In my previous post all about the Purple Brazillian clay from Brambleberry, I mentioned my plan to make soap for my neighbors. This is it! I used a sunshiney, gender neutral fragrance. I used the YELLOW clay for this, and it turned out gorgeous. Both layers were colored with the yellow clay, but they are different soap bases. With the bottom layer I altered my usual process- I used tea instead of water to mix the lye. I made it strong, opaque. I don't have a control, so I don't know how much the color would have been different- safe to say it would probably be lighter & more goldeny without the tea- more like the top layer. This might be a really nice color though for a pumpkin pie scent- maybe with a touch of red mica to make it a touch more orange. I just made it last night, so they won't have it for a little bit yet. I don't think they read my twitter posts, so I'm not ruining the surprise (I hope). Here it is- clay enhanced soap for my fellow neighbors showering in slippery water!
Whilst skimming through my social media this morning as is my habit, I came across the Brambleberry twitter link about how to be on the SOAP panel. I think most readers of my little corner probably don't know what that is.. & no I'm not asking you to click on anything to vote for me. Not how it works. Briefly, the SOAP panel (Soap Opinion Awesome Panel) receives a new smattering of fragrance oils to try that are as yet unnamed, incognito. I probably don't have to tell you that this is Gemini Heaven. So, yes please! Do send them to my abode that I may mix them with soap, et al.
While musing on my lunchbreak, I remembered seeing a post on the Brambleberry blog some time ago by someone who said she was on the SOAP panel, & thought, wow, how did she get to do that? And now I get to throw my hat in. I just need to blog a little about Brambleberry's stuff, easy! I went home after work & read the entry steps again. FAVORITE Brambleberry product? Oh, no. I have to pick a favorite? How in the world to do that... I've never gotten anything from Brambleberry that was less than fabulous. At least not yet.. so whatever I'm currently working on is my favorite. Oh! 💡
So my current pick for favorite Brambleberry Cool Thing is the Purple Brazilian Clay: http://www.brambleberry.com/Purple-Brazilian-Clay-P5497.aspx
Mauvey Gem Mica that was used on the top layer of the soap in the above photo can be found here: http://www.brambleberry.com/mobile/Mauvey-Gem-Mica-P3072.aspx
I purchased the Purple Brazilian Clay with the idea of using it with Lavender essential oil: http://www.brambleberry.com/Organic-Lavender-Essential-Oil-P5451.aspx & it would also be great with other "purple" smelling fragrance oils. Ideas? Ok!
Use Bordeaux fragrance oil: http://www.brambleberry.com/Bordeaux-Blend-Fragrance-Oil-P5164.aspx in your (purple Brazilian Clay colored) soap, poured into this cute Grape Leaves tray mold: http://www.brambleberry.com/Grape-Leaves-Tray-Mold-P3531.aspx
What about a Violet Swirl? http://www.brambleberry.com/Violet-Fragrance-Oil-P3889.aspx
I myself chose to lunge right into Lilac, also available at Brambleberry, choose between: http://www.brambleberry.com/Lilac-Fragrance-Oil-P3891.aspx
Of course one should always be careful to read reviews & product descriptions, there's always a chance that a fragrance oil will yellow or even brown up the overall color of the finished soap. There are all kinds of things you can do though, if so, to work it into your design.
I had read somewhere that using clay in soap helped to anchor the fragrance- this seems to be true. I found another benefit of the Purple Brazilian Clay (besides the amazing color) in my own shower! My building has well water, and it is treated somewhat with a softener. At the end of the shower, no matter how completely one rinses, one is still slippery. A touch of clay in soap alleviates that slippery feeling like magic! I'm planning on making a batch for my neighbors.
At this point I would be remiss if I didn't mention that there ARE other colors of clay you could use. So, for the cautious amongst us, Brambleberry has made a sampler pack available: http://www.brambleberry.com/Brazilian-Clay-Sampler-P5510.aspx full of lovely clay colorants.
Now I may be the proverbial snowball in hell here. I'm not a big name soaper, just a my name soaper! I don't sell much, at least not yet, and it may not be my path to be "big" in that way. I have an unrelated day job in a doctors' office, though I do think aroma is related to health & well being. I soap primarily to make my own, for fun, leaning & sharing.
My favorite thing is to try new things and share them, the good, the bad, and the ugly. I'm excited to share fantastic stuff, as well as things that may better fit the category of "proceed at your own risk". Oh, I know I'm new Brambleberry berries, but pick me! Pick me!
Love from my berry patch,,
Child of Light & Self Appointed Connoisseur of Dynamic Aromatics,
Penelope Treat, purveyor of the idea called:
Light Expressions Candles & Sundry
You won't often find food recipies here, but I have one for ya. It struck me as a good idea last week, & I tried it tonight.
Faux ice cream, no animals involved, parve. May substitute agave for honey I suppose, or unbleached cane sugar. Why unbleached? Go on the interwebs & read about what they use to make it white. And simple!
Get two or more organic bananas, chop & freeze in a bowl drizzled with a little honey & Sriracha. Easy on both the honey & Sriracha, you can always add more but you can't take it back out. Once frozen, blenderize, use the food processor, or mash by hand like I did. I don't know how well it would scoop, you may want to have small containers such as Dixie cups or little Tupperware guys ready. You could also refreeze As pops on popsicle sticks I suppose. Anyway, it's yummy! If you like Sriracha. And bananas!
Three new soaps I made since last time- the one with slight lavender marbling is Lavender Essential Oil soap. The one in the middle got it's color from olive oil, a coconut lime scent I'm calling Limey (in my head. The other one is special. :-)
I have a full time job, I do not have a store to speak of because it wouldn't be consistently stocked. I can make loaves by special order- your fave scent or one of my blends. Single bars you see here may or may not be available. As you probably know, shipping is expensive so there's that to consider.
Just a video link to a tiny review video I posted in appreciation for the fine folks at Brambleberry! Not a big deal. Mwah.
"There is a crack in everything, that's how the light gets in". - Leonard Cohen
As a Light Writer, the term indicates a mistake. Certainly, most photographers strive for control over exactly where light will place itself pertaining to both capture and final presentation. In an old school darkroom, a light leak (meaning light unaccounted for, from an unplanned source) can ruin a whole box of light sensitive material, causing each sheet to turn an even and terrible grey. It is described as "fogged" and is generally unusable. A light leak in a camera will cause a strange "hot spot" or an area of brightness that often obscures the intended image completely. In recent years though, the results of such light leaks are often appreciated, admired even. There are digital camera apps such as Hipstamatic and others that actually include a facsimile of the (originally) filmic effect. I'll leave it to sociologists, maybe anthropologists to discuss why it's happening now- I would like to read that!
Perhaps it's a natural progression of every art form, when mistakes become examined and beauty is found. Interest is stirred. Something about the Accident exposes some aspect of the ordinary as extraordinary, increasing visibility of inter-dimensionality, the former mistake becomes something of a new form in itself. A scientific attention is suddenly paid to how it happened, what can be consistently repeated and how- what are the parimeters? Again, the attempt to control. Photography, like any other religion, consists of humans trying to do their best according to their understanding and abilities. So, photographers, I ask you- Are you ok with a lens flare, or do you hate them on principle? Have you ever taken advantage of the Sabattier Effect, & if so why?
As for myself, the older I get the less I care about technical aspects for their own sake. I care about whether I like the image. There are things that it seems I must have in a photograph- I look for something in the photo to be sharp as a tack, though I'm currently examining total blur. No pure white corners, eeeeeew. I may just tolerate white edges depending on what else is going on in the frame. I have learned though to live with perceived mistakes a little longer and see if they grow on me. During current methods of artistic training, one of the things that one may learn early on is that if something that you have done artistically, or habitually bothers you there is a reason why, and that reason may be the gold at the end of the rainbow. That which you would like to discard immediately, perhaps violently, that which you wish had never happened may be the whole reason that you started the piece to begin with. Of course you won't have the answer in the middle of the painting. If you pin it up on the wall though, you may not have to work as hard to excavate it later.
When making a photograph, the "writing" aspect indicates discernment, responsibility, and (yes), exercising control culminating in the final image presented. For me, every successful photograph I make is a Light leak from the Creator that I am allowed to participate in. Whether I have made an exhaustive amount of preparations for a given image or zero (just working from accumulated training), I always feel lucky when I get a successful image. Perhaps the better term is Blessed.
I've recently been "lucky" enough, Blessed, to act as photographer for my aunt's wedding. This aunt is my father's sister, and my father is no longer on the planet in the same manner as the rest of his family, so it is all the more precious to me. My Aunt, in her mid seventies, has never been married before. I, in my mid forties, have never partnered with a special someone for more than a few months. I had not intended to be alone at my age, but aloneness, as anything else, has it's own benefits. I had intended, though, to have a small-to-large tribe of my own by now. I have come to the realization that I have been viewing my life as it is as a mistake; indeed it still feels so. The event of my aunt's wedding has been inspiring- also a dynamic reveal of inter-dimensional proportions. If one has not done what one had intended, it is experienced as a mistake. I'm coming around, as round is round, to the idea of respecting life's mistakes as much as I would respect an artistic one.