Thursday, November 27, 2008

Coming along

Thanksgiving was a nice day. A good day to reflect. Nice to have all that are with us, wish the ones here that are not.

Saturday, November 15, 2008

We are in

We are in our new shop. Getting things put away. Finding new homes for this and that. No internet, no Wi-Fi, no hard line phone. None yet. All going through my wireless. It will be coming soon. Hard to do everything over a Blackberry. Slow web connect. The roof leaks, the rollup doors dont keep out the rain and the parking lot is like mushy wet cement. Plus red clay. The red clay is nice. Thats a special treat. You can not scrape that stuff off your shoes. We be jammin'. Things are being handled and delt with. Management is doing a good job. All is great at the Soapworks. Just wee bumps in the road. But if I dont get some internet soon....I'm going to fit.

Friday, November 7, 2008

Building the New Store

It's coming together slow. We have the walls up, layout is going through. Lots of little things that I did not think about have to be taken care of. The look of the store is nice. At the old store things are getting packed up. Patricia is hard at work getting that end taken care of. All the jars, bottles, herbs, lots of "stuff". Looks like will start moving some things Saturday.

Thursday, October 30, 2008


We are finally Moving!!!
After many delays it's a go. The shop will be closed Saturday November 1st till Sunday November 9th. We will reopen Monday November 10th.
This Saturday we will be at the Pecan Festival here in Florence.

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Getting things done

Always a million and one things to get done. I recently bought a new cell. My old one was 3 years old, very good basic phone. I thought it would be cool to take pictures....what a bag of snakes that opened up. All said and done, cost, special offers and all, I got a Blackberry Curve. Wow! Wow! Wow! This thing does it all. Calendar, emails, music, GPS maps, pictures, full Internet, IM, the list goes on. The best is time management. I got an application from RexWireless called "ToDoMatrix". You put all the things you need to get done in folders, it notifies you when you want. If you loose your phone its all backed-up online. No worries. No more - I forgot to call...., I forgot to get the milk, Why do I need to be at the store early? If you need to manage life better, it is something to look at. I have tried different things, but this seems to work for me. It will help save a couple of trees because of all the paper notes I have been using.

Monday, September 22, 2008

She Saturday Show, September 20, 2008

Was at that The "She Saturday" Show, Florence Civic Center this past Saturday. It was a large show. They have a health fair, were you can get many medical checks done free, and lots of shopping. Was about 130 venders this year. We set up a small booth this time. Took only soaps, herbs and a few sundries. One of the wildest booths was a Taser Booth. Buy your own stylish,
color coordinated, easy to hold personal taser. Made for a woman's hands. Was a little creepy hearing that clicky-buzzy sound every so often across the way. I kept waiting for the screams. Over 5000 people came out for the event.

This was the first public showing of a new brand at Harvest Moon Soapworks, Carolina Moon Soap. This is made by Patricia. She is in the shop Fridays and Saturdays. Its an all natural melt & pour soap base. All good, no nasty chemicals. Very rich lather, non drying to the skin. They will be offered on the web site soon. She will be offering seasonal shapes and fragrances.

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

When good soap goes bad - Update

After the last Vanilla Soap, I got some ideas. I liked the white topping. So I kept that and cut some of the last batch into chunks and dropped them on after it set-up for a little. They will get darker. Vanilla Soap is a light color when fresh but darkens during curing. You can see how the edges are already darker than the center. That looks wild. I like vanilla, it is a warm and relaxing scent. It's a strange one in the store. I'll sell a bunch over a week, then it will set there in it's bin for a couple weeks. Then it starts out the door again. Beside it are some logs of Cucumber Melon made the same day. The Cucumber Melon has some Oatmeal Soap slivers in it that adds a nice texture. A little scrubby on the skin, but not abrasive.
Everything comes around in the end. ;)

Saturday, September 13, 2008

Time to be heard!!

If you make cosmetics or you buy cosmetic from a small business you should speak out. Cosmetics by the FDA are lotions, creams, anything basically used on your skin that are not drugs. This gets very complicated in the definitions. But the basics are....If you use something on your skin. With the new bill that is in the works, it will hurt everyone. Almost all the small business owners that make cosmetics will be put out of business. Its all the people you see at markets selling lotions and bath products and talking about how good theirs are for your skin. and local business that make things in there homes for you an your family. The wonderful products you buy at your local Health Food store that are good for your skin care. The only businesses that will survive this are the ones that are regular commercial set-ups. That is after very costly changes and fees to there business. Because of this, it would probably stop our production of cosmetic products. Even though they are VERY SAFE, some are all natural and are manufactured under "Good Manufacturing Practices" There are many groups helping to fight this. Below are links to information. This link is a survey for your voice to be heard. It is from Debbie May.

Globalization Act 2008

Tuesday, September 9, 2008

The Fascinating World of Resin and Recycle Codes on Plastic Containers

I found this bit of information really good. She breaks down the recycle codes on bottles. We use #1 PET bottles and jars here at Harvest Moon.
Plastic info

Saturday, September 6, 2008

When good soap goes bad

This slab look unique, a dark vanilla with a white icing? But something was not quite right. It just didn't look "right".
It had set there for a day in its mold, warm and insulated. Nice and safe. After taking it out....looked, well OK. But did not "feel" just right. So I cut 'em into logs. That's when I found out... It all started with making some Vanilla soap. Vanilla is a wee bit tricky. It sets up quick. Gets thick fast. Not time to doddle. Mix it to trace and get it in the mold. Well at the very end I decided to get creative. HHmmm maybe I will add a swirl. So I poured out some soap, added some white...mixed it well... then poured my vanilla in the mold. (which I did not mix well enough) Started to add the white and was not happy with the color. So I add some more... eating up valuable time... poured the white on and tried to swirl. Well the vanilla had changed to a concrete paste. I tried to fight it. Well you CAN NOT fight soap. It will do as it will. Just like a cat. Now I have this ....vanilla leaking, cratered up soap. Not an attractive site. But it looks pretty cool.

Thursday, September 4, 2008

Bath Bombs

It has been a busy day. Updated the books, ordered supplys, cleaned, and put my candles on sale. Made a batch of Emmie's Soap and a batch for hand milling. Hand milling or re-batching is when you grate up a soap, melt in a slow cooker and add extra oils, herbs and such to make yourself a custom luxurious soap. It is not hard to do. That would be a good addition here. Will get that out soon. Started making Bath Bombs or Fizzies again. It has been a loooong time. It gets tricky adding the correct amount of liquid to make then stick together without setting off the reaction. I recently found a good mold, so I started experimenting again. They turned out pretty well. They will be offered in the shop and web store soon. These test ones are Lavender and Cucumber-Melon. They are about 3" long and weigh about 8.7 ounces. You toss one in the tub and they begin to fizz and dissolve. They make the water nice and release a nice fragrance for a relaxing bath. That sounds good for tonight.

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Many Hats

The web site is up and running. Still have many products to add. We have alot of things in this store; herbs, teas, stones, crystals, tea balls, gift packaging, lotions, body butters, soaps, not counting all the different kinds of necklaces and bracelets and everything else. Slowly it is getting done.

Our move to the Pee Dee State Farmers Market...
The building is still not completed. Maybe by the first part of October it will be done. We are very excited about the move. I will have a much bigger production area and dedicated office space. That will be nice, files will have there own home. Not sitting with the extra baskets and candles. We have been busy making the final cut for the products that are going to market. This lotion or that one, how much of this to add, what fragrances to make. The results will be out soon. The major companies spend bunches on marketing research, we use what our customers say and what we feel is the right ones to add. Maybe a poll? I think I can do a poll for suggestions on here somehow. I will find out how. Sounds good Pat. Yea it does.

Tuesday, July 8, 2008

FDA Globalization Act 2008

The Food & Drug Administration Globalization Act of 2008
is a disaster in its present form.
Take a look at the video and see how this will affect you.

Wednesday, May 28, 2008

The Iris Festival - Swan Lake, Sumter SC May 23, 24 & 25

The Iris Festival at Swan Lake was loads of fun. They had lots of things for the family to do. Good selection of vendor foods and a lady's group that sold sandwiches and such. Plus my favorite vender food - Funnel Cakes. It was hot Friday, then rained Saturday. The park is famuse for there ducks and geese. Plenty of them for the kids to chase and feed. We used a differant booth setup this time. Met some other soapers from Blythewood SC.
Back in shop cooking up some new things. The Pine Tar soap seems to be working out. A little soft, should get harder. A little too quiet around the shop. Not much business. But it lets me get some thing finished. Some new soap pics coming soon.

Monday, May 19, 2008

Well I finished my bathroom project, got the wiring finished. All works fine.
Christina now has modern electricity setup in bath. She is happy.
Getting ready for the Iris Festival this weekend. Should be a good show.
Made a new soap Saturday that totally trashed. First time that has happened in a very long time.
It turned out to be a very big caustic mess. Solid but, yuck. Always fun trying something new. Never quite sure how it will turn out. Tried the new "swirling technique" I learned from Lori Nova. A very nice girl. She is a Pro at swirling soap. Well it turned out pretty good. Will be adding it to the collection soon. Have lots of new things to work on; new fragrances and blends, techniques and products.
I miss the creative part of soapmaking. Do not get enough time to do "Play" I am starting to make time to play. Only way new things can come to life. Pull them out of the cracks in my brain - See if they are something nice or something you "poke with a pointed stick" see if it bites.

Friday, May 16, 2008

Got this today, pic of me receiving certificate from Marie Gale, President of the Handcrafted Soap Makers Guild. Taken in Vermont, April 30.

Wednesday, May 14, 2008

I guess it is a southern expression for "wallowing". To roll around oneself in a lazy way. Kids wallowing in the yard, pigs wallow in mud, dogs waller in grass ( on there back - feet in the air wiggling around). things like that. My mother would tell me to quit wallering in bed and get up.
Another use would be "quit wallering in self pity" I learned proper speech and grammar from my Mother and Sister growing up. Spelling is another matter. But some of the southern expressions just don't have the same "feel" if spoken correctly or incorrectly. I find myself using more of them as I get older.
So far this morning I have labeled jars, packaged mud, packaged soap, cleaned up and had some juice. Off to Myrtle Beach today to sell some soap & herbs. Bike Week is on, so traffic should be fun. later.

Tuesday, May 13, 2008

fixing my bathroom

You figure out what you are going to do... then it all goes to sh&#t!
I spent all day yesterday fixing my bathroom. The medicine cabinet broke, so took out the old one and replaced it with one that went right in. No extra work, put it in the hole and screwed it in. Amazing! Next was installing some extra plug-ins. Ok I am not an electrician, but can do some simple fixes. After making 3 extra holes I didn't need in the wall. The plugs were in. Next comes running the wire to the box. That's still to be done. but the plugs look good. Nice and neat, but still not working yet. It took me 10 hours for all that and 5 trips to Lowe's. After, I helped the kids plant some vegetables they stated in the yard. Hermes had to waller all over them. He does that. Wallers on stinky stuff, wallers in the dirt, wallers just to waller. I hope they live. Found a rogue Tomato plant growing in the herb patch, a nice size.
Made some body butter and coffee soap today in the shop.
Never have enough time do-ya,
to get it all done.
Start early again tomorrow.

Wednesday, May 7, 2008


I am glad you found this!!!
This is my ramblings... from the crazy alchemic mind of a soapmaker who
mixes up some of this, a little of that, add a touch this and BAM!!! I have made soap.

I hope you enjoy....
I do not spell good, LOL, so sorry about any typos in my postings.

I have returned from The Handcrafted Soapmakers Guild Conference in Burlington Vt.
What a beautiful state. Met many nice soapers and made a new friend of like mind. I am now a "Certified Soapmaker" The first certified by The Handcrafted Soapmakers Guild in the state South Carolina. Learned some new techniques. Had a great time.