This is just a quick update. A major character in my current work-in-progress (which I’ll be publishing as H.O. Knight) makes all her own soap. It’s a craft that was passed down to her from her mother, who learned from her mother, who learned from her mother … you get the picture. Only I had no clue what making soap involved so I took that class I mentioned in “On Goats. And Soap.”
I arrived at the class expecting the soap-making process to be a chore, but it wasn’t. It was kind of fun – although you have to be very careful as there are hazardous chemicals involved. I learned a lot, and I left with four small lemongrass-scented bars. If “Emma” is making her own soaps, then her house must smell heavenly.
Will I make it again? Probably not. But my character won’t sound like an idiot to skilled soap makers – if one reads my book, that is. The next time I go to a fair and see a soap vendor, I’ll have a deeper respect for what goes into the end product. And I’ll definitely buy some.
If you live in Western Pennsylvania and are interested in learning how soap is made, I took one of the classes offered by Lori Chandler from Ashgrove Soaps (hint – that underline means it’s a link). Alas, the instructor probably won’t bring any goats with her. Nevertheless, she’s excellent.