In 1990, after a ten-year career as a legal secretary in Toronto, Sandra was faced with having to find a new career when she and her husband chose to move to Orono, Ontario to raise their family. After becoming an accredited Reflexologist, Sandra began her studies in the field of Aromatherapy. It was a re-discovery you could say since Sandra had already developed an interest in botanical aromatics during her childhood days when she mischievously hid jars of concoctions under her bed that were filled with blooms from her mother’s garden.
In 1993, Sandra founded two successful enterprises: two health food stores in Orono and Bowmanville, Ontario, and the formulation of an aromatherapy line in conjunction with an expansive collection of essential oils, resulting in supply contracts with more than 600 accounts across North America. In 1997, Sandra began teaching aromatherapy courses and was a guest instructor at several colleges in Ontario, teaching essential oil safety to massage and aesthetic students.
In 2007 shortly after the birth of her first grandchild, Sandra was compelled to sell her distribution company. Her granddaughter was diagnosed with a rare genetic condition called Loeys-Dietz syndrome, and it soon became evident that Sandra’s daughter needed her to help with the little one due to multiple trips and numerous stays at the Hospital for Sick Children.
During her seven-year sabbatical, Sandra maintained her repertoire with respect to the properties of essential oils and also managed to squeeze in a number of other projects, namely, cofounding a not-for-profit foundation and the completion of nine credits towards a degree in psychology.
‘Mother and Daughter share the sweet scent of success’
In 2015 Sandra and daughter Leanne teamed up to open Bespoke Aromatics in Cobourg, which boasts an impressive ‘Aroma-Bar.’ Sandra possesses an uncanny ability to whip up essential oil concoctions with the active participation of delighted clients; hence the word bespoke – to customize.
In true Sandra style, an ever-evolving entrepreneur, Bespoke Aromatics also features an exquisite array of natural body care products, luxurious soaps, vintage nightwear, meditation pillows, original art, crystals and gemstones. Sandra also offers consultation services with respect to essential oil formulations and ingredient procurement.
With more than 100 essential oils in stock and dozens of aromatherapy inspired products, Bespoke has become an ‘aromatic gem’ for the residents and visiting guests of Cobourg. As Sandra says with Leanne cheerfully nodding: “We are a significant retail destination in Ontario for anyone who loves essential oils.”
If you can’t locate Bespoke by the emanating glorious aromas while strolling in beautiful Downtown Cobourg, then look for 22 King St. West.