Monday, December 26, 2011

End of year sale!

15% off your entire order from now until friday morning 12/30/11! 

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Holiday Soaps Now On sale!

Just a heads up to everyone, that all of the new items are now available for pre-order purchase on the website at

Happy Holidays!  :)

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Holiday Soaps - The Breakdown....

No not my breakdown, that was last week.  Ten A few drinks later and a good hour of Oprah teaching me all the answers again, and I was a brand new...

Man!  I thought she was annoying when she gave James Frey a fourteen billion dollar reaming on her show that day, (Remember that ego-fest? Heinous.)  but now "Oprah's Life Class"?   Really?!
Kill me.

Anyway - A few of you have asked me to concentrate my Holiday soap range in one area for easier reading, instead of all scattery-like on Facebook and You Tube.  Great idea.   So let's see what we have available....

This is Sugared Spruce.  A twist on the traditonal Christmas Tree pine scent.  It's mellowed out with some yummy citrus and a sugary note that smells really great.  Almost a "candied" scent.

Next we have "Christmas In Aspen".  Unisex and drool-worthy.  It has notes of aspens, citrus and a zesty middle note that just makes it so nice.  Just like a cabin near the slopes!

I also went on a Sugar Plum bender, and soaped two differen't kinds.  First up is "Frosted Sugar Plum Spice", which is a deeper plum with spice notes and sugary notes. 

The next one is sweeter....more docile, and kitten-like.  :P  It's called "The Land Of Sweets" because as you know, that is where the Sugar Plum Fairy lives, in The Nutcracker!  (Thanks for the awesome name, Carrie!)  It's a sweet, sugary plum with added notes of oranges and vanilla.

The next one is "Berry Christmas" (Clever, right?  :P ) It's a really tart/sweet/yummerific berry scent.  Blackberries, raspberries, mulberries, blueberries, dingleberries.....ew, no...wait....scratch that last one.  It also has notes of peaches, oranges, cherries, grapes and more. 

Next up?  This is "Christmas Candy".  We're talkin' straight up Candy Canes! 

The next one in line is called "Cookies For Santa".   Yes, don't mock me.  It's the infamous Nipple Soap from YouTube.  Lawd ha' mercy....

What else?  Let's see.....Oh!  What's Christmas without Gingerbread?! 

And last but not least....a li'l kooky, a little whackadoo, but fun.  I call this "Santa's Midnight Ride".  Really yummy smelling with notes of cherrywood, cherry pipe tobacco, vanilla, raspberries and cherries.  It's predominantly cherry so son't let the "tobacco" thing scare you.  That note is subtle but oh so goooooood. 

So there ya have it.  The entire holiday range of fun new soaps.  Great for gifts, and they'll all be going on sale on Halloween.  They're going fast in pre-orders!

Until my next post!

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

An update and some rambling about soap....

Hey everybody!  It's been awhile since my last post, huh? 

 I just wanted to update you guys on what's been happening lately for the shop, and give some information on when the holiday soaps will be released.  I've been getting tons of messages for a time frame, and...well....I'm getting them done as fast as possible but I can't really nail down a specific date for ya.  I'm shooting for the end of the month, right after Halloween, so there isn't so much of a mixture out there at once.  Sound good?  It's been so busy (Thanks for all your awesome support!) that I don't even know what the heck I've made in the last month or so.  A few are:  "Sugared Spruce"..."Cookies For Santa"...Frosted Sugar Plum Spice"..."Christmas Candy".....ummmm...what else?  OH!  "Berry Christmas" aaaand...."Gingerbread".  I have at least 3 more left to make and that'll be it for the season.  I will be making a new "Trio" of some kind, as well.  If you'd like a look at some of them, check out the videos on my YouTube channel.  It's going to be a fun batch, and I hope you like them. :)

I also wanted to talk a little bit about a trend I'm seeing on YouTube lately.  Many non soapmaker soapaholics are a unique breed and we love ya.  We do.  When someone is passionate about products that we soapmakers put so much time and heart into, it really makes us feel so good when it's appreciated and loved by buyers and afficionados.  Sometimes I wonder where the heck you people store all of that soap (Next...on "Storage Wars" but I love ya.  It makes it all so much fun. :)  You are the fuel for our businesses and also our creativity.

I've been seeing a lot of people doing "Lather Tests" on video.  Now, it's not rocket science, and I don't want to insult anyone's intelligence by this mild rant, but I'd like people to keep in mind a coupla things when doing these.  I see many people take stacks of soap from various soapmakers, and one at a time, test their lathering ability arm, over and over again.  It's important though to consider that no matter how "good" a soap is, a certain amount of oils will be stripped from the skin, just by the very nature of the product.  Some more than others.  But with each consecutive "test", more oils will have been removed from that spot, and the following soap may appear to lather more than the first one, and on and on.  Ya following me?  Less oil on the skin means that the soap will "grab" more and produce more lather.  So my point (and I do have one) is that this generally isn't a fair representation of a soap, or soapmaker.  It is also important to know something about what makes lather in a handmade soap.  Big fluffy lather is created by specific ingredients in soap.  Coconut oil, castor oil, sugar etc.  Stable lather is produced by other specific ingredients.  The factor to remember is that it is always a trade-off.  The high-lathering ingredients are also more stripping to the skin.  If you have a soap that has so much lather, it's frothing all over the place, I will guarantee you have a soap with a very high percentage of oils that create that.  You will almost always have a soap that is also less conditioning to the skin, despite the high superfats and other tricks of the trade.  The key is balance.  It takes many years sometimes, to create a recipe that produces great lather and also doesn't dry out the skin, and strip all the nutrients away.  Additionally, one person's skin differs from another's.  And what one person likes may be completely different than what someone else enjoys.  It's a wonder I don't blow my brains out....  :P   We try our very best to find that delicate sweet spot that balances all of the elements.  It isn't as easy as it looks.

Now, I don't wanna be a buzzkill here, because the videos are kinda fun...but many people watch these videos for recommendations, and I'd hate to see fledgling businesses get a poor rap because their product wasn't accurately represented.  It hasn't happened to me yet, but sometimes I think to myself "Ouch - that soapmaker just got nailed for lackluster lather", when really, if that soap had been used further down the stack, it would have almost certainly produced more, and that soapmaker's product wouldn't have looked so lame in front of all of YouTube. 

You smell what I'm cookin'?  Good. :)

(Please be sure to check out Holly's other great points in the comments section too!)

So what's a YouTuber to do?  Maybe just switch up the spots on your body or maybe even review a particular company on one video, singularly.  Disclaimers like "This is just my opinion, get off my back" in the downbar, are really sort of flippant and MeanGirlish, honestly.  It makes me sad when I see that. I know most soapmakers welcome honesty and feedback, but just be mindful of the damage you may be causing someone's business.   I know nobody would want that to happen. :)  Let's keep it light and fun and accurate.  So now, armed with more information and food for thought, bring on the new videos.  I always love to see them! that's all.  I hope everybody's having a nice, seasonably warm, fall.  Looking forward to seeing what everyone has been making for the holidays.  You guys are so talented!
Have an amazing day!

Friday, September 9, 2011

Then leaf subsides to leaf....

...So Eden sank to grief,
So dawn goes down to day.
Nothing gold can stay...

Easy, Ponyboy.

Let's talk turkey.  Get it?  Turkey?  Fall?  Turkey is for thankgiving, which is in the fa.....
Awww skip it...

I wanted to blog about some of the new stuff available for fall, in my shop.  To get right into it, the new Fall Trio made it's debut this evening, and I wanted to share it with you.

I just love a gift pack, don't you?  It could be dirty socks and if it came in a cute gift pack, I'd be all over it.

This one comes with three full sized bath bars.  All 100% goat milk soaps in various autumnal (I'll take "words nobody ever uses", for $500, Alex) designs and scents.  Macintosh Apple, Poison Pumpkin (the incarnate), and Haunted Hayride.

I think it's fun and if you're interested or want to saturate yourself further with the details, you can check them out HERE

I've also recently started a line of facial masks that seem to be doing well.  They have yummy ingredients such as macadamia nut oil, kukui nut oil, allantoin and of course beneficial clays etc.  For the time being, I have formulated four of them:

The Clarifying Facial Mask (with bentonite clay)

The Clear Skin Facial Mask (with french green clay and select essential oils suitable for problem skin)

A Milk & Oats Facial Mask (that has lovely ingredients like oats, goat milk, coconut milk, and a honey almond blend to name a few...)

And lastly, a Dead Sea Mud & Kelp Facial Mask (whose ingredients are self-explanatory)

I have a few more percolating in my feeble brain, but haven't had time to play with them yet.  They are wet masks, and not of the dry variety you'll see a lot of.

So...I've been busy.  I still haven't made a face cream that doesn't suck, so that got put on the backburner awhile.  I can hardly believe summer is on it's final leg already.  My woodstove is 80% installed, 10 cords of firewood is ordered and will be delivered tomorrow, and the leaves are already beginning to turn on my maple trees. 

Who's ready for apple cider and bonfires?

Monday, August 29, 2011

Poison Pumpkin...

I have a very limited amount available of the popular "Pumpkin Spice" scented soap, I've been asked about.  I found some stash and was able to make a few bars.  This year, I'm calling it "Poison Pumpkin" for the Halloween season.  I will be getting more of this scent in, and will, most likely, be making more of a variation of this, because it sells out so fast.  These may be the only few of this design. 

Think pumpkin pie, warm white spices and maple syrup! 

If you'd like some of these, please send me a message and I'll create a custom listing for you, in advance.

Sure is spooky around here!  :P

Thursday, August 25, 2011


Have you ever loved someone's talent so much you can't not share it with people?!  I have to show you guys some things.  I'm so excited I'm about to pee on myself.  :)

So, Carrie has bought soap and goodies from me in the past, and we've gotten to know each other, and we message back and forth etc.  Because there's no shame in my game, I begged her to craft for soap.  I whored my soap out for goodies and I am unashamed.   She writes a crafting blog (link below) and one day she made these INCREDIBLY cute coasters out of glass tiles she found: 

Can you even stand it?!  How freakin' cute are those?!  So I slobbered and begged, and she agreed to my shifty deal.  LOVE her.

My box arrived today!!!  Squeeee!

Not only did she make these for me, but she even asked me if I wanted a certain color and design too!  Wow!  I adore the li'l bird, but since I live out in the country I told her some other ideas I would love too.  Now, she's even customizing for me.  Awesome :)

I should mention here too, that Carrie should quit her job immediately, and live out her dream to be a greeting card designer, because they are truly original and fun.  Who wouldn't love these?

She makes these herself.  Look how detailed they are!  Right down to the little "buttons" on the overalls straps.  So cute!

So, I opened my box and the first thing I see is an adorable mini magnet board.  Awww!  She sent me extra goodies!!!  How flippin' crafty & cute is this?!

It has these two cute, glass, bird magnets on it (which I'm sure she fashioned from the prosthetic eyeballs of some corpse or something - she's THAT good) and a coordinating metal board with a really sweet Ward Cleaver that.  I love it so much, in fact, I hung it in a place of honor, on one of my bulletin boards over my desk.  :)

She also sent me the cutest little upcycled note pads that she makes from paintchips, in really cute primary colors.  Now how many times have you tossed these away?!  What a great idea!

As if that weren't enough, as it is, she also sent me this adorable zipper pin and wine cork keychain!

Again - all made by her...

I must be special :)

So now, for the pièce de résistance, look at the beautiful coasters she made for me.  They are absolutely stunning and perfect.  She etched this awesome tree in the center of these gorgeous, watery green, glass tiles and added cork to the backs.  A set of four.  I am in love with them.

I wish you guys could see these in person.  It's about to storm here so the lighting is really bad and not doing them the justice they deserve.  I cannot tell you how great these are.

Thank you so much Carrie - I'm giddy.  :)  You guys really need to check out Carrie's blog.  She's got the cutest ideas.  I have so much respect for this, because if I was dangling from a 60 story building and my only chance for survival was to use a cricut machine and some hot glue, you'd all be scraping me off the sidewalk with a spatula.

Saturday, August 20, 2011

New Soaps!

Let's talk about some of the new soaps I have coming out for the Halloween/Fall season.  :)  I am officially ready to gag over all the cinnamon-y, pumpkin-y smells around here! 


They smell good, but I need some fresh air after days of it.  Can you die from nutmeg?

So let's guys have seen the apple ones, right?  So I won't post those again.  I did a couple yesterday that I can show you.  This one is a "Witches Brew" blend that I goosed with some fresh squeezed oranges, ripened peaches and spiced cranberries.  The Witches Brew notes are cinnamon, cedarwood and patchouli.  Overall, I'd say it's a little like woods and berries:

As you can see, there are a coupla versions of it...

Another one coming soon is a really yummy scent based on "Leaves" by Bath & Body Works.  It’s a combination of fresh apples and juicy oranges blended with spices of cinnamon, nutmeg, and clove.  It's fall in a soap!  I'm calling it "Haunted Hayride".

The best smelling one yet, is my Pumpkin Spice soap that sold like hotcakes, last year.  It's a blend of pumpkin, maple syrup and white spices.  It's sooooo good.  It's in the mold now and I'm not sure the skeletons are gonna make it.  We'll see....  I might decide to surgically remove them.  A bone-ectomy, if you will.  Stay tuned for that...

I also have another soap coming soon, which is still turning dark on the bottom right now.  It should eventually get more brown.  It's sort of a vanilla butterscotch scent:

I'm not sure which are making the Autumn Trio, but expect a nice gift set for fall.  If you see anything ya like, let me know!

Monday, August 15, 2011


Today is August 15th.  My father passed away from lung cancer, on this day in 2003.  In some ways it doesn't seem possible that so much time has passed, and in others, it seems like that was another lifetime.  Veiled now, by memory and time.

Let me tell you a little bit about him.  Dad was a quiet guy, mostly.  Not overly talkative or expressive, for the most part.  Six foot two and handsome.  As if Robert Mitchum and Elvis conceived a child. He gave amazing hugs, provided unwaiveringly for his family, and was devoted to my mother; his sweetheart since they were eight years old.  Wouldn't anyone want that kind of love story?   I love that about them.

Dad was a draftsman.  First working for Studebaker in Indiana, and then Chrysler here in Michigan, until his retirement.  He drew blueprints and designed cars.  He had that crazy awesome, precision handwriting they learn to do.  I have papers I saved, that were his....just because they have his handwriting on them.  My favorite possession I have of his, is his hairbrush.  I asked my mother for it when he died.  Nobody really knows this, but even all these years later, I take it out of the box sometimes, and touch the aged gray hairs, still entangled...still here on this earth, when the rest of him is less tangible now... and smell the bristles because it takes me back to him. 
It still smells like him.

Dad called me "Bum" when I was little.  Every evening, when he came home from work, I'd run to him and he'd lift me up into his strong arms, kiss me on the cheek and say "Hi Bum".  It was always the best part of my day. 

Dad wore big, heavy, black wingtips and never tied the laces.  He had rough elbows and the whitest legs you have ever seen.  He had smiling blue eyes, and made "cases" for practically everything that he felt needed one, by folding cardboard or heavy paper into boxes sealed with masking tape.  Rulers, magnifying glasses.  Always better in a handmade case.  If you wanted to drive him crazy, fold a map incorrectly, or unplug the lamp by his chair to use your blowdryer - and then forget to plug it back in.  When he was angry with any of us girls, he called us "Sis".  We knew we were in big trouble then.

Dad loved nature and quiet, simple things.  I get that from him.  He also loved babies and puppies. 

And Star Trek.

He loved us.
  These are the things I know.

There are also so many things I didn't know.  I can't say that my father and I were close, in the way that most people would define it.  Heart to heart talks were not in his nature, and I sometimes found a deeper connection difficult, for reasons borne entirely of my own shortcomings.  Today, I'm thinking about those things I do sometimes.  What would I ask him today, if given the chance?  Maybe some of these things:

 What made you fall in love with mom?  Was there a moment you knew she was the one?

What were your horses names and who was your favorite?

Do you have any regrets?

 What did you like about me in ways that were differen't from my sisters?

Were you ever sorry I came along so late in life?

Who ever taught you to eat onions whole, like an apple?  Gross.

Did you feel differen't from other kids because your mom was blind?  Did it ever make you feel extra protective of her?

What was your favorite color?  Or book?

Why have I never heard you sing?

Were you scared when you knew you were going to die?  Because I was.  I was terrified. 
And never told you. 
I never told you a lot of things.  I shut down.  My mind wouldn't let me go to that place and I ran.  I'm sorry I didn't call you more.

I told you later, at your grave... and I knew you heard me.  And understood.

Today is August 15th and I will never forget the blur of that hot day eight years ago.  You, in and out of conciousness, but coherent enough to tell me you liked my kisses on your forehead.  The palpable abject fear in the room, knowing that all of our lives were about to change forever.  Each of us grasping for something to steady us.  Mostly each other.  Mom trying desperately to hide from all of us, that she wasn't sure she'd survive without you.  We weren't sure either.  The moment your heart stopped while I held your beautiful hand. 
I'm glad it was me.

I miss you today. 
And, every day, I love you...

Saturday, August 13, 2011

No bones about it...

My dog needs rehab.  I've been trying to deny it.  The shame....the constant questioning of myself... "where did I go wrong?"....the whispering and judgement behind our backs.  He was such a quiet, well mannered boy, too. 

Yes, Jack is on the crack.  It started innocently enough.  A rawhide here and there, to keep him busied when I don't have the time to cover him with smooches, or scratch his belly while we watched The Real Housewives together. Nothing fancy, just the plain ol' common ones with a knot at each end.  He'd prop it between his paws, grin happily and gnaw.  Things were good then...  Things were....simpler.

Then it happened.

I was in Sam's Club when I saw them.  Luring me into their evil clutches, I walked toward the shelf, without fear or trepidation.  When there, between the Morningsong Backyard Birdseed and the treats shaped like little t-bone steaks - was a plastic package filled with a new kind of bones for dogs.  A kind I hadn't seen before.  Had I known then, what I know now, I would have run, shrieking, from the aisle to warn everyone.  "NO!  DON'T EVEN LOOK AT THEM!" but it already had me in it's crosshairs...

I am here to warn you all now about the dangers of these satanic puppy treats.  All it took was one.  Just one

See how happy and unbalanced that dog looks on the package?  Eyes like little slits, dreamy smile, about to fall backwards?  That's because he's HIGH, people.  Cracked out of his GOURD!  If you listen quietly, you can almost hear Dave Matthews Band music seeping out of the heat sealed seams.  I dunno what's in these things (meth?) but now he's got a 3 bone a day habit, and if you even think about denying him one before he hops up in bed for the night, he'll cut you.  I'm telling you people, he will SELL your silverware and lie to his own grandmama for a sniff.  When he wants one, no... needs one, he'll pace the floor, panting and whining, until you cannot take it anymore and he breaks you.  Crumbling your resolve - enabling his habit for one more day.


So, immersed in his addiction, I pray for strength, and Jeff Van Vonderen  (" I just see a whole lot of people who love you like crazy").  Looking forward to the day when we all have our lives back.  Damn you, busy rollhide.  Have you no conscience?

All that aside, let's talk new soap.  I've had some LUSH dupes collecting dust on my shelves for a while now.  Some, I've soaped with disasterous results, so I put them away for a bit.  Last night, I decided to soap "Yummy Yummy Yummy", which I'm told has been axed from LUSH's current line.  So, this might be fun for you if you're missing this scent from them, and you can get it for a much cheaper price, as well.  I'm calling it "Yummy Scrummy" just because I think we all need to use the word "scrummy" more often. ;o)

Hopefully, tomorrow I'll get a chance to work on my new face masks and some seasonal soap.  Right after I check Jack into Promises...

Be well.