Central Soaper’s Workshop 2015

I can’t believe this was the LAST ONE. Central Soaper’s Workshop was founded by Kenna Cote of Modern Soapmaking three years ago, and last weekend was the third and final Workshop. (Insert sad face here!) We had an amazing line-up of speakers and presenters, with an option to attend the business track or the soapmaking track, OR there was a virtual option available as well for those who couldn’t attend in person. Everyone who was able to be there in person will have access to the virtual sessions as well – BONUS!

My part in the event was to teach some soap designs. I don’t have as many photos as I would like, but here are a couple of the soaps I made:

First soap - hanger swirl inside with Taiwan (linear) swirl on top
Hanger swirl inside with Taiwan (linear) swirl on top
The class requested a DNA/helix swirl, so of course I complied!
The class requested a DNA/helix swirl, so of course I complied! There’s a drop swirl inside.
I snagged this photo off Instagram.  realfoodfarms won the prize for the most #centralsoapers social media love!  Click the photo to check it out!
I snagged this photo off Instagram. realfoodfarms won the prize for the most #centralsoapers social media love! Click the photo to check it out!
This is the Litsea Lavender gradient soap I made on Sunday morning with lab colors from The Sage, and essential oils from Brambleberry. The colors should eventually bleed together!
This is the Litsea Lavender gradient soap I made on Sunday morning with lab colors from The Sage, and essential oils from Brambleberry. The colors should eventually bleed together!

The highlight for most of us was getting to meet the Soap Queen, Anne-Marie Faiola of Brambleberry. She demonstrated how to make beer soap and brine soap for the Soapmaking Track and gave Six Steps to Social Media Success for the Business Track. I enjoyed seeing her soap demonstration:

Anne-Marie Faiola discussing how to make a drop swirl beer soap
Anne-Marie Faiola discussing how to make a drop swirl beer soap

Brambleberry has been such a huge supporter of the Soap Challenge Club from the very beginning, so this is one of my favorite photos from the weekend (and my current Facebook profile pic):

Me, Anne-Marie and Kenna
Me, Anne-Marie and Kenna

I also got to meet Melinda Wolff-Foster of Melinda’s Naturals! She has been a member of the Challenge Club for several months and winner of the DNA/Helix swirl challenge last month! (She brought one of the soaps from that winning batch to show us – it was really cool!) Melinda discussed in her class how to formulate cold-process soap recipes for intricate designs and then demonstrated how she makes a NINE-color swirled soap. I was fortunate enough to witness her cutting the soap:

Melinda cutting her soap - and the final reveal!
Melinda cutting her soap – and the final reveal!

Majestic Mountain Sage sponsored the soap lab again this year which allowed every participant to make at least two one-pound batches of soap and practice the designs they learned.

Soapmakers at work!!
Soapmakers at work!!
Here I am with Andee and Tina from The Sage - love these gals and their endless soap knowledge!!  Grateful for their support of the Challenge Club too!
Here I am with Andee and Tina – love these gals and their endless soap knowledge!! Grateful for their support of the Challenge Club too!

On Sunday, RuthAnn Matthews of Divine Scents showed us how to make hot-process soap in the crockpot. She made it look so easy, and gave tips for keeping the soap fluid enough for designs at the end of the cook.

Ruth-Ann stirring down the soap as it cooks.
Ruth-Ann stirring down the soap as it cooks.

There were other presenters in the soapmaking track that I missed because I slipped out to sit in on a couple sessions in the business track – I wished I could have cloned myself and done both, but I’ll just have to check those out when the virtual area is ready to go! Preston Tillotson of Sudz by Studz rocked my world with his excellent information on how to use Instagram (my username is “greatcakesoap” – seriously, go find me!), and I also learned all about the 7 Deadly Sins of Wholesale from Lela Barker of Lucky Break Consulting.

I thoroughly enjoyed meeting two other Challenge Club members while I was there (hey Kelly and MaryLou!) and visiting with other soapmakers, both local and nearly local. Overall, it was an amazing event and I hope we get to do it again sometime…

Page with Comments

  1. It was wonderful to meet your famous self, too, Amy ! Seriously informative, energizing and fun the whole weekend…been brimming with ideas since ! I could hardly concentrate during a church study this weekend, because the carpet was inviting me to do a helix into it’s stripey layout …We see opportunities everywhere now, right?
    I was really motivated to come home and work on organizing my soap-lab, and my business strategy…Thanks to everyone for participating . What a wonderful weekend.
    darlinglaurie

  2. Amy, it was SO good to meet you. You have such a sweet disposition and I loved seeing how flexible you were with your soaping when the ingredients weren’t quite what you were expecting. I hope to see you at many more conventions and gatherings in the future. Thank you for all you do for the soapmaking industry with your instruction and inspiring design work. Great wrap up post too =)

  3. Hi Amy:

    It’s very nice to meet you. I love some of the soaps you guys hand-crafted here. It would be excellent to attend the central workshop for Soap Making in the future.

    The inspiration you provide to our community are highly appreciated and we also love the pictures! <3

    Carlos

  4. I’m really enjoying the virtual access – not quite the same as actually being there, but quite good – Kenna’s done a great job.

    Thanks for your photos – I hadn’t seen your gradient soap (strangely free of blue) or the 9 colour pour (I HAVE to try that!).
    LindaV´s last blog post ..Busiest season is over

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