Friday, December 25, 2009

Seasons Greetings!

Have a safe, wonderful and joyous holiday!

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Skin MD Naturals Lotion Review

Skin MD Natural Shielding Lotion is made with some really nice natural ingredients like Aloe and Arnica. It is Vegan, fragrance and color free. I started my week long test by discontinuing all usage of my emu oil products. The first thing I noticed about Skin MD Natural is its rapid absorption rate, it sinks right into the skin and you only need to use a little. It leaves no greasy, oily, or waxy feel either. I like this! I have severely dry, problem skin and before I started using emu oil products had to file my hands every day with a fine callous remover several times a day to remove the coarse sharp alligator skin I develop that tears nylons. I had got to the point where I needed only file my hands once or twice a week. Unfortunately, I had to end testing of this product after Day Four. My skin was so dry it hurt, and ragged due to rough, dry skin. While using Skin MD I had to once again file my hands every day several times a day due to rough, dry skin. I also had to reapply Skin MD Natural about every 2 hours. While Skin MD Natural is a nice lotion, it did not work well for severely dry, problem skin like mine. It would be satisfactory for lightly to moderately dry skin and for those wanting a vegan lotion with many natural ingredients that absorbs quick and leaves no residue on the skin.

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

Testing Skin MD Natural Lotion

Cat Doss contacted me after she read my blog with an interesting proposition, she wanted to send me full sized bottle of Skin MD Natural Lotion for me to test and review! I have severe skin problems due to health, and the only thing I have ever found that helps is emu oil and my own soy wax lotion tarts, so Skin MD has some fierce competition. I will use it one week and stop using my own emu oil products and tally the results next Tuesday and post a review for you all. You know me, if I find a good product, I like to give kudos and props when they are deserved, even if it is my competetion. There's room for both my products and others too in the market and if it works more power to them! Different things work for different people, so if this helps, great! So let's see what happens!

I Hate spam!

I got my first spam here on my blog so am now forced to put comments on moderation! Spammers must be the stupidest people in the world...we remember them and automatically will NEVER buy anything from them and talk about them so others won't too!

Fantastic Give Away Blog!

Reposting this as a reminder the give away is still happening! If you like Give Aways, and who doesn't like getting something neat free, go check out Audreys' Give Aways. She does excellent reviews of the various artisans she finds (she did one for me and she is thorough) and hosts Give Aways for products that are really unique, well made and just plain cool like the OcasiaCasa Give Away she is featuring now, her newest.

Friday, December 4, 2009

Soy Wax Lotion Tart Give Away!

Reposting this, to remind everyone! Audrey's Give Aways is hosting a give away of my Soy Wax Lotion Tarts! Read all about them in her review and enter to win, win, win this awesome product! Many ways to win! Thank you Audrey!

Featured!

2 Virgos Designs was featured on a blog, The Art of Craft. Thank you, Robert! go on over and read all about 2 Virgos Designs!

Thursday, December 3, 2009

New Primos Pawtourage Project!

After a year of thinking about it, I finally launched Primo's Pawtourage's newest and most awesome project: a dog breed specific high end doggie gift bag! The dog breed is the Maltese, we will see where it takes us! One bag will be a donation for the American Maltese Association's rescue raffle at their dog show in May 2010, something dear to my heart, as my Maltese Blossom is a rescued puppymill survivor! We will also be launching a retail verison of the same bag! I canvassed for contributing artisans from Etsy and there are now 7 of us involved in the project! Everyone is really enthusiastic and excited, this is so cool! Even if we don't sell one bag we will have had fun and helped out with Maltese rescue! Here is what we have so far: an applique tote bag to hold it all, an embroidered mess bag and towel, a key chain, a placemat, an Eco toy, scrumptious dog treats, a bar of my hand milled dog soap with emu oil, a bar of paw print soap, a 3D Maltese soap dog, and a cool Maltese designed t shirts! This tote bag better be big! I am looking into advertising with Maltese Monthly to get our retail bag off the ground and on the market. I will also offer it through my Etsy shop. We'll be looking at other promotional avenues too. I am so stoked about this project, and to be working with such a cool group of people is awesome! To think: one little 5 pound dog started me on this road! Thank you my dearly beloved Primo. I miss you.

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Vegan Soy Wax Lotion Tart Review

Heather of Feathered Friends Mementos wrote an awesome review of my Vegan Soy Wax Lotion Tarts! Read it here! Thank you Heather!

Thursday, November 26, 2009

Thanksgiving!

Happy Thanksgiving! I ahve so much to be grateful for. Most of all, that I get to spend the day with my mother and a good friend. Last year this time mom was dreadfully sick and in an out of hospital. I am thankful she is alive and home! Have a wonderful safe day!

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Vegan Mamere's Punkin' Pie Hand Milled Soap




I made a block of custom Vegan soap for Christina. Instead of my standard emu oil I used mango butter and evening primrose oil. Mango butter has suberb emollient properties and evening primrose oil is known widely for it skin nurturing benefits. This soap was an adventure for me! The first batch I made had too much fluid in it and would not set! It was the first time I have ever had a batch of hand milled that ruined, my first ever mistake! Oops! Threw it away and made it again. I used pumpkin puree like usual and for the first time, pumpkin powder for exfoliating. And this wasa wiht the pumpkin shortage, you don't know what i went through to get a can of pumpkin, then I end up with several. Mom came to the rescue of course! Through all this, Christina was more than gracious and patient! I used a new fragrance and it had a high vanilla content, unbeknownst to me, and the soap turned from orange to brown! This is normal but was unexpected, I did not know it had that much vanilla in it but it smells lovely! Anxious, I awaited Christina's feedback...she is delighted with it! Yay! Thank you Christina for being so patient!

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Linda B has featured my Black Knight of Avalon Spa Bag in her Etsy Top 5 Finds blog! Go check out Linda B's Blog! There are all kinds of goodies there! Thank you Linda B!

Monday, November 23, 2009

I won!



I was the 200th fan and surprise! I won a beautifully wrought clay mug from Claytastic! It is gorgeous! Thank you Laurie! If you want a cool gift that is beautiful AND functional go check out Claytastic right now!

Blossom Won!



Woo hoo! Blossom won the November Pets Jubilee Pet Photo Contest! A huge thank you to Pets Jubilee and to everyone who voted for Blossom and made her a winner! Pets Jubilee makes and sells a wonderful pet sampler box with items made by different Etsy artisans. The sampler box is a great way to try out different treats, toys and such before committing to buy from individual sellers! Sampler boxes are full of things for dogs, cats, gerbils, and other pets.

Saturday, November 21, 2009

Update on Mom

The doctor has found another mass in my mom's abdomen, she is going for a CT scan Tuesday. I will go with her. Saying many prayers for mom, I had hoped this would not happen again. I wish they could figure out why this is happening and stop it. I feel so badly for mom and wish I could take it from her. I want this part of her life to be comfortable and nice for her. She will be 75 December 11. I got her present already, she will love it.

Soapies Supplies Interview

Kelley of Soapies Supplies kindly interviewed me. It is a great article. You can read it here! Show some love and leave a comment too! Soapies Supplies offers a nice variety of premium soaping supplies. Thank you Kelley!

Friday, November 13, 2009

A Week to Be Joyful About

Sometimes, amidst the hardships and challenges of eveyday living we will experience a day so spectacular it makes it all worthwhile. I have had a week that stands out from the rest and makes me so grateful to be alive and validates my determination to stick with it no matter what! Earlier this week I got a newer pc someone had donated to the community I live in, my old one is getting ready to kick the bucket, couldn't have happened at a better time, now I can save my files! Mom gave me a new beautiful armchair for my living room and a chest of drawers, now my delicates have their own drawer! Thnk you Mom! I have been handpicked for 3 Etsy treasuries, one is live right now, my Peppermint Oatmeal Buttermilk Bath Sachets were selected. Please go and show some love by clicking on the products, and leave a comment if there is space. I really would appreciate it! And here I thought I was invisible amongst the thousands of wonderful shops on Etsy! Thank you Etsy and thanks to each of the selllers who graciously handpicked my prodcuts to showcase.

Monday, November 9, 2009

Find Out About the Etsy Black Friday Extravaganza Thread

Here is the thread link on Etsy to find all about our Black Friday weekend Extravaganza! Join in the fun!

Indie Smiles Coupon Directory



Any Etsy shop wanting to join in on the fun of our Black Friday Weekend Extravaganza can get free ad space on Indiesmiles Coupon Directory. Sue has graciously given us free ad space for our joint weekend extravaganza November 27 through 30th. Thank you Sue for your time and efforts!

Featured on Handmade Louisiana!

Lisa on Handmade Louisiana wrote a real nice profile on me and my little shop 2 Virgos Designs. Etsy's Handmade Lousiana is a wonderful group of Louisiana artisans of which I am a proud member. Thank you, Lisa!

Sunday, November 8, 2009

News Flash! Etsy Black Friday Extravaganza Announcement

Announcing The Black Friday Extravaganza on Etsy! Over 300 sellers have collaborated on this project, each seller has their own special, some offer free shipping, some offfer Buy One Get One Free, others offer discounts. 2 Virgos Designs offers a 15% discount on order of $15 or more on everything in the store! Just write "Black Friday" in the Notes to Seller on the Check Out page. The sale begins November 27 and lasts to midnight November 30th. To see a list of the stores involved check out this site. There are so many the page listing revolves, so check back again or refresh your page to see other stores offering great Black Friday specials! The Black Friday Extravaganza blog offers a little history of Black Friday and Cyber Monday too! Check out IndieSmiles who is graciously promoting our Black Friday Extravaganza and has featured my shop too!

Free Ad Space for 2 Virgos!

Cathy Winsby of Soap Making Essentials has graciously given me free ad space. You can see my ad as well as some other nice soap shops here. Thank you so much Cathy!

Friday, October 30, 2009

I'm in a Treasury

What an honor! My Moonlight Sonata Hand Milled Soap with Emu Oil has been featured in a fabuluous fall colors treasury created by ChickaDeesigns on Etsy. ChickaDeesigns handcrafts the loveliest resin pendants and fridge magnets. Thank you for adding me to your beautiful and colorful treasury CheckaDeesigns!

Friday, October 23, 2009

Saturday, October 17, 2009

Review of 2 Virgos Designs' Soy Wax Lotion Tarts

Patrice of The Soap Seduction has written anice review of my Soy Wax Lotion Tarts on her blog. Patrice handcrafts wonderful cold process soap and make up, like the Lip Lush Trio I got from her, which is really nice. Check out her nice blog and her ArtFire shop, get some holiday shopping done! Thank you Patrice!

Shout Out for WoodenLove Affair

A friend of mine, Kathi Lozier and her husband Lou of WoodenLoveAffair and on Etsy had a nice interview written on them by HandMadeNews on ArtFire and they kindly mentioned me and my shop, 2 Virgos Designs, as one of the favorite shops. Kathi and Lou handcraft exquisite pieces rangin from jewelry to boxes from wood, often using exotic woods. Their work is incredible and I urge you to go on over to either of their shops and check them out. Their pieces make unique and beautiful gifts, and just in time for the holidays! Thank you Lou and Kathi for the Shout Out!

Home from the Hospital

I had to go into the hospital last week for 5 days for observation and testing for my blood pressure problems. Things checked out Ok there and the doctor put me on a strict dosing schedule with my meds and a strict low sodium/diabetic diet and I got home 2 days ago. Boy, did I miss Blossom, my dog and my pc! It was so good to get home. I stayed at Doctors Hospital in Shreveport, it has been partially closed down for several years with just a wing open for drug rehab but is now open and accepting patients and that is where my doctor works out of now. It was very clean, the food was good, and staff wonderful, a pleasant stay for a hospital but there is no place like home! I feel better and my blood pressure while still getting a little high is much more stable. I had an abdominal ultrasound day before yesterday and we will be comparing it to my tests done in 2005 which showed the right side of my liver enlarged and deformed. If it has gotten worse, that will explin the sudden changes in my blood pressure. There won't be anything we cn do about it, but it will be an answer. My biggest challenges: this new diet and the strict time table for my medicines. I know I can do it though, I want to be as healthy as I can be and it is up to me in a large way.

Monday, October 5, 2009

Feathered Friends Mementos Review of My Soy Wax Lotion Tarts

jix1764 of Feathered Friends Mementos blog has cast her vote and written a nice, thorough review of my soy wax lotion tarts. Thanks Heather!

Take it to the bank 24 K mineral eyeshadow



I just had the privilege of getting some 24 K gold mineral eyeshadow from Mum Mum's Craft's on Etsy. Lucy has done a suberb job at making a wonderful, soft, smooth, adhering true to color that lasts and lasts gold eye shadow. Gold is my fav color along with black of course, so I wear this all the time. This eye shadow came in a cute 10 gram sifter jar which is quite a lot of eye shadow, it will last for some time. The ingredients are: mica, iron oxide, titanium dioxide, magnesium myristate, kaolin. I am picky about my gold eye shadow, this is true gold and quite lovely. If you need some high quality mineral make up, hurry on over to Mum Mum's Crafts and check her out, she has many colors of eye shadow, lip color, mascara and other goodies that she makes herself. Lucy puts quite a bit of time and effort into making premium quality mineral make up. Thanks Lucy!

Thursday, October 1, 2009

New Soapie Direction: Vegan

I have noted some people are asking about my emu oil and indicating they would prefer not to have it in the soap and soy tarts. I have been wanting to offer a Vegan line but to be perfectly honest, emu oil is spectacular snd provides benefits that really can't be matched. There is no comparison. But last week I took a custom order for 2 pounds of Vegan hand milled soap and after quite a bit of research I am taking out the emu oil and adding evening primrose oil and mango butter to it. I cannot add much evening primrose oil to the soap so we will see what the customer thinks of it after she uses it. When I pour and cut up this batch of Mamere's Vegan Punkin' Pie Soap I will post a picture of it here. I will make some soy lotion tarts with almond oil which is nothing more than just a vegetable oil with no special properties and a touch of evening primrose oil and see how they test out. The tarts with emu oil will be a hard act to follow, feedback is awesome for them, they are simply better than any lotion tried and the skin moisturizing lasts for hours, far better than the best lotion.

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

"Help! Someone is Copying me!" What to do.

Donna Maria, CEO of Indie Beauty Network, radio show host and producer, author, work shop organizer, and speaker has written an excellent article about what to do if (when) you discover someone is copying your business ideas. It can happen to any of us, and probably will the longer we are in business for ourselves, and often the perpetrator is a friend, and our reaction can be pretty emotional. Read Donna Maria's well written blog article and find out what you can do to weather this in your business. Thank you Donna Maria for this heads up guide.

SilkFair Experience Today

Today I got a spam email in my SilkFair inbox. I wrote SilkFair right away and told them about it. I got a reply in less than 5 minutes, I have almost never seen such speedy customer service! They immediately deleted the spammer's account and wrote me back and told me about it right away. I have my shop on vacation there right now due to health problems and no sales but I am most impressed with SilkFair and their superb customer service. I would highly recommend SilkFair to any handcrafter wanting a new venue for their goods. I have a free account there but you can purchase a premium account too I believe. With customer service like this, I predict SilkFair will be a rising star!

Monday, September 21, 2009

Vote for Blossom!

Pets Jubilee on Etsy is running a photo contest starting today and ending the 27th! Please vote for Blossom, she is contestant #22, the Maltese in the leopard dress, stylin'! It is easy to vote, just make a signed comment on her entry, you can vote once a day, make sure you type the word verification in. The prize is free advertising, a sampler box, and they will use blossom's picture as an avatar on their website for one month. Blossom is already a winner in my book, help make her the contest winner, it is easy and free! thank so much!

Friday, September 18, 2009

Blossom's Birthday (Belated) Wish



woof, I am Blossom, I am a Maltese dog and Mommy said she will type this out for me. It is my birthday wish. My 7th birthday was August 20 but mommy has been real sick, so I forgive her for being so late. I just want her to get better, she walks me more then and plays more with me.

I came to mommy last December. I grew up in a tiny cage just big enough to have a litter of puppies in and turn around in. I never went outside and when I first saw grass I grew very afraid. The people who kept me in the cage were mean to me, their hands always hurt me, grabbing me and sqeezing me by the scruff of my neck and jabbing sharp needles into me. They took my puppies away from me, I did not get to see them grow up. they gave me shots all the time and made me breed with strange male dogs and I had about 3 litters a year. Dogs are only supposed to have one litter a year, the shots mommy tells me were human hormones to make me come in season more than nature meant for me to. I never got enough to eat and it was bad food, I was always hungry and very skinny. The cage was wire, snd it hurt my feet to always stand on it, and my toes permenantly splayed outwards from trying to get purchase on the wire cage bottom to walk, my toes would keep falling though the cage bottom. It hurt. I never got a real bath, or a hair cut, the humans would turn a hose on and spray me and my puppies off with a blast of cold water every once in a while. We had no where to go to the bathroom away from our food bowl and bed. It was very dirty and I was very dirty and my fur was matted to my body and stank bad but I did not know this until I was rescued. One day, I got sick. I did not get better. The humans did not believe in spending any money on us dogs if we got sick, they would just get rid of us. The humans took me out of the cage I was so scared! and gave me to another lady. I did not know it then but she was nice. I was terrified, I had never been out of my cage before and when we got to her hosue she shaved all my matted fur off! I had skin and she gave me a bath and I did not stink any more. I thought she was going to kill me but it turned out all right. The clippers made a horrible buzzing noise but did not cut me just my hair. (I am a Maltese and we have hair not fur!) The bath water was warm! I saw things at her house I had never dreamed existed. I hid a lot at first. The other dogs showed me the way to get round. The nice lady (Deborah) had other dogs she had rescued. We ran in a pack in the house free and I learned to walk around a large space in the house but it scared me so I would spin just like I was in the cage still. I still spin when I get nervous. But it happens less and less. I lived with Deborah for 8 months then she took me in long car ride (wow, cars!) and left me with mommy. I was terrifed of mommy but she has turned out to be the nicest lady. She feeds me real good and I have a big bowl full of different food ALL THE TIME and can eat whenever I want and it is all mine and i have enough and plenty of fresh water too. She gives me baths me and has me groomed so my fur is always nice and clean. The most amazing thing is the bed! This HUGE, soft cushion we lie on all day and night if we want, no holes in the bottom for my toes to fall through and it is so comfy. I can't believe this human, she even puts dresses on me because she figured out the air conditioning made me cold since my hair is short now. Dresses! Me! I am so special. I like my dresses, they are real cute and warm. They belong only to me. Mommy lets me walk and run anywhere in the apartment that I want to. She did not grab me all the time and let me get used to this new place and to her and i slowly allowed her to touch me and pet me. I did not know what petting was and it really scared me at first, I would quake from head to toe when her hands touched me at first. I don't shake now and I like being petted, it feels so good! Her hands do not hurt me, she never grabs me or squeezes me, and she is very gentle with me and never yells at me or blasts me with cold water or jabs me with a needle. Sometimes we go some place in a car and I do get jabbed but it is quick and the humans are nice and mommy tells me it is so I will not get sick. I cannot believe my good luck. I thought humans were horrible creatures and my life was so miserable, Now I am a little queen, mommy tells me and I can do whatever I want. I am a good dog and never bother anything. I sleep a lot because I am still tired from having all those puppies. I am so sorry for them, for I know maybe they are lving in a cage like I did for 5 years. I am so glad I do not have puppies any more, I still do not like my tummy touched much but I will let mommy stroke it once in a while when I am in a good mood. She never hurts me.

Mommy says this place I come from is called a puppymill. It is factory for making dogs have more puppies just to make money for the humans that run it. Everything is about money there, we are objects not creatures with feelings and needs. We are property there. Not like now, mommy is my family. Those humans do not believe in spending moeny on us dogs if we get sick. They feel we are then worthless because we are not making them money and they let us die there or get rid of us like they did with me. I got lucky, and now I live in a palace. But mommy says there are many puppymills still out there and thousands of poor dogs suffering like i did. They sell their puppies to Pet Shops. A reputable breeder would NEVER sell their puppies to a pet shop because their puppies are part of their family and they care about them, they send them to good homes where the people are checked out and made sure they can take good care of them for their whole lives. My birthday wish is for all the puppymills to be closed down. This will only happen if people make them stop and they can be made to stop by refusing to buy puppies from back yard breeders and pet shops. If a puppy comes from a good home there will be an interview and the adopters may even have a home visit by the breeder to make sure they have a nice home to bring the puppy to. Please spread the word about puppymills and get people to stop buying puppies from them.

I live a good life now and want all dogs to be so lucky. All's well that ends well. I am very happy now and I get to style in my new dwesses! How do you like my dwess in the pic? I even have matching bows but don't tell mommy I hate them, they pull my hair and I take them out as soon as I can. I get to meet new humans who are real nice to me, so that is nice. Mommy has a friend who comes over all the time and she is real nice to me. I get to go on walks around the apartment complex and that is really fun. I like eating and get to eat whenever I like. I really love stretching out on the bed and even have a pillow to put my head on and my own blankie. Mommy and i play catchmeifyoucan but I always win, I am so fast! Sometimes I let her think she has won though. LOL I have an important job, I am the guard dog here and I am very good at it. What is really neat is all the space I have to roam around in here and I love running through the apartment very fast just because I can.

Thank you for reading my letter and thanks to mommy for writing it for me, the big words are hard for me. Now it is time for a nap!

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Downsizing

Yesterday I bit the bullet, faced the facts, and closed down all my online web stores but 3. The 3 remaining ones are Etsy, my main squeeze of course; Bonanzle; and Sellers Arena which is really not working yet anyway. I have had absolutely no sales on the others and with my health problems can no longer devote the time to keep them updated when I sell something on the active ones. I gave them all a good run for the money, so to speak, and they just didn't pay off. Bonanzle yet may go too, we shall see. I do not like the venue there, just not enough handmade stores, too many commercial interests. I've met some nice people, but it is sales I am interested in after all. So out with the flotsam, in with the proven venues.

Update

I am holding my own and haven't been to the ER in way over a week now so am feeling stronger. Thanks for your encouraging words! soon I will post a review of some stellar mineral eye shadow I have just received and a long awaited article on puppymills from my dog, Blossom's, viewpoint, I promise it will end on a very good note! Blossom gives it a 2 paw salute!

Wednesday, September 2, 2009

Still Battling

Just a quick post to let you know I have not forgotten you! My blood sugar has now joined the battle along with my blood pressure and things are pretty rough, been to the ER 4 times since the 18th of August. Blossom's (my Maltese dog) birthday was August 20th and she wanted me to post about her birthday wish, the end of puppymills. As soon as I am better, I will write about this for her.

Sunday, August 16, 2009

Oatmeal, Goat Milk, and Honey Hand Milled Soap with Emu Oil



Ready for sale! I tried my hand at staging the pic, hmmm. Wonderfully fragrant @5 ounce bar of hand milled goat milk soap scented with oatmeal, milk and honey fragrance with a touch of almond. Delicious and good old fashioned comfort aroma! Loaded with colloidal oatmeal to provide gentle exfoliation and contains real honey. Can be bought at http://2VirgosDesigns.etsy.com

Ingredients: Goat milk, Olea Europaea (Olive) Fruit Oil, Cocos Nucifera (Coconut) Oil, Sodium Hydroxide, Carthamus Tinctorius (Safflower) Oil, Persea Gratissima (Avocado) Oil, Elaeis Guineensis (Palm) Kernel Oil, Glycine Soja (Soybean) oil, Ricinus Communis (Castor) Seed Oil, Butyrospermum Parkii (Shea Butter) Fruit, Theobroma Cacao (Cocoa) Seed Butter, Emu Oil, Helianthus Annuus (Sunflower)Oil, Avena Sativa (Oat) Kernel Flour, Water, Honey, Fragrance, Tocopherol Acetate

Thursday, August 13, 2009

To Blog or Not?

A question on one of the forums is whether our blogs should contain personal matter or be strictly business. I know I don't follow a blog myself if it is solely commercial, I get enough of commercials eveywhere else. I quickly unfollow anyone on Twitter if all they post are endless promos. More than 5 ads, and they are history. While I do post new products and do product reviews here as the case arises, I feel like me, you want to know a little bit about me, what is going on in my life, what interests me, and what challenges do I face sometimes. I find it fun and interesting and yes, sometimes sad, to read about other bloggers' lives and goings on, I WANT to hear about it, it is what makes that person's blog stand out and makes me want to come back for more. I try to keep it balanced here, a little personal, a little business, to make it live and breathe. What do you think?

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Naturally Fresh



August 3 Melanie McCullough of Herbal Natures in Bradford, Illinois sent me a sample of her delightful Natural Deodorant. I am really impressed with this all natural alternative to the chemical full deodorants I purchase at the store. This came superbly and professionally packaged in a pop up deodorant tube, a generous 1.25 ounce sample. It is made with Arrowroot Powder, coconut oil, castor oil, Meadowfoam oil, candelelilla, silica, zinc oxide, and lightly scented with essential oils, Floral Fantasy. Melanie has really done her home work and come up with a wonderful product that works well! It completely stopped any under arm odor all day in the dank high heat of Louisiana and was scented light enough to not interfere with my own cologne. This deodorant is just the right consistency, not too soft and this sample will last me a while. I have hepatitis c and blood cancer so am extremely sensitive to heavy metals like the aluminum used in store bought deodorants. Finding a healthy alternative like this that works so well has made my day! This Natural Deodorant is the ticket for anyone wanting to use a safer, healthier deodorant. She will be adding this to her line up in the near future, if you would like to try this, email her, she has a few on hand. Also, feel free to check out her other wonderful natural products, like her mineral make up and linen spray. Thank you Melanie!

Saturday, August 8, 2009

The Fight

Suddenly I have found myself in a fight for my life. Even the slightest touch of salt in my food makes my blood pressure skyrocket, a week ago it went up to 244/117. This was a mini stroke. Scared the you know what out of me. I did not go to the hospital, last time this happened, all they did was do some uncomfortable tests, admit me, throw me in a room, gave me NO medicine to bring my BP down, and forgot all about me. I left after some hours of this. This time, I called a caring friend and neighbor, Suzanne, and she sat with me whle I took an extra clonidine (what the hospital gives), drank plenty of water, and practiced self biofeedback to lower my pulse rate and blood pressure. This time it worked, but I cannot get my BP down to normal and am terrified of eating anything. I guess that is one way to lose weight! LOL After being told twice by my doctor's office that I could NOT come in for a follow up to my 1st transient ischemic attack (mini stroke) on June 5th, at other's pleadings, I called again on Thursday and they agreed to let me come in yesterday. He checked me out, will pore over the labs taken, did not want to change anything till he perused the labs, refilled my prescriptions and told me I was following the best course of action and did the right thing this time. I will return to see him on the 8th of September, now just to manage to live long enough to do so! I find it ironic after so many years when I wanted to die (years ago when younger) I now have no intention of going anywhere. I am happy - truly happy - for the first time in my my life and have tons more soap to make!

Wednesday, August 5, 2009

Alice Online Shopping Service Review

A friend turned me on to Alice, a new online shopping and delivery service. A personal shopper! I shopped on Saturday, picking out the minimum order of 6 brand name items, all things I needed badly, including Pantene Red Expressions color enhancing shampoo, Northern Quilted toilet tissue and Baggie brand sandwich bags. My order only totaled $21.00 and the shipping is FREE! I received my order today, Wednesday, via FedEx, wow, this is wonderful! I've been waitng YEARS for this service and it went without a hitch, super cool, super convenient, no problems checking out. I used my credit card to pay, the account was quick and easy to set up, and they have hundreds of selections of brand name useful things to shop for. Alice is in Beta, and I have seen finished web sites that couldn't brag like this one can. There are several ways to shop, I used the Shop By Room selection and it was very easy, it pulls up a catalog of everything they have in that category, like Kitchen. They have a good selection of products and are adding to it. You can also key in the name of what you are looking for, the pages load fast, but I have cable internet. I am disabled with no transportation and getting to Walmart to get the things I need is a huge inconvenience for me and costly, there are many areas still where it is hard to get to a super center or big grocery store, Alice fits the bill and quite nicely! Alice also has selected coupons for some things, saving you even more money, it was cheaper and easier for me to order what I needed through Alice than it was to go to the store. Alice ships within 2-3 business days. I highly recommend Alice she will save you time and money. Forget about those lines from now on! Make Alice your new personal shopper!

Friday, July 31, 2009

Seducing Swap




That's right, Patrice over at The Soap Seduction put a double whammy on me! She kindly agreed to a swap with me and I hit the jackpot! First up is her luscious Lip Lush Trio, handcafted lip loving balm with a hint of color and a nice taste. Patrice does not use sweetener in her lip balm feeling it just makes us lick our lips and waste this lovely lip balm and she is right! I opted for Cherry Berry, Mango Peach Fusion, and Pina Colada. This formulation of olive oil, castor oil, beeswax, caranauba wax, candelilla wax, fragrance, lip safe colorant, lip safe mica goes on silky soft and stays on, tastes good, and makes my lips nicely moist and soft.

I also swapped for a bar of her wonderfully moisturizing cold process soap, Pinky Muskadero, a delightful mixture of olive oil, soybean oil, avocado oil, castor oil, coconut oil, cocoa butter, distilled water, sodium hydroxide, oxide, and fragrance. This beautiful soap is scented with notes of jasmine, musk, and a hint of peony. I rushed to test it out and found it gave loads of creamy bubbles, scented just right and not reeking, just the way I like it, and left my skin soft and clean. All products came packaged in a pretty muslin drawstring bag, a nice touch!

I encourage anyone wanting to use premium handcrafted lip balm instead of chemical laden store bought stuff and fantastic cold process soap to rush to The Soap Seduction and shop to your heart's content, you will be happy you did! Thank you Patrice!

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Holstein Heaven Hand Milled Soap with Emu Oil



Just cut my batch made 7/17/2009 of all natural Holstein Heaven Chocolate Vanilla Hand Milled Soap with Emu oil. This heavenly scented olive oil soap named tongue in cheek for our lovely black and white Holstein cows is full of natural goodness and so good for the skin. Fragranced and colored naturally with pure cocoa powder and vanilla oleoresin, it is chock full of exotic butters and oils, like avocado oil, shea butter and emu oil. This soap will be ready August 7; it is curing now to get a nice gentle, long lasting hard bar of soap made to spoil your skin. You can get this soap now here!

Monday, July 20, 2009

Blossom 4th of July bow




Here is my lovely dog, Blossom, a Maltese, with me now over 7 months, she is a puppymill rescue. Her fav thing to do? Recline in spoiled luxury on the soft plump queen-sized jacquard covered bed, so very different than the wire she was forced to live on 24/7 for 5 years. She deserves it and more! What an expression on her face! She is chastising me because of the camera, once put away, she was back to racing around and playing.

Edited photo courtesy of Rosemary. thank you so much Rosemary. You are an artiste.

Monday, July 6, 2009

Soy Wax Lotion Tarts



I have an awesome new product! soy wax lotion tarts! What is this, you may ask? It is a 2 in 1 product: home fragrance and exquisite skin softening and warming lotion! You will not believe your eyes! Unique product. 2.5 ounce 6 individual breakaway soy wax lotion tarts, 2 products in one! Place one cube in your tea light burner or electric burner, melt and you have a delightful home fragance. Lightly dip you fingers in the melted soy wax and apply to hands, you then have the BEST lotion you have ever used with shea and cocoa butter and triple refined certified Asutralian EMU oil and the warm lotion feels wonderful on your hands. Superb for cracked dry skin and eases hurting hands with its warmth.

If you have used lotion after lotion with little to no benefit, you must try this! One cube lasts for about a week using it daily as a lotion. Soy wax is green, clean burning, and melts at a lower temperature than regular wax, no fear of buring yourself, just don't touch the bowl of the burner, it's hot! No wick to sully the wax lotion. Dye free! When possible pthlalate free fragrance oils or essential oils used, only skin safe ratios used. The best way to use this is to let it melt, blow out the tea light, or turn off the electric burner, let cool for a minute then dip away! Treat your skin special today, you will wonder how you lived without this!

You can get it at http://2VirgosDesigns.etsy.com

Thursday, June 18, 2009

Moonlight Sonata Handmilled Soap with Emu Oil

Just cut my Moonlight Sonata Nearly Natural Handmilled Soap with Emu oil today! 21st century grandma's olive oil lye soap without the bite. Moody, more intense Musk. Strong, unisex, heady fragrance, with notes of fern, lily, hyacinth, jasmine and a hint of orris. This fragrance is completed with a powdery and sweet amber note. Incredibly sexy, yet not too heavy or cloying. All vegetable soap with added triple refined AEU certified American emu oil for its well known healing and moisturizing properties. Includes shea butter and cocoa butter! chuck full of NATURAL goodness. NO added synthetic chemicals except for pthalate-free fragrance oil and a dab of colorant. Highly recommended for those with problem or sensitive skin. Nice hard, long lasting 5 ounce bar of soap with good cleansing properties and good suds. Taking orders now, I have 6 bars, this will need to cure for 2 weeks to harden up nicely and be extra long lasting. $6.50 a bar. Multiple discount of 15%. USPS Priority Shipping.

Ingredients: Water, Olea Europaea (Olive) Fruit Oil, Cocos Nucifera (Coconut) Oil, Sodium Hydroxide, Carthamus Tinctorius (Safflower) Oil, Persea Gratissima (Avocado) Oil, Elaeis Guineensis (Palm) Kernel Oil, Glycine Soja (Soybean) oil, Ricinus Communis (Castor) Seed Oil, Butyrospermum Parkii (Shea Butter) Fruit, Theobroma Cacao (Cocoa) Seed Butter, Helianthus Annuus (Sunflower) Oil, Emu Oil, Fragrance, Tocopherol Acetate, FD & C Blue #1 Titanium Oxide

Sunday, June 14, 2009

Cooked New Batch Handmilled Soap Today


I made my first new batch today, all the better so I won't be overly fretting about my mother. I made a robin's egg blue and white marbled Moon Lake Musk Handmilled Soap with Triple Refined American Emu Oil. It smells oh so divine and hopefully will come out halfway pretty. Swirling in the mold with rebatch is difficult, it comes out more a marblized effect but still nice and two toned. I added a bit more water to this rebatch in order to get a better two toned effect. anxious to unmold it but must wait till it cools down. I will pic it when I do and see what you all think! this is what it looked like the last time I did it.

Saturday, June 13, 2009

NEWSFLASH! Greening up My Line

I am now offering my glycerin soaps in all natural pure soap base, the only chemicals in this true soap is the lye used to make all soap and the fragrances and FD & C colors I may add. Melt and pour glycerin soaps are not true soap, they are chemical stews, even the premium glycerin soap base I was using had them in it. Old fashioned glycerin soap is not even SOAP it is classified as a cosmetic by the FDA. It bothered me, I did keep the chemicals to a minimum but I have searched high and low in order to offer a better product that is safer and healthier to use. My NEW natural glycerin soap does not have these chemicals in it. It is true soap, pure and simple. Classified as SOAP by the FDA. The only chemicals will be the little bit of fragrance oils and colorings I add to some of them. I will be updating my sites to show this new greening of my soaps. I am proud to offer this vast improvement in my products, your skin will love it, and I will be able to do it without raising my prices much at all. Remember, it is the synthetic petrochemicals our skin hate, this new soap will be far kinder to your skin. It is a superior product and still affordable. Be kinder to your skin and body, use pure soap!

Friday, June 12, 2009

What Soap should I Make Poll

I have 6 pounds of cold process soap in to make 3 2 pound batches of handmilled soap. I am wavering on what to make at first. I am leaning towards Moon Lake Musk for my first batch and perhaps one unscented batch and some more dog soap.What do you think? any requests or suggestions!

Sunday, May 24, 2009

Layered melt and pour today

Today I made more layered bars of Black Knight of Avalon for my Medieval fantasies series. I have 3 more to make and then my spa bags will be filled.

Saturday, May 23, 2009

Sweet Swap!

This April I participated in a sweet swap with Audrey'sCountryCrafts on Etsy. I swapped my handcrafted soaps to get her teal raggedy bag, handmade by her out of cotton homespun material. This good sized bag is lovingly stitched using an "X" pattern and lined with cotton batting with 2 pockets on the inside. It is large enough to hold my medical files when I go to my doctor appointments and this is great! Gorgeous and functional! Beautiful work, Audrey, I am most proud of my bag and would jump at the chance to do another trade with you. Anyone wanting something unique and handmade should rush to Audrey's Etsy store and check her out, you won't be disappointed.

Sunday, May 3, 2009

Taking Charge

A year and half ago I discovered soaping. I had long been trying to find a handcrafted niche that would suit me. I am an artist but my hands are being destroyed by nerve damage so i don’t do pen and ink or charcoals any more. I also have serious health problems, am disabled by it, and i am not one to sit back, worry, and await the bad. I knew I needed a creative, positive outlet to get personally involved with. I can’t knit, crochet, or draw and I stumbled upon soaping. I wish I had found it years ago. It is right up my alley: math, science, creativity, artistry, marketing, socially involving, lots of alone time, improve my own health, something I could be in charge of; everything I could ask for and more! I can’t use lye so I use premium bases to make my products. I am quite proud of them and am making the move on my glycerin melt and pour soap bases to a more natural glycerin base as my goal is to avoid synthetic chemicals in my products. I also LOVE animals, Maltese dogs in particular, and have been able to combine my love for soaping with my love for dogs in my 3 D dog breed collectibles made from soap. They’re pretty unique and I love doing them. I also handmill cold process soap and I am quite proud of it. Since using my own products my skin has cleared from the terrible itchies and rashes I have suffered from for years. Even my dog soap is all natural and my dog does not have the itchies either and I know what I am using on her is safe for I made it and i know exactly what is in it. I firmly believe the widespread infliction of skin allergies we and our dogs are now suffering from comes directly from the chemical stews stores sell us as bath and beauty products. I also believe in aromatherapy and I find lovely scents from essential oils do indeed make me and my dog feel more relaxed and happier. In some of my products I do use pthalate free fragrance oils, if it is a scent that is not found in nature or the cost of the essential oil is prohibitive. I use as little as possible and all my fragrances are used in absolutely skin safe ratios, mathematically correct, so my products will not reek, (they shouldn’t anyway) you can be assured they will be safe to use. My goal is to provide safer, more natural bath and beauty products made with luxury ingredients at an affordable price. If you have sensitive skin, or skin allergies, I urge you to get off storebought bath and beauty products and find poeple who handcraft these things, but make sure they are truly knowedgable, for natural is NOT always safer and better, expecially if one does not do the research and know what they are doing. Many crafters drench their products in scent, using NON skin-safe ratios, this is not healthy for you. Read the ingredients, read up on the ingredients so you will know what is bad for you, and switch to high quality (not necessarily high priced) handcrafted bath and beauty products. Your skin and hair will love you for it! And you will be putting more money into our community instead of fat cats’ pockets.

Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Feathered Friends Mementos/European Goodies Review

Today I received the most wonderful surprise! My good friend Johanna of European Goodies on Bonanzle send me a pair of the most exquisite feather earrings lovingly handcrafted by Heather of Feathered Friends Mementos on Etsy. Uniquely crafted of caged blue green feathers captured in silver wire metal. Such a creative, elegant design: a perfect juxtaposition of elements: light/heavy, air/metal, animal/earth, and freedom/caged. Heather's workmanship and ingenuity are refreshing and a beauty to look on. As a bonus, I received the matching necklace, on just the right length (so hard to get) of silver metal chain. Heather handcrafts an assortment of jewelry, original artwork, bookmarks and keychains, and fine art photographs. Some of her designs utilize feathers from her beloved caique parrot, Royal, like my earrings. Beautiful work, thank you, Heather. If you want divine, one of a kind, handcrafted, keepsake items, please check out Heather's shop on Etsy.

European Goodies is owned by Johanna a wonderful German lady who has lived in the United States for 12 years and is of Koziol family fame, her father invented the snow globe and was the Ivory Carver! European Goodies features unique vintage times including genuine pre-banned old ivory jewelry and what nots, and other quality vintage items along with her own custom designed website banners like the one on my site. For quality vintage, vintage pewter, custom banners, collectibles, and other nice things, drop by Johanna's Bonanzle Shop. Thank you, Johanna!

You 2 ladies made my week!

Monday, April 13, 2009

new direction: marketing spa bags

Happy Monday everyone! since I last blogged and told you about the retail company that flaked out on me bigtime and I had to fire leaving me stuck with bottles and bottles of lotion and shower gel and vinyl spa bags, I am going to take these around to all the local gift shops and boutiques around me. I am confidant some of them will be interested in buying these wholesale as they are unique and in a unique scent that knocks the pants off everyone and if there is enough interest I will continue to invest on my own in this spa bag venture. I am currently offering them in oh so sexy Black Knight of Avalon and they contain: one 8 ounce bottle of hand & body lotion with goatmilk, honey, & emu oil, 8 ounces moisturizing shower gel, one 4.25 ounce bar of beautifully layered Black Knight of Avalon glycerin soap, one 2 ounce bottle of dry cologne, and a bath puff or loofah. This is a men's spa bag, I am not sure what I will wholesale it for yet. OK, my wholesale price will be $25.46. They will retail for at least $38.00. I should be ready to market these by the first. Wish me luck!

Friday, April 10, 2009

Terminated New Wholesale Account

2 weeks ago i had had enough and terminated my new venture with the retail company that wanted to feature my medieval product line in thier product line. After a multitude of patient emails to them trying in detail to explain the FDA laws regarding legal labeling of products for retail they kept insisting on trying to make me market my products illegally and completely ignoring my efforts at educating them to keep us both out of trouble. I am out $500, stuck with product I had no intention of investing in for myself, and am glad I found out how unscrupulous they are NOW rather than later when orders started coming in...I was going to dropship the itmes, so that meant they would be remitting payment on orders to me, I probably would not even have been paid for my products. I learned 3 valuable lessons: 1.) CONTRACT, contract, contract. 2.) Insist the retailer invest half the investment monies up front before any work is done. 3.) An exclusive contract costs $20,000 and a license must be signed. They wanted to have exclusive rights to my products, in the bath and beauty business, that is worth $20,000 to cover lost future revenue on my behalf since I would have to remove my products from my stores..Learn from my experince, get it in writing and get earnest money up front to cover your expense. any company that knows nothing about the bath and beauty business MUST follow your lead, it is your business that is on line, when the FDA levies fines, it will be YOU they levy them against if your products are not manufactured legally.

Saturday, March 21, 2009

MaMere's Punkin' Pie Soap with Emu Oil and Shea



Granny's wonderful handmilled cold process vegetable soap with shea butter, cocoa butter, real pumpkin with its skin nurturing caroten, vitamins A & C, and fantastic Emu Oil. Gentle at least @4.5 ounce bar with good suds. Great for your sensitive skin, contains NO artificial colors or synthetic chemicals except for a bit of skin safe pthalate-free Pumpkin Brulee fragrance oil. A delectable indulgence and perfect for any season!

Ingredients: Water, Olea Europaea (Olive) Fruit Oil, Cocos Nucifera (Coconut) Oil, Sodium Hydroxide, Carthamus Tinctorius (Safflower) Oil, Persea Gratissima (Avocado) Oil, Elaeis Guineensis (Palm) Kernel Oil, Glycine Soja (Soybean) oil, Ricinus Communis (Castor) Seed Oil, Butyrospermum Parkii (Shea Butter) Fruit, Theobroma Cacao (Cocoa) Seed Butter, Goatmilk, Emu Oil, Cucurbita Pepo (Pumpkin), Vanilla planifolia oloeresin, Fragrance, Turmeric Powder

http://2VirgosDesigns.etsy.com

Friday, March 13, 2009

New Wholesale account for Primo's Pawtourage Dog Themed soaps

This morning a very good friend whom I get my custom incense and some fragrance oils from asked if she could feature my dog themed soaps on her wholesale site! YES and YES! suddenly, I have 2 !!! wholesale accounts! I will make less money per item but more sales therefor more money. She makes big buck compared to me and has an established customer base. We shall see. Things are happening for me and it is such a blessing and time will tell.

Tuesday, March 3, 2009

Gaia's Gift Patchouli Glycerin Soap




Calling all hippies! Gaia's Gift Patchouli Soap. Luscious 4.25 ounce bar in a soap goddess mold. Vegan coconut oil glycerin soap, hypoallergenic. Superb for the skin! Contains powdered patchouli leaf for gentle exfoliation and genuine patchouli essential oil. Earthy, warm, spicy, yet mellow exotic scent. Dark green. Bask in the rich smell of Indian patchouli!

Ingredients: Propylene Glycol, Sorbitol, Glycerin, Sodium Laureth Sulfate, Sodium Stearate, Sodium Myristate, Sodium Cocoyl Isethionate, Pogostemon Cablin (Patchouli) Oil, Triethanolamine, Water, FD & C Blue # 1, FD & C yellow #5

Small orders can be shipped in a flat bubble envelope USPS 1st Class.

Friday, February 13, 2009

3 D Collectible Chinese Shar Pei soap dog

Primos Pawtourage's newest addition! Just got my new 3 D Chinese Shar Pei soap dog mold in and have orders all ready! I am learning new technques with this one, dry brushing handpainted details, lots of detail since the Shar Pei is so heavily wrinkled. Getting the fawn color is challenging. the Shar Pei is an ancient dog breed, not as popular as once before, but still beloved by its fans. Statues from the Han dynasty date back to 200 BC. "Shar Pei" in Chinese means "sand skin" and they are a medium sized muscular dog weighing 45-60 pounds and extremely devoted to their family, somewhat standoffish towards strangers. Quite an interesting breed of dog and striking in appearance! Any dog lover and Shar Pei fan would love this 3.8 ounce collectible soap dog. It comes in fawn (beige), variation in color due to individual casting and handpainting detail. You can buy him here. He is about 3X # X3 X3" in size and comes varnished to protect him from moisture. Taking orders on the 3 D dog now! Primo gives his stamp of approval and Blossom just loves him! Proceeds fund my rescue of puppymill survivor Blossom.

Saturday, January 24, 2009

Buttermilk Bath



When I first started making milk bath I didn't know what i was doing and used non-fat instant milk powder from the store. After months of doing this I discovered I was supposed to be using WHOLE FAT milk powder: goatmilk, cow's milk, coconut milk but to get true skin moisturizing and softening one MUST use whole fat milk powder. Using non-fat milk is just like using colored water. All the skin goodness has been taken out of it. Now online, they charge ridiculous prices for this stuff, the local health food store wants $9 for 12 ounces of it! I found whole fat cultured buttermilk powder, 12 ounce can for just $3 at Walmart. I'm finding my milk bath mix now clumps when I add my essential and fragrance oils so will be adding Natrasorb to it, this will raise my price a lttle but my customers can be assured they are buying a premium product that is good for their skin and not some cheap knock off. They will be getting their money's worth on something that is luxurious and good for them and truly wonderful to soak in.

new layering of Black Knight soap



This looks pretty good!