Welcome to the latest installment of Meet the Team, where we interview members of our team to get their insights on fragrance, candles, and life itself. Next up: Amanda Klohmann, who leads our Customer Experience team.
We spoke with her about her favorite fragrances, her scent memories, and her favorite places to go in Austin…
What do you love about your job?
Two things. First, I love the challenge of bringing something that is so experiential to the digital world. Making smell come to life on your screen, be it on our website or through our emails and social channels, isn’t so straightforward. We have to think about how we sell our product differently than other e-commerce companies. Taking on this challenge every day is fun.
Second, I joined this team very early on in PHLUR’s history. The adventure of defining the brand, launching the site and selling our first bottle, to now where we are adding new products and growing the business everyday, is so exciting. It makes me proud to see how far we’ve come, and I’m always looking forward to where we are heading.
What got you into the fragrance industry?
This job! This is the first fragrance or beauty company I’ve worked for. I love working for a brand that represents a lifestyle ideal and can get so personal with our customers.
How do you feel like fragrance enhances your everyday experiences?
To me, fragrance is the final touch. It’s about adding a layer just for me.
What are 3 words you would use to describe your personal style?
Versatile, minimal, and occasionally unexpected. To be honest, I think these are all just code words for, “I wear a lot of black.”
Where are you from?
I grew up in St. Louis, MO.
What do you love about living in Austin?
Austin is perpetually changing. I moved here in 2011 with a plan to stay for a year or two. What is it that they say about the best laid plans? Every time I’ve been offered an opportunity to leave Austin, I look around and realize how much is going on here, how much the city has to offer, and how much it is growing. I like being a part of that and I haven’t been able to let that go. Oh, and breakfast tacos might factor in too.
What are your favorite places to go in Austin?
Showing off Austin is one of my favorite things to do. So here’s my short go to list…
- For date nights: There’s always a new movie at Violet Crown Cinema.
- For dinner: I eat at El Chile (almost) every Wednesday night.
- For a beer: I’m a regular at Lazarus Brewing Co.
- For a tourist spot: Hope Outdoor Art Gallery is a must see, you can even add your own graffiti.
- For a 21+ tourist spot: You have to go two-stepping at White Horse. You’ll get your fill of hipsters and cowboys all in one place.
- For live music: You can’t go wrong at The Mohawk or Stubb’s.
- For a weekend activity: I love exploring all of the wineries in Texas Hill country. Who knew Texas could be so green?
What are some of your hobbies?
I grew up dancing (and playing soccer, I like to be a bit of a contradiction), so after college I started teaching dance at a local dance studio. I’ve been teaching tap, jazz, and musical theater classes there for about seven years now. Being a dance teacher (and by default a choreographer) is a huge creative outlet that I feel super fortunate to be able to go to consistently.
I also love to travel. My dad is a travel agent and I grew up stamping brochures in his office, so I was bit by the travel bug very early in life. I try to take one big trip every year and then squeeze in short weekend trips as much as possible as well.
What is your favorite vacation spot and why?
That’s a really difficult question. I’d like to say “the next spot” is always my favorite, because I love going to new places and experiencing new things. It’s really difficult for me to agree to go to a place a second time (even if I loved it the first) because there are just too many places on my to-do list.
My favorite vacation spot ever was Zermatt, Switzerland. It is a picturesque town hidden in the Swiss Alps. Everyone is friendly, everyone can tell you five stories about amazing mountain adventures they’ve been on, and everyone enjoys wine and cheese.
My most sentimental vacation spot is Sanibel Island, Florida. I grew up going to Sanibel Island every summer to stay at my grandparents’ condo. The smell of sun, sand, and sunscreen will always transport me back to my favorite spot on Coquina Beach.
Do you have any hidden talents?
Tap dancing. I always try to sneak a class or two in at Broadway Dance Center when I travel to New York.
I will read anything and everything, I’m constantly starting a new book (and hopefully finishing one too). I was the kid standing in line for Harry Potter at midnight, so that should tell you something about my reading habits. For my book club I’m currently reading The Little Paris Bookshop which, incidentally, has a lot of beautiful descriptions of memory and scent in it.
What is your favorite thing about Fall?
For me the perfect fall weekend is spent in sweater weather, with my family, eating delicious food at a college football tailgate.
The company just launched candles. Where do you keep yours?
It sits on my kitchen counter or on a shelf below my television. I live in a pretty tiny home, so as long as I have it in one of those two places, the smell spreads throughout the entire space. It even travels up my stairway to my bedroom and office. We weren’t kidding around when we added extra oil to these candles, it really makes an impact.
Do you have any pets?
Accidentally. Two friendly feral cats have made my house their home. They show up every night and sit on my doormat and cry until I feed them dinner. Then, they climb into my flower pots and sleep until I leave for work in the morning. I am very much a dog person, so I feel conflicted by all of this.
Who inspires you?
I’m inspired by my mom who is a teacher and is so selfless in the career she has chosen, she has taught me so much about empathy. She’s been teaching her entire life yet is always trying new things and strategies to best reach her kids. I think she’s the first person who introduced me to user research and user experience in a way.
Do you have any strong memories associated with smell?
For me, season change is always associated with smell. The air takes on a totally different flavor when you transition from winter to spring, or summer to fall. So seasonal memories, like going to the pumpkin patch in fall or the first snow in winter are always closely tied to scent.
If you were a PHLUR fragrance, which one would you be?
Olmsted & Vaux. It’s straightforward, not overly complex (but still complex enough to be intriguing), and gets the job done.
Favorite Scents for: