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Meet Ashley McClain and Miatta Smith of The Essentials Makery in Kennesaw

Today we’d like to introduce you to Ashley McClain and Miatta Smith.

Ashley and Miatta, can you briefly walk us through your story – how you started and how you got to where you are today.
Ashley and I are both teachers who worked at the same school for several years. Between us, we have seven children and were brought together by our mutual concern about the toxin-filled cleaners, soaps, and detergents that were in our homes. About four years ago we started doing research and discovered we were able to replace many of the products in our homes with products that we made ourselves. With just a few simple, non-toxic ingredients we started making our own products that worked just as good, if not better than their store-bought counterparts. We were able to make these items over into safer, natural, and more economical versions that we felt comfortable using around our children.

From there, we began sharing what we were doing with our co-workers who wanted to participate. This is when our journey of buying the ingredients in bulk and sharing the costs began. We would hold these “make & take” workshops at work. A bunch of us would get together, Ashley and I would purchase all the ingredients, and everyone would leave with 3-4 products they could use in their homes. It was so much fun getting together with friends and doing something good for our families and homes. Everyone enjoyed themselves, and the word spread from there.

That is when we came up with the idea for a more permanent space to do these workshops. We wanted a space that wasn’t just for us but was also a community space where creatives and local wellness experts could come to share their knowledge and expertise. Three years later and we are more passionate than ever about empowering people to be the gatekeepers of their homes. That is how The Essentials Makery was born.

We’re always bombarded by how great it is to pursue your passion, etc. – but we’ve spoken with enough people to know that it’s not always easy. Overall, would you say things have been easy for you?
Once we decided to go forward with opening the studio, the biggest dilemma was finding the right space. We didn’t want to take out loans to open a storefront that we had to keep open seven days a week for nine hours a day and have to hire a staff. So we decided to look at office spaces instead.

This would give us the flexibility we needed as busy moms. We also wanted a central location that wasn’t too far from our homes. We found a quaint little space in the downtown area of Kennesaw which is currently undergoing a revitalization and knew instantly that it was perfect for The Essentials Makery.

The process of opening our business in the city of Kennesaw was an extremely smooth one. Everyone of the people, from the fire marshall to the assistant at the business license office, made every effort to help us open without delay.

So let’s switch gears a bit and go into The Essentials Makery story. Tell us more about the business.
We are a beauty, wellness, and cleaning DIY studio. Think “sip + mingle + make your own products with friends”! We have a menu of items and bundles that can be DIYed in our studio. We offer four different bundles that we like to think of as a group of products that makeover an area of your home.

With the Spa bundle, you can make four different products: a body scrub, a relaxing pillow mist, bath bombs, and luxurious body butter. The Wellness bundle is everything you need to stay above the wellness line. It comes with an immunity roller bottle, detox bath salts, a chest rub, and a germ-away spray. Our cleaning bundle offers an all-purpose cleaner, a wood floor cleaner, a carpet powder, and a room & linen spray.

The fourth bundle we offer changes with the season – we call it the Seasonal Home Makeover bundle. People often want their homes to smell like the season (pumpkin spice, pine or cloves in the winter, etc.) We do it without toxins in these bundles. Each one includes a hand soap, a hand lotion, and a room spray.

We also offer a variety of workshops and classes on a variety of topics – from living with allergies, to how to apply non-toxic mineral makeup, crystals, to essential oil basics. With every one of our workshops, our intention is to get you closer to making your way to a greener home.

Has luck played a meaningful role in your life and business?
We feel like we are lucky because we currently, on almost a daily basis, are learning about how the products people are using in their homes, on their skin and hair, are known to contain synthetics and chemicals that are slowly making them and their families sick.

They are looking to make changes in the products that they use. We are part of that movement. We show people how easy, economical, and fun it is to makeover those products with simple recipes and toxin-free ingredients.

Contact Info:

Image Credit:
Melisa Heath

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