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Starter Company Plus Spotlight – Bloem Botanicals

At Bloem Botanicals, every step, phase, ingredient, herb, and part of the process is carried through with intention. Bloem Botanicals crafts small batch botanical health and beauty products made with medicinal herbs grown in their garden or sustainably foraged in the Beaver Valley region. All products are clean and simple, and free from added toxins or preservatives.

Some would say they use earth’s magic to create beautiful products.

Sarah (owner of Bloem) is a lovely, passionate and whimsical woman who shares her love for Mother Nature in all that she does. Whether that’s hiking through the forest with her littles ones, going for a swim in a nearby lake or harvesting her own herbs and flowers for her latest product run – the mission within her business and personal life are closely connected.

Bloem aims to empower you with self-care tools and to show you that incorporating simple small batch botanicals into your routine can bring you joy and peace of mind and body.

To learn more about Sarah + Bloem, read on for our latest Q+A below.                 

What inspired you to start your business? I’ve always felt called to work with plants and nature. I even found a diary entry from when I was 11 where I dreamed of crafting oils and other products and have a little shop. Starting this business coincided with the pandemic which only motivated and inspired me more to create products that could improve health and wellness.

What services or products do you offer? We offer several products, both internal and external, that offer support for issues like sleep, digestion, skin health and more. We also do workshops so you can learn to craft your own or to simply connect with nature in a new way.

Bloem Botanicals

Who do you look up to for ideas and inspiration? I love to find old dusty books, tucked into the back forgotten corners of used book stores that contain pages of plant knowledge with the most beautiful monographs and illustrations.

What’s your favourite herb to use? Every season I’m pulled to another herb. This spring I was deeply drawn to violet, but now that the seasons have shifted I’m suddenly pulled to my patch of Tulsi / Holy Basil.

What does your morning routine look like? I wake up around 6:30am, make a strong cup of black tea and sit down with my herbal studies (currently working towards my clinical levels) until my kids wander down at 8 and we have breakfast. Then a little homeschooling followed by a few hours of gardening.

Tell us a bit about the process behind creating your products: Sometimes I’m hit with an idea like wave crashing on the shore, and sometimes it comes slowly like gentle breeze. I look up the plants I’d like to use and play with the plant combinations in my mind for several days. Then I harvest those plants from the garden and pick the most vibrant of them to work with. The infusions then sit for 4-12 weeks depending, which is when I design the labels and start compiling clinical studies to support their use before straining, bottling and labelling.

What is unique about your business? My business is unique in that I grow or harvest 90% of the herbs I use so that I can be sure of their quality, that they’re harvested at their peak, and I know exactly how they’ve been grown. I spend more time in the garden tending to these plants than I do in the apothecary. Most botanical product crafters don’t have the option or desire to go this deep.                                                      

Who is your biggest cheerleader (and why)? My husband, artist David Marshak. For some crazy reason he believes in me and in all my wild ideas, including leaving behind the photography career I had built up (and on which we financially relied) and jumping head first into a new business.           

What does success look like to you – when will you know you’ve achieved it? I always felt that success was being able to live abundantly from doing what I love while raising a family and being present with them. I’m nearly there, but I’ll know I’ve reached ‘abundant’ part when I can take a day off without worry.                                           

Photo of flowers hanging in the ceiling

What is one important skill every person should have? Wood working. Being able to do my own renovations feels not only empowering but is so incredibly useful. I should also say that herb identification is good skill, lol.                               

What are you favourite local spots to visit on a day off? I like to go to a quiet spot along the Beaver River with my family. We like to jump in where it’s deep, lay on our backs and let the water carry us into the shallows where the trees hang over the water’s edge.

What’s your favourite product or service that you offer? The Deep Sleep Elixir is up there for sure. I sleep well generally but love to use this when I am stressed and it’s one that several customers have written me deep thanks for.                                                                                                                         

What is something you are great at cooking? I make a mean taco. Dave and I team up (he usually makes some slow braised meat) and I make the tortillas from scratch. We usually top them with an avocado + mango salad, fresh herbs from the garden, some quick pickled onion and homemade crema.                                                               

What is your favorite job you’ve ever had and why? THIS job! I love working with plants, quietly moving through the garden, crafting new blends for this or that and trusting myself more deeply every day.

Check out Bloem here:

IG: @bloembotanicals
Website: https://www.bloembotanicals.ca/