Wednesday 17 June 2015

The Wonderful Witch of Acton

Do you ever hear your parents' words coming out of your own mouth? It always comes as a shock when it happens, and I'm pretty sure that it starts as you approach middle-age! "Mad as a bag of snakes" ... that is how my mother would describe Sarah McCartney, founder of Acton's own 4160 TUESDAYS, and on this occasion I would have to agree. However, I say this with great fondness and admiration because she truly is a glorious one-off.

Sarah used to be found writing all of those mouthwatering descriptions for products found within the infamous Lush shops; no high street seems complete without the intoxicatingly sweet waft of fruit and florals that emanate from the home of the "bath bomb". It was during this time that she started to read, and read, and read about the industry, but it never entered anyone's mind that this untrained perfumer(ess) would take on the big boys at their own game. It would take a slightly crazy, passionate, argumentative, opinionated, funny, inspirational and "mad as a bag of snakes" type of person to achieve it. Well, happily she did ... and 4160 TUESDAYS was the result.

I first met Sarah at a talk that I gave on Guerlain, and it wasn't long before her questions started coming. She is a mine of information and is always striving to add to her memory banks. If you don't know your subject then she will see straight through you ... and I love her for this! Sarah has a childlike outlook when it comes to her creations; "Why can't I do that? Why can't I use that? Who says so?" Only as we age do we work within boundaries; she smashes them down and creates from a completely blank canvas.

Sarah says that she always wanted to be a witch and make potions, rather than perfumes. Well I think we can now safely start calling her the Wonderful Witch of Acton. Her "potions" push every attempt to classify them and truly challenge with every breath. I am a little bit in love with her, if I am honest, and with every spray of "Dark Heart of Old Havana" I am drawn deeper into the wonderfully crazy world of a true original.

If you only buy one perfume this month, treat yourself and make it one of Sarah's. Visit her website ... I'll probably see you there!


  1. It's funny, a couple of years ago, I realised that Sarah bears an uncanny resemblance to Bayonaetta, a computer game character, who just happens to be an 'Umbran Witch' :) BTW, I love Dark Heart too, but I've probably told you that before.

    1. Hello Barry, we do seem to have similar tastes. Best, Stephan