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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

My 'Original' Rant

Posted in Knit & Crochet , on April 20, 2009 ,
So as I mentioned recently, I’ve put my Cthulhu toque pattern up for sale. Pattern sales seem to be better than the actual completed item, which is ok by me because it gives me more time to work on other things instead of making a lot of crochet Cthulhu toques to have available on hand. I was able to get into the recent batch of those activated to sell patterns on Ravelry, so I of course put the pattern up for sale there. I noticed the very next morning that there was a blog post attached to the pattern so I went to check it out:
“I read the description of this pattern original cthulhu toque and tried to decide whether I should be offended. Not at the ACTUAL pattern because it’s very cute but because it’s incorrect and I published a crocheted cthulhu beard hat (or toque if you will) back in december. I think I’m not going to worry too much, but at the same time I was irked because I had that original idea long before. sigh”
Truth be told, I’M a little offended by her post. Mostly because my crochet design IS original, and it IS the first of its kind. The concept of mixing Cthulhu with headgear is NOT new, nor was she the first to think of it, as there have been many forms of various Cthulhu headgear created long before her. When I had the idea for my crochet Cthulhu toque, I did a lot of searching — both on Ravelry and googling — to ensure that it was an original idea. I’ve seen several Cthulhu toques, but none were like mine. I’ve seen fleece toques with tentacles that hang down (Sewn, though, not crochet) and I’ve seen both knitted and crochet toques that have the image of Cthulhu’s head outline done in a pattern that repeats around the hat like a band, chart style… but nothing crocheted as just a true toque with eyes, wings and the tentacles that hang down on top of the head like my design. I even saw the pattern in question that the person above is referring to of their design — but again, her design is not the same as mine. She created a bearded facemask… not a ‘toque.’  Her crochet design is a facemask that has tentacles hanging down like a beard, which transforms the wearer into Cthulhu.  My crochet toque design is a beanie style hat (not a facemask) and the tentacles I used are not like the bearded facemask design at all… not in how they are designed and not in the way they are positioned within the scope of the garment. The tentacles of my toque design are on top of the head along with eyes and wings, so the toque itself creates a little Cthulhu creature sitting on top of your head… which does not transform you into Cthulhu himself when worn and does not make the wearer sport a beard of tentacles. To me, there is a huge difference between a toque and a full facemask. The designs are NOT the same functionally nor aesthetically, and so her post makes me mad, as her comment “I had that original idea long before. sigh”  is completely irrelevant — she did NOT have/make the same idea as me.  The definition of ‘original’ is as follows:
new; fresh; inventive; novel: created, undertaken, or presented for the first time: capable of or given to thinking or acting in an independent, creative, or individual manner: a person whose ways of thinking or acting are original.
While I understand that the concept of creating Cthulhu headgear in general is not my (nor her) original idea, my particular crochet design IS original, as there are no other crochet designs out there like it. Because there are no other designs out there like it yet, that makes my design original in the sense that it is the first of its kind. This person’s crochet design of a tentacled bearded facemask is original, just as my design of a crochet beanie that creates a Cthulhu creature on top of your head is original. I could understand her frustration if I had created a crochet bearded facemask like hers and tried to pass it off as the original of its design… since she clearly created the crochet bearded facemask before me. But we’re talking about completely different headgear here that creates a very different aesthetic and functional result.
*grumble* Just had to vent.