Hello everyone! Yesterday I had the opportunity to spend the day with Ivie and her niece, Christina which served as our translator. Ivie is a Soap Maker from Taiwan and is spending time visiting her family here in Texas.
Ivie is has been creating soap for 7 years and works with the Spa & Hotel Industry providing them with soap for their guests and retail in their upscale boutiques. She has an avid business and employs several people to assist her with production. Yay Ivie!
Ivie shared with me that she loves seeing all of the artistry of swirls and color, something she doesn’t have the opportunity to experiment with. “Since there is so much pollution in the air, the people in China only want soap made with natural colorants (plant-based) and essential oils.” She indulges her creative mind by making beautiful soaps using layers of natural colorants. After further discussion, utilizing the language skills of 16-year-old Christina, we discovered Ivie is wanting to expand her target audience to include the hipsters, 20-30 year olds.
She came to me wanting to learn to make Beer Soap. As the creator of Texas Beer Soap Co., I was feeling honored to share my love of Craft Beer and how to incorporate it into a luscious skin loving bar of squeaky clean fun. As we began our journey deciphering her questions.
We discovered she did not like the smell of hops. Humulus lupulus the flowering cone of the Hops plant that is used in brewing beer. No need for a translator.. facial expressions communicated quite clearly. But she did like the idea of being able to create a product using an ingredient she could locally source. Something most handcrafted soap makers have in common.
The use of a stick blender was fun! Ivie creates her soaps by hand stirring but was eager to play with some of the tools Western soap makers keep in their arsenal. Her tentative look was soon overtaken with a beautiful smile as she whirled the oil mixture to a light trace, a very thin pudding consistency, in a matter of seconds.
After an hour of long pauses with translating back and forth, we had found our soapy rhythm and we were two soapy peas in a pod for the next few hours. Ivie created her desired beer soap with great success and a BONUS log of coffee soap with freshly brewed espresso. Something else her future Hipster Customers may like. And I have a standing invitation to visit Ivie in Taiwan at her production facility. Road Trip anyone?
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Until next time… Wander.Explore.Create.Enjoy. ~Theresa