Hello, I’m Ed Pycraft, co-founder of Star Seed. This is my story of how life led me towards purpose-driven work and later, regenerative skincare.
Growing up in London, I was fortunate to be immersed in a rich tapestry of cultures. Also driven by passion for music, extreme sports and the natural world, I had a lust for diversity & adventure.
My curiosity for the world led me to a degree in Politics & International Relations at Manchester University. Surrounded by learned, critical thinkers, we studied historic patterns and challenged the status quo.
Back to my Roots
This school of thought was hugely influential in helping me land my first jobs. Starting off as a Political Researcher in the House of Lords, I moved on to Political Risk Underwriting in the City.
For many, this would have been a sure future with exciting prospects. Yet, for me, it was a stepping stone towards something deeper. My heart was elsewhere.
At the age of 26 I left the city to go pursue one of my life long passions, music & food culture. After road tripping through New Orleans – Memphis - Nashville, I moved to Denmark to retrace my roots as a half Dane.
Meeting Emilie, co-founder, at this time of my life was awe-inspiring. A young, beautiful woman committed to something greater than herself was very powerful. As an architectural student designing ways to live in extreme environments – I had met my greatest gift!
Determined to create my dream food & music venue, I threw myself into 14+ hour shifts across Copenhagen’s most revered restaurants & bars. Witnessing first hand the personality traits of a chef (capricious) & bar operator (conceited), in a downward spiral of self-sacrifice towards ‘Great Hospitality,’ I was in the deep end.
Just before starting my own venture, life had something different in store. After a freak accident, I experienced a whiplash injury that left me incapacitated for months and changed my life forever.
With splitting headaches and migraines, the reality of running a live music venue faded. In a desperate attempt to fix myself, I threw the kitchen sink at my health, journeying through countless doctors, scans, and medication, none of which yielded positive results.
Instead, my solace came from a very different place. Yoga, meditation & CBT – embracing the quiet.
Having begun this spiritual journey with my partner Emilie, we discovered how the ancient wisdom of the Mayan Indians can help us understand and respect the connections between humans and nature on a much deeper level.
An integral part of the Mayan philosophy is based on the energy rhythms of the universe. My day sign according to Mayan Indian wisdom is a Yellow Star, guided by the Star Seed. It was believed that this is a symbol of the sun, of energy, life and health of the whole society. The mission of a Yellow Star is to improve life through making it more potent and virile, more delightful and brilliant.
I was on a new path.
Photo credit: www.13lunas.net
A (Star) Seed was Sown
My dad, a passionate man, focused on organic farming and wilderness regeneration, brought my attention to our pressing, existential threats: Biodiversity Destruction & Climate Change.
Having spent some of his 20s living in Kenya, he had a burning desire to try harness indigenous knowledge to help reverse the growing human – nature divide.
In 2018 we launched Keystone Legacy, a purpose-driven enterprise aimed at supporting grassroots, land regeneration projects with Kenyan Indigenous Communities. Designing a grazing scheme for a parcel of Maasai land, the size of London, we saw how modern ideals of privatisation & individualism were destroying nature’s delicate balance.
Having learnt some critical lessons around project design & implementation, we created Food & Forests – a regenerative farming platform aimed at supporting smallholder farmers access organic farming inputs, markets & capital.
However, in 2020, the world was reminded that we are not so distant from our natural world of microbes. When Covid-19 brought the world to an almost standstill, we were offered an opportunity to change. Was this our second coming?
The Great Pause awarded Emilie and I a chance to do something purposeful with our interests: regeneration & organic botanicals.
Examining skincare’s long & unethical supply chains, we immediately saw a place for our natural & impactful skincare concept: Star Seed.
Keen to understand African healing botanicals further, we moved to Kenya to see how we, a small, ambitious skincare brand could make a difference.
The support and enthusiasm from our newfound friends & partners in Kenya was staggering.
With our female producer and her smallholder farmer communities, our mission is farm to face!
We want to achieve full traceability on every ingredient back to the farmer, how it’s grown and how it helps your skin, and overall health.
When you try our products, know that this journey is not ours alone. It is a journey shared by the 1000s of farmers who help create our products. We are nothing without them. And we want to tell their story.
In return, we are committed to supporting, both financially and through education, regenerative farming & living.
I’m truly excited to share our journey with you.
Photo Credit: Augustin Cross (Keystone Legacy)