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Introducing Soapstone GEEKSOAP!

Posted in Soapmaking , on July 2, 2010 ,

Ahhhhh… I’m back in Indiana after a 10 day hiatus to Canada with a little time spent in Seattle, WA along the way. Lucas and I had a fantastic time and spent our anniversary in a beautiful bed and breakfast on the ocean near Victoria, BC on Vancouver Island to kick off our Canada Summer 2010 Tour. After a few days of relaxing we headed over to stay with family in Vancouver and see the city, followed by a pass through Chilliwack and on to the wonderful Penticton, BC, where Lucas grew up. We enjoyed some beach time and got to see family and friends there, too. We flew in and out of Seattle, WA, so we made sure to head back to Seattle a day and a half before our flight so that we could experience all of the fun that downtown and the waterfront had to offer. We seriously could’ve used another couple days there. What a great time!

Of course, being gone for 10 days meant I had a huge backlog of orders waiting for my personal attention when I returned, and I truly appreciate everyone for being so understanding with me being out of the country and all! I’ve gotten back on schedule right away, and I’m working on your orders as quickly as I can. :) And getting right back into the swing of prepping for Gen Con. Can you believe it’s just over a month away! Still lots of soapy goodness to work on, but there is a light at the end of the tunnel!

So… let’s introduce my newest soap already. (It’s like I can read your mind, right?) *drum roll* … Introducing the Soapstone! Some backstory first, k? I have had a very lengthy relationship with WoW, dating back to January 2005. (I tried EQ2 in Nov 2004 first… you can see how long that lasted since I had moved on by January.) Besides just plain playing, I’ve been featured twice on the official World of Warcraft website front page, and for over 2 years I wrote for Mentor Media/38 Studios as a paid staff writer and then editor with the Azeroth Advisor. I had a brief stint with WoWHead but was too busy to keep up and had taken a break from the game for a bit. I’ve taken breaks off and on in the more than 5 years I’ve played, but Azeroth always calls me back… and my most recent return brings the Soapstone along with it. Lucky you!

The concept of this soap design in particular is nothing new – I’ve always been inspired by ManaPrincess/Amethyst Soap and their hearthstone designs, but for the longest time I kept telling my customers I’d not make one because it had “already been done before.” I take great pride in the fact that ALL of my previous soap designs are unique and original – not only in the construction of how I do some of my signature soap, but before me there was no such thing as Dr. Who soap, or Game Cartridge soap. Or D20 Soap on a Rope, or Cthulhu soap… just to give a few of the many examples. Then it was brought to my attention that these crafty people were no longer creating and/or selling their hearthstone soap. That’s when I approached the previous makers because I wanted to create my own vision that depicted what *I* thought a hunk of carved stone would look and smell like. This means I’m not competing with either person’s sales or trying to take any of the credit for their idea. Special thanks to Margaret of Amethyst Soap – she has been a completely amazing person to work with as I designed my own unique handcarved version. Her support meant a lot in my quest to capture the essence of “home” in a bar of soap.  Thankfully I completed the quest successfully, and was rewarded with an epic shower and smelling great. Yes!

Anyway, even though I’m busy busy busy I couldn’t resist unveiling something new. I love it. :) There’s more new stuff coming very soon – my Baththulhu Cthulhu Bath Mitt (which will make the fourth of my original Cthulhu designs!) comes out Monday and is part of a giveaway over at Cthulhu Chick plus I have at least 2 other completely new and original soap designs you won’t find anywhere else headed your way in the coming weeks. Once I work out the kinks with them and get around to casting molds hehe. :)

OH! And before I forget… I’ve been tweeting about it, but want to make sure I cover it wherever I can… my Ninja Turtle GEEKSOAP Guest Soap set is ready to be released, but instead of just releasing it per usual, I’ve given my friend Tommy over at @SaturdayMorning (Saturday Morning Central) the very first set to give away in a fun TMNT contest they’re hosting! So not only do I have the new Soapstone out and 2 new soaps announced on the way, I am also finally debuting the Ninja Turtle soap via contest! Once the winner has received their set from Saturday Morning Central’s contest, I’ll release the soap in my store so it can finally be made available to the masses. :) Get over there and enter the contest already, you know you want to!

Thanks for all of your love and support! It’s people like YOU and the awesome comments and stories you send my way that keep inspiring me to make more and be the best that I can be for you, the customer. Thanks! <3


GEEKSOAP News & Support UberDork Cafe!

Posted in Knit & Crochet, Miscellaneous , on June 15, 2010 ,

Hey readers!

I just wanted to give you a head’s up – GEEKSOAP will be on vacation from June 19 – June 29. Check out the On Vacation page of my store for more information. Basically the store will stay open, just be aware that my house sitter cannot make soap, so I won’t be able to begin work on your order until I return on June 30. :) I will then begin processing orders in the order they were received in my absence, and I promise to get your order out to you ASAP! Thanks for understanding :)

So what’s the vacation for? Well, Lucas and I’s anniversary is coming up on Sunday, and it’s our tradition to stay in a bed and breakfast on the ocean over our anniversary. Last summer we did Nova Scotia and I still daydream of the place we stayed at. I think the sound of the waves crashing up through the open patio door all night is the most relaxing thing ever! This year we’re going to Vancouver, which is a good choice since it means we get to stay on the ocean (we’re actually going out to Victora on Vancouver Island for 2 nights at a bed and breakfast there) and also head inland a little bit to visit friends and family. I’ve not yet been to Vancouver, so I’m excited about exploring after our getaway on the island. We’ll visit Lucas’ uncles and Matt and Laresha (brother and sister-in-law) and then head even further inland to spend some time in Penticton, where Lucas grew up, to visit his parents and some more friends. I can’t wait! I’m working extra hard this week in the GEEKSOAP soap studio to prepare; not only am I working on orders daily, I’m also still prepping for Gen Con in August! Whew!

When I return you can expect some new goodies, too! I’ve got 2-3 new soaps coming PLUS a rumored 3D Dalek soap from Dr. Who…. that won’t be ready immediately when I return, but it’s in the works! ALSO, the awesome Cthulhu bath mitt I designed and crocheted will also be made available. I will be calling it the Baththulhu Cthulhu Bath Mitt, and it’s extra cute! Currently I have a mens and womens’ size as well as being able to make it in a lefty-friendly design. It’s 100% original and made from super soft 100% cotton; perfect for getting clean with my Cthulhu GEEKSOAP! The Baththulhu mitt will be my FOURTH original Cthulhu design since 2009… first it was the Cthulhu toque (and a baby toque that came out last year), then it was my Sock-thulhu Cthulhu plushie in late 2009, then my Cthulhu soap came out in January 2010 and the Baththulhu mitt will be out July 2010! Exciting!

So July will bring some new soap and some new items for GEEKSOAP with the Baththulhu Cthulhu Bath Mitt! I will most likely be having my Cthulhu toques and Sock-thulhu plush added to my product listings at GEEKSOAP in the near future, even though they aren’t soap related… they’re still geek related and complete the set with my awesome, original Cthulhu soap. I want to prepare ahead of time because the Cthulhu toques get popular in the fall and winter months so I need to get started on some stock! I’d also like to take a few to Gen Con if I manage to get the time. Some bath mitts will for sure be going, but I may not have time to make very many toques or Sock-thulhus. (Speaking of which… I need to find a good wholesale supplier of various colored chenille socks… lol)

So that’s the news for where GEEKSOAP is right now, and what you can expect to see from me soon! Now I need to turn your attention to something incredibly awesome… my friend Natali (AKA @UberDorkGirlie) is amazing. She has this dream of a super fantastic geeky cafe that she calls Uber Dork Cafe – a family-friendly place where art and science and geek come together to provide patrons with a completely fantastic cafe experience – and she needs your help! Uber Dork Cafe was granted a pledge page at Kickstarter, where you can help pledge your support to various ideas and creations by all kinds of people and their dreams. Please go check out Uber Dork Cafe and pledge any amount that you can to help Natali fulfill her dream!

More ways to support UberDork Cafe: Head on over to the Facebook page and follow @UberDorkCafe on Twitter!

That’s it for today – I’ll see you back here after I get home from vacation with an update on the crafts I’ll be taking with me on the plane (Lots of Baththulhus will be made for sure!) and to announce new soap and finally release the bath mitts! Thanks for stopping by *hearts* <3


Introducing… G33Kmade!

Posted in Featured , on May 19, 2010 ,

Wow. A lot has happened since my last post and there’s so much awesomeness and good stuff that it’s a little overwhelming.

Brace yourself.

Awhile ago, @KyleeLane and I had a vision. A dream. A great-minds-think-alike idea that we’ve set in motion to become something completely amazing. As geeky crafters, we were dreaming of a place where other geeky crafters could come together and be promoted and shared with the world. We wanted to showcase the crafty inspirations, history, and all of the things that go into creating something original by hand. A celebration of geeky craftiness and handmade for the greater geeky good. And G33Kmade was born.

What is G33Kmade? Well, without gushing too much, it’s a company. A community. A network. Even though Kylee and I are soapers, it’s not just about soap, we just happen to both make soap. G33Kmade showcases craft geekery and promotes it; pulling all of the epic geeky goodness together in one place so you can easily find whatever flavor of geek you’re looking for. Our thought on the matter is this:

Geek stuff because geek stuff is “cool” is merely demographically targeted marketing (e.g. “punk” after the 1980s), whereas *true* geeks want the people making the stuff to be as obsessed as they are about time travel, software libraries, or medieval Germanic Lit, or whatever. Once you compare even mediocre handmade things with mass produced, handmade always wins.

What’s exciting about G33Kmade is the potential to connect with so many other geeky crafters in one place. A community feeling. Imagine the huge HUGE amount of inspiration and coolness at your fingertips? Let’s say you’re a geeky crafter. You contribute by submitting yourself/your craft via our [Contact] page. We receive the submission and check it out and potentially get back to you for more info. We do a write up to post on G33Kmade and promote you – you’re featured on the front page, we spread the love on various social media outlets, and we help make sure that the world is made aware of how completely and totally awesome you are. GEEKS FTW!  Not only will the feature be great, but through G33Kmade you’ll have all kinds of access to other geeky crafters; you’ll be able to browse tutorials and get inspired by fellow crafy folk that think like you and enjoy some of the same things you do and put that love into their work just like you. But G33Kmade needs YOU to grow – to become this great, huge resource we need contributions and submissions from you. Check out our [Contact] page for more details. We want to hear from you, we really do! :)

But what if you’re not crafty? How will G33Kmade benefit you, you ask? Simple. Use G33Kmade to browse artists or crafts that you may not have otherwise stumbled upon on. Looking for the perfect geeky gift? Handmade is always better, and you’ll be able to sort through just about everything under the sun with a geek theme to fit any occasion or satisfy anyone’s geek tastes.

So it’s a positive thing for everyone involved, and that’s the major underlying feel: positivity! Spreading the love of geeky crafts and promoting artists and handmade. Sharing ideas, how-tos, projects, and inspiration. Providing a place to showcase all of this awesomeness together. If you’re a geek, you’ll love G33Kmade whether you make things or not, because seeing what others are doing out there and why is hugely fun and interesting. Did I mention inspiring?

See, now I’m gushing. I’m really passionate about G33Kmade and all it stands for. THIS is the way it’s supposed to be. It’s not about competition, it’s about supporting each others’ passions. I’m really excited to have found someone who holds the same values about handmade art, to spread the love instead of negativity, and roll all of that positive energy up into something that benefits everyone… and that’s Kylee. Even more fun and exciting is that G33Kmade will have an Exhibitor’s booth at Gen Con in Indianapolis this August to sell some handmade geek at the biggest 4 days in gaming. We’re also planning a G33Kmade Gen Con Tweet Up to accompany that – more info about that will be announced over at G33Kmade in the coming weeks.

So there’s LOTS going on around here. Besides all of this good stuff I’ve got orders up to my eyes and some really fun other crafty projects in progress. You should SEE this awesome custom order I just completed of Handheld Game Cartridge GEEKSOAP bars as wedding favors! Whew :) I have a week left of this school year, and then the summer off to focus hard on G33Kmade, prepping for Gen Con, and selling more and more GEEKSOAP! Next month is Lucas and I’s anniversary, and in keeping with the tradition, we’ll be staying in a bed & breakfast on the ocean… this time on the west coast in Vancouver, BC. We’re looking forward to a trip back to Canada and will be able to see a lot of Karpiuk family while we’re out that way. Score!

More soon – take care, and be sure to get on over and check out G33Kmade… keeping in mind it’s kinda in a “beta” mode as we roll things out, but at least you can get started and see where we’re going with it! :)


GEEKSOAP Sends a Geeky Message of Love

Posted in Featured, Soapmaking , on April 28, 2010 ,

geek loveWho knew gaming could be so romantic? This story and custom order truly melted my heart. So geeky. So romantic. With the customer’s permission, I just had to share.

I enjoy doing gift sets and custom requests for orders, especially when the end result is being shipped to a friend or loved one. I take great pride in knowing that someone feels my handcrafted soap is worthy of a special gift for a special someone in their life. I really enjoy adding little handwritten personalized notes from the customer to gift orders and imagining the look on the recipient’s face when they open the box and see my soap. This week, I received an interesting custom order inquiry that would put a bar of my geeky soap in the middle of a budding romance between customer, Chris, and his girlfriend, Jordan.

Chris writes,
“I recently asked a girl out by inviting her over to play Bomberman 64 (she accepted!  that’s a keeper), and I think it would be funny to gift her with a bar of soap bearing that label.”

Super squee, right?! I found Chris’ request for a special bar of soap to represent how he asked his girlfriend out as a token of love hopelessly and completely romantic. How could I *not* complete this amazing request? (And seriously? Bomberman64? Awesome.) But that wasn’t all… Chris had a side-quest for me; he also wanted a sweet little personalization carved into the top of the cartridge to send a note to Jordan. (à la carving your name into a cartridge so you knew who it belonged to.) And a <3 heart emoticon soap to complete the package.

This was such a fun order of truly epic proportions, and it gives me warm fuzzies to know that my soap is going to be used to express some geeky love. I know that handmade gifts like this are the best kind of gift, and as a gamer girl, I would melt into a puddle at someone’s feet if were to receive such an epic gift to commemorate how my significant other asked me out. (Pssst, Jordan… this one’s a keeper!)

I only wish I could witness the look on Jordan’s face when she opens the package and receives her sentimental soap inside, complete with a notecard bearing a custom message from Chris. It makes me sigh one of those big happy lovey-dovey sighs just thinking about it!

Way to be awesome, Chris, and thank you for letting me play a small part in creating a romantic gifting opportunity for your girlfriend. Best wishes to you both! <3

A word about GEEKSOAP gift orders: Doing gift orders really makes me happy. Do let me know if your GEEKSOAP order is for a gift in the notes to seller upon checkout; I’d be happy to write a personalized message on a notecard to be inlcuded with the order absolutely free of charge. If there is anything I can do to help make your geeky handmade soap gift that much more special for your special someone, please don’t hesitate to ask. I’d love to help create a perfect geeky gifting experience for you! GEEKSOAP makes great birthday, wedding, or “just because” gifts for the geek(s) in your life. Let me help! – order your geeky soap at http://www.geeksoap.net :)


Congratulations, GEEKSOAP Contest Winners!

Posted in Contests, Soapmaking , on March 25, 2010 ,

Special congratulations today to the two winners of free GEEKSOAP geek soap! As described in the previous post, we here at GEEKSOAP were giving away some free bars of our geeky soap to two lucky winners: one at random chosen from both the ContestMachine entry form and the Twitter entries.

And the winners are……

Entry Form: Susan Francis
Twitter: Mathew_Ladd

Congratulations to both winners! Confirmation emails (and tweets) were sent out to both parties requesting their mailing information and which bar of geeky soap they would like from any of my designs. Please check the Portfolio for the complete list, or my shop at http://www.geeksoap.net. If the bar you chose isn’t clear, you can also select a custom soap color to use. Please email your address and GEEKSOAP choice to Lesley (at) ThePinkToque (dot) com ASAP! Free bars of geek soap will go out no later than Monday, March 29 (assuming both parties have replied by then.) If one or both do not respond, I’ll pick new winners after Monday.

Thanks for your participation – your entires provided some valuable insight on my stock and have given me some ideas for new GEEKSOAP designs to play with in the future. If you didn’t win this time don’t fret! I’ll have more free geek soap giveaways later :)

Stay tuned… after these messages I have an update on the latest geeky soap designs unveiled this past week and new venues where you can find GEEKSOAP locally in the upcoming months.