Thursday, February 08, 2007

Time Flies

It seems like I just updated this thing yesterday, and yet I know it has been nearly a month since my last post. Sorry for the slacking folks, I've just been really, really busy. After staring at a computer all day at work, the last thing I feel like doing is getting online at home. The few moments that I do spend on the computer at home are currently devoted to building a website.

Stitching is still practically non-existent, but it's getting better. I've managed to get into a bit of a routine where I actually work on my stitching (mostly PIG) for a miniscule amount of time each day. Admittedly, it isn't much, but it's better than nothing.

Soap continues to take up most of my time. I've been playing around with various recipes and techniques, and I am getting ever closer to being able to sell some of it. Technically, I suppose some of it has been sold. That was unintentional, though. You see, I took some painted Valentine heart soaps to a friend who owns a coffee shop. These were not for sale-- the intent was that he would give them out to some of his "better" customers. There was no tag, no business card, nothing. It was just a little Valentine treat for some of the folks who had supported his business. Apparently, one of his employees didn't know these were freebies, and he sold several of them.

Below is a photo of samples from some of my recent batches. The one on the left is the lavender soap that was a near-disaster. The first go-round with this soap didn't set up properly, even though the soap was just fine. So, I shredded it and rebatched using buttermilk. Unfortunately, I was in the country when I did the rebatch and had forgotten to bring soap molds. I ended up using a mini muffin tin, hence the small size and less-than-glamorous appearance. The soap is absolutely wonderful, though.

The next soap was my first attempt at using powdered colorant. It didn't turn out quite right. The color was supposed to be added to the water at the beginning of the process. I missed that part of the instructions and ended up adding the powder at the very end, just before pouring into the molds. That's why it's speckled. It's a terrific soap though, scented with Love Spell "type" fragrance. I really like this scent-- rather citrus-y. It's one that I'll definitely be using in the future.

The soap all the way on the right is what the speckled soap was supposed to look like. Notice the pink color! That is what happens when you add the color at the correct time. LOL

The dark one has been named "Ugly Soap" because it is, well... pretty darned ugly, especially when compared to it's more attractive siblings. I used vanilla buttercream fragrance and added honey and oatmeal. The combination of vanilla fragrance and the honey is what turned the soap so dark. The final scent of this came out very earthy, in part because of the oatmeal.