Saturday, December 19, 2009
Friday, December 18, 2009
As much as I think my soap makes a wonderful gift, after seven years of giving soap as gifts I suppose it can start getting old. Last year I made a bunch of ceramic soap dishes to soften the blow of, "soap, again," but this year I just didn't have the extra time. I am a notorious last minute shopper, whatever the occasion. That's not to say I'm a careless gift giver - I do put thought into even the smallest of offerings - but the shopping is often left till I can't avoid it any longer. Today I am thankful for the wonderful sellers on Etsy who graciously promised to mail me my last minute gifts by Christmas. (The gorgeous birdhouse I bought, pictured above, was made by Ryan O'Rourke of I Heart Birds.)
Wednesday, December 9, 2009
The aforementioned stacking crates display and my niece, Madeline, salesgirl extraordinaire. Note my sister's gold and silver tutus in the background.
I traded a jar of Jennie's apple butter for a bar of soap - so delicious and almost gone.
Carina with my niece, Penelope, posing with a chocolate moustachio.
Carina's photo props, silhouette portraits, buttons, and more. So fun! Oh yeah, and all of these photos were taken by Carina who is a photographer by day and a prop maker/ head band knitter by night.
Ceramic plates, cups, ornaments, and more with glamorous prints of animals on them.
Tuesday, December 8, 2009
A last minute addition to the crafty line-up! Rock Bass Rainbow Fest - say that 10 times fast! I just realized today that it's a project spearheaded by Tyler students, which is a funny coincidence considering Tyler is my Alma Mater. Volta Soap will be present on Saturday, December 12.
Location: 2424 East York Street Philadelphia, PA 19125
Monday, December 7, 2009
Fragrance oils are synthetically produced scents created to mimic smells - any smells, from flowers and herbs to fruit to perfume, and are usually petroleum based. Fragrance oils are not all-natural but are often listed as ingredients in all-natural soap. You might see an ingredient listed as, "rose oil," or, "mango fragrance," for instance, which implies that the ingredient comes from a plant source when it does not.
Bright, crayon looking colors should be a dead giveaway that something is not natural but brightly colored soaps, bath salts, and other bath and body are often marketed as all-natural. FD&C, food safe dyes, pigments, oxides, ultramarines, micas - none of them are natural. It's true that some may come from the earth but they undergo enough processing to disqualify them as natural.
And just to clarify, I don't think there's anything wrong with buying your favorite bright purple raspberry swirl soap - it really is a matter of taste. I just think that people have the right to know what they are spending their money on.
Here's a bullet point list from The Natural Ingredient Resource Center about what is or ain't considered natural:
NATURAL INGREDIENT CRITERIA
Natural Ingredients include
plant, animal, mineral or
present in or produced by nature.
produced using minimal physical processing.*
directly extracted using simple methods, simple chemical reactions or resulting from naturally occurring biological processes.*
Natural ingredients are...
grown, harvested, raised and processed in an ecological manner.
not produced synthetically.
free of all petrochemicals.
not extracted or processed using petrochemicals.
not extracted or processed using anything other than natural ingredients as solvents.
not exposed to irradiation.
not genetically engineered & do not contain GMOs (genetically modified organisms).
Natural ingredients do...
not contain synthetic ingredients.**
not contain artificial ingredients including colors or flavoring.
not contain synthetic chemical preservatives.