For the past eight months I've been working on a big master plan: to launch new products, scale up production capacity, and launch a campaign to larger wholesale buyers. It's a lot to do at once - but I'm always up for challenges like this.
With new soap production going strong (what once took 10 hours now takes about 30 minutes), and 3 new product lines, I'm closer than ever.
The label redesign though...has been really tough. The toughest part of it all. But thankfully, after months of toying with ideas, I had a fantastic chance meeting that I wanted to share with you.
I met Santa Ana/Long Beach artist and instructor Robert Brown through an Orange County Academy of Handmade Artists and Supporters event at The Build Shop 3D makers' studio earlier this summer. In addition to managing the Build Shop, Rob is a member at Mutual Aid Gallery in downtown Santa Ana's Santora Building, Ghostwaves project co-producer, and a longtime fine arts instructor.
Our collaborative process has been calm and thoughtful, easy, and overall a joy for me, with meetings always lasting long after my meter expired (oops!), lots of good conversation, and a compelling final look that I love.
Rob and I started out with a visit to his studio - I initially wanted to meet with him to talk about a RISO print sign series - but it quickly expanded far beyond that to a space of broader, more thoughtful conceptual intention (that I suspect stems from Rob's background in teaching and guidance).
We started simply - with no expectations or assumptions - by learning about each other's work. He asked questions about my business and products and visited my soap studio, and I learned about his work, and we often just got rolling, getting off-topic on our thoughts about the world.
I created an inspiration portfolio and sent it to Rob, and he brainstormed amazing concepts exploring the changing shape of a bar of soap.
His concepts have evolved into the new line of labels I will be sending to print soon. I found an amazing eco-friendly tree-free paper to use on my bar soaps, and am so excited to unveil it all soon!