Samantha & Bruce
Pip & Lola’s Everything Homemade
Samantha & Bruce’s story
We are the proud parents of six children. We currently live in a town outside of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, having moved here a year ago from Tacoma, Washington. Bruce was formerly an elementary school teacher and Samantha was previously a real estate agent.
We are both heavily involved in the Arts, specifically theater. We both love to donate our time and what little bit of extra money we have to keeping small Arts organizations running.
We are huge fans of the barter economy and have exchanged our soap for a variety of things including babysitting, photography, and the occasional coffee maker.
This loan is special because:
More about this loan
We started our business in 2010 at the prompting of many of our friends. At that point, Samantha had been making soaps for about 6 years and had been giving them out as gifts. The recipients of our soaps were constantly asking us to make more because, for the first time ever, they had soaps that were not causing migraine issues and major allergy / skin issues. This led us to research our market and realize that all-natural, lightly scented soaps were very rare in a pretty inundated handmade soap market.
Over the years, our company has grown from about 10 different types of soap to over 70, including hand and body soaps, shave soaps, shampoo bars, etc. We are constantly revamping, improving, and working to make them the best ones available.
We recently signed a lease for a small brick and mortar location that is less than a block from our home because the soaps have outgrown our basement. At the urging of neighbors, we will also include a small coffee bar in the space.
What is the purpose of this loan?
This loan will allow us to purchase more oils in order to build our soap stock back up; create and print brochures to use as we try to get our soaps into other retail locations; purchase materials to build an awning for our new retail space; put a down payment on our new business insurance, which is significantly higher than in years past due to the brick-and-mortar location; and purchase items to add a small coffee bar in our new location.
We believe this loan could easily allow us to quadruple our business this year. Most importantly, it allows us to work one block from our home and have full access to our children (and them to us) at all times.
Soaping Oils: Palm Kernel Oil – $78 Avocado Oil – $51 Castor Oil – $66 Coconut Oil – $140 Jojoba – $58 Olive Oil Pomace – $84 Palm Oil – $108
Brochures: Design – $100 Printing $90
Awning (self-installed): Materials – $300
Business Insurance (down payment): $600
Flooring: Sub-flooring: $280 Sealant/Paint: $75
Coffee bar expenses: Coffee Signage: $70 Coffee Grinder (used): $300 Commercial Fridge (used): $600
Years in operation: More than 5 years
A loan of $3,000 helps us to purchase more soaping supplies, create new marketing materials, and finish the new coffee bar and retail space for Pip & Lola’s Everything Handmade.