Lots of people in the WAHM world have heard of Relic Soap Company - and today we get to meet the woman behind the name.
In her own words ..
Relic Soap Company is a family-owned business that specializes in creating one of a kind artisan soap that nourishes the body and dazzles the senses. Our unique blend of oils is the product of years of listening to our customers and providing them with a soap that they come back for time and time again. Our soaps are infused with cultural, culinary, and aroma-based inspiration. Soap is a necessity, but we aim to indulge you with delicious aromas and sumptuous ingredients.
What makes our soap unique?
While other companies are aiming to cut costs and skimp on ingredients, Relic Soap Company is not satisfied with mediocre soap. We strive for extraordinary. We love olive oil for all of its amazing qualities and use it as a dominant ingredient in each of our soaps. We use only top-shelf natural plant-based oils, essential oils, fragrances, botanical extracts, and minerals. We make all of our soaps in small quality-controlled batches using traditional methods.
Everything is made by hand.
We opened the floor to a few WAHMs, and passed their questions along to Karen.
Where did you learn to make soap, and what got you started?
I started making soap back in 2002, when I was pregnant with my second child. I was a born entrepreneur who wanted to stay home to raise my children while they're young. I found soapmaking because I wanted something I could make with my hands. I think I'm perhaps a little bit of a mad scientist too. My journey began with books and lots of failed experiments. I am very thankful for the help of many soapmakers that I met online that helped me along my way.
What's your favorite soap from your line and why?
This is a VERY hard question! I get asked it at nearly every market and show I ever do and somehow I flounder through it each and every time. If I could only pick one, it would be my Froth sea salt soap. I'm smitten with vetiver essential oil.
What was the inspiration for your business name?
I wish I could take credit for our name. My husband, Ryan, came up with the name after weeks upon weeks of trying to come up with something that felt right. Relic makes us think of something both ancient and timeless at the same time - much like soap.
If you could give one piece of advice to anyone starting on the soap-making journey, what would it be?
Do your own research. Don't rest on the shoulders of others. If you want to truly make good soap, you need to know how the process happens. Until you know that, you can't truly problem solve when the need arises. And it will arise!
What does your workspace/supply/curing-space look like?
A dungeon? Okay, maybe not quite. It's a corner of our basement that allows me to ventilate to the outside. I use my husband's only drafting table, stainless steel work tops, stainless steel racks for curing, and many cubbies for all the tools I use from time to time. We just moved in 18 months ago so we're still working on getting plumbing to my workshop and better lighting. I have fantastic storage racks and built in shelving that came with the home. It's nice to be able to slip down to the shop when the baby naps.
How do you come up with fresh ideas for your products and the copy that describes them?
I am inspired by nature and the culinary world. I am most moved by olfactory memories transport me to some event in my past. Have you ever smelled a cherry pie cooling and had it bring you back sitting at your grandma's kitchen table? That's what I'm talking about. I live for those moments. I have to admit that the copy makes me want to tear my hair out. I find it so hard to describe what you'll experience with each of my scents, especially the very complex fragrances. I get some help from my friends and their impressions. Sometimes I'm lucky enough to have it just pop in my head!
Want a chance to win Karen's giveaway?
Karen is giving away 2 sea salt bars and a sustainable cedar soap dish.
Here's how to go about it:
* Visit Relic Soap Company and reply to this post about your favourite soap.
* Fan Relic Soap Company on Facebook and leave a comment here saying that you did so.
* Fan Etsy Hyena Team on Facebook and leave a comment here saying that you did so.
* Blog or FB or Twitter about this giveaway and post the link of this board.
* Make a purchase from Relic Soap Company between now and Sunday, March 21st and
post about it here. This will get you 5 additional entries. There is currently a promotion
going on which you might want to take advantage of.
The winner will be announced on Monday, March 22nd 2010 and the soap shipped shortly thereafter.