Jill McKeever of For Strange Women

Tell us a little bit about yourself. Who is the earthy craftress behind “For Strange Women”?

I live in Kansas City with my cat and I make things every day. I have a great group of friends who are also artists and we collaborate, craft together, and support each other with everything we do. I am a small, soft spoken Cancerian lady and I just turned 30. My life is a little crazy and I love it.

When did your interest in aromatherapy and natural perfume oils first become apparent?

As far as I can remember, I have had an affinity for non-visual art and alternative sensory perception. I actually spent most of my time in college working with sound, and before that movement with dance. About seven years ago I let that curiosity and obsession fixate on scent, and I am such a sensitive person that I realized I could only stand to work with natural materials.

How did you begin to learn the art of perfumery?

I experimented. A LOT. It was expensive.

Take us through a conventional day at the studio. What is your conceptualization and execution process like?

I try not to over think things. I just ask myself, “what do I love?” and “what excites me right now?” and I try to avoid trends as much as possible. I have learned to put myself in a childlike state of mind where I can just have fun with it and not put unnecessary pressure on myself to create. By doing this I can be very prolific.

How long does it take to concoct the perfect scent?

Some just take a day or two, and some take forever to get just right. Winter Kitty took a year or so, because I had to source a few really strange plant oils to finally get all the elements I had in my mind. I am really particular and I take my time making new things. It is often a 3-6 month process from the time I think of a new line to when it is launched on my website.

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