"How the heck do you come up with the names for your soaps?" is a question that I hear all the time. I smile outwardly but more inwardly. You have no idea how my memories come flooding back as you visit my table and read the names out loud. There is a memory, a feeling or a story attached to every one of my soap names. The names are based off of my life, my memories, experiences and I hope to spark a few memorable moments for you as well.
Some of my names come from my childhood memories. For example Fall River,
or Falls River to be politically correct, is a river that runs through the country in which I was raised. The river, I swear is part of my identity. I was raised just on the edge of it. It taught me respect for mother nature when a cow stepped out on the ice and was lost and when it took our faithful companion, our German Shepard, for she was to old to swim the spring run off. It is impressive and it's a sight to see but it also something that you respect. It also taught me that beauty is something to hang on to. The seasons changed along with the river.
In the spring it ran high and dirty, in the summer slow and steady, in the fall swift and calming and the winter it was rushing against the ice. It was the beauty that always astonished me and made me realize what a wonderful thing nature is but to also not to take it for granted. Anything that can do that can certainly inspire a name.
The second place that the names come from are the places that my children will remember. For example Fleck Summit.
Over Fleck is one of our favorite places that we take the boys. We try to go several times a year and the memories are forever building. We want to have the memories continue on and grow. A dream we have is that we might own a small piece of paradise over the summit some day. We watch the kids grow and maybe someday we will watch the grand kids play, we'll see. I want to remember those memories and look forward to the ones to come. The soap is one of my favorites so I am always loving it when I work with it and look forward to the next time. A soap holds a name that inspires both the past and the future.
My inspiration continues from the people that surround me. I may design a soap around something that I admire about a person or something they do and I try to put my gratitude into the name. Prime example being "Mom's Garden". My mother-in-law is a wonderful gardener. She makes me mad when I don't see one stinking weed in her flower gardens.
She can raise some spectacular Lavender plants. So why not name the lavender soap in honor of this. She has taught me everything that I know about lavender so the name will hopefully let her know that I love everything she has given to me and our family and my admiration of her lavender plants even though she will give me some and I kill them.
The fourth place that I find names is events, stories and happening when the soap is created or around. Simple things as "Easter egg" (can you guess when that was made) and New Growth for the new growth that was happening around me the spring I made that soap. The names might hold some special meaning for me such as inspiration, hope, love or joy that I may only understand. Then again they may hold something a simple as a funny story such as "French Whore House". Many people love the name and get the soap based simply off the name or are a little embarrassed to be actually be reading a name like that. But if you know the story it will normally put a smile on your face. The story goes like this: I make 80 bars of Lemongrass Mint annually for my husband to give to his clients at Christmas time. He is a veterinarian for those of you that don't know.
He works on cows primarily so he works with some of the hardest working, dirtest, and down to earth people that you will meet. Well one year he had his eighty bars in his truck, slowly passing them out to each ranch that he visited. He finished up a call and told the rancher "come to my truck with me for I have a Christmas present for you". So they are at the truck, he opens the door and the Lemon Grass mint scent come wafting out full force. The rancher gets a funny look on his face and asks "Doc, why does your truck smell like a french whore house?!" My husband just smiles and turns to him handing him a couple of bars and asks "how do you know what a french whore house smells like?" I couldn't help but laugh when he repeated the story and at that point my lemon grass mint officially got named "French Whore House".
A name can be everything. Calloused Hands Bounty is something that has meaning for me and I hope that it shows the love I have for agriculture. The hard work that happens daily to help feed us, cloth us and keep us comfortable. Everyone of the people that works their butts off to thrive in agriculture, support agriculture or simply plant a garden to feed their families deserves a thank you. In a small way I hope that this little soaping company of mine does that. Farmers, Ranchers, and home gardeners (and everyone that works to support those people) have calloused hands but in the end the reward is the bounty.
Again it's all in the name.