The Crafty Crafter – Oakwood Soaperie’s Ceri Aitman

Posted on 09/07/2011


Recommended last week by our Crafty Crafter I couldn’t wait to see Ceri Aitman’s shop Oakwood Soaperie I’m a huge fan of handmade soaps and cosmetics and can think of nothing better than coming out of the shower or a long relaxing bath smelling and feeling glorious. Ceri’s shop did not disappoint and I would recommend anyone with the penchant for beautiful smells, bath melts and scrubs take a look.

I couldn’t wait to get in touch with this crafty crafter.

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Q: Have you had any formal training?

A: Well, regarding soap and cosmetic making, I studied towards a Diploma in ”The study of Essential Oils” with Kevala via Distance Learning. Other than that, I have a BA Hons Degree  in Fashion Design from Northumbria University.

Q: What is your favourite product at the moment?

A: I have a few, I can never choose just one. Soap wise they are “Moroccan Hammam” and “Earl Grey Tea”  soaps. I also love my 2 new sugar shower scrubs and Solid Cocoa Butter Body Lotions. They are addictive if I do say so myself.

Q: Are you working on anything special?

A: Well, although I don’t like to remind myself so early in the year, Christmas is a coming…I don’t want to give away any clues just yet but I have some new festive ideas in the pipeline which are under development.

Q: Should we be looking out for any new ranges?

A: I have just introduced quite a few new products over the last month into my Folksy and WowThankyou shops, including my new sugar scrubs
and some all new facial cleansing bars for combination skin. There are also 4 new bubble bars. The newest of which is “Apple of Temptation” a
zingy fresh apple scented red and green one that softens the bath water and turns it a gentle rosy shade.

Q:  I love handmade cosmetics and toiletries and your photo’s look super stunning. How do you come up with the different combinations?

A: Why thank you! I love playing around with compositions to make my products look pretty. I try to theme my photos depending on the product
too so for example my “Ginger Nut” soap is coloured and fragranced with spices and essential oils which led me to making a more exotic image using various items from around my home. On the other hand my “Extra Gentle Shea Castile” goats milk soap for sensitive skin is very natural and I wanted the image to reflect this so it is a very simple composition using only natural materials.

Q: What inspires you generally?

A: Oh that’s a tricky one…the simplest answer is everything, from flowers in my garden to a beautiful sunset. Inspiration can also come from researching the properties of various ingredients and combining them in a way that they will work well together or will look lovely. Sometimes
I get streams of ideas in the middle of the night, or random thoughts on the bus, so I jot them all down and re-visit them later to see what develops.

Q: What is your workshop like?

A: My workshop is currently my dining room, I’ve hijacked it almost completely. My ideal one though would be an outdoor one separate to the
house, maybe one day when I’ve sold enough bars of soap to move out to the rolling Northumbrian hills I’ll be able to make this happen.

Q:  Do you have any favourite Folksy crafters you would like to mention in The Crafty Crafter as an inspiration, Friend or just a favourite shop?

A: One of my favourite Folksy shops at the moment is Cinnamon Jewellery. I particularly love the handmade copper earrings and the lamp work glass beads used in the range, really lovely. I’m hoping for some of these for my birthday, I’ve dropped lots of hints. I also really like Pipistrelle Photography Deb does take some beautiful pictures, I’m very tempted to treat myself to a couple.

One of my favourite people on Folksy and WowThankYou is Caroline from “Mint to be Stationary”  lovely, lovely lady also not forgetting Rebecca at “The Emporium – Oundle”  who is also a very lovely and talented lady sourcing the best in handmade British gifts to sell via her website. She also makes candles and hand paints glassware selling it at craft fairs and also on Folksy via “Atelier glass” She’s a mean artist too, go check her out.

So there you go lots and lots of handmade shopping for you all wrapped up in a TBH interview. I know I spoil you, it can’t be helped when there are so many talented people out there! Ceri’s products start at £2.00 and really are worth checking out, I’m thinking Ginger Nut myself. If you want to check out her shop don’t hesitate to find her at Folksy or Wow Thank You and catch up with what’s new at her blog or email this lovely lady –