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Tuesday, September 29, 2009

A Longer Process

So I thought it would take me two days to determine a winner for the coconut contest. Boy, was I dreaming. Ha! Sorry folks, it's going to take me much longer. There were some last minute entries, and I want the opportunity to try each and every one to make a determination. Smelling the soaps right out of their boxes aren't necessarily fair.

Give me a week. I brought them all home and smelled them all again. I will lay them all out and start soaping up today, tomorrow and picture taking, too.

Thanks to all of you who spent the time participating.

Saturday, September 26, 2009

Dye Porn




I don't have any soap porn for you right this minute. I have dye porn.

Yes, last night, along with 3 twelve year old girls watching, I bleached and dyed my hair. I had fun and I like my hair the way it came out. I have been dying my hair crazy colors since I was 14. Now, I still think I am 20!

My son saw me last night, did a double take and said, "Mom, you look cool. So beauuuuutiful."... And touched my hair like in the romantic movies. Does it get any sweeter than that?

Unfortunately, all I had today was my computer camera under florescent lights so you get what you get....in the dullest of locations. Yeah, baby! My undecorated side office in my shop.

So here I am, sans lipstick, being porn-riffic, dontcha think?

;)

yea-YAS, I am laughing out loud. No lols here!

The Coconuts Are In


Thank you to everyone who participated in the Coconut Challenge. I know it was pretty bad timing for most of you cold processors being that you all are probably trying to prepare for the holiday season and I had to go and throw a wrench in the works, or as I say it in THIS house, a bone in the fan. Yes, for those of you who don't know why my husband's blog is named bone in the fan, that is why. Because I can't ever remember idiomatic expressions and I come up with ridiculous expressions that imitate or try to imitate the real ones, except I think they are the real ones at the time.

Anyway, back to what I was saying, thank you. I received a small handful and I am pleased with the results. Straight out of the boxes I think I have a winner and a runners up, But I will examine more thoroughly and with my full attention tomorrow on my only real DAY OFF. Perhaps Monday or Tuesday I will have the winner results.

Stay tuned.... and in the meantime, I might surprise you with a bit of porn between now and then.

:)

Happy Saturday!

Monday, September 21, 2009

Pass The Fork, Please

Beware: Foodie soap porn.

I don't know about you, but the amount of soap pastries on the market have multiplied and I have been craving sweets the more I see them out there. Who's pants are getting tighter?


Halloween Cupcake Soap by Machine Gun Lullaby


Bubbles Variety Shoppe has Cupcake Soap in Cranberry Sugar.....


Strawberry Cheesecake from Australia at Funky Bunches. Mmmm. and another from Funky Bunches...
Chocolate curl muffin





Cupcake Soap and High Tea Cake Soap by b. Gentle soaps in Australia (woah, extraodinary!)
also in their line of goodies (had to include it because it's fantastic looking!!)

Block of chocolate:

Isn't that chunk o' choco unbelievably real looking? I love it and want that right now, thank you! So there you go. My favorite subject: sweets. Subjects: Soap and sweets. ;)

Enjoy your day. May visions of sugar plums and ooey gooey chocolate dance in your head.

muwahhhh ha ha!

Thursday, September 17, 2009

Wrap It Up - Retailer Ready

Wrapping soap is a dilemma for me and probably for many other soap makers. It's a constant tug-o-war between style and practicality. If you are thinking about selling your soaps wholesale to customers who want your soaps labeled, this is something that needs to be weighed.

I know I want my soaps to be seen and the artistic nuances to be admired and to have the soaps exposed so people can smell them. On the flip side, if I were to provide soaps wholesale in bars (right now I offer wholesale in loaves), I'd need to weigh all of my options. Exposed bars aren't necessarily what the retailer wants and it might end up damaged....then what?

Wrapping a bar completely allows the bar to be packed consistently for shipping, minimizes damage during any shifting...whether it be in shipment or shelf shifting...etc. In this way, your soaps are not seen so your packaging must be so appealing that it blows people away, or your bar will remain a lonely dusty skeleton on that shelf until it is thrown away. Do we want that for our babies? OK, this choice means serious artistic uniqueness. It can be done and the choices are HUGE!

Here are a couple of examples of beauty that I came across with all sorts of wrapping jobs.

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Here are packaging ideas for soap makers provided by The Ponte Vedre Soap Shoppe website. Each packaging idea is marked with a number. If you are interested in finding out more, go to their site to see the details of the wrap job.

(pvsoap)


This person from Memory Makers bought soaps plain from Good Fortune and decorated them herself for her own wedding. They are so cute!

I went to Good Fortune so I could show you their soaps, but I couldn't pull a graphic from the site. They wrap their soap with a card and what looks like a hair tie to hold it all together. Very smart.


Here is an example of a full wrap with no band or personal touch. Still...quite elegant.


Tokyo Milk Paper Wrapped Dragonfly Soap at South Moon Under



There's a do-it-yourself tutorial at Creature Comforts, where they show how to wrap soap with step by step instructions (measuring, cutting, ribbon, stickers....)




Then there is the tissue wrapped soaps:
Soap by Gianna Rose



The metal box (which I haven't yet seen) done by Scottish Fine Soaps


There's the boxed soap/ A dear friend of mine, Lisa Devo, is co-owner of The Soap &Paper Factory and their line is stunning looking. Their soap in a box is shown here:



Fabric is a beautiful choice as well:
Wrapped in hand batiked fabric at Me Naturally


So how do you wrap your beauties and are you thrilled with the outcome? Do you have a blog post you'd like to share? I think wrapped soaps are beautiful any way you slice it, styles and difference are fantastic. I love to see it all.

But I'm extra hungry today.
;)

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

The Coconut Challenge Is A True Flop

What happened to this challenge? I certainly was hopeful about people entering a contest, but I am embarrassed to say, I have received 3 entries.

Wow.

I guess contests aren't something we should conquer here at The Soap Bar. Maybe it's too stressful or competitive for you guys. Perhaps the coconut challenge really is a challenge and very few people have found a true coconut scent.

Whatever it is, I am here to remind you that you still have ten days to get a coconut bar to my shop. The soaps must be received by me no later than Friday, September 25th by 6 pm.

The address for mailing:

Product Body Shop
xxxxx
U.S.A.

To read the post with the concept and "rules" check it out here.

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Sunday, September 13, 2009

Scrumptious Samplers That Are Heavenly

What is better when you can't decide what to pick and hate the idea of dropping dough when you aren't sure if you're going to like a scent or not? Soap samplers are the perfect solution! These are some very beautiful ones that I found today. (this was no easy feat!) I will start offering this as well. Everyone should. It is brilliant.




noncommittal

noncommittal by Dirty Sanchez DirtySanchez
I love the ingredients she lists: Soap, sarcasm, love, awesome.
Nuff said. =)


The Soap Sampler by Hartley Soap on Artfire


Extra large goats milk sampler by Lily Pond Soap
I like the tower and wrap


Soap Sample Pack by Fresh Cut Soap Co. in Australia
I just discovered their soap this evening and I really love the looks of them!


Want a gorgeous crinkled french fry? ;) These are so cute in a bowl! Misty, of Burnt Mill Soap has made her soap available in cute sample sizes. 10 oz. of soap for only $7.00. Deal of a lifetime. Her soap is great and is also some of the most colorful soap I've ever seen.





haus of gloi
sample 4 stack. You can choose from any of these scented soaps:
1. Satyr - Blood Orange - Black Vanilla
2. Lavender Sugar - Sweet Sugar - Lavender
3. Depravity - Golden Amber - Wine - Sandalwood - Coconut
4. Envy - Red Sandalwood - Basil - Bamboo
5. Absinthe! Soft Mint - Sugar Lump - Touch of Moss
6. Elevenses - Orange - Sugared Almond - Black Tea
7. Imp - Passion Fruit - Pink Grapefruit - Mimosa
8. Apothecary - Cedarwood - Rosemary - Lemongrass
9. Honey Tree - Honey - Black vanilla - Rare Woods
10. Madcap Garden - Black Tea - Honey - Sweet Green Peppermint
11. Aduwa - Ginger - Hot Cream - Coffee Grounds

I have some deep respect for this young soap artist. I don't know much about her, but I am ready to talk to her, pick her brain, check out her soap. She is going to be known, folks. If I lived in Portland, I'd ask her to meet me for coffee.

So what do you think? Shouldn't we all get one? Offer one? They are all so pretty pretty!!


You Guys Are Awesome!

We made it past 50! Wahoo!!

We are actually into the first round of the "Judging Phase" for Shine A Light.
Who knows if we will make it past the first go around. I'm sure thousands have entered, but Product Body sure could use the award money for marketing, staff a sales person... we could really be efficient! And anyway, we may be inspiring enough....

I love you!

Thank you Thank You Thank You Thank you Thank You Thank You Thank you Thank You Thank You Thank you Thank You Thank You Thank you Thank You Thank You Thank you Thank You Thank You Thank you Thank You Thank You Thank you Thank You Thank You Thank you Thank You Thank You Thank you Thank You Thank You Thank you Thank You Thank You Thank you Thank You Thank You Thank you Thank You Thank You Thank you Thank You Thank You Thank you Thank You Thank You Thank you Thank You Thank You Thank you Thank You Thank You Thank you Thank You Thank You Thank you Thank You Thank You Thank you Thank You Thank You Thank you Thank You Thank You Thank you Thank You Thank You Thank you Thank You Thank You Thank you Thank You Thank You
Thank you Thank You Thank You Thank you Thank You Thank You Thank you Thank You Thank You Thank you Thank You Thank You Thank you Thank You Thank You Thank you Thank You Thank You Thank you Thank You Thank You Thank you Thank You Thank You Thank you Thank You Thank You Thank you Thank You Thank You Thank you Thank You Thank You Thank you Thank You Thank You Thank you Thank You Thank You Thank you Thank You Thank You Thank you Thank You Thank You Thank you Thank You Thank You Thank you Thank You Thank You Thank you Thank You Thank You Thank you Thank You Thank You Thank you Thank You Thank You Thank you Thank You Thank You Thank you Thank You Thank You Thank you Thank You Thank You Thank you Thank
Thank you Thank You Thank You Thank you Thank You Thank You Thank you Thank You Thank You Thank you Thank You Thank You Thank you Thank You Thank You Thank you Thank You Thank You Thank you Thank You Thank You Thank you Thank You Thank You Thank you Thank You Thank You Thank you Thank You Thank You Thank you Thank You Thank You Thank you Thank You Thank You Thank you Thank You Thank You Thank you Thank You Thank You Thank you Thank You Thank You Thank you Thank You Thank You Thank you Thank You Thank You Thank you Thank You Thank You Thank you Thank You Thank You Thank you Thank You Thank You Thank you Thank You Thank You Thank you Thank You Thank You Thank

Friday, September 11, 2009

I NEED Your Help... and quick.

Shine A Light Program is an opportunity of a lifetime for me and Product Body. Amex and NBC are asking people to recognize inspiring small businesses. I have until Sunday to collect at least 50 endorsements to qualify...to be in the running for a monetary prize so we can make Product Body go to the next step, to continue to bring you yummy body treats.

When you go to endorse Product Body, you do need to register. It will only take one minute of your day. I promise.

So if you'd be willing to help us, please register here: Shine A Light and then hit our story page and click the Endorse Now button on the upper left part of the page.

You can get to our story page directly by either going here, Product Body Shine A Light Profile Page or by clicking on the Nominations button, then using the search box and searching under Product Body.


This means the world to me.
You have no idea.
Thank you.

ps: If you are really feeling crazy, tell the world and send the message out to nominate us, too!

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Personalized + Stamped

One of the things I've been wanting to do is stamp my soaps because I love the way they look and I think it is a fantastic marketing move. Think about it. You tear off the soap wrapping, stick it in the shower and use it one or two times, realize you love it and - BAM! What soap is this? Where did I get this? What was that company's name? Hmmmmph!

If your logo or name is stamped on it, you'll be sure after 4 showers, your name will still be visible. The other thing it does is gets your name branded in the showering person's brain because you're getting their undivided attention every morning for approximately 4 days (or more!). They pick up the soap, see your logo/name and wash with it 2 or 3 times per shower. It is brilliant marketing. Same goes for a powder room soap or guest soap.

What better way to promote yourself?

Sadly, I bought a soap stamp and it is too small and my letters are too "blocky". I should come up with a logo or try something else completely. My soap stamp was a failure because of how I designed it. Bleh.

Here are some beautifully stamped soaps.


Inner Earth Soaps in Australia


Arrogant Bastard soap by Magic Hands Workshop
Magic Hands logo




Nahia Creations makes wonderful soap.





Anhoki
Her husband actually makes soap stamps



Grumpy Girl stamp on her Ay Carumba Lime Margarita soap



Hello Bath + Body Co/Supplies by Hello
Owned by the lovely Daniela Maldonado


******UPDATE: I forgot Intentions! How could I have??

What are your thoughts on the subject?

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Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Ode To Le Noggin

Halloween is so much fun. Not a big fan of death, but I love skulls, always have. OF course, it was really pretty easy to find Halloween appropriate soaps being that you can't go anywhere nowadays without seeing spiders and webs and orange and black in every window already. What IS THAT!?

I am just not with it like the rest of you. I am barely out of summer mode. I still have sand in my toes. Is the Halloween decor hot the minute Labor Day is over? Is that the retail way? I am not up to the rules. Actually, I've never been one to follow the rules because I DON'T KNOW THEM. Like....never wear a seersucker suit, when? After Labor Day? Is THAT a rule? Don't where linen to a poker game? None of that nonsense makes sense to me, frankly. I say, wear what you want to wear. Who gives a flying faHOOT whether or not it's fashionable. Right? In any case, Halloween, doesn't bother me so much, because I love costumes, spiders, witches, skulls, and CANDY. Yummm.

So, I've got skull eye candy.


Found these cute mini soaps on Skull A Day which, if you have not checked out, you absolutely should.
I have his book, and I have spent hours just perusing the endless creations.


Black Skull Soap at Night Moth in the UK


Voodoo Jill Soap by Dancing Zebra
Blend of peach schnapps, apricots, oranges, and a hint of exotic flowers.



Skull and Crossbones Wretched Woolies Felted Soap by Persnickety Pelican
Honey + oatmeal scent



Absinthium Skull Soap by Bathtub Bling
A touch of fresh mint and a bit of sugar


Skull and Bones 5 lb loaf $70 by Primal Elements or by the bar for $8.50
Vanilla with caramel


Halloween (La Nuit) Shea Butter Soap by Sweet Petula
Amber combined with myrrh, vanilla and Egyptian musk.


Swashbuckler by Arcana Soaps
West Indies bay rum, scurvy-preventing limes and a dark blend of spices.
This soap can be purchased here



My work is done here. For now. ;)

Thursday, September 3, 2009

Amber's Ambry & Her Little Blueberry, Too!

Amber's Blueberry goat's milk soap
(photo by yours truly on my patio)

So, I get this great package from my soap buddy, Amber, a few weeks ago. Nice soaps, beautifully wrapped, they smell wholesome and are decorated similarly. Looking at them made me want to eat more healthily, grow a garden, make my own paper and make homemade applesauce for goodness sake. I was even considering giving up my chocolate habit during that fleeting moment, but then I thought about my nightly ritual of eating Reese's peanut butter cups and decided that all natural, all the time just isn't for me. There is a time and a place for natural, but when I want junk, I can push a button and go for it. Especially when your chocolate gets into my peanut butter.

Back to Amber, her ruby shoes and her little blueberry.

I am not a huge fan of blueberry smells in the land of bath and body products (thinking Bath and Body Works and all that encompasses that place) and also TJ Maxx - all of the rejects from every other store in the U.S. and quite possibly products pushing their expiration dates. But Amber's soap smells true and blue. Blueberries are my favorite fruit, I'll have you know, and every time I got into the shower, I rubbed that bar all over and sniffed it sniffed it and sniffed some more. I couldn't get enough of that smell! I think I'll call it a heaven bar... with the perfect amount of poppy seeds. I think poppy seeds are under utilized in this world. They are not only cute, but they work so hard, especially for being so darn small.

My husband wrote a blog post recently about a loofah soap he found in our shower and how it felt like razor blades. If you want a laugh, go read it here. Apparently after reading all of the comments, it appears that the men are not big on exfoliation but women LOVE it. The rougher the better. Now, I would have thought it would be reversed. I know that about half the time, I like to exfoliate and I don't like it mild, either. So, Amber's blueberry packs the perfect poppy-punch because it isn't downright rough, but it's no where near mild.

In short: I love this Blueberry bar of goodness!


poppy-punch good


How cute is this muslin bag with the blueberry stamp that Amber carved out and made HERSELF?!



Oh come on, is there something this chick can't do? Oh yeah. Let me share with you some of the things she can do brilliantly:


She bakes:

She gardens. And well, too:
















She quilts:




She's a knitter extraordinaire:




She sews many beautiful aprons (I am an owner of one)
Wish I had the photo of me wearing mine....so cheery.:



And she and her husband made these invitations and I really want to know how they did it. Perhaps we can ask her to do a tutorial or something...







This crafty chica is no woman to be dual-ling with at high noon with an art box.


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