Well the stall looked fine, not as good as normal as I was so rushed I just did not have time to get my normal overhead supports so I could cover it with spring greenery and flowers, but I managed to get time to stop off on the way in with gloves and secateurs and cut some new beech, oak and Hawthorn. I then put this into two jugs on either side and it looked nice, not quite the same but people liked it.
A funny old day really. Lots of people, a steady flow all morning, lots of interest and questions but just not buying much. Why? Could it be the recession, could it be the election looming? I know people are still very worried about finances, and why not, and it was not just me, lots of other stall holders were slow too. Oh well, cupcakes flew off the stall and sold lots of the new palm oil free range....
On the other hand I made lots of good contacts. Two more shops wanting to stock Naturally Made Soaps, two more fairs to attend and a chance to buy into a very cheap supply of pomace olive oil - basically enough for potentially a years supply for £1.95 a litre. So pretty pleased really. Anyway, Debbie (the organiser) did a fantastic job of getting a really great selection of products today, it always amazes me how many talented makers there are in Devon, some really lovely stuff. I will be booking my stall for the October Fair anyway, thanks for organising it Debbie and thanks to all my loyal customers who came and bought as always.
A few of my fellow stall holders who really caught my eye:
KATYCAKES - http://www.katycakes.biz
Wow! fantastically beautiful cupcakes that you can eat!! much more filling than mine
THE CAKE LADY - http://www.the-cake-lady.org
HMMM yummy, yummy, yummy her chocolate cake I sampled was so sticky and lovely. What is it with me and cake at the moment? I'm already at least 2 stone overweight, am I on a roll? I hope not. Anyway, her cakes are really good and look fantastic.
So can you spot the obvious connection with all these new soaps? Easy - ALL PALM OIL FREE! I'm so pleased. So now every remake I do will have all whole Devon goats milk and be palm oil free. Can't better that, oh yes I can, I almost forgot, I'm about to get my first order of organic, lightly refined Shea Butter from Fresholi http://www.fresholi.co.uk/
Fresholi organic shea butter comes from Ghana and comes from a Fairly Traded Community Project. This is what they write about their products sourced using this route:
"Wherever possible, we source quality & sustainable ingredients that support community projects around the world. We embrace wholeheartedly the ethic of paying a fair price in order to sustain these projects & the communities they support.
It fills us with enormous pride and satisfaction that both our certified organic tamanu oil and our certified organic unrefined shea butter are sourced from such projects."
Click on the link below to see a presentation about their Shea Butter.
This one is a replacement for my White Chocolate & Strawberry Gateaux, inspired by Twiggy from FuturePrimative http://futureprimitivesoap.com/ and thank you to Twiggy for allowing me to use her ideas especially the one about making dark, thin lines around your layers and embeds. I'm happy with the initial results and it smells fab. Same scents as before (Chocolate Truffle from Gracefruit and Strawberry from The Soap Kitchen), the balls are rebatched and scented with Strawberry, the bottom layer is chocolate, middle layer plain white and top layer dollops of all 3 swirled together.
Its curing well and is already nice and hard, again a bit sticky out of the mold but my palm free experiments are getting better. I hope you like it.
Great tips for grilling shrimp already, got to think she lives in hotter climates than UK lol
but still, have a look it makes you think of summer..... it has been a lovely day here in South Devon too, could this be the shape of things to come? http://tipnut.com/grill-shrimp/
Carry on and look at my last posts, need new names and feedback....
Yup, another one that is Palm free, think I must be on a roll now. This is a soap I have been wanting to make for a long time, tried a couple of times and it did not work, but too busy to keep going. Finally decided to try and crack the Salt Bar soap - Why you might ask... well we all know how health giving and healing salt can be, it makes a fantastic bar of soap, I have used 75% natural, Portuguese sea salt in this trial batch along with lots of coconut oil and Castor oil for bubbly properties. Its still very young - some bits hard, some bits very sloppy out of the mold - but has now hardened up beautifully. Its like polished marble. I have been using some already and it it bubbly, and lovely, scented with peppermint and eucalyptus essential oils - really fresh and invigorating.
Well, I need a name. I am hoping that eventually this soap could be part of a new Portuguese soap range - have come up with lots of really naff names (Sea Breeze - see below) but need something that says it all, Atlantic coast, white icing sugar sand, lots of wild waves, very cold sea....... can you help? have a look at the pics and let me know what you think, all comments gratefully received
A close up of the top of one bar, shows the seasalt embedded in the top
Another picture of a collection of bars
HELP! I would really love a name that reflected everything I am trying to convey, Summer holidays, Beautiful coast, surf, fab sandy beaches etc.
A really great prize available to the best name......................
Thanks, in anticipation
Yes folks, after trying out lots and lots of different recipes as well as trying to source a good sustainable supply of unrefined Palm oil things have moved on. I have hit on a recipe that I am really thrilled with. It uses lots more olive oil so, while that is great for your skin, it does mean the soap is a lot softer getting it out of the mold and cutting it up, in fact it was really sticky and I did have to force myself to keep going. 3 weeks later it is already lovely and hard, a gorgeous golden colour and it smells wonderful. I just hope the scent lasts as its citrus based, I used lemongrass, sweet orange and grapefruit essential oils, together they are fab.
I have used full fat, really fresh local goats milk from my favorite supplier Norsworthy Dairy Goatshttp://norsworthydairygoats.blogspot.com/ and that has just added to the wonderful creamyness of this soap. It really is great and while I will still be looking for a good source of sustainable palm oil the rush is over. If customers like this soap I think I will slowly change all my range to this blend.
The soap will be ready for sale soon and up on the website within a week or so.