Maybe all creations start with a small spark or are triggered by the slightest stimulation, even though their creator hasn’t still pictured the final outcome.
So it was with me and soaps.
Ever since I was a little girl, I was fascinated by the soap creating process. I have been working for many years as an insurance broker and live with my family, sharing our time between Athens and Andros.
Most of us, who come from the island of Andros, hold a dear memory of our mothers, grandmothers or aunts preparing the handmade soap that along with the aid of the water that sprung from the blessed soil of Andros, would clean perfectly all the white clothes and linens of our households and was suitable for all the other cleaning chores of our households.
That is the sensation I was looking for for years during my travels abroad, finding soaps made out from special ingredients from all over the world. I was mesmerized by the feeling, the fragrances, the excellent quality and the luxury of their foam. The idea alone of creating soaps like those was an enormous experience and this is how “Soap by Eleni” was born.
Intensive courses in soap making so that I can learn how to combine the feeling with the know-how. Countless tests and trials (Fortunately nothing went to waste). And there was our first production!
Local fragrances, wine from local vine yards, homemade rose water, spearmint, bergamot, savory, lavender and merolies from Gialia are blended with cedar, sandalwood, and rosewood.
And yet something was still missing! Our cause hadn’t been completed yet.
Our efforts had to be combined with a vision and that vision had to be entwined with the needs of our island which are so many and imperative.
Our Course of Action
So we are cleaning Andros’s pathways!
The symbolism is clear. The aid is big.
Andros Routes, the Andros research center, which is responsible for the cartography of Andros’s pathways and volunteers in keeping them clean, the charismatic Olga Karagianni and I met at the beginning of 2015. During that meeting I suggested to take upon me the cleaning and maintenance of a number of certifiable pathways of our island, through the profits made from the sales of my soaps.
With each soap purchase, the buyer automatically becomes a financial sponsor and contributes in our efforts in cleaning the pathways of Andros. During the Lemon Festival which is conducted every year, our lemon soaps, small or big, are being bought enthusiastically by everyone, giving us the feeling that nothing goes to waste since the money collected from their sales, help maintain many pathways clean and open for hickers.