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Etta + Billie, tasty smelling soap

I am a small town girl who loooves the big city. I started making soap about 5 years ago after telling my mom I needed a hobby and receiving a soap making book in my Christmas stocking (thanks Mom). Since then, I just made batch after batch and realized that I loved creating usable naturally scented art. So, I officially started Etta + Billie a little over a year ago so that I can provide lovely handmade 100% natural bath a body products that look and smell great. When I am not furiously making soap and products, I love to cook and read and if I have time try to watch the Wire season 3. I desperately want a dog but must resign myself to fish for the time being. I like to collect 80s prom dresses and other 80s clothes (and started way before the 80s got trendy). I am currently working on be a good blogger, eating seasonally and making conscious choices in my life.

What inspired you to go into the craft business, do you still have a day job? What pushed me to start crafting was a frustration with my day job and feeling like I was never creating anything useful or beautiful. My mom was also super crafty when I was young, she went through many hobbies including sewing, stained glass, weaving, macramĂ©, paper making, pottery, and the list goes on. I didn’t catch my Mom’s craft obsession until a few years ago, but it feels great to have found something I am passionate about. I do still have a day job and am thankful for the insurance and regular paycheck but am counting down the days till I can soap full time.

Describe your creative process when designing/making your product line. I dont have a set process in place for coming up with ideas, I get these flashes of inspiration and make sure to write them down. Sometimes it comes from cookbooks or cooking shows, sometimes while I am taking walks and sometimes it just happens while I am on the bus. I go through my ideas and figure out which ones are worth testing. From there I mix up a scent an use perfume strips to test it making sure to note how I like the scent after I initially create it and in a couple of days. Then I will make a “test batch” of whatever I am working on, giving it to family and friends for feedback. I keep tweaking it until I love it!

What’s the best thing about what you do? And the worst? The best thing is coming up with scents and products that people absolutely love and creating them in the most sustainable way possible. It gives me a warm fuzzy feeling :). The worst part is cleaning up – I hate washing dishes!

What’s the best advice you have been given about your business or craft practices? The best advice I have been given is to not let fear or doubt stop me from doing the things I need to do to make my business work.

Anything else you would like to tell us about your business? I am really excited about some new products that I will be launching in the next couple of months – one of which will debut at the Maker Faire!!


One Response

  1. Avatar vanessa says:

    AWESOME!!! I am going to try to make the faire!
    much love!

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