It was a brisk winter morning when we rolled up to the parking lot of Lakewood Masonic Temple, an iconic classic architectural structure built in the boom of the industrial revolution with classic Greek style, and federalist flare inside. The building has been well kept, but echos the 1920s in so many ways.
One of the oddities of the culture of the Cleveland Bazaar is that the spaces are all unassigned – and its a frenzied free for all to hold a spot to set up. The doors open with just an hour to set up, and in a frenzy people navigate into the room, and begin dropping their things, standing there and holding their ground. It is a bit challenging, but once you get past that set up I must compliment Shannon Okey for her ability to advertise and draw a strong following of patrons of handcrafted goods. We found ourselves on the center aisle, between our friends Cindy and Vinny (Blast-masters) who sell sandblasted glass ware, and a young couple that sell unique Cleveland prints, often photos and maps from archives which they copy and frame, often in very interesting vintage layouts.
There were a few familiar faces in the crowd of vendors, and a number that we did not know. All said, the variety of goods was well varied, and the steady flow of customers/shoppers was good. As always we had a lot of soap on hand, and we had some wonderful discussions about essential oils,and the choice of ingredients we put in our soap. Big buzz was the shaving soap.
We rolled out our newest shave soap – A soap for women with the scent of Lavender, hints of rosemary, and litsea cubiba. Litsea cubiba is a spice grown on bushes, and is also known as May Chang. The primary purpose for May Chang is the rich lemon essence it provides when distilled into essential oil. We are calling this shave soap Lavender Lemon. Like all other shave soaps, this is a cold processed recipe using olive, coconut and palm oil, aloe butter, and bentonite clay. The bentonite clay is the amazing ingredient does a few things to make the shaving experience more enjoyable:
- the clay creates a slippery surface on the skin, making the razor glide easier, reducing the risk of nicks.
- the clay creates a low level static electric charge, causing the hair to stand up for the razor
- the static electric charge also releases dirt and toxins from the pores of the skin – a great topical detox.
And the blend of oils allow for the soap to lather up, and generate a stable lather that can be generated either by rubbing the soap in your hands or using a shave brush in a bowl or mug.
And as a trial I rolled out solid perfume in three flavors. This is a blend of beeswax, coconut oil, and essential oil that is heated, blended, and then poured into small tins. Solid perfume is a classic way of enjoying fragrance while being able to carry it around. Our solid perfume remains solid up to 76 degrees, which is ideal for use most of the year. We recommend refrigerating it during hot summer months. The second benefit of the blend it that it melts at skin temperature, and quickly massages into the skin. We recommend applying to pulse points, such as at the inside of the wrist, behind the ears, and at temples.
This first offering is three fragrances:
- Lavender Lemon – using the same essential oil blend as our new shave soap, this solid perfume is a rich lavender that hints at rosemary, and bottom note is a bright citrus lemon brought by litsea cubiba essential oil. Relaxing, calming, refreshing.
- Spicy Pear – a blend of fresh pear fragrant oil, ginger essential oil, clove essential oil and a hint of black cherry fragrant oil. This one is bright a fruity, with a strong undertone of spice.
- Sandy Beach – Musk, gentle notes of water lily, sea spray, white tea and a hint of ginger.
Perfume is a personal thing… and it always smells slightly different on each person’s skin because of body chemistry. In spite of that, the perfume was received well… and there was great interest in trying it, smelling them, and applying them. So the booth smells exceptionally strong of lavender and pears and so did so many of the customers.
And the perfume is packaged to match the simple elegance… Simple label on the tin with a tamper proof fold over, then the entire tin wrapped in attractive scrapbook paper, and sealed with another copy of the label. 1 oz of solid perfume for $5.00 is quite a great deal.
The solid perfume was received very well, with the Spicy Pear and the Lavender Lemon selling very well…. no takers on the Sandy Beach fragrance.
Overall, the Valentine Bazaar was a lot of fun. We saw a number of our customers, and some old friends that we dont often run into because our businesses head in different directions. It was quite a good day. Thank you Cleveland Bazaar and all of the customers that visited us!