Hello again from @SenorCoconut,
Building a community is about clear communication and the willingness to support one another. As Homesteaders Co-op (HSCO) grows, we must keep in mind that the complexity and diversity of its moving parts may also expand, so here we are helping this free market stay running smooth together.
We found it essential for the good of everyone to highlight the vendors of the HSCO market place. Wouldn’t be nice to know the individuals and families offering their goods and services a little more?
Every week vendors are featured on the web site. As a community, we thought that every week, we should feature these vendors here on the Steem blockchain (@HomesteadersCoop) to give everyone that much more exposure.
It takes a village to raise a child, because when people help eachother life is easier for everyone involved.
Without further ado, here are a few question I’ve conjured up… let’s meet Sunscapes Soap Shop:
SenorCoconut: I’ve been going through all the products from your your soap shop on Homesteaders Coop and I have to say, it all looks so delicious and edible… One could almost smell all the fragrances through the photos! Can you tell us about your passion for making soap?
Sunscape: I love that you think the soaps look delicious, but I am sure you would rather not take a bite unless of course, you want to be reminded of having your mouth washed out with soap like when you were a child. Of course, that statement probably gives my age away. For some unknown reason, I believe parents used to think that would stop us from cussing, lol.
Now, back to your question about how my passion arose for soapmaking. I have always had a very creative spirit and a desire for making handmade items my entire life. I even traveled the art festival and crafts circuit throughout western, NY for many years selling my handcrafted items. It was about 35 years ago that I first came across handmade soaps at a festival and I was hooked right then and there. I think I spent forever at that woman’s booth smelling the wonderful aroma from every single bar. The all-natural ingredients and the variety of amazing scents did it for me. I knew then, that someday I would create my own line of soaps for everyone to enjoy. Of course, it did not happen right away, as life has a way of taking us where we have to go for a little while.
Although traveling to craft festivals is and was a very enjoyable experience, but as all things change over time, that too has narrowed to sales much closer to home. Bringing the soaps online, instead of hauling them all over the festival circuit seems so much easier to me at my age and less time consuming while being a great way to reach a larger audience too.
SenorCoconut: I am alway curious to hear about the intentions vendors may have put into their products or the desired outcome one is looking for in selling handmade product. How are you looking to connect with your customer base?
Sunscape: I feel that my “intention” is integral to the success of my soap business. I believe with my whole heart that I am bringing my customers a truly unique soap creation for them to enjoy. I won’t even go into my soap room if I am having a bit of an off day, as I do not want any of my discordant vibes affecting my products, just saying! I carefully choose the ingredients that go into each of my bars of soap. I intend that the recipes I create will be as all-natural, healthy and safe for my customers which is of the utmost importance to me. Researching the qualities of each ingredient, and how they benefit the skin and how they can work together, is a key to creating a wonderful product.
I started out thinking that I was going to focus on reaching the younger generation by creating an all-natural, vegan-friendly line of products. However, how can one not want to share a great product with everyone? 🙂 Focusing on one particular age group may be how some people would choose to market their product, but I don’t want to put myself in that kind of box and limit myself to a certain type of customer. I feel I have a line that can benefit any age group from hippie to mature and that’s how I roll.
SenorCoconut: This next one is on “carbon footprint” and our human impact on our environment. Without getting too political, can you tell us how you feel about climate change and pollution?
Sunscape: I believe each of us at some point in our life comes to the understanding that we can help to create a cleaner, healthier and safe planet to live on. I am sure that deep down in the depths of everyone’s heart there lies a spark of Divine light that carries a desire to nurture Mother Earth. You can see this everyday in posts that stream to you, watching the world news and even talking with your friends and family.
People are so much more aware today of what needs to be done to ensure that the Earth can continue to sustain the growing population. People want to help however they can to reduce the number of waste products that go into our landfills. Being mindful of how we dispose of chemical products, prescriptions that are unused, and not putting toxic liquids down the drain to eventually reach the water supply is up to us all. How else will we ever decrease the pollution levels that go into the ground, water and air. Using less wherever we can is so important for each of us to decrease our carbon footprint. How each of us does that will be as unique as the individual. We all have a part to play and I believe we are going to get extremely good at creating recyclable materials from all-natural products that will not harm the eco-system. Everyone deserves to enjoy this beautiful planet for eons to come.
I really don’t know what to say about climate change. I know many believe it is due to pollution, others believe that our weather is manipulated at times, and they are probably right. I come from the perspective that the Earth knows how to cleanse and purge itself no matter what humanity may continue to do to her. Gaia is as alive as we are and I believe that the weather cycles we are going through are a huge part of her doing just that. The Earth has been here for billions of years and like all other life on planets throughout our solar system, it too has cycles that appear and disappear throughout the ages. I feel we are experiencing one of those warming, water cycles during our lifetime. In a way, I am glad it is not the cooling water cycle where our weather gets colder and colder for longer periods of time. I do not want to have to live through an ice age thank you very much, brrrr.
SenorCoconut: I have noticed that you use all natural materials for making your products, why is this important to you?
Sunscape: I have always loved creating something with my hands. I believe I get that from my grandmother and aunt who always let me help them when they were making homemade items for their own families. They always grew their own fruit and veggies and of course there were the chickens and cows too that added to the natural way of growing up on a farm. We made the jam, canned our fruit, made butter from the cow’s cream and of course lived off the land. Back then we recycled old clothes into scraps of fabric for making quilts for the family beds. It was an era I grew up in and I am so happy to see so many young people returning to a simpler lifestyle that is self-sustaining.
Actually, I come from a long line of very talented family members who today, like myself, continue to create and inspire their children to do the same. Every day my mind imagines different ways that I can share my inspirations with others just as my family has throughout the years. That is one of the reasons I began making my own soaps as that is what one did on the farm all those years ago. I just happen to enjoy doing so with a little bit of a modern twist today.
Sunscapes soaps are mainly created using the cold process method and in small batches using traditional techniques passed down throughout the generations, but tweaked here and there with some modern day advances. Each batch of soap is made using the best essential oils, fragrances, botanicals, minerals, and organic products whenever possible. Most of the ingredients I use are purchased from trustworthy soap companies that offer sustainable, non-GMO and eco-friendly products specific to the soaping industry. This is very important to Sunscapes Soaps as I believe everything you put “on” your body is as important as what you put “into” it.
It has always been my intention to keep my product line all-natural and as organic as is possible. I grew and managed my own plant nursery for many years and it was important to me then to offer organic plants, herbs, and vegetables to my customers. It is funny how one aspect of one’s career can flow into another as life’s journey goes on. Today, I still grow my own herbs and botanicals in raised beds organically and use them in my soaps all the time. At least to me, this is very important. Being chemical free is why I wanted to start making soaps in the first place. Here I am years later merging my knowledge of the nursery business with that of handmade soapmaking.
Now, I am learning how to forage from many wonderful people here on Steemit and at Homesteaders Co-op.
This last week I made fresh, Dandelion Soap and a Healing Balm too. Then the Violets came into bloom and of course, I had to infuse them into an oil to make a balm for arthritic joints and swollen muscles. Not to mention that I even made a wonderful Violet Jelly too.
Then came the Lilacs and another jelly, this is my life! I see nature’s beautiful bounty and I ask myself how can that benefit me and others too? How could I have known that growing my own herbs and fruit when I took that fork in the road so many years ago would bring me here today? Isn’t life grand?
SenorCoconut: Lastly, let’s talk photography. That seems to be another passion of yours, could you tell us a little about your creative mind please?
Sunscape: Ahh, I see you have noticed that I love to photograph…everything! I just love life and everything that surrounds me just seems to captivate me. Using my camera, whether it is my Pentax or iPhone to capture up close that which often is overlooked, is exciting to me.
I just adore nature and really want to capture it in a way that others can enjoy it too. I think my creative juices are always flowing and never shut off. I could be knee deep in the dirt planting flowers, only to see a snail climbing up a flower stem that of course has to be photographed and shared with one of the fun challenges here on Steemit. Besides, that snail just happened to show up to remind me to take a break and enjoy that moment with him. Who could resist that?
I want to thank you for taking precious time out of your day to answer these questions, there is so much to learn from what you said… I am glad you mentioned Gaia being alive as we are. It seems a lot of people forget that. And thank you for your optimism, I guess you’re right, we are much more aware today of what needs to be done to ensure that the Earth can continue to sustain the growing population.
Your work is very inspiring, and I wish you all the best with making everything you make. Funny you mention eating soap, apparently I had a bad habbit of nibbling on it when i was little… I didn’t even have a potty mouth!
Once again, thank you @Sunscape for letting us have a peak into your life, it was a pleasure to read 😁 and keep up that optimism please, we really need it!
For those of you who would like to look at the shop at HSCO here a quick link: Sunscapes Soap Shop!
Thank you so much for reading and stay tuned for next week’s featured vendor… Same time, same place!