Me!!! Or rather my soap is *grin*
Following on from my last post, that I'd been told I'd won an award for my soap entry into the NSW Hunter Valley Olive Oil Association 2009 Show (what a mouthful!) and the invitation from the show steward to attend in person, I'm honoured to say that I was presented with three awards. This show was open to all professional/commercial soapmakers accross Australia, as long as they used Australian Olive Oil in their soaps, and I was told the 4 soap judges needed to spend a month to use all the different soaps entered in their daily showers, and judge them on various aspects - appearence, scent, texture, lather quality, meltability, longivity etc.
Firstly I was presented with "Best in class" for my castile soap - which is made from 100% Australian olive oil, scented with my 'Charm' blend of Lemon Myrtle and Lavender Essential Oils, coloured with infused Calendula. This is a specialty soap that I make for a select few of my customers as Olive Oil is one of the most expensive 'soapmaking' oils - more so for me as I don't use inferior imported pomace oil.
*** I learnt a lot about the different grades of olive oil by talking to the many growers, producers and judges there, and learning about what chemical solvents are actually put into Pomace Oil to produce it from the absolute dregs, pips, bruised/rotting olive fruit and othr waste - solvents which have been proven to be carcinogens (cause cancers) - so it now scares the heckers out of me, and I won't have icky pomace olive oil anywhere near me or my family!
Moving on *grin* - Next they announced I had won gold for my soap overall, and THEN they announce I had also won best in show above all other soaps entered in all classes - I was bright red by this stage and starting to shake from nerves with hubby rubbing my arm saying "calm down bub" and I'm like "ohhh lordy I have to walk up there again - stumble, stumble" LOL!
Here we have the two paper awards, and the huge plaque I won for best in show - it's the size of a large dinner plate - and the case is gorgeous!
Before they were announced, I was glad to hear the presenters tell us that the judging panel had been made up of both professional soapmakers and general consumers - so we were judged both 'technically' by the soapmakers, and then more overall by those acting as 'consumers'.
After the awards we had a gourment bbq dinner, and I had lots more questions asked of me, and met some amazing people! All in all a great day, and I felt very priviledged...