Hi, I'm Tania Cottew, the Director/Owner/Operator of Amor Aromatherapy Ltd.
I initially set up Amor Aromatherapy in 1994 and became incorporated in 1998 with the desire to produce my own products as I feel there is a real need for pure aromatherapy products instead of the current mass marketed hype of "pure essential oils" in chemical bases. In 2000 www.AmorAromatherapy.co.nz was born. Here is a brief background on how I arrived here!
I was first introduced to Aromatherapy in 1987 when I did my first massage course through the Auckland College of Massage. From there I went searching for every book I could find on the subject and continued learning, receiving my NZQA Diploma of Aromatherapy in 1998.
My journey with my fertility issues and my son (who is now 21 years old) and his unusual form of asthma (allergic to ventolin, triggered by humidity) as well as being galactose intolerant, allergic to wheat and being diagnosed with ADHD & ODD at a very young age made me want to learn more about what I could do for us, rather than having to rely on just the orthodox medical system. Due to his health and my sensitivities to drugs, I had been using aromatherapy on him as a baby and before I knew it I was making blends for friends and family, developing my Babycare, Childcare and Mothercare Ranges - each remedy has its story on the page.
My initial training included Medical Aromatherapy, Herbal Fundamentals (60 Herbal Remedies), Massage, Infant Massage, Fascial Release, Fascial Kinetics (a derivative of Bowen Technique), Energy Balancing, Lymphatic Drainage, Anatomy & Physiology (including Biochemistry and Nutrition) and Pathology.
When I first qualified, my clinic work specialised in Paediatrics and Women's Health, particularly in the areas of fertility and infertility, pregnancy and miscarriages, hormone imbalance conditions (including early menopause) and utilising essential oils, herbs and diet to help rebalance the body because of personal experience.
During that period I also worked as a volunteer and facilitator for Miscarriage Support Auckland, as well as Eastern Bays Hospice with cancer patients, and nursing close family and friends through terminal illnesses and permanent disabilities due to accidents (my mother became a paraplegic).
To feed my Yang personality, I also work in construction (my money-earning qualifications being quantity surveying and construction management).
In May 2006 two weeks after setting up Amor's new website I had a nasty fall whilst shopping, going over backwards and landing on my head, then my sacrum and finally my shoulder. I managed to dislocate my shoulder, as well as fracture my skull and sacrum/coccyx which weren't diagnosed at the time until 4 weeks later (and 2 days before we were relocating to Northland). It turned out 6 weeks later that I had a MBTI (mild brain trauma injury) caused by cumulative concussion (my 8th head injury - the others as a child) affecting my ability to speak or interact with people and the loss of use of the right side of my body.
So whilst in recovery mode, Amor was expanded into raw materials (because minimal concentration is required to bag and bottle raw materials), and I discovered that stand or sitting for periods of time during a consultation/massage was unfeasible.
With my brain still messed up, I decided to go back to Wellpark College in 2009 to see what I could (or couldn't) remember and discovered that memory storage and recall was an issue so sat the papers I wanted to upgrade in - Microbiology, Biochemistry, Nutrition and Naturopathy, Flower Essences, Homeopathy, and that Researching to Research was just too "out there" for my comprehension and my concept of completing the Bachelor of Health Sciences in Naturopathy went west.
On the upside, during my time there, I was diagnosed as a Coeliac with Malabsorption Syndrome and used it as my research assignment and started ticking many boxes in relation to my health all my life... and now my health interest has moved into Digestive disorders, Auto-immune disorders and Brain chemistry.
In 2010 we bought an amazing leaky home property at auction (which we have since sold) and we relocated back to Auckland for my husband's business (our construction management consultancy I now occasionally dabble in). These days, I no longer run clinic and have shifted my personal focus sideways - I currently work with the Auckland District Health Board as a Project Manager (which I love doing), along with running Amor as a web only small business, processing orders after hours (between 8-10pm) and during the weekends. Last year, 2016, I embarked on one of my biggest dreams and ticked off a very large section of my bucket list - I explored Europe for 3 months inlcuding a portion of the Camino Primitivo (until I got really ill), spent a month in Spain, then onto Andorra, France, Italy, Greece, Turkey, Switzerland, and Austria. All of these places have been on my "must visit" list since my grandparents did a 2 year trip around the continent with a caravan in the early 70s. I still have their travel diary, slides and projector! My ideal trip would be to repeat theirs when mu husband and I have both retired. Amor has no staff, only me - who gets to do everything! The creation of formulations is fun... cleaning up afterwards, not so much.
It's now 2017, Amor is based in Red Beach on Auckland's Hibiscus Coast and it's been very busy year since we got back from Europe juggling Amor and my work at Auckland Hospital. The Cosmetic Kit sales have been very popular since the beginning of December, so we've been putting in a bit of extra focus on them bringing in items not readily available in NZ to add to them.
This winter I would like to focus a bit more on perfumery including having ready made bases for you. I've been busy distilling perfume base as well.
Last year, 2016, I embarked on one of my biggest dreams and ticked off a very large section of my bucket list - I explored Europe for 3 months inlcuding a portion of the Camino Primitivo (until I got really ill), spent a month in Spain, then onto Andorra, France, Italy, Greece, Turkey, Switzerland, and Austria. All of these places have been on my "must visit" list since my grandparents did a 2 year trip around the continent with a caravan in the early 70s. I still have their travel diary, slides and projector! My ideal trip would be to repeat theirs when mu husband and I have both retired.
Amor has no staff, only me - who gets to do everything! The creation of formulations is fun... cleaning up afterwards, not so much.