Saturday, January 31, 2009

New Blog Feature: Score This Soap!!

I love soap! I think that's a bit obvious, but I think my love of soap boarders on obsession. I've decided to funnel this obsession into a new feature I call Score This Soap. Every Saturday I will feature cool and interesting soaps that I find on Art Fire and Etsy. I'll make my picks based on color, texture, shape, and overall uniqueness. I consider it my pay-it-forward. As small business owners, we could use all the free publicity we can get!

This week's score comes from Southern Charm Soap Co. This soap is definitely one of those "Why didn't I think of that...." She uses leftover soap scraps and pours goats milk M&P soap all over it and VOILA-you've got Happy Endings! Dig the rich colors and the cool texture. The scent is a potpourri of all the different scraps used, so each bar is a unique surprise. Southern Charm Soap Co. is available on both Art Fire and Etsy, so go score!

Friday, January 30, 2009

Art Fire Artisan Spotlight: catinalife

As promised, I am shining the light on one of my fellow Art Fire artisans, and this week's feature is all about catinalife. Joy, the owner, is a true joy. She really had me at cat-in-a-life which should be the title of my story. Check out her q & a, then head over to Art Fire to pick up one of her unique and heartfelt creations!
1. Tell us a little about yourself.

This is the hard one right off. I am a BA/RFH.. Beadaholic, rock, fossil hound. I know it, I admit it, I’m OK with it. (Worse addictions.) I am a very young at heart (love video games/alternative music, and more) just over 50, mother to 3 and grandmother to 11. I work at home doing on-line med transcription when I am not making and selling the jewelry I love to create. Other than that I live a quite a boring life compared to most now. I grew up in NE Illinois not to far from Chicago and have had to resettle in Iowa. Much much slower pace of life here. I miss the Lake the most. I have been in Iowa since 1994 after a 19 year marriage that was physically/mentally abusive, I basically grabbed my kids then 11, 13, 15 and got away with my life and theirs, God bless the shelters out there. I took my life back. I am now 15 years free, safe, and still living.

2. How did you discover your artistry?

I started making jewelry around the age of 8, my mother gave me a Creepy Crawler set (ouch) for Christmas, I went back to school selling plastic butterfly pins to my classmates. I love all the sparklies, making my own jewelry was a way to have unique and affordable jewelry without the cost. No comparison to Mother Nature’s own beauty in the stones (diamonds included).

3. Do you craft full time or do you have another full time profession?

I am working towards crafting full time, as I work at home I can be available to my customers every day on-line. I am determined to make it full-time.

4. What brought you to Artfire?

A few things, on eBay my work is lost in the mix, as well as Etsy, which has been lets say, slow. At Artfire I feel my work will be seen and that is all I can ask, it is ultimately up to the buyer.

5. What are some of your favorite materials to use?
Gemstones, crystals, Czech glass, glass…oh heck….all of the jewelry making materials I can find, standard and unusual.

6. If you could learn to do any other craft or artistry, what would it be?

I have always been envious of those that can draw, paint, sculpt. I do good with stick figures and turkey hands that is about it. I do cross stitch, embroidery, Macrame, right now I am honing my Chain Maille skills in hopes to combine with gemstones at some point in the future.

7. Do you have a blog, website or other craft venue that you sell on? Now on eBay(at present glass/stone supplies). is my own site also though it has some bugs right now. I always try to add a little smile for the day joke…some are pretty funny…need a smile take a look. Smiles are free.

8. What’s your overall impression of Art Fire and would you recommend it to fellow artisans?

I am loving it so far. The talent I am seeing there just blows me away. The AF community is coming together and there are daily changes, they are listening to the sellers to help make it a great site. I recommend it as a great venue to be able to sell your crafted wares. Differing from eBay in that your buyers are looking for you, you will be seen, as well as low fees where I can pass on the savings to my customers.

9. Now, for the fun!!!
a. Coffee or tea? Coffee, lots of coffee.

b. Cat or dog? Catinalife……my shoppe on AF…definitely cat

c. NY or LA? Neither. Chicago/Milwaukee.

d. Paper or plastic? Paper biodegradable.

e. Fame or fortune? I have it, I am famous with my family and fortunate to have survived to this age after a heart attack and stroke in 2000. If you do what you love in life and live it like it is your last day, (and I do) you have all the fame and fortune you will ever need.

Wow!!! I purposely did not open the answer to Joy's questions until the day of this post because I wanted to be surprised (yes, I did say surprised) at her answers. Joy, you rock (pun intended)!
Thank you so much for taking the time to answer all my nosy questions, and you're a survivor! God bless you and your family, and much success to you!

Thursday, January 29, 2009

I Made More Soap!

I am so ass-backwards sometimes. I'll either have lye and no oils or oils and no lye. I'm literally scraping the bottom of the barrel, and I was able to eek out enough just to make this batch I call Love Hangover because that song from Diana Ross just popped into my head when I was trying to think of a name for it. It's bursting with the arousing aromas of grapefruit, tangerines, and lime. This bar is the perfect pick-me-up. I can't wait til it's cured and ready to use. I also cut the bars a lot bigger this time. These weigh a hefty 5+ oz. and I added cocoa butter because I'm in love with it. I think I'll make cocoa butter a regular ingredient in my recipes. It helps make my bars nice and hard, and I love how it moisturizes dry, ashy skin-like mine.

Tomorrow is my first Art Fire Artisan Spotlight. Ya'll come back now, ya hear?

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

These Bath Bombs Are The Bomb!

I love surprises. No, I'm lying. I don't love surprises because I have to always know what it is. Don't tell me it's a surprise because that'll make me all the more curious. I use to find my Christmas gifts as a child and carefully peel off the taped edges so I could see what the package was. I'm terrible, and I digress.....

So, I actually got a surprise in the mail on Inauguration Day to be exact. It was from my good friend Misty over at Burnt Mill Candles & Soaps. I happened to comment on her blog post about her bath bombs, and she so graciously made me one of her surprise testers. First of all I'm thrilled that she would even consider me, and secondly, I love bath and body stuff-especially free bath and body stuff:-D

Let me tell you right off the bat, I do not like taking baths. I've said it a million times on this blog. I have a thing about soaking in my own filth, and it dates back to my childhood. Anyway, I decided to use the bombs in a slightly different capacity. I used them as a soak for my long overdue pedi. I love watching bath bombs twitch and sizzle when I drop them in the water. I only used half of a bomb which was plenty, and not only did it make my water smell divine, it softened the water and welcomed my crusty feet with open arms! I tend to neglect my tootsies when the weather is cold because I wear socks or tights all season long. I probably let my feet soak about 20 minutes, and the flakes literally slid off when I touched my feet. There was minimal effort-just a few swipes with my trusty pumice stone, and I was done!

I recommend these bombs highly-for bathing or for mani/pedis. I don't know where she gets her yummy scents from, but all of Burnt Mill's stuff-candles, soaps, bath bombs.. are good enough to eat. Check her out today!

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Snow In The Nation's Capital!

(You may be saying to yourself, "This dusting...?" It's major to us, okay???)

Okay, technically I'm not in DC, but I'm literally a hop, skip, and a jump from DC, and it snowed today! It's our first measurable snow of the season, and we get pretty dang excited when it snows here. It's not the greatest shot, but it's a beginning. Give me one major storm-ya know, the kind that will shut down EVERYTHING for 2-3 days. It's been about 5-6 years that I can recall that we've had that kind of snow. Ahh, the memories......

ps-If you're reading this ittybitty, I got the soap! Can't wait til it's cured and ready to use. Thanks, ma!

Risky Beads Is Afraid of The Soap Seduction

I was reading the forums over at Art Fire, and I stumbled across one of the threads called "Did you Blog Today," and I just happened to click on Risky Beads. That's such a cool name-one that definitely got my attention. I tend to read the latest 5 or so posts of any blog that I visit just to get a feel of what the blogger is about, and I was shocked when I saw a picture of my
Snicker Doodle Sugar Bubbles. Maybe it's just me, but if I blog about another business, I try to give the owner a heads up that I'm shouting them out (okay, not all the time). This was a most pleasant surprise. The title of the post is called "Buy This So I Won't-Volume 5." How clever-although I wish she would buy it!

Sunday, January 25, 2009

Yum, Delish, & Ooh La La!

Now that I write that as the title of my blog post, I should have actually named my new and improved Lip Lushes just that! When I first started offering these, I thought they were pretty cool, but I wasn't pleased with the "look" of them. I wanted my lip balms to pop! I am a firm believer in shopping local-besides helping my neighbor in business, I get my stuff a lot quicker!! So I peruse my bookmarked vendors and go straight to Southern Soapers because they're right in Virginia, and I get my supplies within 2 days of ordering them (weekends don't count.) The fragrance oils are off the hook! You will find some of the most unusual, yet appealing fragrances out there. It's no wonder Kelly's been voted one of the top suppliers of the year by Saponifier Magazine. I blogged about her here and here.

Anyway, I had to give Southern Soapers some love because I bought my new lip colorants from there, and boy, do my lip lovelies POP! I love these, and this is just the beginning. There's way more on the horizon. Right now, I'm offering Cherry Berry, Orange Chocolate Truffle, and Mango Peach. Shameless plug: Spend $10 or more and get a free one-your choice!

Saturday, January 24, 2009

The Jury Is Still Out

I forgot to mention that I finally got the lye! I was so excited that I could barely contain myself. So of course, I had to make soap, but I aint happy ya'll! This was supposed to be my comeback soap, LOL, but it tanked. It's scented in Black Currant & Nectarine. It smells heavenly, but it reminds me of a block of solid, creamy peanut butter. I'm really pissed because I used the crappy soap colorants that I bought from that supplier I swore I'd never use again. My intent was to swirl this soap orange and dark magenta, but this batch refused to accept the colors. I'm going to let it cure and see what happens. The one saving grace with this soap is the cool peaks on the top of it-pure luck-my soap had started to set as soon as I added the FO. I'm gonna stick with this one. Maybe I'll add a new category called Ucking Fugly. This would be Ucking Fugly II!

update: I haven't even posted this and the soap is growing on me!

Thursday, January 22, 2009

Move Over Carol's Daughter....

Cuz I'm making my own hair products now! We are in a recession. There's no doubt about that, and I can no longer afford my beloved Hair Balm from Carol's Daughter. It retails for $12.00 for 4 oz. Come on CD! You are pimping me and lots of other women out there! I'm not knocking their hustle, but I actually took the time to read the label, and you know what? I've got 8 out of the 10 ingredients in my soap making arsenal. Hot diggidy! I'm gonna make my own hair balm, and it didn't turn out half bad!

My balm is packed in an 8 oz. jar and it contains the following:
  • Coconut Oil
  • Palm Kernel Oil
  • Sweet Almond Oil
  • Olive Oil
  • Beeswax
  • Cocoa Butter
  • Fragrance (I used Dragonberry)

I don't much care for digging my hands in the jar. I've ordered a few tall bottles to put my future batches in. I admit, it's not Carol's Daughter, but it does what I need it to do which is moisturize and condition my brutally dry hair. I slather this on section by section after I wash my hair with a sulfate-free shampoo and twist it all over. My hair stays nice and shiny for up to 3 days after which my hair is dry as a bone. I think I'll stick with this for a while. If Obama gives us a stimulus check, maybe I'll buy the real thing.

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

I'm Verklempt-The Soap Seduction Has Fans!

See what happens when Obama gets sworn in? Good things happen to me!

I love the name Milk & Cookeez, and I love Tammy, the owner. She's been one of my biggest supporter for the longest, and I appreciate it and her friendship. We follow each other's blog, and I faithfully check my blog roll daily. When I first saw the picture, I was taken aback. "That's me!!!" I said to myself. What am I doing on Tammy's blog again? I read the post, and Tammy's done her own Favorite Things list (a la Oprah Winfrey.) For anyone, regardless of fame or popularity, to publicly state that they love something you do or make, is truly flattering but for me, humbling. It's so hard for me to write this post because while I like to personally revel in attention, it's hard for me to accept public adoration. I always feel like there's stuff out there so much better than mine or I could have done something differently or better....Anyway, I'm going to accept this token of appreciation from Tammy, and to her, I say, you are the greatest!

Next, I'd like to thank another friend, Misty over at Burnt Mill Candles & Soaps. She is my candle goddess, and she's another favorite of mine. Last week, she posted about her bath bomb making efforts, and I was truly impressed, so I made a casual comment that while I don't like baths, I have another idea in mind for them. Well, lo and behold, I get a nice little package in the mail yesterday from who else but Ms. Burnt Mill herself. "I didn't order anything..." Then I opened it, and Holy Sh*t!!!! This sweet woman made me one of her surprise testers! All I can say is YUM!!!! I haven't even used them yet, and the bath bombs smell DELISH. I think Lemon Bundt Cake is my new favorite scent. I cannot wait to dig into these (I'll be posting on this next week-not as a tester, but as a fan!) By the way, they arrived in tact! Thank you Misty!

Lastly, I have a new friend, and I'll call her Ittybitty after her blog. I found her purely by accident. She is the follower of another blog that I frequent, and her photo just beckoned me to click on it. Ms. Ittybitty is a budding soapstress, and she blogs about her trials, and I look forward to them:-) She made this batch of soap now called Mintal Forest. This is a cool, funky-looking soap because it's filled with tons of peppermint leaves. Again, I casually, okay, I blatantly say, no insist, that she send me a bar when it cures. She's sending it to me! I'll blog about that too. Thanks Itty....!

See, basically all ya have to do is ask, and ye shall receive. I love my friends! Thank you all, and I look forward to all the good things to come.

Monday, January 19, 2009

Bitch Post #2-UPS Is On My Sh*t List!


Before, I reveal why UPS is on my sh*tlist, I must give you the backdrop to this story: I haven't told anyone this til now, but I am going thru a serious soaping withdrawal. I need a fix bad!!! I haven't made any CP soap since November, and I'm about to set it off!

First of all, my trusty, local hardware store unexpectedly, I mean literally overnight, goes out of business (this economy is killing the small biz owner) so I have no means of buying my lye locally. None of the major hardware chains carry it. I went to Home Depot and asked, "Do you carry lye?" and the dude looks at me like I'm speaking Swahili. He literally said, "Huh?" I was dumbfounded. I had to actually break it down for him: "You know-sodium hydroxide, the stuff used to open up clogged drains and whatnot...." "Oh, then you'd want to look in the plumbing aisle." "Gee, thanks (for nuthin, ass hat.)" Needless to say, I found no lye, so I was left with one choice: Order it online and go thru all the hazmat bull crap (Thanks a lot you scumbag meth mongers!)
So to wrap up this tale of woe, I found a great deal on Etsy from Tog Soap Molds. I got 8 pounds for $22.00 which is like a bargain because I was paying $5.00 for a 16 oz bottle at Mom & Pop's. Anyway, they shipped the goods the next day, and I got confirmation that my stuff would arrive on 1/16/09-this past Friday. I'm having this delivered to my job because there's no one at home to sign for the package. Anyway, the day is half over when I realize that my package aint there, so I go online, and I see that my shipment has been re-scheduled for the 19th!!! WTF!!?? I am livid. I don't have time to fool with UPS because I'm working-otherwise, I would have called and acted a f*ckin' fool! It's not ladylike, and I don't recommend it, but it's very effective when you need to make things happen. Anyway, I can't have the package re-routed to my home because I'm not the original sender and only they can do that. The damn package was attempted delivery to my job today: MLK Day. A holiday. No one's there. The building is closed. I don't have my friggin lye, therefore, I cannot make any soap. Therefore, I majorly pissed. Therefore, UPS is on my SHIT LIST!!!!

Everybody Sing For Martin Luther King!!!

Sing, celebrate! Sing, sing, celebrate! For a king......

Today is a great day! Not just because it's a holiday, but because we are honoring a man who gave so selfishly of his time and his life for the good of all Americans. Peep this video from back in the day-'85 to be exact . See how many artists you can identify!

Friday, January 16, 2009

Inauguration Madness

It is mad cold here in DC and its surrounding burbs. I don't think it's been this cold since...I don't remember, but it's been a long while. One of my favorite comedians Earthquake said, "Those who said hell would freeze over before Obama gets in The White House wasn't lying, because that's how cold it is right now...." I'm really torn now about whether I want to participate in all the inaugural activities this weekend. When I tell you the city is in complete and utter chaos right now, I'm not exaggerating. There are so many parties going on this weekend that it feels more like All Star weekend than Inauguration Day. I just pray everything goes smoothly and with little or no drama. Here's my advice: If you plan to attend the outdoor festivities, dress extra warmly (don't knock long johns ya'll!), pee before you leave home (or wear one of those adult diapers like ole girl did when she drove from Texas? to Florida to beat down her husband's mistress-you know the astronaut chick), and don't even think about driving in DC cuz it aint gon happen Cap'n. Most importantly, bring your patience and get ready to experience something unlike you've never seen before. I'm betting crowds will top The Million Man March. For real though, if the daytime temps will be below 40, my tail will be on this sofa watching it on the tube!

Have a great weekend!!!!

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

The Heart of the Matter

Remember back in the day (grade school to be exact) when you'd go to the drugstore or grocery store or general store, or whatever store and bought your box of Valentine's Day cards to give to your friends and classmates? I loved browsing the aisle looking at all the cute offerings, but I especially loved buying that big bag of heart-shaped lollipops with the "Be Mine" messages written on them. I especially loved helping my father pick out that box of chocolates for my mom. I, of course, picked out the kind I liked. Back then, we only had a choice of Russell Stover, Whitman's, or Brach's. I was partial to Russell Stover myself, but now, I'm a Godiva Diva all the way. I'll settle for Dove, but if you want my heart, it's gotta be Godiva (I'm so high-maintenance when it comes to affairs of the heart!) Seriously, though? I'll take the day after box of drugstore chocolates marked down to 50% off. It's chocolate people!!!!

Here is my Valentine's Day offering. I call it Chocolate Cherries Heart Soap. It's ironic that I came to make this soap because I loathe chocolate-covered cherries. It was my least favorite candy in the box. That ooey, gooey, cherry cordial syrup running down my lips and fingers bring back horrible memories of having to take Saint Joseph's cough syrup when I was sick. EWWW!!! BUT.....this soap is DIVINE. If I could eat it, I'd be about 10 pounds heavier. It smells of sinful, chocolate fudge with just a kiss of sweet cherry in the middle. Together it's a chocolate lovers dream. I'm giving one to each of my office mates-even the dude. I think they'll get a kick out of it. They're available now in both my Art Fire and Etsy shops. I'm off now to have a piece of chocolate. Writing this post just kicked my sweet tooth into high gear!

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

Something New

ArtFire - Buy Handmade - Sell Handmade

Hey All,

This is a long post, so grab a coffee, tea, beer, whatever you drink at 7am EST! I’ve blogged briefly a few weeks ago about Art Fire, a new online selling venue for artisans (I like this word so much better than “crafter”.) One of my goals for the year was to become more involved with Art Fire building up my store and becoming an active member of the Art Fire community. I’m happy to report that I’ve actually done that. That in itself is a miracle being the lazy ass that I am. I’ve even joined two Guilds (the Etsy equivalent of a Team.) I am now an official member of Blog Fire and We Love Art Fire. Isn't Blog Fire the coolest name? I really love Art Fire because it’s new, it’s fresh, and I feel a true sense of community there. For every account that is opened, they plant a tree for the environment, and if you refer at least 10 artisans to open a store on Art Fire, you get a free ride (i.e., no fees) for LIFE! You can join at the basic level for free-no listing fees and no commissions, however, you’re only limited to listing 10 items, and you’re listings are limited (no categories, only 4 pics….) Or, you can sign up for the VERIFIED status and pay a flat monthly fee of $7.00 for life (if you’re among the first 5,000 to join). With the verified status, you can list as many items and as often as you’d like with no listing or commission fees, unlike Etsy. Another plus: you get shop statistics via Google Analytics. I recently closed my candle store there because I’m not really making candles as much as I used to, and I got an actual e-mail from the president of Art Fire asking me why I closed my shop, and if there was anything wrong that they did. How impressive is that? Okay, you can play devil’s advocate and say, well, yeah, he would contact you because they’re a fledgling site who really can’t afford to lose members at this point. BUT, the fact still remains that he took the time to personally e-mail me, and it wasn’t some lame auto-response either. That’s what I call customer service!

With all that being said, I’m starting a new feature on my blog called Chillin’ With…. and I’ll be spotlighting a seller from Art Fire. The spotlight will consist of a series of questions about the artisan and their artistry. My intent is to generate some positive buzz for both the artisan and Art Fire. If you are an artisan on Art Fire and would like to be featured, please leave a comment in this post, and I’ll contact you with the details. The first artisan will be featured on 1/23/08.

To join, click my link, and I’ll send you a nice token of my appreciation!

Monday, January 12, 2009

My Boobs Rule!!

Now that I've gotten your attention, my White Chocolate Bath Melts made a treasury today. I knew these boobs , er melts, would be popular. They made an Etsy Treasury today. DC’s got some talent! Shout out to all my CREST (Capitol Region Etsy Street Team) peeps!

Saturday, January 10, 2009

How Delightful!

One of my goals for 2009 was to participate in one sample box per quarter. To kick start my participation, I've chosen a new venue: Sweet Delight Divalicious Sample Boxes. They're the sister site of Delightful Divas In Business and they're based in Canada. I'm so excited to be participating in this particular sample box because it's my first time dealing with an international venue. DDIB has a respectable following (me being one of them), and I love getting my product into the hands of new people. If you don't or haven't already, sample boxes are an excellent opportunity to get your product and your name out there in the wide world of e-tail. These boxes are filled with a dozen or more of different e-tailer's sample products ranging from jewelry to cosmetics to bath and body. You'll discover some interesting finds and generate some buzz for your own business. The SDDSB debuts in March, so I encourage all my online buddies to consider participating. This could be the start of something big....

Thursday, January 8, 2009

Pour Some Shuga On Me!!!

I love that song by Def Leppard. I was a junior in high school when that came out, and my friend Marcus and I were probably the only two black kids at my school who loved that song. Anyway, I've taken the leap from soaps to bath and body, and here's my latest offering: scrubs and polishers. I have so much fun making these, but they're a mess to make. Here's Margarita Lime and Snicker doodle which are now in my Etsy shop. I actually listed some stuff! Go figure. The Margarita makes me crave one, and the Snicker doodle beckons me to Knibbles at the mall. I love these because they're cleansing and exfoliating all in one. I like to sleep til the very last minute, so I'm a big believer in time savers. Okay, now I need a drink and a cookie. Talk to ya'll later!

Wednesday, January 7, 2009

Bitch Post #1: Listing and Re-Listing

I may have mentioned this before, but if not, I'm making it official: I AM LAZY!!!! I don't like to do stuff-especially when it's tedious and time-consuming. Where am I going with this? I'm referring to listing and re-listing your stuff on your craft venue of choice. I guess it would be easy to make a template with everything and simply copy and paste it when you're ready to list, but that would be too much like right, right? Why don't these venues offer it as an automatic feature? They sure would make a hell of a lot more money off of me if they did. That's why my shops often fall by the wayside, and that's why I'm doing myself a disservice. So all in all, I guess I'm more pissed with myself for being lazy than with Etsy or Art Fire for not offering a template, but they should!!! I'm sure I'm not the only other lazy ass out here.....

(p.s.-I'm turning into Oprah. I'm splattering my face all over this blog!)

Tuesday, January 6, 2009

Vanilla Boobs?

No!!!! They're my new White Chocolate Bath Melts, and I made them just in time for Valentine's Day. I personally do not like baths. There's something about soaking in my own filth that turns me off, but I do take a mean shower. I'll just stand there forever letting the hot water pelt me all over. Yes, I did say hot water. I don't like warm showers-especially in the winter time. I know hot water is drying to the skin, and that's where the vanilla boobs, I mean bath melts come in. I made these with primarily cocoa butter and coconut oil, so they're designed to dissolve in warm bath water as well as absorb easily into the skin. If using one with a shower, rub on damp skin once you've finished showering. It eliminates the need for lotion or other moisturizers. I love these, and the scent is to die for. I gently scented them in chocolate. Coupled with the natural aroma of the cocoa butter makes it a real winner in my book. They'll be available later this week in my Etsy shop. Be sure to check 'em out!

Sunday, January 4, 2009

One Step Ahead...

I always pride myself on being one step ahead of the game (or at least on pace). Case in point: I received my download of the Jan/Feb '09 issue of Saponifier Magazine the other day, and one of the articles was Product Reviews. I was surprised to see that one of the products being reviewed was Brambleberry's Holly Berry fragrance oil. I was so excited because I bought this FO back in November as my one true Christmas fragrance. It's a limited edition FO, so I'm not sure how long it'll be around. The reviewer used her Holly Berry in body cream and MP soap, but I used mine in CP soap. The scent itself is a combo of holly, pine, and red tart berries with supporting notes of cinnamon and cardamom. There was a disclaimer that the soap would discolor to a peach/gold after 8 hours. That would have been so cool, but it didn't happen for me. My soap stayed the red and green I colored it. I really smell the cinnamon and pine more than anything making it perfectly unisex. I sprinkled a little gold soap glitter on it for effect. Believe it or not, I haven't used this one yet. It's going in the shower tonight. Bottom line: It is a nice addition to your holiday/winter collection.

Saturday, January 3, 2009

I'm Getting Better!

For those of you who regularly read my blog, you know I often lament about how I suck at pillar candle making. Well I'm happy to report that I'm improving-slightly. I ordered a new type of wax that I've never used before, and I'm quite pleased with it. I went to At Wix End to originally order a drill bit for my pillars, but I not only got that, I bought a 5 pound bag of this wax. I love it because it's a one pour wax, meaning you don't get those pesky sink holes. I hate those damn things! Secondly, the finished product yields this beautiful snowflake effect. I scented this candle in Blackberry Nectarine from Candle Science, but the color doesn't really reflect it. I was testing the wax after all! I give this wax 4.5 stars out of 5. Like all soy and palm waxes, you get that powdered fluff which gets all over the place. I wish they'd package these types of waxes in a container. Those plastic bags they pack them in aren't worth a damn. The tiniest little hole will get that powdered stuff all over the place. Looks like a huge bag of cocaine to me!

I'm off to make a few more candles. Stay tuned...

Thursday, January 1, 2009

My New Year's Resolution? I'ma Do Me!!!!

Happy New Year, Everyone! I'm so thankful to make it to another year because there was a time not too long ago that I didn't care if I lived or died. 2008 was a year of transition for me. It was my first full year without Spencer. I started new job, and I started blogging. I was trying so hard to fit in and keep up with The Joneses that I lost myself. I was information overload-Etsy, Twitter, MySpace, Ning, you name it. I saw all these wonderful sites and talented crafters that I wanted to copy them and be like them-even if it wasn't me! I wasted so much time, money, and effort trying to be somebody I wasn't. If I saw a soap maker who made cool swirls or used a certain fragrance, I had to do it too. Well, no more! It's 2009, and I declare this the year of ME!!!

I resolve in 2009 to be true to myself at the expense of myself. I vow not to compare myself-mind, body, spirit, and talent-to anyone else. I will take advantage of every opportunity presented to me even if it results in failure. I am so tired of living in the "what if". I will continue to perfect my craft and share what I know with others. I will be nicer to people (that's gonna take a lot of work). And lastly, I will learn to love myself again. Whew! I've just set the bar so high, I feel faint....

Talk to ya'll later.