Soap Making Classes in Florida at Earth Blend & Flower

    By Gabrielle Davis

    Soaps, body scrubs, shampoo. Create your own fragrance at this Orlando shop.

    It's not purses, jewelry or even shoes that does it for Christa Hyatt – it's soap.

    Particularly natural soap, which the Orlando resident confesses she stockpiles at home.

    So, Hyatt was thrilled when she discovered soap making classes in Florida that she and her daughter could attend together at Earth Blend & Flower, an aroma fusion studio in Orlando that offers classes on creating soaps and other smell-good treats.

    Inspired by the organic beauty of Cameroon, Africa, during a graduate internship in 1998, studio owner Karen Peters has been using essential oils to create natural soaps and other products ever since. In December 2010, Peters opened the doors to Earth Blend & Flower, a hip storefront on the edge of Mills50, the city's artsy hub.

    Locals or visitors looking for a chill girlfriend activity will enjoy the tranquil vibe during the two-hour soap making classes in Florida.

    Laura Conaway, who flew from Colombia to visit family in Orlando, likes that the class was fun – but also useful. "I get to take something away with me that I can use that is practical and beautiful," said Conaway while sniffing her rosemary mint soap blend.

    As guests picked exfoliators for their soaps like calendula and oats, Peters talked about the essential oils that would go in the soap.

    After looking over a menu where guests can pick the oils to create their unique scent, the mad scientist portion of the class begins: soap blending.

    Although Peters does some prep work, participants are provided aprons and safety goggles to get in on the action of mixing the soap with a handheld electronic mixer.

    After the blending, Peters pours four ounces of the soap batter into separate plastic bowls for each guest, and then the essential oils, exfoliators and herbs are added.

    The class takes their blend home in their bowls. It takes 48 hours for the soap to set and it can be cut into as many as five good-sized bars, Peters said. After four weeks the soap is cured and ready to use.

    No worries if you're not that passionate about soap. Earth Blend & Flower offers how-to classes on creating shower gels, body scrubs, candles and shampoos for people – and even the family feline or dog.

    "You're using high quality ingredients, "Peters said. "But the value is not only in the ingredients, but here you are crafting and creating."