Soapmaking can be a lonely endeavor. It’s not exactly the most popular of activities. So, unless you happen to have other soapmakers who live near by, you’re usually doing it by yourself.
Until you go to the Handcrafted Soap and Cosmetics Guild Annual Conference and mingle with 325 other soapmakers! OMG, it is just a thrill to be able to discuss your passion for HOURS and see no glazed-over expressions or eyes rolling. It’s fun, validating and exciting to learn about so many soapmakers from literally all over the world. (This year’s attendees included some from Australia, China and Pakistan!)
Last weekend I was in Raleigh, North Carolina for the 2013 Conference (the fourth one that I’ve attended), and it did not disappoint. Who knew how raucous soapmakers can get? And when we weren’t giggling over double-entendres (soap is an intimate kind of thing, after all), we were comparing experiences, sharing techniques and helping each other troubleshoot problems.
I did part of that sharing when I demonstrated how to make soaps that look just like cupcakes. It was quite a production, with an overhead camera projecting what I was doing, and a microphone, and everything. I felt like Julia Child. (“Always save the giblets.”)
So of course, I am already looking forward to the next conference in Tucson, Arizona . Until then, I am going to be hanging out in our little virtual soapy world over on Facebook. Here’s a list of the various places where I hang out to chat and mingle online with other soapmakers. Come on over and join us! It will help you feel not quite so lonely…