Tuesday, May 18, 2010

What's Next?

New Soaps Coming Soon: Working on a couple of new bar soaps. Pomegranate soap, for my dear niece Laura, and Beer Soap just because I've always wanted to make some. Beer soap makes some great lather. My plan is to use Shiner Bock. Hoping this soap will be ready in time for Father's Day. I'll keep you posted. (Thanks to Margie, Roxanne and Maggie who gave me excellent advice and tips for working with beer in soap at our last Austin Area Soapmakers' dinner.)

Next Event: Our friends and customers often ask me when and where we'll be out selling soap next...

I don't have any events scheduled right now. The reason is our son plays baseball and we are committed every weekend until the end of July! While I love participating in shows, supporting Eric (and his teammates) is my #1 priority. We were lucky that the team didn't have games scheduled the Saturday of Violet Crown Festival. Always amazed at the way things just work out.

I'd love to participate in the 78704 Artisan Market on South Congress. Maybe we'll have a Saturday and/or Sunday open up. I'll be sure to let you know if/when that happens.

In the meantime, if you need soap, visit the website, email or call...I'll get it to you! Want to sniff before you buy? If you live in the Austin area, we can arrange that, too. Shoot, have a soap-sniffing party. Invite your friends! I'll bring the wine!


Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Spring has Sprung, or Why you need After-Bath Oil Spray

May 11th and high in the 90s with 70% humidity. Aaaah, Spring in Austin. Aaaaa, air conditioning.

Sitting in the AC all day and/or night can dry out your skin just as much as sitting in the sun. Violet Crown's After Bath Oil Spray is a wonderful way to give your skin some much-needed moisture. Spray it on after you get out of the shower or bath, before you towel off, and pat it in.

It's made with Liquid Shea, Passionfruit, Kukui Nut, and Coconut oils in a cyclomethicone base. You're probably familiar with Shea Butter and Coconut oil. You can read about them on our website under the Ingredients link. But I'd like to tell you a little about the more exotic sounding oils, and about cyclomethicone.

Hawaiians have been using Kukui Nut Oil for hundreds of years. It contains very high levels of linoleic and alpha-linolenic essential fatty acids. This oil is readily absorbed into the skin and provides important essential elements. It's particularly good for use after sun exposure, as well as for dry skin.

Passionfruit Oil is renowned for its soothing properties. It is emollient and rich in vitamin C. Passionfruit oil contains high levels of linoleic acid, which nourisht and moisturize your skin.

Cyclomethicone is an unmodified silicone that stays on or near the surface of the skin. The molecules are too big to enter past the upper living cells. Instead, they associate with the upper layer of drying skin. They evaporate quickly after helping to carry oils into the top layer of epidermis. From there, the oils may be absorbed by the skin. Cyclomethicone is non-toxic, does not stain and is not harmful to humans or the environment. I promise - I wouldn't put it in Violet Crown products - the same products that my family and I use - if it were.

After-Bath Oil spray is available in several fragrances, scented with either essential oils or fragrance oil. Visit the Violet Crown Soap Company website and see what's on the menu today. If you don't see your favorite scent, let me know - this spray is easy to customize.

Do your skin a favor - try some. Warning - once you try it, you won't want to be without it. Honest.

Here's the fine print: The information presented here and throughout our website is for educational purposes only and is not intended to diagnose or treat any medical problem or to replace the advice of a health professional. We are not making any claims that our products heal or cause or contribute to physical or emotional changes.

Friday, April 30, 2010

time keeps slippin' away

I'm making a batch of liquid soap with olive, sunflower, castor & coconut oils. Should be yummy, and ready for the Violet Crown Spring Festival next weekend! I'm going to make it in two scents - Lavender Tea Tree (essential oils) and a fragrance oil. The testers who tried the Enchanted Apple scent really liked it. That scent is Ellis' favorite bar soap. Another thought is watermelon - it's light and fresh. Great for kids of all ages. Any thoughts?

Speaking of Violet Crown Spring Festival - I will have plenty of bar soap, just not as many varieties as usual.

You know, I thought when I retired that I'd have more time for soaping. I guess technically I do, but other pursuits/demands/interests have presented themselves and are gobbling up my time.

One soap-related pursuit is making liquid soap. Developing and testing the liquid soap really ate into my "regular" soap making time these last few weeks. Making liquid soap is a different process, and requires frequent (every 20-30 minute) tending for at least 4 hours. I'm not experienced enough to try to have a pot of liquid soap going and make my regular cold-process bar soap at the same time. Hope I'll get to that point one day. Multi-task!

My teaching schedule this semester is different and takes more time, because I'm teaching two different classes (Principals I - Financial and Principals II - Managerial). I've taught both classes before, but I still have to prepare assignments, tests, and quizzes, grade said assignments, tests, and quizzes, and prepare for two different lectures each class day. NOT COMPLAINING. Love teaching this stuff and my students are great. Just saying it's more time consuming this semester than in recent experience.

And baseball with Eric takes big blocks of time for games. Again, not complaining because I love, love, love watching him & the other Wings players play ball. But we've had a couple of out of town tournaments, and we played last Sunday in San Antonio. No soap-making last weekend.

Point is, everything seems to be taking more time. Only so many hours in a day and not enough of them.

All this adds up to less time to soap. I'm hoping I'll have your favorite when you stop by at the Festival next weekend. If I don't, I hope you'll find something new to try and love.

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

This and that...

Not much exciting to report on the soap making front...things are rockin' along, though. Making soap and stuff in between teaching and watching Eric play baseball.
Violet Crown Spring Festival is coming up just in time for Mother's Day - Saturday May 8 in Brentwood Park. Lot of fun stuff and a great way to spend a few hours on a spring Saturday in Austin.

Had a great time at Martha Cole's spring show this past weekend - thanks for letting me participate, Martha. The beautiful necklace featured above is one of her creations. In case you didn't make Martha's Spring Show, or just want to see more of her work, here are links to Martha's etsy shops:

And thanks to my wonderful friend Kathleen Johnson for selling my wares while I was pulling baseball-mom duty for Eric.

Speaking of Kathleen - is anyone out there interested in paper crafting (rubber stamping, cards and such) but you don't know where or how to start? Get in touch with Kathleen! She has monthly "stamp camps" that are way cool. And fun. And no-stress. You can see some past projects and a schedule at http://www.stampinup.net/esuite/home/kathleenstamps
Here's a sample:

I'll post more details about the festival soon.

Saturday, April 3, 2010

Liquid Soap Test Batch...FINALLLYYYY

Yes, my test batch of liquid soap is diluting as we speak! Keep your fingers crossed. If this works out (and so far it's looking pretty good) Violet Crown Soap will add all-natural liquid soap to our line in the very near future! I hope to have it available by the end of the month...definitely in time for the Violet Crown Spring Festival in May!