I just thought I’d share how Janelle’s Soaps and Succulents began. It was quite by accident really. It wasn’t planned, it just happened. I know this sounds quite unusual, but it’s true. Here’s the story…

I love handmade lemongrass soap, but every time I went to the local markets, I couldn’t buy any. I even asked my Mum to look when I couldn’t get up there, but still no soap. So I bought a cold process soap making kit and made my own. I shared it with my family for Christmas that year and they loved it, as did I.

My first batches kept us in soap for quite a while, but it did run out, right about the same time that I finished up in a very stressful job. I planned to make some more soap batches for us, but I had this brilliant idea…if I like handmade soap and can’t buy it, maybe there’s others in the same boat.  So I made more batches and posted on social media, and people kept asking about them.  I took them to the markets to sell on my Mum’s market stall and the locals loved them, which was amazing.

I have also always loved succulents and already had quite a few. I had a pallet sitting out the side of the house, just waiting for someone to do something with it. After about three days work, I had the pallet pulled apart (lol) and ready to make something out of it. My husband Peter, showed me how to make the first box, and from then I was on my own. I made planter boxes manually, using a handsaw, drill and hammer. It was hard work, but I enjoyed it. I filled the boxes with succulents and posted photos on Facebook. People seemed to like them and I sold my first batch.

Janelle’s Soaps and Succulents was born. Since then I have improved my soap making skills and now my tool collection includes drop saw, bench sander, reciprocating saw and nail gun. I sell mostly at the markets, and I have a couple of stockists for my gorgeous soaps. I love what I do and that’s half the battle!

Photos show my first soaps and first planter boxes.

Thanks for reading! Cheers

Janelle x

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