Saturday, April 13, 2013

10-Dollar Gift Card Giveaway & Interview With Soap & Jewelry Maker Autumn Burgess

Got a special treat for you today. This month for my artist and shop feature, I'm interviewing Autumn. She has two shops on Etsy and Facebook, one for soaps and lips balms and lotions. Some of her soaps even look like cupcakes! It's no wonder she calls it Skin Sweets & Body Treats!

Her other shop is Jewelry Designs by Lula. Today we're going to talk a little about both and there is a giveaway (see below) for you to enter for a ten-dollar gift card for one lucky Book Babe follower to use toward anything in either shop. U.S. Residents only, please. But, first, the interview:

Tara: Soap making, jewelry making, all of it is a form of art. What drew you to these particular forms of expression?

Autumn: Well I started off making jewelry because I loved all the fashion jewelry that was going around but of course I was on a budget, so I decided to teach myself to make it on my own. I eventually started making it as gifts for others when my husband suggested I try to sell it. So that’s how I got started. From jewelry, I started to then add other items I loved to use, like lip balms, sugar scrubs, lotions and soaps. Then I learned the cold process method of soap making which is making soap from oils and lye, and that has been my true passion. Eventually I found myself with two separate business and markets, so I decided to separate the two. The fact that I loved to pamper myself but needed to find a way to do it affordably is what drew me to jewelry and soap making. 

Tara: Any other hidden talents?

Autumn: I’ve tried my hand at quite a few things over the years. I can crochet and knit in its simplest forms. I used to decorate cakes, cupcakes and cookies any chance I could and I can play the piano and one song on the guitar. I have a license in cosmetology so I can also cut hair. But I don’t do any of these things anymore!

Tara: What’s the most rewarding thing about what you do? What gives you that warm glow?

Autumn: When a product actually turns out I get pretty excited! I’ve had lots of failures while trying to learn new techniques. When I made my first batch of cold process soap and when they were finally cured and ready to use, I felt like I had invented the world! It cleaned, it bubbled, it did exactly what it was supposed to do! On the jewelry making side, I love to do custom, personalized pieces. Hearing how much a customer loved their jewelry always makes me smile.

Tara: Bestselling item?

Autumn: Definitely soap because the possibilities are endless and people always like trying something new.
Tara: Favorite scent?

Autumn: Oh my goodness, I don’t know how to pick without making all my other scents jealous, but I love anything fruity and sweet smelling. “Fruit Twist” is my favorite of this type. I also like clean scents like “Freshly Fallen” because they are great year round. 

Tara: How much of your product do you end up keeping for yourself because you just can’t send it away?

Autumn: Whenever I make a loaf of soap you have to cut the end pieces off because they aren’t very pretty. I always keep those for myself. If I’m making several batches of lotions I usually end up with a bit extra and that never goes to waste!

Tara: Is there a special story behind anything you have created? A special order?

Autumn: I just made a soap using snow. It’s great when mother nature can provide me with my ingredients at no financial cost. This spring I hope to collect enough rain to make several batches of rain soap. What could be better or more natural than using all natural ingredients!

Tara: Imagine your soap being lathered and rubbed on a hot celebrity bod...down those chiseled abs...who is it?

Autumn: Oh man, I don’t really know of any celebrities these days since most of the TV I watch is the Disney channel with my kids, but Mickey Mouse seems nice.

Take a moment to browse both shops. The pictures I posted really don't even show half of what this woman does. She has soaps that smell like pipe tobacco, lip balms that taste like pumpkin cheesecake, witty sayings on pendants...

Enter to win a gift card from me below. Please note, if the item you desire to purchase from her shop is $15 dollar, you must make the difference. I am crediting ten toward your purchase. Anything over ten dollars, including shipping fees, is up to the winner. Winners will have 48 hours to reply to my email or another winner will be chosen. Giveaway ends Monday night. U.S. residents only.

a Rafflecopter giveaway


  1. Ah, darn! Didn't see the US stipulation first time around. Oh well, tweeted, shared on FB and LinkedIn for you. Best of luck. :)

  2. I would really like to try that soap from snow. I have purchased soap from her and it is awesome stuff. I have only used the one bar up and am getting ready to open the beer soap. Thanks for sharing Tara.

  3. Great interview and giveaway. I've never tried homemade soap. :) But I would love to.