This past week I felt kind-of overwhelmed. I haven’t been happy with my recent soap experiments. I didn’t realize how frustrating it would be to try so many new things in such a short amount of time. While I’ve been learning a lot, nothing I have made since I started this blog has been perfect; each one has had elements I’ve liked, and elements that I don’t like. The aesthetics have been particularly awful! And I know that no one wants to buy ugly soap!
The best things I’ve made recently have been the lip balm, probably, and I’m working on a third recipe right now which will have the best elements from the two different batches that I made. That will probably be my main recipe (knock on wood) for lip balm. But the soaps… the soaps!
So, today was a bit of a turning point, I think. I made soap yesterday — the first time in a week! And… I swirled. It might not be the nicest, most consistent swirl but IT WORKED. Woohoo! I’ll be cutting it later tonight, so stay tuned for pictures! (It turns out that the key is mixing the lye and the oils when they’re quite close to room temperature.)
The other big obstacle in my soap-making has been that I NEED MORE SUPPLIES. Which means, of course, more money. And, although things aren’t that bad for my family financially… I’m starting to feel pressure. Pressure to make money. When I went into this, I knew it would cost money. All business start-ups, no matter how small, cost a significant chunk of money. But I am starting to get a little edgy about it. I’m considering using Kickstarter for We Love Soap. But I don’t know if anyone would contribute! (I would give away soaps and lip balms for contributions, so I think it could be win/win, but who knows?)
There has been good news this past week, too. I have had a lot of lovely compliments, as well as some useful feedback, on my lip balms. I’ve even had a few offers to do home party type events once I get my catalog up. And I got a letter in the mail from someone local (that I don’t know!) saying that they would like to purchase my products. I’m not quite sure how that happened, but I am glad to see that my grassroots marketing seems to be working! That really made my day!
Not only that, but I won a contest for 250 high quality business cards! Thanks Lakeshore Branding and UPrinting! And because I won the contest, I now have my first real backlink to my blog, which is a major blogging milestone!
And, even though I didn’t make much soap this past week, I have been working on a few other things for the business. I have hired someone to make my logo, for one. And I am now the owner of a high-quality color laser printer, that will be used very soon to make my labels!
Counting down to my March 1st opening… I have to get my @$$ in gear!