Musings Over Bar Size, Etc

Older Label

We spent quite a bit of time yesterday, working on our cigar-band labels, cutting our recent magenta-lavender soap back to size after we glopped rebatched soap on top, and updating the website.

Our labels have evolved over time from adhesive stick-on labels to cigar-band labels that encircled the bar, but the printing was perpendicular to the width of the bar. However, the latter method nearly completely obliterated any view of the bar, which was disappointing when we made a pretty soap.

Somewhere I saw where someone had their soap on shelves and I noticed their cigar-band labels were very small, encircling only the very bottom of the bar, and with the printing parallel with the width of the bar.

New Label

I started making our labels like that, which left most of the bar exposed for viewing. Last night, I made them even smaller.

Frankenstein Bar

We also cut the tops off the magenta-lavender soap. We’d glopped leftover lavender soap on top of the existing bars, but the mistake we made was doing it after we’d already cut the loaf. It was impossible cut through the added soap and match it up with the cuts we’d already made. The result was ugly, misshapen bars straight out of Frankenstein’s laboratory.

Revised Lavender

The basic bar with the top cut off looks much nicer.

I work with the website, while she works more with finessing the soap once it’s out of the mold. However, last night she went to the website and helped me delete a lot of stuff that was outdated, soap we don’t even have in inventory anymore, and a bunch of paracord and crocheted items. Also deleted all the lip balm since it’s getting pretty old, but still retains its scent and vitality.

Making handmade soap is quite an experience. It’s really an art, and like artsy stuff, it isn’t cheap to make. However, most people probably don’t think it makes any sense to pay $5-$7 for a bar of soap when they can get a dozen bars of something labeled “soap” at WalMart for $2.50. (I haven’t priced it, just guessing. And, of course, it’s not “real” soap.)

We’re not good at marketing and very seldom sell soap via the website. We’ve had several friends who bought once and then never returned. Just can’t justify spending that kind of money, I guess. We’ve also tried selling on ebay, but that was a flop, too. Sold soap there once and gave up. Maybe need to try Etsy.

We sell the most soap at the local senior center here in town, where they feature crafts made by seniors. I have no idea who buys our soap; maybe tourists passing through. Trouble is, they take a 25 percent or more cut, but I guess that’s better than selling nothing.

One idea I’ve been tossing around is cutting our bars in half and selling them for $2.50-$3. I wonder if people would be more willing to part with that kind of change rather than forking out $5-$8 for a bigger bar? People have paid $7 for our soap at the senior center, however.