Tuesday, 12 October 2010

Hits and Misses

I'm still foraging and preserving as befits the time of year. It sometimes seems that there is not enough time in the day to do the things I want to get done but for now,  it's time to unwrap some of the soap I made a month ago.

Here we have an old favourite - Cinnamon Cake

 Deliciously fragrant and spicy and very popular from this time of year onwards Actually, what started as a festive yuletide seasonal bar became such a winner I make it all the time now. I have lost count of the number of times people have said
 "That looks and smells good enough to eat!"
Well, I know I use all natural ingredients including  ground almonds for exfoliation, Cinnamon essential oil and bark, nutmeg and honey but I wouldn't recommend  you take a bite.
It is a great soap for showering and hand washing alike though and often takes pride of place in downstairs bath and cloakrooms where the scent provides a warm welcoming note.

Speaking of ingredients, one of the very first soaps I  made was a simple bar, scented with Bergamot essential oil that I named Earl Grey after the strong pot of fragrant tea I used as the liquid part of the recipe.
I recently found some of my old style labels for this soap during a clear out and I thought it was high time for a revival.
A quick canvas of friends and customers alike indicated a lot of enthusiasm for this oldie and so I set to work.
I did have a slight niggle about the quality of the essential oil I was using. Not from my usual supplier I hasten to add but I was keen to make a start and so into the pot it went.
Four weeks down the line I open the box  and unwrap a bar to  do the usual tests. 
While it is a good creamy bar of soap the scent is way too far in the background for a newly made batch. It could be bergamot but it's too faint to really tell. Not what I wanted from this bar at all.
So back to the drawing board which is annoying for a few reasons, not least my impatience to get it done. An unsatisfactory batch of soap for whatever reason can be an expensive and time consuming mistake. Not to mention having to dissapoint the people who wanted to try a bar.
So in summary - I have a large batch of faintly scented bars of soap that I don't want to sell.
I have Bergamot oil on order from www.essentiallyoils.com  and a determination to get it right so when the postman delivers the next parcel of fab smelling bottles I'll  brew some more tea and get out the soap pot to start again and to anyone who wanted a bar I ask for patience but it will be worth the wait.

On an unrelated note I leave you with a picture of a gift my Mother gave me recently. It currently hangs above my desk and if you know me you will know it to be very appropriate.