Hello from the Koenig Farms soap shop!
Somehow after a stressful day on the farm it relaxes me to come home and whip up a batch of soap. In fact, today I was at the farm all day and then came home to cut my most recent batch of soap into bars.
Today’s soap: Johnny Charcoal, which contains fresh goat milk, tea tree oil, activated charcoal, coconut oil, olive oil… and lye of course.
Here’s a fun fact about this soap: It is named after my brother-in-law (because I let my sister name this variety) AND it takes an entire month to make this soap (Well, that fact is true of any soap I make).
I start by dissolving lye into fresh goat milk then add all the fats and oils like coconut oil and olive oil. Then once that is combined I add essential oils, herbs and clays then pour it into my soap mold that my dad made for me on the farm (Thanks, Dad). Then I cover it and let it set for 24 hours. Finally, I slice the batch into bars and let it cure (or harden) for one month.
It is actually quite the scientific process that requires more precision than I ever thought it would when I was originally contemplating beginning this soap venture.
Which brings me to my next topic: why I started making goat soap in the first place. One of the reasons was because the goat milk soap I was buying online was so expensive. I thought, I should try making this myself. Then I liked making it so much I started giving it away to my friends and family who finally convinced me to sell it.
I soon discovered that making soap helped me get through stressful or tough times in life. It was something I could think about that was fun and creative. And I share different Bible verses inside each soap label that have brought me encouragement in hopes that they may encourage someone else!
OK, time for another fun fact: I don’t actually have goats on our farm. This is the question I get asked most by my customers, which makes a lot of sense. I am a farmer and I make goat milk soap. But I always have to answer with a big fat NO. Instead I partner with other farmers in the area to make my soap creations.
I buy as many ingredients that I can from other local farmers. I buy my goat milk from another farmer just a few minutes away from our farm. And I buy my honey and beeswax for my Oatmeal Honey soap and lotion bars from another farmer with beehives. I love being able to support my neighbors! And my neighbors have supported me too!
My best customers are people in our community who stop by and pick up their soap order from my home (aka soap shop) or order online from my Etsy Shop. One of my favorite parts of the Koenig Farms soap business is how it has connected me with old and new friends in the community. You all are the best!
ELIZABETH KOENIG – HINCKLEY FARMER, THERAPIST, AND ARTISAN SOAP MAKER