Travel, wine and a love for natural products has led Otago-based Amy Burke down the path to The Cottage Soap Co., her handmade soaps and skincare business. Her passion for good food and wine has translated to a skincare range characterised by rich essential oils, so delicious they’re almost edible!
What do you make?
I make luxuriously natural skincare and soaps. Currently I have released my hand cream and face cream with rosehip oil, but I have so much more in the pipeline.
How did you get into your craft?
After working in the wine and restaurant industry for a long time I knew it was time to discover my other passions. I have always had a love for all things natural. I’m grateful to still be part of the wine industry because of the amazing people that we work with and have got to know, and everyone can appreciate a good glass of vino at the end of the day.
Your favourite materials, tools and processes?
Essential oils, dried rose buds, rosehip oil and coconut oil. Yum! Almost better than making cupcakes!
galleryWhat inspires you?
Travel – we love to travel. Especially Europe, for the wine, the scenery, the produce.
Is there a philosophy behind your work?
My philosophy is to be natural as well as practical. To create something that will benefit you and your life everyday.
Five words that describe your mind:
Dreamy and full of creative clutter… My heart has more control unfortunately.
Your favourite feedback from a customer:
I recently had a customer that suffered from sensitive skin and couldn’t use any of the products from the supermarkets or pharmacies. I told her to give my goats’ milk soap a try, which she did. Now she claims it’s the only thing she can use and she loves it. Fantastic!
Describe your workspace:
My kitchen used to be for creating edible masterpieces, however now it seems to be over-run with my skincare products and soap making utensils. I ‘should’ be getting slimmer due to the lack of baking I do now! Unfortunately that’s not the case…
What are you reading now?
Every Bastard Says No – The 42 Below Story. Very inspiring.
A favourite quote: You only get one chance to make a first impression…!
Do you have any pets?
Yes, I have two dogs (Chopper, a six year old old border collie and Belle, a two year old huntaway/collie cross) and Tiggy and Alley, two black cats. It’s like a zoo at our place!
What was the last handmade item you bought?
I bought a homemade candle from the Kandle Co. It’s delightful and I have recommended her products to many of my wholesalers.
Visit Amy’s Felt shop to see her full range of luxurious skin products. Amy has kindly offered one lucky Felt blog reader a prize of a set of her lovely hand and face creams, worth $36.50. To be in to win, leave a comment below, telling us what inspires you about Amy’s story and her products. The draw will be made on Friday 30 August and is open to New Zealand residents only.