Christmas Is Here! (What?)
No you are not seeing things, I really did say Christmas is here... Tomorrow marks the first officially dubbed "Christmas Market" that we're attending! The Christmas Artisan Market at Strelley Hall takes place over this weekend (Saturday 25th, Sunday 26th, 10am - 4pm) and it's set to be a great event. There'll be lots of locally produced gifts and treats, so it's a great way to support local business, have a family day out and also get all your shopping sorted early(ish?).
This is the first of a few Christmas events that we're attending, including a fair at Lady Bay Primary School, a Christmas market at the Brewhouse and Kitchen on Trent Bridge, and an open house Christmas shopping day in West Bridgford. It will be enlightening to see how much sales increase for the festive period - we're prepared with lots of soaps but there's a worry of selling out early (not a bad problem to have). Soaps take a minimum of 4 weeks to dry out prior to use; once they're sold out, it'll now be impossible for us to restock in time for Christmas.
Recently, we were looking into new product ideas. After some consideration and research, we settled on bath bombs as the new project! Within the week and with some inspiration online, we came up with a glorious bath bomb recipe. They're chocolate orange bath bombs, with natural cocoa butter and cocoa powder which mean you can actually lay in a chocolatey tub! Using orange essential oil, the bombs smell just like a Terry's Chocolate Orange! What's more, they're packed with epsom salt and witch hazel which both soothe your muscles and the cocoa leaves your skin feeling super soft! Take a look at them below.
Now that we've settled on the recipe, the next step is to get them assessed for safety and selling ASAP! Hopefully that shouldn't take too long...
I mentioned in the previous blog entry that we were planning to scale up production with a new and high powered stick blender. I am happy to say that we're now making 40 bars of soap per batch, rather than 20, in the same amount of time! It was a smooth transition and the only difficulty comes with pouring from buckets rather than smaller jugs. There haven't been any major spillages so far, so let's hope it says that way.
Finally, I want to touch on plans for the business early next year. After having attended markets for roughly 8 months now, there will be a push towards more online advertising and wholesale. I'll still be taking the soaps to markets and events (and hopefully even bigger ones), but for the business to grow, it requires a more steady income. Markets are wonderful, but since they're mainly on weekends, it's difficult to rely on them entirely. So if you know anybody that's getting married or having other large events and would like some wonderful soaps as small gifts - let me know!