Nearly Wordless Wednesday: Take a Bow!

Next week, we’ll introduce the new board (and believe us, we can’t wait!).  Until then, here’s one last look at the July 2011- June 2012 Board of Directors:

July 2011-June 2012 HSMG Board of Directors

From left: Feleciai Favroth, Cathleen Timberlake, Leigh O’Donnell, Donna Pixton-Hacker, Julie Koenig, Barb DeLosSantos (not pictured: Beth Byrne)

And the tireless 2012 Conference Staff:

2012 HSMG conference crew

Standing, from left: Cathleen Timberlake, Janette Mitchell, Tami Thornton, Al Gerhold, Wanda Gillen, Tom Koenig, Robin Schmidt, Jennifer Grimes, Donna Pixton-Hacker, Feleciai Favroth, Barb De Los Santos, Teri Kalgren, Cheryl Peterson. Front row, from left: Stephanie Craig, Leigh O’Donnell, Camryn O’Donnell, Julie Koenig

This conference staff pulled off the biggest conference in HSMG’s history at The Red Lion on the River, a gorgeous venue on the scenic Columbia River, just minutes from downtown Portland, Oregon.  We hope all of you had as much fun attending as we did putting it on for you.

Did you miss the conference?  Check out this post for a great round-up of re-caps.

We want to see you at next year’s conference, in beautiful Raleigh, North Carolina. What are you waiting for?  Go sign up now!

Are you certified?

Since the release of the very first basic certification exams at the 2008 Annual Conference, the Handcrafted Soapmakers Guild has certified hundreds of soapmakers.  Today, you can apply for basic, advanced, and master certification, under either a cold process/hot process or melt and pour track.  All in all, you can achieve 6 different certifications.

Sample Certified Soapmaker Logo

Why did HSMG develop this program?

Part of the Guild’s mission is to encourage and promote the highest professional standards among HSMG members.  By establishing an industry-wide standard of excellence in soap making, the certification program is a natural fit,.  In addition, the program creates a centralized repository for industry-standard information and resources.

Why do I want to be certified?

Achieving these certifications not only builds credibility with your customers, it demonstrates dedication to professional standards.  The certification program also helps you measure your soap making knowledge and skill.

We are proud to announce that 44 new certifications across 4 different certification areas were awarded to 35 soapmakers at our 2012 Conference in Portland, Oregon.

Congratulations to all the newly certified soapmakers!!

Conference Highlights: Soapers’ Showcase

Another great conference has come and gone.  Did you miss out this year?  Check out recaps from around the web, including blog posts from Simply Eden, Alegna Soap (Day 2, Day 3), The Nova Studio (Day 2, Day 3),  Soap Much Love, SV. Soaps, David FisherSimple Pleasures Handmade Soap, Monastery CreationsRiver Bar Soaps, Bramble Berry, Stc and Company, and

Now that you have all that reading out of the way, we want to celebrate the winners of the Soapers’ Showcase!!  As usual, the  competition was absolutely fierce and we admired, ogled, sniffed, and marveled at the variety of soaps and techniques present.  It was impossible to choose, but the votes were counted and winners chosen.

Without further ado, here are your 2012 HSMG Conference Soapers’ Showcase winners:

Best Appearance, M&P:  JoAnne Somers of Dirtyface Soap Company

Best Appearance, CP/HP:  Jill Keck of Calise Soapworks & Such

Best Scent, M& P:  JoAnne Somers of Dirtyface Soap Company

Best Scent, CP/HP: Linda White of The Healthy Soap Company

Best Packaging:  Julia Bundy of Woodman Hill Soap Company

Something Different: Na Yeon Beggs of Castle Lake Studio Soap Art

and, drumroll please…..

Best of ShowJill Keck of Calise Soapworks & Such

Thank you, ladies, for sharing these fantastic soaps with us and thank you to everyone who entered and donated soap to local beneficiary Rose Haven.

Which soap was your favorite?  Have another blog post we missed?  Let us know in the comments.