Hello! My name is Yahira Tiare, soap making enthusiast and now, writer and creator of the digital magazine "Las Jevas del Jabón" (The Soap Gals).
This little project was inspired by all of you soap makers/artisans and your amazing creations. I started my soap making adventure almost 7 years ago while living in Germany (army wife) and my first stop was the Soap Making group on facebook. I LOVED it and learned almost everything I know today thanks to everyone willing to share their good and bad experiences in the group.
In 2015 my family and I moved back to Puerto Rico so my son (now 5) could be raised with all of our family. To my surprise, there was no group similar to Soap Making (not even close) in spanish, I spent hours looking on facebook for a high quality and educational group and found none.
Most of the soap makers I know were a little intimidated by the creations of seasoned soap makers on the groups and never felt comfortable asking questions or sharing their work. So I decided to create my own study group where they not only felt comfortable but also got the best educational study material available for free online.
We study and share the works of soap makers like Sorcery Soaps, Modern Soap Making, Brambleberry, The Ultimate Guide Series, and many other experienced and talented soap MASTERS. With the group came monthly challenges where we choose a theme, ingredient or color and everyone makes a soap inspired on it. These challenges are helping a lot of new (and experienced) soap makers to get out of their comfort zone and explore new techniques.
I wanted to share their work, progress and talents with everyone I knew, this guided me directly to writing the first digital magazine for soap makers in Puerto Rico. The magazine focuses on soap science, techniques, the monthly challenge and local artisans; not just soap makers but also clay artist, jewelers, painters, etc. I felt the need to give my readers and fellow soap makers amazing interviews with the people they look up to on YouTube, blogs and such...
I have to admit I was afraid to press "send" to Bee Iyata's inbox, I've followed Bee's work since I joined Soap Making 6 years ago and she has inspired hundreds and thousands of soap makers all over the world with her unique creations. I almost fainted (for real) when she replied and accepted to do this mini interview with me, a local soap maker from Mayagüez, Puerto Rico! But enough of me, let's read and know a bit more about a REAL soap witch, Bee Iyata from Sorcery Soaps.
Q: What is Sorcery Soap to you?
A: Such a great question! There was a moment when I first created soap and it worked in the shower… I created bubbles and it cleaned my skin in a lovely way. I knew it was sorcery, because there was a leaving off point where I didn’t have control over the process. I followed the recipe, put it on the shelf and in a few days, there was soap. I think anything that inspires someone is magical and using the word “Sorcery” is a way of explaining that magic.
Q:What inspires your amazing designs?
A: Everything! I get inspired by hiking, archery, browsing Pinterest, cake makers, cookie makers, colors, micas, fragrances… I look for inspiration. I seek it out. I was inspired by a candle once and that led into the bell, the book and then candle soap. I also watched the movie again. It’s about a witch, who doesn’t want to be discovered, so I felt a kinship.
Q: I know that choosing a favorite soap is like choosing a favorite child but, do you have a favorite soap, technique or design?
A: The one favorite soap that sticks in my mind is the Sea Turtle soap, which is on the cover of The Magic of Soap Dough book. One of the reasons its my favorite is because I was in the moment. I wondered if I could make a reasonable turtle and one thing lead to another and I created the undersea coral reef with the turtle. That all happened before I had my first cup of coffee.
Q: How does it feel to work with so many talented makers/creators?
A: I’m inspired constantly by the new soap dough designs showing up. I’m so delighted to see the new soap dough artists coming to the foreground. Now soap dough is a thing! There are some crazy talented soap makers in our community and it’s only getting better. We’re just at the beginning of our soap dough art.
Q: Do you have any advice for people entering the soap dough realm?
A: Use a reliable recipe, one that another soap dough artist stands by. That will save a lot of headaches. Also, smooth all soap blemishes and crumbs with water, to get a smoother look. Most of all be patient with yourself. I make 5 embellishments as practice for every one I share. I give myself practice time when I start any new idea. This is critical to work out how to assemble and how to design. Things are rarely perfect the first time… At least not in my world. Also, read as much as you can about soap dough. Follow those who create things you love, since they are the ones you’ll want to learn from.
Everyone loves the freedom of working with soap dough, it gives you the opportunity to create amazing and unique designs.
Here are some soaps created by "Las Jevas del Jabón" :
Yahira Tiare- Dehoja:
Leslie Ann Lozada: Lolas' Soap Shop
Desireé Velazquez- Lila Suds
Joan Figueroa - Soaptique by Joan:
Arelis Velazquez- Divad Naturals:
Tamara Rios - Soaplicious
Enjoy a special free download with an exclusive interview with Ashley Green, author of The Ultimate Guide to Hot Process, Liquid and Cold Process Soaps book series. Take a peek at the "Shop Local" sesesion where we share our favorite artisans from Puerto Rico.
*Our magazine is in SPANISH but both interviews (Sorcery Soaps and UG2HP) are in english.
First Issue: October, full in SPANISH
Second Issue (free download companion) : December, SPANISH
Free Download: Spanish with special interviews in english.