Pages

Sunday, December 26, 2010

Introducing..Carmen!

I wanted to introduce you to the newest member of the Sailor Mouth Soaps family, an adopted Orangutan named Carmen!



She is being cared for at the Nyaru Menteng Orangutan Reintroduction Project just outside of Palangka Raya, Kalimantan, which is part of the Island of Borneo. She was brought in by her owners and surrendered into the care of the facility. 

Thankfully her owners realised that they couldn’t care for an infant Orangutan and did the right thing, allowing her in time, to be released back into the wild.

She is very independent and *loves* milk. She used to be a bit of a terror when she was younger, now if she wants a bottle, she just goes and gets it herself.

From the 1st January 2011, I’m very excited to announce that I will be putting aside a portion of each sale to go towards adopting even more Orangutans in the coming year! My goal is to be able to adopt at least another 5 before the end of 2011 <3

If you are interested in adopting an Orangutan or making a donation, here are two Australian foundations you might be interested in:-




Friday, October 29, 2010

Meet Mary from Roseberry Bay Soaps

The ridiculously long neglect of my blog has prompted me to get my butt into gear and write a decent post! I'd like to say the large gap between my last post and now is because of some amazingly exciting project but in reality, it's just from general slackness, holidays and lots of orders! I did enjoy my holidays and the orders are great but yes, I am blog slack. Maybe I need a blog personal trainer?

Anyhoo, enough chit-chat, let's get on with it!

I want to introduce you to my friend Mary from Roseberry Bay - Beautiful Handmade Soaps & Luxuries . Mary is the first Australian based soap maker that I met and we became instant friends.

One of Mary's specialities is loaf soaps. I'm always in awe with the precision of her work and her remarkable ability to reproduce such tricky designs with accuracy. My loaf soaps are always a drama. They never turn out quite as planned so I've taken to stopping for a few deep breaths and thinking "What would Mary do"?  Tehehe.




What took your initial interest in soap making?
I have always bought soaps from markets and over the last year or so I noticed more and more of these really lovely and unusual bright soaps.  After buying one lot that had embedded curls, bright wavy layers and beautiful clear colours I thought - I wonder how hard this can be?  So I did what anyone would do - I googled handmade soap and was absolutely dazzled by the information on offer!  I visited all of the forums and blogs and etsy and madeit stores I could find over the next month and realised that this was something I thought I could do!  My daughter had also raised the idea of us having a stall at the local market and M & P soap seemed to fit in with that as she wanted to make lip balms and body butters.  I found an Aussie supplier of the soap bases, colours, moulds and fragrances, placed an order for a “Starter Pack” and off I went!  There was a considerable testing process though - I needed to make sure that the soap was good to use and safe as well as looking “pretty”.
Have you (or do you still) had any other crafty interests?
I have always “dabbled” in craft of some kind.  I knitted and sewed when my children were small and was a professional Calligrapher for about 10 years also teaching Calligraphy at the local Community Centre.  I’ve done cross stitch, tapestry and I bake ... a lot!  
Do you have a “day job” or is soaping a full time venture for you?
Yes I do have a “day job”.  I work at the local Cemetery in sales which is about as far from soaping as you can get!  It’s a great job and you meet loads of lovely people who rely on you to get them through a very difficult time so it is a very nurturing job as well.
Run us through an average soaping day.
I guess there’s no such thing for me as an “average” soaping day.  I can see something that makes me think of soap (and all you soaping addicts know what I mean!) on TV or in the shops and come home from work and start planning what I want to do.  After cooking tea I’ll head to the soap station (my kitchen) and start fiddling around with colours, fragrances and moulds until I have it clear in my head how I’m going to set everything out to get the result I want then ... off I go!  I also try and set aside a Sunday or two a month to concentrate entirely on designing and making soap.  It really is a process than can take a couple of weeks.  I see something I’m inspired by ... spend a little bit of time here and there working out on paper the possible ways to do it ... try and work out any variations that I think may work or look better ... in the back of my mind I’m thinking of fragrances and colours ALL the time ... then off I go!
Where do you get your inspiration from?
Inspiration can come from many different places.  I look online to see what others are doing and, if there’s something that really catches my attention, I’ll see if there’s a way I can tweak it to make it mine.  There’s nothing worse than soapers who make an exact copy of someone else’s really distinctive soap.  I can be inspired by food - ha ha who isn’t really?  I’m hooked on the Food Network and if there’s something there that has great layering or a different look then I immediately think “Would that be do-able in soap?”  There isn’t a lot of soap information here in Australia so I also check out the blogs from overseas as well as our local ones.  There are some great blogs from Europe which I can’t read (because they’re in a foreign language!) but the soap pictures are fantastic!


Do you have any soaping or crafty idols?
I think like most of us who craft Melt & Pour soap, I am fascinated by the work done by both The Soap Queen (Anne-Marie Faiola) and Soapylove (Debbie Chialtas).  I also love the soaps made by Peter Paiva (www.peterpaiva.com.br).  Peter is a Brazilian who makes fantastic bright and innovative soaps - his website is a hoot even if you don’t understand Brazilian!
How do your friends and family feel about your soaping?
My daughter is my “Market Buddy” - she and I go to the Wallan Olde Time Market every month and have done other local markets as well.  She is expecting her first child in January so currently the Wallan Market is the only one we’re doing.  Our son-in-law LOVES the soap and I have to stop him stealing multiple bars every time they visit!  My husband also appreciates having a supply of good quality soaps on hand and both he and my son-in-law absolutely love our new shaving soap.
If you could make 1 really challenging thing out of soap, what would it be and why?
I was in America this year and saw some fantastic loaf soaps with terrific shapes in them that seemed to have been carved out of soap!  One of them was an antique bath with bubbles piled up one end - I think I’d like to attempt something like this.  The patience and steady hand needed to carve a long tube that is “bath shaped” all the way along would be a real challenge!  The reason I’d like to do something so difficult and challenging is so that I can look at it when I finish and say “I made that!”
Do you have a favourite supplier? Why?
My favourite Australian supplier would have to be Aussie Soap Supplies - their bases are just second to none as far as quality goes and they have a great range of fragrances and bits and pieces to add to the never-ending collection!  My favourite International supplier would have to be Bramble Berry (www.brambleberry.com) because their range of colours, micas and moulds is absolutely unparalleled - with the Aussie $ as good as it is at the moment it’s easy to shop online and the prices can be comparable.
Tell us about your first soap making experience.
The very first soap I made was a tricky little angled and layered number with a soap curl embedded in it.  I was so pleased with the way it turned out but, looking back at it now, I can see all the flaws and that it wasn’t really very good!  Thankfully I didn’t know that it used a couple of pretty advanced techniques or I never would have tried it!
Share with us how you felt when you had your first sale.
My daughter and I were so excited!!  This was a complete stranger who liked my soaps enough to buy one - how cool is that??  I think I probably overwhelmed the poor woman with details about the soap base, the fragrance and all of the magical properties of my soap!  She obviously didn’t think I was some kind of soap nutter because she has become one of our regular customers buying up to 8 soaps every month!
What is your favourite base to work with?
It really varies depending on the idea that has captured my imagination at the time!  At the moment I’m loving the Ultra Clear and also the Hemp soap.  Ultra Clear gives you such wonderful brilliant colours and the Hemp is so wonderfully nourishing when you use it.
Do you see yourself trying your hand at CP soap or any other soap making methods besides M & P?
I would love to try CP soaping ... but the lye scares me!  I am waiting to have a decent amount of time to play around with it and really learn how to do it properly.  There’s not a lot of information about it in Australia but I would love to do a course.
Where do you see Roseberry Bay Soaps in 5 years?
I would really like to be full-time making and selling soap.  I would also like to be able to have my daughter working with me and have enough business to support us both!  I would also love our website (www.roseberrybay.com) to become more of a sales tool - at the moment people are really just looking at the soaps there and then asking me to bring them to market!  



Tuesday, October 26, 2010

If you could have a super power, what would it be?

Flight! I'd love to go for a cruise around in the sky.

Ask me anything

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Sailor Mouth Soaps will be at two market stalls this weekend!

This weekend is going to be HUGE for Sailor Mouth Soaps!

Saturday night 18th September I will be at the Sun State Roller Girls Bout #5 and with little time to recover, I'll be at the Kustom Krafts Alternative Markets #7 on Sunday morning the 19th September.

I've been churning out soap like a mad woman and my soap studio & packaging room are looking a little worse for wear! Here is a sneak peak at what's been keeping me so busy...



If you're in the Brisbane area, be sure to drop by, say hello and check out some of the awesome other stalls as well <3

Monday, August 16, 2010

My favorite skin care receipes

My interest in natural skin care began at an early age. My Mother had a book called "Natural Beauty by Lorna Horrocks" and it became a bible for me. I think I've tried almost every receipe in this book & I wanted to share my favorites with you.



Honey Cleansing Lotion
For any skin type

1 teaspoon of honey
2 tablespoons of warm milk

Blend together to make a thin lotion. Rub over the face & neck with the finger tips. Rinse off.

Olive Oil Cleaner
Good for removing city grime. For any skin type

2 teaspoons of olive oil
1 teaspoon of honey

Apply to the face & neck, rubbing with the finger tips. Wash off with a mild chamomile infusion.

Oatmeal Mask
For any skin type

2 teaspoons of steel-cut oats
150ml of water

Boil oats & water gently for about 5 minutes & strain off the liquid. Apply the liquid to the face & neck - leave on to dry as long as necessary - several hours if you wish. This s a gentle face-lift for sagging face after illness or depression. Rinse off and apply a moisturising lotion.

As  many of these receipes aren't vegan, I wouldn't use them now but it is a lovely trip down memory lane to curl up with a hot cup of tea and read this book.


This is my favorite illustration, it was my dream bathroom for many years!

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

How to get the best out of your new natural soaps

Natural soap is different from commercially made soap in many ways. It is better for your skin and the environment but it does need a little extra care to ensure it lasts and lasts.

One of the best things you can do for your soap, is to allow it to dry completely between uses. I have one of those silly soap dishes in my shower that is virtually flat, has one drainage hole and collects spray from the shower, turning in into a mini swimming pool. This is not a good way to store you soap as it doesn't have the harsh chemicals commercially made soap has added to it to ensure the bar is super hard and not so prone to melting when left in water. What I do is either prop the bar upright in the soap dish or place it on my shower caddy to let it drain properly.

I've also been using a body puff to foam up the soap and use it that way, it's much more effective that using the bar itself, ensures a good lather and keeps my bath time indulgence around for a lot longer.

So with a few simple tips, you can extend the life of your natural soap greatly. It's worth it!

Monday, August 02, 2010

Greazefest Kustom Kulture Festival wrap up




You might have noticed that I've been somewhat absent for the last month due to the mammoth task of preparing for Greazefest - Brisbane's own 1950's nostalgia festival.

Well I'm pleased to say that the day was a fantastic success! To keep with the theme of Mimsy's Trailer Trash Tattoo stall of a Hawaiian Luau, I had made my soap all in the Tiki & Hawaiian themes. Here's some pictures:-












































































































If I've managed to keep your attention up until this point, then you're in luck!

Between today (2nd August) and next Monday (9th August), buy any three soaps in my Sailor Mouth Soaps Etsy Store and pick a fourth for free! Simply add BLOGOFFER to the "notes to seller" upon purchase & tell me which soap you would like. It must be of equal or lesser value to the other soaps you are buying & this must all be done in the same transaction. That's all you need to do to get a free soap. So head on over, take a look and get your freebie.

xx

Tuesday, July 06, 2010

Etsy Treasury East

I'm loving Etsy's Treasury East where members can create their own Treasury's and save them forever!

Here's one that I made recently. Guess how I was feeling when I made it? Things that look like food

And here's a few that I've been featured in. It's funny how popular the gory, horror soaps are compared to everything else. Tehehehe.

And now: the ZOMBIE blood TREaSURY!

It's a Royal Flush...

Play a hand, Alice?

Tiki Torched

Ommetaphobia - Fear of Eyes

EYE SEE YOU

Pieces of My Heart

horror

Coffins, Skulls, and Humor

Creepy and Mysterious....


Monday, July 05, 2010

We all make mistakes...

Interested in trying out my natural soaps at a half the regular price?

I've just listed in my Etsy store a mystery bag of not-so-perfect-yet-still-lovely soaps that need a new home.

You will get around 200g of soap for only $5!

These poor ugly ducklings are the result of experiments, are a little too small for regular sale or have a ding or two from being transported to and from market stalls.

Ugly duckling soaps will be listed from time to time, as my epic failing permits, so hop on over to my store and take a look before they all sell out and you have to wait for another mistake :P

funny pictures of dogs with captions
see more dog and puppy pictures

Friday, July 02, 2010

New kids soap range

It's getting to that stage in my life where most of my friends are off having babies and my social outings almost always involve my friends children, so having spent a bit more time around them, I've decided to do a line of soaps especially for kids!

This first of the range is these adorable dinosaurs - roawww!








They are all made with nourishing Shea Butter to help moisturise and care for little one's skin. Each soap is scented with Guava & Cucumber fragrance. Imagine everything that was fresh, green and new in the world that once was.

Saturday, June 19, 2010

I've been featured in the Sekkei Crafts blog!

When the lovely Vicky Majajas from Sekkei Craftsoffered to interview me for her blog recently I was over the moon but nervous at the same time! I haven't been interviewed before so I had no idea what to expect but I'm thrilled with the result.

Thank you Vicky!

Be sure to follow her blog, she's doing some very interesting reviews and craft how-to's in the near future, it will be a good read.

Friday, June 11, 2010

Why is Shea Butter such a magical ingredient in soap?

There is a lot of buzz in the cosmetics world about Shea Butter but what is it, where does it come from and how can it benefit my skin?

Shea Butter has long been used by the people of Africa for its soothing and healing properties, even as a form of sunscreen! It is extracted from the nut of the Karite tree by picking, cracking, pounding and finally soaking the nut for several hours. The creamy butter is then removed from the water and dried, ready to be processed and sold.

Shea Butter is high in non-saponifiable fatty acids and vitamins, keeping your skin soft and supple by soothing skin irritation and even warding off premature lines and wrinkles.

Other amazing attributes of Shea Butter include:

• Has protective and emollient properties
• Helps minimise scarring, stretch marks and inflammation
• Relieves tight, dry skin
• Helps restore your skin’s elasticity


So I guess you can say that Shea Butter is magical, or as close to it as you can get! Now where did I leave my wand?

Time to meet my fur kids


Sleeping pups, originally uploaded by sailormouthsoaps.
This is Herman and Gomez, my Pug & Tibetan Spaniel/Maltese. They are one of the main reasons I like working at home several days a week, they are always happy, warm and entertaining.

Thursday, June 10, 2010

Now that I no longer have the plague...

Things are getting back to normal, yay!

I've been spending lots of time working on wholesale orders, getting together lots of soaps for an Australia Soap Makers Swap (how exciting!) and working on some new designs.

This is all thanks to a lovely friend of mine who donated a microwave when mine blew up! He even dropped it over to my house when I was sick. What a lovely guy :D

Sunday, May 23, 2010

Soap Studio *update*

Just for fun the downstairs microwave decided to blow up!

So it looks like I will need to get another one asap, along with some more storage before I can move into the studio completely.

I still have the space upstairs to use for a little while so it's not the end of the world :)

Saturday, May 22, 2010

Soap Studio

Well today is the day I've been waiting for, I finally get to move into my own little soap studio!

It's nothing too amazing but it will be great to have my own space and stop taking over the kitchen cupboards with my supplies and get all of my extra boxes and junk out of the lounge room.

If I'm lucky I might even be able to squeeze in a nap this afternoon before my busy weekend begins with the Ten Fours gig, QLD Roller Derby Mixer, Kustom Craft Markets, Roller Derby Meeting and then Fresh Meat Intake..wow, that's even a lot to type!

Have a great weekend everyone :)

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Pricing exercises

IMG_4320

I've had a number of wholesale enquiries recently (which is amazingly exciting) and it has prompted me to sit down and actually work out proper pricing structures for my soaps.

Let me just say, it was a very eye-opening experience...I had no clue I was undercharging to the point that I wasn't even covering costs most of the time.

Having been brought up in a very penny pinching household (and I don't mean that in a bad way Mum, honest) it pains me to part with more cash than I have to so I've found out the hard way, that pricing my soaps based on what I think is a fair price just won't work! I wasn't taking into account the cost of my base materials, the differences in weight and difficulty for different soaps, the number of steps involved, whether I was able to do other things while making certain batches of soap or whether it had to be watched closely, how long it takes to package, what those costs are etc. It had snowballed before I realised there was even a problem.

So as much as I hate to do it, some of my prices will be increasing over the next few days & weeks as I get myself into the habit of doing actual costings. I wish soap making supplies were cheaper in Australia, dang it!

Thursday, May 06, 2010

Bicycle Soap by Soapylove


Bicycle Soap, originally uploaded by soapylovedeb.

I saw some of the entries at the Soap Guild over in the States and without even seeing who designed it, I knew it was Debbie from Soapylove.

I know this is going to sound weird, but this soap brings a tear to my eye. It's one of the most inspiring, inventive and awe-inspiring creations I've seen. I'm in awe with all of her soaps but this one is something special.

If someone says to you soap is just soap and that it can't possibly be art, show them this. They will change their minds.

Slack

I will blog again, promise! I'm just struggling to find the time to do more than just Twitterish updates at the moment :p


- Posted using BlogPress from my iPhone

Sunday, May 02, 2010

Honeydew Peach


Honeydew Peach, originally uploaded by naiadsoaparts.

Seeing tonight's trend?

I'm loving circles and Naiad is an amazing soap maker, just had to share.

Crazy Fruity Handmade Soap


Crazy Fruity Handmade Soap, originally uploaded by HeatherRai.

I love the pastel colours HeatherRai has used in this soap.

Flickr

This is a test post from flickr, a fancy photo sharing thing.

Thursday, April 29, 2010

My house will smell yummy!

New molds, mold maker, new foam core for a light box and new fragrances. Come on weekend, I want to get my soap on :)


- Posted using BlogPress from my iPhone

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Big day ahead

So much to do, so little time! I hope I can fit some soap making in around my other commitments, I do work best under pressure after all *grins*


- Posted using BlogPress from my iPhone

Sunday, April 25, 2010

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Preparing for my first stall

Today I was madly rushing around trying to get the last few things done for my stall on the weekend. I found some great stuff, I'm loving the bright & cheery packaging :)

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

New supplies

I found the most amazing ribbon today, can't wait to use it!

Friday, April 09, 2010

New supplies...mmmmm

6kgs of Shea Base is waiting for me to make something fun tomorrow and I have another 20kg of Clear Base on its way!

I can't sing the praises of Aussie Soap Supplies enough http://www.aussiesoapsupplies.com.au/ - David & Jude are amazing and they always put a little gift inside each order for me, how sweet :)

The postman delivered my new brain and skeleton in a coffin molds today. You know what this means. This means ZOMBIES!

Sunday, April 04, 2010

Bi-carb, wonderful stuff.

This morning I read a blog by The Soap Princess about having a more natural approach to cleaning your home.

This struck a cord with me for a couple of reasons. One of the main reasons I began making my own soap was because I was dissatisfied with what was commercially available. I had no clue what most of the ingredients were, a terrible amount of products are tested on animals or have animal derivatives and many are not so great to put down the drain. They dried out my skin, made my face break out and if I left even the slightest trace of soap on my skin for too long, I would get a reaction.

I have always been very careful about what I buy. I always choose animal and environmentally friendly products but more often than not, I end up with a cupboard under the sink, full of products I can do without. Everyone would like to save money of course but I sometimes take it to the extremes. I'm one of those people that takes two hours to do their grocery shop because I want every cent to be put to good use and I'll hover over choices for what seems like forever before I make my final decision. Saving money = good. Saving the environment (you know, the ONE place we have to live) = great.

Imagine my delight when I cleaned my oven with bi-carb for the first time. I used about 10 cents worth of bi-carb and a fraction of the water I would normally have to use with those toxic, foamy cleaners. I slapped the paste in, gave it a scrub around, washed out my cloth, wiped again and I was done. A job I've been putting off for months thanks to the memory of my mother scrubbing away at a grimy oven for hours on end, took me about 5 minutes to do.

Next I tackled my sink and bench tops. The verdict was amazing. And, my hands weren't like a prune when I was done and my nails didn't get all soft and breakable. Bi-carb, you're a winner.

So many thanks goes out to the Soap Princess. She gave me the reminder I needed about the joys of bi-carb.

PS - vinegar is your friend too.

Saturday, April 03, 2010

Setting up shop & my Tibetan Spaniel, Gomez

Good morning everyone,

I practically pulled an all-nighter last night getting as many sites all set up and ready to go as I could.

I must have spent hours on Etsy looking through the how-to's and blogs. Having never sold there before, I was amazed at the amount of information available. Thorough tutorials, videos and more! I feel more prepared now and I hope my camera charges quickly, I have lots more photos to take.

My wonderful little pup Gomez did me a favour this morning. He was going through a box I have in my office that contains most of my packing materials and kept pulling out the same piece of bubble wrap. I kept taking it off him and telling him to leave it etc, as you do, with very persistent pets and then on the third try, I noticed there was actually something in the wrap. When I received a stock order the other week, I somehow left one bottle of soap colour in the bubble wrap and Gomez found it! Needless to say the pups were then given a nice breakfast and plenty of pats.

Thank you Gomez, I'd be lost without my Brilliant Blue :)

Friday, April 02, 2010

Welcome to Sailor Mouth Soaps

Hello and thank you for reading my blog!

I'm in the process of setting up all of my social networking sites, Etsy store front etc so check back often for updates :)

LinkWithin

Related Posts with Thumbnails