Courtney Feider is the founder of the REN Method and Fig & Honey makes apothecary-style * fresh * clean * body * products using nutrient dense by-products from the beer and winemaking process.
With inspiration from some of the most serious and committed sustainable and organic winemakers in Italy, and several eco-sensitive breweries in the PacificNW, we process body products which echo a sustainable and gentle lifestyle.
Using whole food-grade ingredients, essential oils, and upcycled by-products distilled from natural foods and beverages, our team creates handmade goods for body, health, meditation, and home. Founder Courtney Robinson Feider developed and continues to develop a natural body goods and products line.
With grape seeds and skins fresh off the wine press, we create a solar-infused, nutrient dense oil which becomes a healing base for all of our salves, lip balms, and body scrubs. Taking hops grown in the local and regional area, we develop a solar-infused, nutrient rich anti-inflammatory oil which is our second most popular base for balms, scrubs, and salves.
When and why did you first start your business?
I started making Fig & Honey style products in 2004 after I went to massage therapy school. I already had a bachelors in health science, so when the curriculum was repetitive I would dig in to advanced study of aromatherapy, food as medicine, and food therapy. It stuck. I have sensitive skin and so do my kids, and I was forever spending massive amounts of money on natural products. One day I looked at the ingredients, and thought - I can MAKE this. So I did. After several years of "practicing", friends encouraged me to put it out for the general public. That was January 2014. The rest is history.
I grew up in Boise, Idaho. It probably did influence my creativity because I knew very creative people growing up. It was a much smaller community back then too, which meant you had an opportunity to invent your own reality. I was a child of the 80's and very influenced by the graphic features of the time.
Would you say that you have “found yourself” creatively?
I am finding a new version of myself every day. I am constantly in re-invention mode. I am also a fine artist (watercolor/mixed media) and it's important that I keep moving, express, document my place in the world at a given time. Lucky for me, this is emerging through Fig & Honey and special recipes that genuinely help people heal.
What kind of a path did you take to get to where you are now?
A very convoluted one, but all variations on a common theme :: lifestyle and consumer engagement. I was first in corporate marketing, then agency work, then selling boutique wine, then back to agency work, then corporate marketing, then massage therapy/natural healing/food and aromatherapy, then the natural stuff while doing agency work, then founding my own companies starting in 2007. All roads lead back to the center, which is my soul purpose, my ethical core, and my desire to help people help themselves.
How would you describe your process?
Ongoing. Dreams, journaling, sketching, designing, smelling, absorbing, fixing, refining, trying, tasting (yes, often actually tasting). Then being committed to the best end product and being okay with refining it until it's right, but releasing it early to the correct small audience so that I can receive the feedback. I want to make things that people can use for multiple purposes, daily, and blow through before they know it so it's at it's freshest and best. I desire the creation of things that help them improve how they feel about themselves. I design with the intention of creating a time and space memory in each essential signature scent from the natural raw ingredients + essential oils.
What is your favorite medium?
Right now - raw, food based products. Cocoa butter. Beeswax. Propolis. Essential oils of every kind. Shea butter. Kokum butter. Kaolin clay. And lovely, colorful mineral oxides that are saturated color and tons of sparkle and shimmer. Like nature's watercolors. I feel like a fairy princess when I am working with those (but maybe that's the influence of two young daughters...).
Where do you find your inspiration?
People with an "issue" they can't solve
And by obsessively researching
What do you do for fun?
We live on a half acre that we just bought so for now, fun is redevelopment of this space. We're gardening, urban homesteading, we raise chickens, and I can't wait to plant my herbs.
I also road bike, do hot and traditional yoga, sing, and try to spend time in the company of exceptional people, first of which are my 4 and 6 year old girls and my lovely urban homesteader of a husband. Watching all of that Little House on the Prairie as a kid is really paying off :)
Can you describe the moment when you felt you had made it?
I feel that every day right now because my business is still developing, and all of my projects have something in re-invention at a given moment. I do feel like I have made it because I have a loving and healthy family, a wonderful spouse/partner, and successful businesses that don't cause me too much heartache and have no debt. I live on a lovely green space in a growing and desirable community in the PacNW. After 7 years in office space, I moved my businesses and production to a home based place. I feed my chickens between meetings on Skype and fulfilling orders. I have it GOOD.
How do you balance your creative self with the rest of your life?
Just checking in on that point every day. Some part of it has to be action, some strategy, and some planning for the future. And a lot needs to be love - family, friends, business supporters, coaches, mentors, and mentees. Balance.
What is the most difficult part of Being You?
I have to remind myself to slow down. To breathe. To take things one at a time. To accept each day as "enough". I am fascinated by what I do, so if I didn't need to sleep and there was a time vortex that still allowed me time with my family and obsessive amounts of creation, I would create that much. It's a tough energy to balance and a tough one to be in a relationship with. I value my husband's mental peace, fortitude, and patience.
What is the most rewarding part of your day?
The early morning when one or both of my kids come bounding into my bed and fit like a puzzle piece next to me for a little while. We stay there a long time on weekends and days off. It centers me for the rest of the day, and I think it does the same for them.
What do you have in the works?
Narrowing my product line and refinement of the beauty products. I want to stick with what works best and people use most. I am also developing a line of natural home cleaning products and some "apothecary" style reed diffuser systems.
Who do you admire?
So, so many people. I am not really someone to admire people who are a "big deal". I admire people I find on the serendipitous path of daily life. When they are meant to be in my life, they show up again and again, without me trying. I admire the lifecycle of community and connection. I admire people who are a big deal who don't act like they are. I admire people who struggle and overcome.
Follow and reach out to Courtney at:
Follow and reach out to Courtney at: