Daniel Krasofski's skillful repurposing of a film developing reel!

Daniel Krasofski’s skillful repurposing of a film developing reel! On the right: don’t do this! On the left: do this!

I always am grateful for my connection to thousands of natural perfumery fans, perfumers, and members of the Yahoo groups. I’ve been on the Internet for twenty years, and have read about all the problems and opportunities in our art because of their posts and their private correspondence with me.

Daniel Krasofski is one of my students, and he wrote me from Napa, where he was taking Jeanne Rose’s day-long course at Eden Botanicals. It was this bit of a tiny photo in the collage of photos he sent me that caught my eye. What in the heck is that spiral stainless steel thing? He was in class and on the road for the rest of the weekend, so my email asking about it went unanswered until Monday, by which time I had spent hours on google trying to find the darn thing.

When he wrote me back, I immediately went on eBay and bought dozens of them. I’ll give them away as gifts and probably have one in each room of my house. What I like especially is that they’re divided into four compartments: top/middle/base/accessory notes!

One of my eBay scores: three reels for $5 plus $6 shipping. The best size is the 35mm reel (shown).

One of my eBay scores: three reels for $5 plus $6 shipping. The best size is the 35mm reel (shown).

They’re stainless steel (impervious to oils), stable (round, flat base) and repurposed from an industry that is almost defunct (film processing). Beautiful!

Here’s what Daniel wrote about his path:

/The round spiral blotter holder is an invention of mine that I love love love! As I might have told you in the past, I have a near magical ability to go into a Goodwill thrift store and find the “perfect” things I need at the time. I have a friend that drew a cartoon that depicts an average person walking into a GW store finding only broken crap, and then me walking into a GW and finding the garden of exotic amazing-ness.

Three years ago, when I was really getting into the perfume aspect of essential oils, I was sampling many oils via blotters, and found them messy and challenging to deal with. I went on a mission to find “the perfect mouillettes holder” and one day, I found it! As I was walking through the Goodwill in Hollywood I spotted a stainless steel vessel that resembled a thermos, picked it up and it rattled and clanged inside. I remembered this object from High school and knew exactly what it was: a film developing canister. Inside were four developing spools! The perfect touche holder. I had to make a few alterations to make it perfect; added some tape to the bottom and a small amount to thin wire to create more “sections”. I’ve been using them for three years now and they can hold up to 40+ blotters when inserted with a technique I developed. Super easy to use. The thing I like  most about it is, if I’m doing a marathon smelling and slightly fatigued, I can easily take the entire set of blotters to another location with fresh air to re-evaluate the scents. I’ve been dubbed the MacGyver of perfume by a few people, I have a ton of little ideas. /

Daniel certainly is resourceful, pays attention, and knows when to go into action! Thanks so much, Daniel, I hope this blog post spreads the word far and wide about your creative repurposing of the reels.

PS for those who missed it, another of my students, Michael Singels, invented a no mess, no fuss way to warm up thick oils (like labdanum, etc), so that they’re easily pourable. No bain marie, no microwave (Yikes! don’t use that for your oils), just sheer ingenuity.  You can read about it on my old blog site: http://anyasgarden.blogspot.com/2011/05/so-simple-so-elegant-why-didnt-anybody.html

My students are so creative and I appreciate them sharing their discoveries with the perfumery community!

If you’re a perfumer, aromatherapist, perfume blogger or perfume lover reading this, you know the value of this find. No more roach clips! No more odd, unstable photo holders/memo holders. Can you spread the word, and share this blog posts? I’m sure your friends and/or readers will really appreciate it.