I’m Karen, the face with the ‘nose’!
Quite a little one according to my Dad. He said when I was born I didn’t have one, so he rolled up a piece of putty and popped it on, giving it a little push with his thumb!
He’s right you know, I’m sure this little upturned nose has a thumb print on it! But this nose has done me proud and after of a lifetime of knowing it perceived things differently to many other peoples noses, I finally put it to good use and launched my artisan perfume brand in 2019.
Want to know where this nose is leading me now?
2020 dawned and I was feeling restless.
My signature perfumes were receiving recognition but even more exciting, they were being talked about across all my social media, which was fantastic! People were buying them and offering uplifting and positive reviews. As rewarding and fulfilling as this was, it felt the right time to look to the future and consider how KTFF needed to grow.
However, deciding on my next steps was the hardest part. I had so many ‘next steps’ that I wanted to take; I was in fear of not looking behind me to see how far I’d already come. How many of us do this?
Is it not true, whilst rushing to meet the next day, we often fail to stop, turn around and see the beautiful sunset we’ve left behind us?
My next steps must be a logical progression. Ambition must be kept ‘real.’
My journey, creating my signature fragrances seemed easier by far, than then taking them to market. A 24/7 job that was to last well over a year!
I was under no illusion that whatever I chose to do next would not land in my lap: it needed to be driven.
As Coco Chanel once said, “There is no time for cut-and-dried monotony. There is time for work. And time for love. That leaves no other time.” I am lucky as I was convinced that whatever I was going to do next would always combine love and time in equal measure!
Up until February of this year I had been renting space in a perfume lab provided by my mentor and exceptional Master Perfumer, John Stephen, yet the reality was slowly dawning, I was yearning for my own lab.
I craved my own space where I could be creative whenever it suited. I had to have immediate access to the rows and rows of fragrance materials that I had become used to. Ingredients I had set my heart on, were calling out to be decanted into those enigmatic amber bottles, the colours in a perfume creators’ palate!
It felt essential to be able to pick up the next day where I had left off and not be expected to clear away at the end of each lab day and head home. This was what I needed.
Then, and totally unexpectedly during this time of navel gazing and deliberation, Coronavirus hit and very soon we were ‘locked-down’.
To be honest the first week, with its gloriously sunny days, the earie yet soothing quietness of lock-down did feel like the perfect ‘staycation.’ Where bird song became deafeningly loud yet where our skies stilled; the awful juxtaposition to the news, filled with unimaginable horrors and sadness.
I needed to keep safe, keep those I loved safe, listen, and learn how to do this.
I also needed to find a place to express myself and take some comfort for me as nothing was normal anymore. I was confined to the house, and for who knew how long and that was that. My hour a day of permitted outdoor exercise gifted me time to really see the world about me through fresh eyes and truly appreciate the seasons morph from winter in to spring.
Would now be a good time to think ahead? Was this really the right time to plan for future? A future that was undoubtedly going to be immensely different.
Hour after hour went by talking of to myself, coupled equally with time spent talking to those I trust and value. Professional advice was sought from those who had travelled this path before.
Finally, after a massive brain-dump from mind to hard drive with absolutely everything I needed to achieve, my action plan was good to go!
Now WAS most definitely the right time to take a major ambition forward; to take Karen Timson Fine Fragrance into the new world!
Shopping lists, wish lists, scaled drawings and workspace planning ensued.
Space was cleared, walls painted, and shiny new lab equipment ordered: glass vials, French perfume bottles and endless flagons and jars brimming with enticing ingredients arrived daily begging to be positioned on the newly hung, sparkling glass shelves.
A month later, and somewhat exhausted yet immensely happy, I sat at the lab table, a glass of champagne in my hand and surveyed my now perfect space!
A fully functioning laboratory for perfume creation was now at my fingertips!
I was still ‘locked down’ yet I have never felt so free!
Here, in this inspired little piece of earth, that was all mine, magic was about to happen!
But we all know, magic needs sharing to appreciate its wonder: it should not remain with the conjurer, lest its incantations are lost in time. They should be fulfilled; they need to become reality.
The scene was set, the mistress of the potions was ready to catch dreams and weave them into an elixir of happiness, for her, for you!
‘Ta dah,’ the new KTFF Perfume Creation Service was launched!
May I welcome you in and let’s get busy!