Friday, July 31, 2009

New YouTube Video

Yes, the addiction is more voracious than ever!

Do You Use Google Analytics?

Well if you don't, you could be missing out-on YOU! I was checking my analytics today, and I found that I was featured on this blog, Follow The Colours. What a lovely surprise! What language is that? Espanol? Francais? All I saw were my pics, and was like, "WHOA!"

Thursday, July 30, 2009

Etsy + Twitter = Etter?

How about Twitsy? Okay, how about the Etsy Twitter Team? Yes, I am one of the newest members of this exclusive street team. Why do I call it exclusive? Because they only let 25 members in at a time! As you can see, I'm starting to emerge from my shell. What way to be more socially active than to join some big street teams? I've been peeping the team list, and I'd like to publicly shout out some fellow team members who happen to be followers!

Now that I'm part of the team, I've got work to do! I love snagging treasuries, so I'm going to now make it a point to make my treasuries related to my street teams: Etsy Twitter, Etsy SAFE team, and EAOC!

I'm Calling You Out!!!!

If your name is in this post, please reply to let me know you're still alive! I haven't seen or heard from you in more than a month, and I worry about my friends!

  • Laura-I Can Make That

  • Ittybitty

  • Kelly-Kelly's Color Studio

  • Heather-Skincare by Heather

  • The Turquoise Bird

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Go Fudge Yourself!

I promised myself that I would not wait until the middle and end of fall to make new soaps because they take so dang long to cure! I've got lye. I've got fragrance oils, and I've got soaping oils (a minor miracle that I have all three at once!) so I'm on a mission: to have at least 10 new batches made by the end of summer. That may sound like a lot to the big batch pro, but that's a major task for me. I've already got 3 down: the orange and ginger, Bad-Ass Cousin, and now Go Fudge Yourself! I am feeling this soap ya'll! It really smells like fudge, and I just want to bite a big ole chunk out of it. I made this batch really simply: olive, palm kernel, coconut, and castor oils. I was trying to give it a cool marble effect, but my swirls leave little to the imagination, so we have these "bald' patches. The color of this soap will progressively get darker. I wonder if the bald patch will grow in. I left that part un-scented intentionally in hopes that it wouldn't go dark. Who knows? Who cares? I just want this one to be ready. I've reserved my own special bar so when I have company, I can tell them "Go fudge yourself...."

Monday, July 27, 2009

It's Been A While, But More Soap!

I don't think I've ever gone this long between posts! The past week has been a really long one. I went out of town for a few days, my sister came down from Harlem for the weekend, and I saw my cousin who just turned 18. I even got my hair done-sorta...

With all that fun, I did manage to squeeze in a few batches of soap. First up is a batch scented in blackberry and sage. I call it Bad-Ass Cousin. Why? Because this scent could be the cousin to Black Raspberry and Vanilla only it has a spicy kick (the sage) to it. We all have a cousin (or other relative) who is just a little to the left when everyone else is to the right. They're such bad-asses! I'm also really loving anything blackberry right now. I under-measured my oils (I don't know where my freaking mind was) so these bars look "squat" to me. I compensated for it by cutting them thicker than normal. I made these soaps with added shea butter, and I left them in the mold for a full 72 hours before un-molding and slicing. Usually I'm so gung-ho about revealing my newest creations, but lately I've been like "Ehh...whatever, It'll be there tomorrow...." I think the summer heat is getting to me...

Monday, July 20, 2009

Whew, I'm Tired, But I Did Make Soap!

This has been a busy weekend for moi! Let's recap, shall we?

  1. Launched my YouTube channel. It's still a work in progress, but I'm happy I can cross something off my to-do list.
  2. My cupcake tutorial is posted on The Soap Bar (another task completed!)
  3. I received my giveaway winnings from Nuria (super Yay!)
  4. Filled a couple of orders (always a good thing!)
  5. Made some soap! Check it out in my latest YouTube vid (I'm becoming a YouTube junkie, btw!)

Saturday, July 18, 2009

I Have Arrived!

Now that I have your attention, I can now reveal the teaser that I blogged about last week. I was approached almost a year ago by soap lover and maker extraordinaire Joanna at The Soap Bar about doing a tutorial for her mucho popular blog. I was all gung-ho about it until the reality hit me that I had to do some work! By that I mean put together a step-by-step tutorial on how I made one of my soaps. I was scared sh*tless. Needless to say, I never followed through with that tutorial, and I assumed my window of opportunity was lost forever.

Fast forward to a few weeks ago when I get this e-mail out of the blue. It was Joanna asking me again to do a tutorial! I was absolutely floored. I'd honestly thought I had burned that bridge forever. Oh, how I've grown in this last year! I quickly said yeah, and my tutorial was officially conceived! This is truly an honor to be recognized and sought after by someone in your craft field. The Soap Bar is wildly popular soap lover's blog. I still can't believe I've gotten to this point. Let me tell you, I went through about 5 drafts of this tutorial. When you're used to doing something naturally, you don't think about the steps involved, you just do it. I had to actually think about this: what materials were needed, amounts of ingredients, pictures, etc.

Okay, enough blah, blah, blah, click here to check out my tutorial and let me know what you think.

I Took The YouTube Plunge!

Holla at your girl! Yes, I'm on the Tube of You. I've uploaded a couple of vids made with my camera and Windows Movie Maker. Now that I'm on YouTube, I'm totally hooked. I have many plans my friends. I plan to do tutorials, showcase new products, everything.

Here's a lil something I put together. Check it out and tell me what you think. Holla.....

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

New Stuff

I've been in the lab (aka my kitchen) charting new territory. I love fragrance, and I've making some perfume oils! I prefer oils to alcohol-based sprays because the oil blends in nicely with my own natural oils so you I get the perfect fragrance: the perfume oil and me! I really dig these roll-on bottles. They remind me of those lip glosses Maybelline used to make back in the day. What were those called? I can't remember, but anyway, I have two new fragrances that will take the place of the perfume solids I used to make.

The first is Vanilla Sandalwood., this stuff smells so good! It reminds me of Donna Karan's Cashmere Mist. It's so subtly sexy. You ever keep smelling yourself because you really love the way your fragrance smells on you? Well, that's how I feel about this one.

The second scent is called Honey Patchouli. A one-word description? DAY-UM! I don't care for patchouli by itself, but when it's blended with something sweet or fruity, it really makes a statement. I can't decide which one of these I like best, so you know what I'm doing? I'm blending them! Man, I wish I'd made these sooner. They're totally affordable, and they are long-lasting. I've got more great fragrances planned. I'm officially launching these in my Etsy shop. I'm adding them to my other venues later this week....

Monday, July 13, 2009

Bitch Post #9: Yes, Packaging Counts!

Picture this: You order something really beautiful and rather expensive (for the sake of argument, I consider anything handmade expensive compared to store-bought), and you're anxiously awaiting its arrival in the mail. The day finally comes, and you rip open the box, and you quickly deflate like busted balloon. Your stuff is wrapped in newspaper! This has happened to me more than once. I'm not expecting fancy gift wrap, but please don't wrap my treasures in newspaper! Ugh!! I cannot tell you what a turnoff that is. You can go to the dollar store and buy tissue paper in a multitude of colors and hook it up! I've been doing that lately, and my customers love it! I use my signature colors-hot pink and black with coordinating ribbon, and it makes such a statement without braking the bank.

So today's lesson: NO NEWSPAPER! Save your packing peanuts and bubble wrap from your own purchases to reuse for your shipments. Get thee to Family Dollar or Dollar Tree or Five Below or whatever your local dollar store may be, and stock up on tissue paper. Okay, I'm done. For now.....

Saturday, July 11, 2009

Score This Soap!

I didn't do a score last week-I totally forgot with it being Independence Day, but it's back. I was on Art Fire last night browsing the Handmade Soap aisle, and this soap struck me. At first glance, it looks a little like glow-in-the-dark which is what drew me to it in the first place. Then my imagination really kicked into gear and I was convinced they were green aliens invading the soap! Anyway you look at it, the swirls are really cool. The soap is called Apples & Oak by Ten Digit Creations.

One thing I noticed is that this soap is made with lard. I've never tried a lard-based soap before. How ironic is it that I eat meat with a passion, but I won't use bath and beauty products with animal fats in them? This is still a cool soap though.

Wednesday, July 8, 2009

You Wanna See A Hot Mess?

Shoshoni commented on my post the other day about a tutorial that I'll be doing soon, and she said that her first attempt at soap making was a hot mess! That made me laugh out loud because "I stumbled on this photograph. It kinda made me laugh. It took me way back. Back down memory lane..." Okay, I couldn't resist for all you Minnie Ripperton fans (myself included). I thought I'd share a pic of my 2nd batch of soap that I made. Whooo! I so wanted this to turn out well. The scent was Cherry Meringue Bites by Day Star Supplies, and it smelled so delicious. Well, you live and learn. I've yet to buy that scent again. I'm still haunted by the memories of this soap. So here it is in all it's glory: Cherry Meringue Frights, I mean Bites!

Monday, July 6, 2009

My 1000 Markets Shop Gets Some Love

I don't know about you, but when you're juggling your shops on different venues, you're bound to neglect one (or more.) I'm currently selling on 4 venues: Art Fire, Etsy, 1000 Markets, and Funky Finds. Oh, and let's not forget this blog-my baby, my pride and joy. Anyway, my 1000 Markets shop has been picking up a little steam lately, and I got a nice e-mail from Erika Pitera, Editor, of My Shopping Connection. She told me that I was featured in the spotlight on the Bath and Body Arcade of 1000 Markets. For those of you who aren't familiar with 1000 Markets, there are little mini markets within the venue itself. The markets are then made up of various shops which sell like items such as jewelry, metal crafts, bath and body, you get the picture.

Thanks, Erika, for featuring my Honey Baby soap. I need to make more of it. I'm almost out!

A Little TSS Teaser!

Friends and followers, I have an announcement to make:

I've been approached to do a tutorial by a major soap blog, and I am excited and nervous! I won't divulge the who's, what's, and whens til the moment of truth, but I couldn't keep it to myself! I have a lot of work to do in a short time. Why? Because I'm a perfectionist, and I want this tutorial to be on point! More details to follow....

Saturday, July 4, 2009

Happy 4th!

Today's a glorious day! Why? Because I'm alive. I'm healthy. But more importantly, I'm free to do whatever the hell I want to! I can't tell the President to go f*ck himself and not get arrested or catch a beat down for it! That's a little extreme, but you get my point. You can't do that in China or Cuba-well you could, but you'd probably never live to tell about it.

For all it's faults and shortcomings, we live in the greatest country on the planet. I wouldn't want to live anywhere else, and I've been to other countries-The UK and Zimbabwe to name a few. They're beautiful places to visit, but you know the saying.....but I wouldn't want to live there....

So, let's celebrate the indedpendence of our country and of ourselves! Have a good ole American hot dog and a beer (if you drink beer) and chillax! Here are some cool 4th of July finds courtesy of Etsy. Have a safe one. I'm going to get my eat-and my drink on today-and no I won't be driving. I'm staying overnight at the party scene! Talk to you Monday!!!!

Thursday, July 2, 2009

I Took The Plunge: Essential Oil Soap

About a month ago I blogged about how hesitant I was to use essential oils in my soap making. I don't know why. Part of it was ignorance and the other part was fear. Essential oils are not the same as fragrance oils. For one, true essential oils are not synthetic or man-made. They are derived from plants. They're called "essential" because they are the essence or the makeup of the plant from which they are derived. Essential oils should also not be applied directly to the skin in its purest form. They should always be blended with a carrier oil such as grape seed or sweet almond. More importantly, pregnant and/or nursing women should not handle or use certain essential oils as they could be toxic or irritating. Click here for more info on which essential oils to avoid if pregnant.

Okay, school's out. Let's play! This is my first soap scented with only essential oils. I haven't come up with a snazzy name for it yet, but it's scented with patchouli and bergamot essential oils. I'm loving the patchouli more now that I'm "cutting" it with sweeter EO's. The contrast is very striking and alluring. I've had this plastic tubular mold for about two years that I've never done anything with until now. Let me warn you: Un-molding CP soap from a plastic tubular mold aint no joke! You can line it with a piece of silicone liner or line a pvc pipe with a silicone liner, but that's too much work for me! I let this soap set in the mold for a full 24 hours until it gradually pulled away from the walls of the mold then I pushed it out with the end of a water bottle. I'm still thinking of names.

Wednesday, July 1, 2009

Oh Happy, Happy Hump Day!!!

This morning I awoke tired and listless-just naturally pissed off at the world because I have to get out of bed and go to work! One thing I always do before heading out the door is scan all of the blogs I'm following, and guess what??? I won the giveaway at Jabon artesanal by Nuria! Remember I blogged about this a while back? Well, the loot, the booty is all mine! I won out of 331 entries! How freakin' awesome is that??? I've never won a darn thing in my life, and I so wanted this! I cannot wait to get my goodies. Thanks Nuria for having such a fantastic giveaway.

I owe. I owe. So off to work I go! Can you believe it's July 1st???