Monday, September 2, 2013

Super Soapers "September 2013, Featured Artist"!!

"Featured Artist"

Tracie Blyther

Super Soapers: Tell us a little about yourself.
The Charming Frog:
The shop began in New England as a brick and mortar shop. We have continued on as a collective from the imagination of my sister, Jenny. She began as a creator of fine jewelry in stones and silver then incorporated soaps, perfumes, and lip balm.

Combined, we have many years of art under our belt and love to integrate colors and creativity into everything we do. We create our own molds and love the originality we place in every soap. We also purchase molds and try our best to craft new designs using them. From our experiences and places we have lived, this gives us the different perspectives we engage into our art. Currently we have converted a storage room into my shop at my home in Colorado Springs near Pikes Peak. Our inspiration comes from the beautiful scenery that Colorado offers us!!

As we move forward, we want to illustrate our passion of art into the products we offer. We will continue to make soaps that are artistic enough to show off in any art gallery! We are always incorporating more products and invite you to visit our shop! We welcome comments and suggestions from our customers and other shop owners! ~ Hugs, soaps, and smiles! ~The Charming Frog~

SS: How did you get started in soap making?
TCF: I started out drawing from a young age and added different types of mediums as the inspirations came to me. Creativity was encouraged by my mom and my sisters. Currently, I have begun to create the beautiful soaps you see within our shop with the encouragement from my family.
SS: Do you CP or MP, & why?
TCF: Right now my medium is melt and pour but I also make lip balms, bath bombs, salt and sugar scrubs, shaving soaps, and will be incorporating many other products. Eventually, I will add cold process into the mix.

SS: What inspires you most?
TCF: I have to say, as a part of a soaper’s group and with the communication of my customers, they both inspire me the most. Looking through pinterest, browsing through fashion magazines, and many other visual art, and other medias gets the creativity going as well.
SS: Do you consider yourself an artist?
TCF: At times I would like to think my creations are artistic. I do work with other mediums such as paint, mosaic, pyrography, ink, and clay board so I believe I am an artist at heart. My mother had much to do with encouraging us to be creative in everything we do growing up. 

SS: How has soapmaking changed your life?
TCF: Soapmaking has opened many doors and opportunities. After getting laid off from my day job, I was able to make time and become more creative. My sister was about to close her store but I wanted to continue her dream and kept the shop open. We are considered a collective and she still plans on doing more with the store in the future. I have been able to meet so many great people, learn new processes, learn new business tips, and dedicate myself in making the best soaps I know how. My hope is to open a B&M within the next two years.

SS: How would you describe your creative process?
TCF: Most soap makers know how to create the MP process but I carry it a couple steps beyond this by incorporating art into each piece. I try to create pieces unlike others I have seen. Originality and being unique are very important. I am not just in it for the money. The shop I have really means a lot to me and I love making others happy. I am so elated when I receive positive feedback and strive very hard to make sure everyone has a happy experience when purchasing with me.
SS: What do you benefit the most from other artists in your craft?
TCF: The biggest benefit I can think of is the “push” of keeping up with the many fantastic artists out there! I love learning so many tips and tricks; it inspires my creativity and encourages me to work that much harder 8)

SS: Now for a little bit of fun.
Most soap artists seem to be all about their FO's & EO's, which of course are an important part of soapmaking, & everyone knows that scent is the major trigger sensory known for people. If you could explain which, FO or EO, has triggered the biggest memory from childhood, or the most important time in your life, which would it be & why? (this is optional of course).
TCF: There are two that stand out the most for me…one is falling leaves scent that brings back so many wonderful memories of my youth in New England. I was born and raised there and would love the smell of fall…I miss that so much! The other would be cinnamon, oatmeal, and maple syrup. As a child, I can remember going over to my great grandmother’s house and she would always, without fail, have oatmeal with cinnamon, topped with maple syrup waiting for us when we would arrive. She was our Nana; I missed those days!

You can find more information on The Charming Grog soaps by visiting their Facebook page.

Their soaps are available through their Etsy shop. 
This interview was conducted & edited by Misty Raines Clapp, Super Soapers Creator & Admin.
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