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Featured Shop: Aubrey E Apothecary

Sep 26, 2012

by Aubrey E Apothecary

Etsy.com handmade and vintage goods

My name is Aubrey Stephens and I make glycerin soaps in whimsical shapes and other bath and body items. I recently moved from Boston to a tiny, picturesque lake town in Winchester, Connecticut. I live and create in a little cottage and finally have my own soap studio!

Running the apothecary has merged everything I enjoy: talking to strangers, creativity, fragrance, writing, photography and bringing people joy. I’m drawn to the idea of making a menial everyday task delightful, like washing your hands with a cinnamon bun soap instead of just an ordinary bar. It’s gratifying to see someone furrow their brow trying to decide what they’re looking at and then get super excited when they realize it’s soap. Getting a genuine laugh out of a stranger is so rewarding.

My brainstorming process usually involves seeing some delicious bakery treat I want to turn into soap. I toil away finding exactly the right fragrance to match the real thing. Once I’ve mapped out the idea in my head, I melt down glycerin soap, add fragrance and color, then pour it into a mold. Once it’s set, I assemble the final soap, adding little details (like the seaweed on the tuna maki soap in my sushi set). The last step is packaging it up and mailing it off to its new home.

I’ve always thought of myself as very multi-dimensional. While I go bananas for cuteness, I’m also attracted to things that are creepy. If it’s a little askew, I’m probably into it. I find myself bringing that out in my work and sometimes marrying the two, like the zombie soaps that are adorable and  just downright weird.

A job can’t be just a paycheck to me; it has to be my passion. Working a normal job was never what I was meant to do. I completely wilt living for someone else’s agenda. I wanted to be working towards something meaningful that made me feel connected and in tune with others.

Doing Aubrey Elizabeth Apothecary full time has really made the life I’ve always wanted come to fruition. I wake up energized and excited for what’s to come, ready to work really hard. I thrive on making my own schedule and creating things. It’s the change I’ve needed to start living my life in a way that makes me happy every moment.

To me, Etsy means finding a community where I finally feel like being unique and quirky is an asset! There are so many supportive, amazing sellers who have a common goal – to create – so it feels like coming home. Etsy brought my dreams to life. Having people from around the globe buy items from my shop inspires me. We’re all finding that little glimmer of happiness from exactly the same thing – a charming piece of soap. It makes me feel connected to every customer, which is magical.

Photographs by Aubrey E Apothecary.

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