We are thrilled to bring back the Kitchen Rituals interview series. This time with the inspiring Leyna behind the body care line Urb Apothecary. We love the way she weaves sensual scents and simplicity into her products and are happy to be part of the local Santa Cruz community with her. All gorgeous photos from Urb Apothecary's instagram. Read on and enjoy!
1. Will you tell us your name, your gender pronoun, and the name of your project/ practice?
My name is Leyna Allred, female, URB APOTHECARY
2. What are your kitchen rituals?
Since the kitchen is my primary workspace, it is the first place I go in the morning. Starting with French pressed coffee, I settle down and lay out a production plan for the day.Materials and ingredients are brought out to my big island and I drive into a day making products and listening to audio books and podcasts. I love it.
3. If you were a plant, who would you be and why? Multiple answers welcome.
I recently visited a bristle cone pine forest high up on Mt Evans and I think I would love to be one of them. They are the oldest living organism and some of them are 1700 years old! Imagine the things I would see! Also, I could be jasmine. Just seeing the expressions on people's faces when they would smell my blossoms would be just the most gratifying.
4. What are some important health events in your life?
Six years ago I started truly questioning what was in food and body care products and that has brought me to a place where I am conscious of what I purchase and consume. I feel that my outlook and overall sense of wellbeing is healthy because I make these educated decisions every day.
5. What are some of your favorite memories in the kitchen?
Making snickerdoodle cookies with my mom as a child.
6. What is your ancestral background? Does this influence your work?
My mother's side is of German and Italian descent and I actually am a dual citizen, USA and Italy! My father's said is a melting pot of ethnicities and I don't believe that it really influences my work.
7. What books are you reading now? Favorite cookbooks?
I am reading Perfume at the moment, listening to The Dresden Files audio books, and my favorite cookbook at the moment is Oh, She Glows.
8. What is your zodiac sign?
9. When you were a child what did you want to be when you grew up?
I had no idea! I just wanted to ride my horse, play in the pond and pick blackberries.
10. What is your focus in food/ nutrition/ healing and how do you work that into your practice/
living your life?
Simplicity is best. Whole ingredients, whole foods are the basis of my life and practice. I strive to create products with unadulterated material and ingredients and the same is true for what I put into my body.
11. Why did you create your project/ business? What is your mission?
I created it, initially, to make gifts and soon it grew into something much larger, but my mission has always been to create body care products and/or products that are organically grown and naturally beneficial and healing the body and mind.
12. Where are you based? Where can we find you and your work? (online, published, events etc)
I am currently based in Santa Cruz, California and you can find nearly the whole line at Stripe on Walnut Ave, online at Urb Apothecary and I will selling at West Coast Craft in San Francisco this November.
13. What are your favorite foods?
Mushrooms, avocados, coffee, and anything that is vegetarian with great unique flavors and ingredients. I will try almost anything.