What a fun day Linda and I had at Otion. We started the day by having breakfast and reviewing Linda’s reactions about her first day (conclusion: overwhelming but exciting) and made an action plan for the day. Since Linda has plenty of business experience, we chose to focus on making product and trying to narrow down Linda’s desire for a retail store versus a large scale wholesale operation.
After opening the store, we headed to the soap lab to check out Linda’s first batch of soap. I’d say that this turned out pretty good, wouldn’t you? I was thrilled that her first batch looked so smooth and colorful. Given that we did a full 8% beeswax, this should be a long lasting bar in the shower. The batch used green iron oxide, yellow clay and merlot mica.
While I ran out to a meeting, Erik and Linda made 15 pounds of rebatching soap and another loaf to go over swirling techniques. Linda was especially excited to see how to do larger scale production with a drill and 5 gallon bucket.
When I got back, Linda and I made bath fizzies galore. She was amazed at how easy and cost effective bath fizzies are. If you’ve never made bath fizzies, TeachSoap.com has instructions and of course, Bramble Berry has the supplies (including an all-inclusive kit for $21.50).
Linda did a great job with her bath fizzies, learning how to press the materials deeply into the mold to ensure a dense, long lasting tub experience.
Linda’s final bath fizzies turned out great. We went over using extra oils in the bombs, humidity’s role in rock hard fizzies and the use of extra herbs and color in bath fizzies. She has enough take-home goodies to test that she’ll be bathing for a while!
Our next experiment didn’t do so well. We made lip balms and while the lip balms were fabulous, our microwave didn’t live through the afternoon. Check back later this weekend for photos and a description of the debacle (hint: it involves exploding hot glass and oil).
After a wonderful dinner, we sent Linda on her way back home to Michigan. I’m very excited to keep in touch with her to see if she does a retail shop or decides to go the wholesale route. Whatever she does, I know she will be successful.