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When I think about where I am now and how I’m creating these signs that I hope will leave a big impact, I think about what pushed me to do it. I know I didn’t get here by chance and though technically I’m just now finding my way in my own creative world, I look at the people God put in my path that helped point me in this direction. The right direction.

 

When I’m fortunate to create a sign for someone’s business, it often makes me take notice not only of the business itself but also it’s creator and how they began doing what it is they do today. As I’ve said before, not only does their business  represent what they do or sell, but it is also  a direct representation of the person behind the name. So of course, it makes it their “Shine Sign”! It’s what they do and do well. It’s their craft and a piece of their heart.

Today I get to introduce you to Maricia Perez who is very special to me. She’s one of the only entrepreneurs I know  that’s good at everything she does. And she does quite a lot! Her latest project is making hand made soap, bath bombs, body butter, and SO MUCH MORE! She has a heart of gold, she gives Martha Stewart a run for her money, and she’s genuinely a fantastic friend. I would say that to me, her only downfall is that I don’t think she sees it in herself. I don’t know of a more humble person that would sooner root for you to do well than see all the goodness she gives on a daily basis.  I’d even  say she is a true leader and when she leads, you follow.

In fact, not too long ago, she called me up and said “Come over for coffee I have an idea”. It turns out we have a few friends that each have small businesses. Maricia thought it would be a great idea to put on a “Christmas in July” with all of our 3-4 vendors and see who else wanted to join in. So we met, came up with some ideas and a month later, what was originally intended to be our Christmas in July , turned out to be our first Trunk Show with 9 vendors. It was a true success and now we are planning our next one in November with 15 vendors (so far)! I only see great things in this dawn of a new season in all of our lives and I’m so thankful I get to share it with her and the rest of our amazing group of Small but Mighty family!

I’m sure people read “Eight Soap” and automatically the wheels start turning about what the meaning behind the name is. Can you tell us what it symbolizes?

Eight is a special number. Biblical eight is the number that represents new beginnings. We like to say (quoting my grandma Deluna) ” If you’re having a bad day, just wash it off”.  Start a new beginning.

On a more personal note 8 is a reminder that through Jesus, I was given the free gift of salvation. My sin forgiven and I am washed cleaned! Jesus is my hope that I believe and hold on to. He is my Anchor.

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What often boggles my mind when I read stories of businesses before they became “BIG” is the story behind the “why”.  Whether good or bad, it’s what lead them to the place they find themselves in today. What’s your story and how has that shaped who you are today?

Wow!!! The “Why” –  I never in a million years thought I would be an owner and maker of a soap company, but through the years I can sit back and see how God was doing his work in me before I even knew him. There is a scripture that comes to mind ” For I know the plans I have for you, declares the Lord,  plans to prosper you not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future”  Jeremiah 29:11.” This scripture of declaration I can truly say I have tasted and seen. I have been in the beauty industry for 20 years. I worked for a very reputable salon in Dallas and worked as an educator there. I taught theory and product knowledge which equipped me to know what made a good product. Fast forward years later to a time when my second daughter was always sick. Her doctor decided to do extended testing and the results were surprising. We found out she was allergic to everything and I had to give her daily shots.

This is when I started making homemade laundry detergent and soap along with a solid lotion bar with natural oils so she wouldn’t itch from being outside. At this time I was still a hair dresser and I would give my clients laundry detergent and lotion bars.

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Fast forward again five more years to when I had my 3rd daughter Sophia. At the age of two  she started getting sick but much different from my other two daughters. She would have moments where she would just zone out. Her eyes would dilate and she would start kicking her foot. Some nights she would stay up and never go to sleep. It got so bad once that she stayed up 48 hours straight. When I took her to the doctor I was told to go to the ER. There I was given the news that she had epilepsy and was having Rolling Seizures and was told that her brain was not fully developed in child birth. Through the course of a year I was taking Sophia to doctors appointments, therapy and hospital stays. During that time she would have seizures all the time. I lost more then 50% of my clients and my income decreased. I remember saying “God you would not give me anything I could not handle and your word states for me not to worry about what I will eat or wear. Lord I need you to show me what to do.” I prayed and prayed and prayed and then one day I heard in my spirit ” Soap – I have prepared you for a time such as this.”  He gave me the blue print before I even knew the plan! Through his guidance and wisdom he helped me sustain my income…New beginnings!

As I’ve mentioned earlier, you have an entrepreneurial hand. Would you say there were things you’ve learned along the way that help you make your many soap creations today?

Yes, from being an educator and being a self employed hair dresser. I learned time management, and gained insight on what people wanted for their skin and hair. I also became aware that everybody’s hair, skin, and style is different and I think this is beautiful. Some people like very simple and some like very extreme so I use this in my soap making. I have simple bars of soap to soaps that are bright and colorful. Some of them even look edible.

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Only because I love it, what is your motto and why is it the focus of what you do?

He is turning beauty from ashes! This is what The Lord did for me
”The Spirit of the Sovereign Lord is on me, because the Lord has anointed me to proclaim good news to the poor. He has sent me to bind up the brokenhearted, to proclaim freedom for the captives and release from darkness for the prisoners, to proclaim the year of the Lord’s favor and the day of vengeance of our God, to comfort all who mourn, and provide for those who grieve in Zion— to bestow on them a crown of beauty instead of ashes, the oil of joy instead of mourning, and a garment of praise instead of a spirit of despair. They will be called oaks of righteousness, a planting of the Lord for the display of his splendor.” Isaiah 61:1-3

Eight Soap Co.  – http://www.eightsoapco.com/

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