Monday, April 18, 2011

Soap, Soap, and ... Soap

Here are a few soaps I have listed in my Etsy shop ... hopefully, today I will get my website update to include them all. Some of these soaps you may have seen as I was cutting them.

Midnight Garden - This one is swirled with a pretty ultramarine blue. When I first poured it, it was much lighter. But because of the fragrance oil turned a dark brown. It has a wonderful violet and amber scent. At first, I was going to call it Blue Garden, but because it turned so dark, I went with Midnight Garden.

This is how light it was when first poured

(click on any photo to enlarge)

And this is what it looks like now

Lilac - Gotta have lilac in the spring!

The Orchard House - This is the one that was SUPPOSE to be Pomegranate Fig, but I only had 1/4 of the fragrance oil that I needed. So I added a couple of fragrances, like Apple Jack & Peel, and Violet Shae, and gave it a bit of a red swirl. It smells good!!

Sage & Flowers - I like this! A blend of essential oils, Sage, Lavender, Palmarosa, and Ylang Ylang. And a green swirl. Very fresh smelling and looking!

A bath and shaving soap for the girls - this is the same sexy blend of essential oils I used in my Night Breeze soap - Orange, Lemon, Clove, Patchouli, and Ylang Ylang. I used all the right oils and butters to keep a good stable lather.

And Bay Rum Bath & Shaving Soap for the guys.

Let's see, what else ......

OH yes, for my soapaholic friend Amy, Hawaiian Citrus Spa. Made with Alaea Hawaiian Red Salt, goat milk, and lots of citrus essential oils!

One I made last year, and brought back for the summer - Carrot and Goat Milk Fragrance Free. Very nice for your face after a hard day at summer's play.

And, Spring Bouquet. This is another soap that ended up with a mix of fragrance oils because I thought I had plenty of one. It was SUPPOSE to be Lily of the Valley. But I only had a too small amount of lily of the valley fragrance oil. So I added a little bit of rose fragrance oil I had, and some myrrh fragrance oil. And I ended up with a very nice springy scent!

Now, would you like to see some soap I cut the other day ??? OK

This one is the same blend of fragrance oils I used in my Snow Spice soap. I like it a LOT, but I'm going to call it something a little more summery. It's a blend of White Spice, Cinnamon Stick, and Sahara Sandalwood. Swirled with yellow oxide and gold mica. Pretty, isn't it? :)

I've had a few requests for more Egyptian Dragon. But alas, the supplier I was getting it from has gone out of business. I only had a small amount of the fragrance oil left (sound familiar? Seeing a pattern here??), so I mixed what I had left with some Dragon's Blood. And it's very nice! It cut the sweetness of the Dragon's Blood a bit, and it's a very nice exotic scent. A unisex scent.

As it sets here in my Tank (the soap cutter), you can see how dark the outside of the soap is. The inside will get just as dark as it cures.

And this one ... this one I made a double batch of. It's called Saguaro Blossom. Saguaro's are the huge armed cactus that grow around here in the Sonoran Desert. They blossom in the late spring, early summer with these lovely big white flowers. These flowers have a scent like ripe melon, and attract all kinds of nectar eating creatures ... hummingbirds, orioles, bats. This is my salute to the saguaro blossom, a white soap with yellow topping, scented with a lily and cantaloup fragrance. Before you see the soap, this is a pic (taken by Ray, of course) of the flowers of a saguaro

And this is my Saguaro Blossom soap

There, that's enough soap for one day, yes? :)

Here's one of the little hummingbirds from the Hummingbird Aviary at the Desert Musuem - Photo taken by Ray (see more of his photos at his blog Sonoran Connection )

Monday, April 4, 2011

What the heck is a BNR ??

About a month ago, I discovered BNRs on Etsy. And yes, I can hear you - What the heck is a BNR ??

BNR stands for Buy And Replace. But before I can talk about BNR, first I need to talk about Treasuries. Treasuries are an Etsy "thing". Any Etsy member can create a Treasury. Each Treasury has 16 spaces. Here, this is how Etsy describes a Treasury -

"Treasury is an ever-changing, member-curated shopping gallery comprised of lists of items. Lists contain 16 items. Members can feature their favorite items, items selected on a theme or whatever they like. Any Etsy member can create a Treasury list, and there is no limit to the number of lists you can create. You can edit your lists as often as you desire, and post comments to other members' lists. The number of views your list receives as well as the number of clicks the items featured in your list receive are displayed in the list's Stats section."

Here is a Treasury I created that features some of my soaping buddies from a soaping team I am a member of. Now, don't forget to come back after clicking on the link! :)

A SAFETeam Treasury

OK, are you back? Did you see a lot of gorgeous soap ?? :-D

So that is a Treasury. Lots of Etsy folks like to create Treasuries, and lots of Etsy folks like to look at Treasuries. It didn't take long for someone to come up with a wonderful promotional tool using Treasuries. And this promotional tool became known as Buy and Replace. Here's the deal ....

A "curator" creates a Treasury. The curator declares it a BNR. And this is what happens - if another Etsy seller buys something from one of the shops featured in this Treasury, then THAT seller's shop replaces the shop that was bought from in the Treasury. Get it? Buy something from a featured shop, replace that shop with your shop. In order for this to work, sellers who are featured in a BNR will help promote it, by posting a link to it on Facebook, or Twitter, or whatever promotional tools they like to use. A BNR promotion may last a few hours, or all day, or until a certain number of sales is reached. Some BNRs are BNSs, which means Buy and Stay. In a BNS, the promotion lasts until a certain number of sales is reached. All the original sellers that are featured in the Treasury stay featured. Purchases can be from any featured shop. The curator keeps a list of all the sellers that have bought in. Then, when the number of sales is reached, the curator creates a NEW Treasury with all the folks that bought in! And everyone starts promoting the NEW Treasury.

And yes, it works! There is a lot of chatting that goes on in a BNR. People get to know each other. It's a seller helping seller atmosphere, very encouraging, very welcoming. And us Etsy sellers, we like it! Because, yeah, we're buyers too! :-D

OH, and let me add, most featured shops will also be offering discounts!

So now when you see me promoting a BNR, you'll know what the heck I'm talking about !!!