeable guys who grow and sell their own fruits and vegetables gave me some tips.

They said it should take about a year before you get a pineapple, but they know of someone who got one to grow in six months!

Also, Pinterest has lots of tips and ideas for growing your own fruit trees like lemon and orange in a regular plant pot.

So I will take the plunge. Will I have success this time, or will it go the way of my other attempts. Like the tobacco, the lavender, the chamomile…… I love herbs and vegetable gardens but haven’t had too much luck with the green thumb so far.

BTW, besides being rich in bromelain, an anti-inflammatory used today in many supplements, pineapple also contains many natural aroma chemicals which contribute to its unique and lovely scent, and which are frequently extracted from the fruit for use in perfumes.

Ethyl lactate is one of these aroma compounds found in pineapple. It has a fruity, butterscotch-like aroma which goes well with blood orange, black pepper and lime, and is used as a top note in perfumes.*
Pineapple prefers sunny, dry conditions, so a mixture of half sand and half potash in the plant pot is recommended. Place in a bright sunny area (it’s possible to grow indoors too) and water about once every two days. We’ll see.
* Source: Perfuming with Natural Isolates by Shelley Waddington.