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Maol Grooming / Talbot Shaving | Authors Ridge Aftershave
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Available on September 29, at 6:55pm Eastern time, Authors Ridge is the most personal project I have taken on. It is a glimpse into the fibers of my being and constructed entirely by the deepest and most meaningful part of my soul. It is, in my opinion, the very best scent I’ve created. Symbolism is everywhere, from the scent, to the labels, to the name, to the drop time. There is so much more I could say about how high I hold this project, but I will let you determine it’s value. Authors Ridge will again be paired with a matching splash courtesy of the inimitable Maol Grooming.
With that said, the expense of the fragrances used for this project forces my hand into higher production costs. Therefore the cost of this soap will be $20.99 instead of the $15 I usually ask. I understand if that is too much to ask of anyone, and I don’t blame anyone who decides not to buy it. I simply could not sacrifice what I wanted to do with this. It may sit on the shelf at West Coast Shaving for awhile. It’s a risk I have to take and accept whatever will come of it.
About Authors Ridge. I could make this write up an essay on its own. There are so many moments in my life I could point at to show where the idea began. More recently, a visit to Walden Pond in Concord, Ma. last year led to a walk through the nearby Sleepy Hollow cemetery. There is a section of the cemetery labeled “Authors Ridge”. Here is the final resting place of many notable authors. Emerson. Thoreau. The Alcotts. Hawthorne. There are many others who inspired these famous names also buried here. All of them lived in Concord and many were part of a movement loosely called “transcendentalism”. It’s vision is deep, but it’s core is centered around self reliance, divinity of nature, and idealism. Having read some of Thoreau’s works already, I next reached for “Conduct of Life” by Emerson and was stunned by how hard and close it hit me. So many of the words published 160 years ago rang true today. It lit a fire in my soul, and so much of who I am was found buried in the words of books I’ve seen all my life but never picked up. They said the words I felt in my soul but would never have been able to verbalize. They uniquely define who I am as a man, and the foundations of my personal being.
Since then, this project has become a passion for me. How could I truly capture all of these feelings in a scent? Once I realized I would never be able to do it properly, I turned to a large amount of symbolism and a little creativity. If I could not capture the idea of transcendentalism in this project, I could certainly attempt a tribute to it. Fall is my favorite time of year and Sleepy Hollow cemetery was dedicated on September 29, 1855. It needed to be an autumn scent that captured the beauty of life as well as embrace the idea of death in nature. So I set forth an idea to craft a scent based on Emerson’s dedication of the cemetery in 1855. The cemetery was created in and of the land it was dedicated on. It was not leveled or cleared of trees and shrubs that existed. Once I had that scent locked in, I created another based on a written description of the cemetery years later. Then I crafted a third scent, this time based on my personal experience at the cemetery. Finally, I gave the whole project one more scent, a fourth, in the style of New England autumn leaves. After much back and forth, I was finally able to create one scent from the four. Can I describe it? I could tell you it’s dark, it’s spicy (not kitchen spicy, rather earthy spice) and it’s unlike anything I’ve ever put my nose to. I could go into lengthy detail of the notes in the soap, but it simply wouldn’t do justice to the final scent. It’s simply something I think you should just experience.
I want to thank everyone for the continued support of Talbot Shaving, and of me personally. This fun venture has become so much more than I ever expected. I’m not sure where it goes from here, but I’m having a great time on this ride.
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