As one might expect, the home of vitruvi cofounder Sara Panton is a beautiful, calming, thoughtfully-designed space. Located in Vancouver’s quiet Kitsilano neighbourhood, it’s inhabited by sophisticated furniture, meaningful artworks, and personal mementos.
There’s the Heath Ceramics vase given to her by her close friend Jen Rubio, cofounder of Away; a beach rock that she found in Tofino, B.C. on a birthday getaway; a wall of framed photographs, including shots of her business partner and brother Sean Panton as well as a longtable dinner from a vitruvi team retreat to a lavender farm; a painting by her dear friend Tori Swanson; and a small silver piggy bank from when she was born. She also, of course, has essential oils and diffusers placed throughout her home. Here are some of the ways she uses them to live a more natural life.
“I use Pacific in a little mister; I put a few drops in with water and I use it as my countertop spray, because it has Eucalyptus and Lavender which are antiseptic and antibacterial, and then Basil which feels earthy and like a garden. And then my mom actually taught me this one: I use baking soda with Spruce and Grapefruit, and I sometimes add a little bit of coconut oil, and I use it to wash my sink out and my bathtub. You actually create a paste and it makes it shine. I use the same baking soda mixture for a fridge deodorizer and in my garbage to keep it fresh; I just sprinkle a bit in the bottom with baking soda. That’s in my book Essential Well Being as well.
I use Sweet Orange on the stove to clean stuff off, I’ll just do it right on the surface with a cloth, just a few drops. It’s nuts, it really works. And I use the same Pacific spray on the floor, too.
Adding Grapefruit and Sweet Orange to your dish washing is awesome as well and just smells really, really good—it works with any of your favourite citrus essential oils.”
“Usually I put Cedarwood and Bergamot in the diffuser in here. I love putting a diffuser on before someone stays over, and I have a lot of people that stay here. I choose Cedarwood and Bergamot because it’s grounding but fresh, especially if people have been travelling. Cedarwood has a west-coast feel, and then the Bergamot is great for when you get off a plane and you want to feel fresh. So I’ll set everything up and then usually have a Balance Mist or a Sleep Mist on the nightstand.”
“I make a mist that has Quiet and Peppermint in it. I use it as an air mist, but I also work out every morning and I hang my workout gear in here because I literally can’t wash it every single time—and then I mist it with this so it smells like flowers but also fresh. It’s great, it’s fresh and minty; I just spray my stuff and let it hang.
And I basically have every face oil in our collection. Right now I’m using Jojoba, Plum, and Apricot Kernel because my skin has never been this dry. And then I use a few drops of Spruce in my hands in the shower; Eucalyptus is really popular, but I use Spruce.
I also have a towel mist—find that in the book, too. I use it on towels in here, and I have a cute towel stand in the guest room that I usually mist.
In the summer I will do usually Lemongrass or Lemon as a foot soak. If I’ve been wearing sandals all day, especially before bed I’ll do a Lemongrass or Lemon and Peppermint soak, something really fresh. And then in the winter I’ve been doing Quiet in the bath so there’s a whole floral, quiet vibe.”
“I have Eucalyptus in here right now, and my boyfriend likes diffusing Spruce.”
“In here I like diffusing Ceremony because it’s just my favourite. Before that released I would do a lot of grounding scents, so Frankincense and Cedarwood. At the end of the day when my energy’s all buzzy, I want my living room to be almost masculine and grounded. So I’ve been diffusing Ceremony a lot.”
Panton’s home is also dotted with memories specific to writing Essential Well Being, a book featuring personal stories from her travels along with over 100 essential oil recipes. She basically wrote the whole thing in her apartment on evenings and weekends, either from her couch or her kitchen table. It’s special for her now to see things come full circle, as her book now sits on her own shelf, among her other treasured possessions.