Wednesday, July 17, 2013

miracle on north madison street

At the end of May last year, I wrote a post about making lavender oil, and then I never followed up to say whether or not the experiment was a success (whoops).  It wasn't a complete failure, because I did end up with lavender 'water' which was very aromatic and great for adding to baths.  I don't think it could've been used for any other purpose (like ironing) because the lavender water I ended up with was tinged brown since it was essentially a marinade of lavender and vodka.  So, I made something nice to add to a hot relaxing bath, but that's it.  I did not end up with lavender oil.  HOWEVER, (!!!!) just last week, I really and truly did make real lavender essential oil.  Back in the winter when I was doing yard work with the man on the next block over, we had a few conversations about our mutual interest in essences.  He said he'd been curious about making perfumes for years, and I said I'd been wanting to make lavender oil for years.  Lo and behold, a few weeks ago this man bought a contraption for distilling essential oils, and one evening last week I rode my bike over to his house with a paper grocery bag full of the lavender I grew this year.  As the sun went down, we sat on the porch and waited for the water to boil and sure enough in good time, the oil evaporated with the steam and separated from the water and we really and truly extracted lavender oil.  It was dark when we finished (too dark to take further pictures), and I rode my bike home feeling giddy and so grateful that another one of my little scheme-dreams has been realized.  I'm going to give the oil to my grandma, and she is going to add it to a batch of soap she is making... so we'll have locally made soap scented with the lavender I grew.  Yippee!!  I can't thank the neighbor man enough... I hope he likes his new contraption as much as I do!

* a Post Script especially for D.F. if you're reading:  This neighbor man is your old friend D.D. (you know, he plays the bass and fixes clocks!)


  1. Of course I am reading and I'm delighted that you've made the acquaintance of my old friend. At first I thought that this was a next project!
    Is this process considered distillation?

  2. Yay!!! So excited for you :D Have fun!!