Thank you for taking the time out of your day to visit Sunny Bungalow. We're Deb and Jon, and we hope as you read further you'll learn more about about our history and why we love soap so much!
Deb and I were never satisfied by any soap. They always left our skin dry and itchy, and smelled artificial. Even bars from the natural section of the supermarket were a turn-off. Then we discovered blocks of cut-your-own handmade soap by the pound at a health food store. These raw loaves were plain pale colors, and had basic scents like lavender and sandalwood, but smelled amazing. More importantly, for the first time, left our skin feeling healthy and clean.
We used this amazing soap for years until one day it vanished from the store. The employees couldn't help us find the original suppliers, so we set out to learn to make it and suffer with the processed bars in the meantime. We were driven to figure it out. People have been doing that since biblical times, so how difficult could it be?
It turns out it's not that difficult. The process of turning fats and oils into soap with an alkali hasn't changed. More importantly, we immediately got the results we wanted. They felt amazing on the skin during and long after washing. They smelled great, and had a smooth creamy lather.
Deb took immediately to making the soap, experimenting with different colors and scents with each batch. Within a few weeks we had enough soap to last years. Friends and family got the overstock until they had too much as well. Still, we were having too much fun and couldn't stop making them.
In 2014 a friend who had been selling his handmade leather wallets on Etsy encouraged us to sell them on the site. We figured, why not. We didn't think we'd sell many, maybe just enough to make back some money we spent on materials.
One thing that was important from the beginning is a clear understanding of what was going in to the soap. Every ingredient was thoroughly researched to discover what they did, if they had any known healthy side effects, and drawbacks, and source impact. Every component to the soaps are always carefully chosen with full knowledge of what effects it has.
Most of the soaps are made using the hot-process method, but cold-process, cold-process-oven-process, and melt-and-pour are also used. All are made one batch at a time. Design techniques come from endless research, some from other countries (thanks Google Translate!), some from baking, some inspirations come from nature. The combination of fragrances, colors, and shapes is endless.
Ultimately every bar was made with equal amounts of care and adventure.
They sold a little more than we expected, which was a perfect excuse to make more and more soap. Deb continued making batch after batch, while I was content helping in the background, taking care of the online store, making labels, and shipping out the orders. Meanwhile customers kept returning, sometimes buying the same favorites, others trying Deb's latest soap inventions. And they told their friends. And they told their friends. And..
That brings us to today. Currently Deb and I have full-time careers outside of soap making. Deb is a Registered Nurse, and I'm a software engineer. The soap has happily filled our spare time as a source of relaxation and fun.