Wednesday, February 27, 2013

Workshop Series: Let's Conceptualize!

As you know, I am kicking off a series of workshops at the store this Friday evening. I am really excited about this! I am also planning a series of trunk shows which will coincide with Art Nights here in Warren (more about that later). 

What I need some help with, since these are events that are designed to serve the community, is relevant topics. What are you interested in learning more about?

I would like to keep these topics under the umbrella of well-being. I don't want the concepts to be too complicated, but I would like each one to have valuable, easily applicable and tangible take-aways. Here is a list of ideas I currently have:
  • Office Chair Yoga
  • The Power of Positivity/Confronting Fear
  • Finding Your Soul Purpose/Reaching Your Potential
  • Meditation 101
  • Simple Head & Shoulder Massage Techniques
  • (Summer) Protecting Yourself from the Sun
  • Benefits of Aromatherapy
  • Re-Purposing Everyday Household Items
  • Using Non-Toxic Cosmetics
I also like the idea of having a vegetarian/vegan workshop and perhaps an evening with a medium. Once I get an idea of the types of topics people are interested in, I will contact local professionals to and book them.

I appreciate your feedback - I really want to create a powerful series that gets people jazzed!


Saturday, February 23, 2013

A Scrubby Experiment

Today, I spent a bit of time in the lab, trying something new. I don't know how successful it is going to be, as it was my first attempt. Behold, Sugar Scrub Cubes! They are, in essence, little solid sugar scrubs, perfect for a single use. The ingredients are quite simple: milled Stella Marie Soap, a bit of fragrance and sugar. There are many bath and body business owners who offer solid scrub and I've always been interested in giving it a whirl. So, my question is: what are your thoughts? Would you be tempted to use it? I think it would be a terrific way to exfoliate when you travel. And let's face it, they are awfully cute.

Thursday, February 21, 2013

Vinegar Wishes and Baking Soda Dreams: Green Cleaning 101

One of the goals I had when I opened my shop was to engage with the community. This year, I will be hosting a series of workshops in the store. I think this is a great way to connect with local people. The first workshop in the series will be conducted by my friend Olivia Lane of Olivia Cleans Green. With spring cleaning time quickly approaching, we thought the timing was perfect.
Workshop Description:
Join this workshop to learn the basics of green cleaning. You'll get tips on how to avoid potentially dangerous toxins when shopping for household cleaning products. You'll also see how to make four fabulous cleaning products!

Friday, March 1, 6-7PM

Stella Marie Soap Company, 486 Main Street, Warren, RI

The workshop is free and refreshments will be served. You can sign up via Facebook.

Instructor Olivia Lane is a former professional green apartment cleaner who shares her enthusiasm for all things creative and domestic at

Tuesday, February 12, 2013

The Importance of Exfoliation

Whew! Did we ever get a walloping of snow this weekend! It took nearly an entire day to dig out of it. I imagine it was a similar weekend for all of my fellow New Englanders. Sometimes, Mother Nature delivers a real nasty storm and the winds and cold temperatures can do a number on your skin.

One way to help keep your skin healthy during these tough months is to exfoliate regularly. By applying a small amount of body scrub to the areas of your skin that are most dry, you help gently remove the dead skin cells and make way for the process of fresh skin cell rejuvenation.

Most body scrubs contain oils that condition while sloughing away dead skin so that moisture does not escape. Our sugar and salt scrubs are formulated with olive and grapeseed oils. It is important not to dry out your skin, especially during the exfoliation process.

Stay warm, my friends!


Tuesday, February 5, 2013


The first 16 years of my professional career were spent in marketing and publishing settings. I really liked this work. I have a natural love of spreadsheets, data analysis and project planning. It definitely came in handy when I started my business. Every month, I create a business summary and it tallies income generated from the shop, craft shows, instruction, online sales, wholesale and custom orders. It also summarizes expenses like commissions, rent, payroll, utilities, credit card fees and raw materials. I like to know where I stand at all times. I am grateful for the skills I developed in my old career. But that career was super stressful. At times, I could justify the stress. Most times, though, I really couldn't. I dealt with clients who waited until the last minute to launch enormous projects and I was forced to lead a team into a needlessly aggressive production schedule. On top of that, many of the clients would ask for massive editorial and (sometimes) conceptual changes without moving deadlines out. It was during these times that I vowed to make my next career about taking stress AWAY from people. I know what it feels like to be put under the gun because someone in a high up position didn't plan well. It's frustrating.

I am now the stress reliever. I am the one who can provide an assortment of products that will relax, calm, soothe, pamper, delight. This is not to say that my job isn't without stress. I put in long hours. I hustle. I don't have a "predictable" pay check. It bounces around, depending on the time of year. But none of that matters much. I am in love with my new career. I feel like I'm actually making a positive difference in people's lives, albeit a small one.

Everyone deserves quiet time. You may curl up on the couch after a long day with a glass of wine or a hot cup of tea and good book. Or perhaps you will fill up your tub with a hot water and soak in an aromatic bath. Maybe you will light a fresh candle and give yourself a nice pedicure. Whatever your choice, I am happy to be the source of products that will help you recharge your batteries.

Front Window Update
With some help from my aunt and uncle, the pink tub on the shop floor has been lifted into the front window and it looks perfect! After Valentine's Day, the window will be getting a bit of photography.

The store is going to be re-arranged, too. Products will be grouped into displays by function. 
bath salt bar, bath bombs, bath melts
body scrubs, exfoliating soaps
body butter, massage bars, lip balm, lotion
bar soap
masks, shaving soap, facial exfoliating beads, toners and mists, eye pillows
ceramics, cutting boards, magnets, etc.
candles, sachets

We will still keep one table for seasonal items. The front window will be themed for the season, also. I am hoping to add more items to our inventory, soon, too!