Spring Time Soap 2014

Soap Heart

Soapmaking is a blast! I really have come to enjoy it… the process of making the soap, smelling and admiring it, and of course using it myself. That’s the #1 reason why I love soapmaking so much – I use the product all over my home, especially in the shower. My favorite out of all of the batches of soap I experimented with this spring was a spearmint patchouli bar with spirulina algae powder in it which makes it look green, naturally. I used essential oils in all but one batch of my soap (that one was balsam fir scent and it was worth it, a favorite of the men who I’ve gifted it to) so they are super natural and healthy. My “Essential” batch includes tea tree, lavender, spearmint and eucalyptus essential oils – some of my all time favorites and common germ fighters. My scrub bars are so, so scrubby.. they are perfect for scrubbing dirt off after running around barefoot during the summer, and scrubbing bug spray and sunscreen off at the end of the day. I didn’t share many scrub bars this time around. I gifted out most of the soap I made this year because it was so fun to!

Here are a few of the soaps I photographed and listed in my shop. They will help fund the next batch! I keep getting better each time I make the soap so I’m definitely going to keep making it.

My soaps are available in my Etsy shop – in the Soap section!

Handmade Felt Soap
A handful of “felted” soaps. I wrap the bars with soft merino wool in bright colors, then rub it around under water which felts the wool around the bar, creating a washcloth-like effect right on the bar. It helps the bar keep longer and you use all of it up! They are super pretty to have around and make really unique gifts. I like to use them on my face!

Felted Soap
I made this new idea I had floating around for awhile… a felted “soap on a rope“. I made one for myself to try out too. Wrapped in the wool is the Spearmint Patchouli bar. Since it can be tied up it can dry out real well in between uses, prolonging its life. (Did you know that wool is naturally slightly antibacterial?)

Handmade Felt Soap Felted Soap

One other thing I experimented with was coffee. I ground up coffee beans and put the grounds in the soap. It works “ok” and doesn’t look all that pretty. I’m going to use it up myself and refine the recipe.

What would you like to see in a bar of soap?

Decorative Tape // Washi Tape

I am totally loving this stuff and I am one picky, thrifty gal…
Two awesome black and white designs are mine.. check them out:
Decorative Tape! and Felt Flowers in The Works

The zig-zag one is Chinese and the diagonal grey one is Japanese. They are paper tapes that can be torn by hand. I like to cut them with my scissors at different angles/sizes and use them for ALL sorts of things but mainly for packaging up products very nicely or taping notes to my note board. In the future I might try some colored versions — as there are MANY! — but for now I’m very happy with these two designs that go great with every color of tissue paper or note card possible.
You know, I’m not affiliated in any way but this is the company I have ordered from happily : Pretty Tape.

“Bacon” Scarf Handmade out of 100% Soft Wool

New scarf product line in my shop. These scarves are very fun to make and are super duper soft. Meant to look like bacon! But hey, if somebody sees it and doesn’t “get it” they’ll just think you’re wearing a pretty brown/pink/peach/white scarf 😉 They don’t even have to “get it”. Those who do are sure to get a kick out of it!

Bacon Scarf 100% Wool

Available HERE!

My First Mannequin! & Paper Mache Mannequin

Hello and welcome to this weeks episode of whatever this is 😉 First off I want to share with you the fact that I got a beautiful mannequin in early January – my first one ever! After doing some research on mannequins (all the different styles, materials, cost) I decided on what I truly wanted and budgeted appropriately. I searched high and low throughout the internet and was super lucky to find an ad on craigslist with EXACTLY what I wanted, at even a lower price than I thought possible WITH the option to go pick it up in person. Two days later I was in the car with a friend, on our way up to Kansas City to look at the mannequin. It was located in this place called the Super Flea … which turned out to be quite an experience/adventure. When I found the mannequin inside it was exactly perfect and so I paid the guy happily and strolled out with her in a box on top of my head.

Meet Isabella!
New Mannequin Owl Scarf Custom Vampire Bite Scarf

But hey, if you have one mannequin… why not have two?
Why not MAKE another?
So that’s what I did! I covered Isabella up with lots of plastic bags, plastic wrap and tape to protect her body and jersey fabric covering and then I did paper mache (Papier-mâché!) around her. When I thought it was thick enough and completely dry, I carefully cut open one side and peeled the paper mache off of Isabella and painted it black with basic acrylic paint. Newspaper, brown paper bags, water, white flour and all-purpose glue and black acrylic paint where all the supplies I used. It was messy and took a little time/energy but what isn’t that is worth it? Now I have a super light and “I don’t care if it breaks I can just make another one” BLACK mannequin. (Un-named. Hmm…)

Paper Mache Mannequin     Paper Mache Mannequin with Peacock Scarf

Check this photo out.. you can see that the newspaper has a little ad printed that says “recycle this newspaper”. I actually tore that out and put it on just as it is without even paying attention until my boyfriend said something to me about it! It was meant to be.

Paper Mache Mannequin

Needle Felted Bunny Rabbit Figure Made With Cat Hair

Meet “Little Timmy Bunny” … for he is actually the little guy that got me into needle felting little characters in the first place!
Timmy Bunny
Timmy Bunny
Before my introduction into wool roving I started working with wool yarn – knitting it and using the washing machine to felt it. I’d make purses and then needle felt designs on the front. However, knitting is so boring that as soon as I discovered wool roving I stopped doing it and even misplaced my needles so I couldn’t do it even if I wanted to. Fast forward a year and I’ve constantly got needle felted projects going on! I truly love it.

Anyway, I made Timmy bunny using un-dyed wool batting for the inside and cat hair for the outside. A friend of mine loved her cat dearly and upon its natural death, she shaved its long hair to keep for sentimental purposes. Over the years she didn’t do anything with it and was cleaning out her closet so she gave it to me. I rarely turn down unique crafting materials. (Yes, I washed it, carefully, in a nylon pantyhose sock with mild soap – much like washing wool.)

Just yesterday the Etsy blog posted an article about crafting with cat hair. My little Timmy bunny is up on the article in the ‘related items’ section. Way cool! My favorite thing about the whole article is the comments people wrote on it… “I love my cat, but EWWW!” .. hehehe. Read it!: http://www.etsy.com/blog/en/2012/how-tuesday-crafting-with-cat-hair

And order one of your own little Tim my bunnies through my Etsy shop!