Our husbands call us mischief and most times we agree. Kelly is the cheeky to Roi’s geeky, a perfect mix.
Kōrero from Roi: Soaps sprang out of a need to create a product that my eldest daughter could use. Our girl was born with severe eczema and after going through a series of tests and food eliminations, we found that if we could manage her diet and also manage what went on her skin, she was ok.
I was blessed to be taught by my nan in all things Te Ao Māori, from Maramataka to Rongoā and tying together ngā tohu o te whenua. Combining Rongoā and Soaps was a natural progression. I am a bit of a science nerd, I love chemistry and learning about reactions, components and constituents in rākau, but my true passions is in Kaitiakitanga, in specific, bringing environmentally sustainable practices around harvest, cultivation and manufacture to the forefront. This principle sits front and centre of what our business is based on.
Our soaps making process is quite different and we believe it is what sets us apart from others. Normal soap making process takes 6 weeks to cure, our soaps are ready to use within 24 hours of manufacture. We want to continue to create a quality product that all whānau can access, this means, we will always strive to keep our costs low, it is part of our manaakitanga mandate that we hold dear.
Kōrero from Kelly: Rongoā Māori has been part of my upbringing through my father and granny. Wairākau would always be available in a separate fridge downstairs. Being young at the time I never took much notice and wish I did now knowing rongoā was going to be a big passion of my life journey.
Roi and I meet being work colleagues four years ago in Tāmaki. I had used these beautiful soaps and witnessed the healing properties on my son who has eczema and watched Roi make them. After reconnecting with rongoā my love grew and Roi challenged me to make soap on my own. After a few wiriwiri moments my confidence and love for making soaps grew. Over the years we have built strong whanaungatanga within both our whānau who understands our last minute adventures to the ngahere.
I am grateful to so many people especially my māmā, pāpā and granny who have grounded me in the skills of Te Ao Māori, mātauranga, rongoā, Te reo me ōna tikanga, manaaki tangata, tiakina whenua and kaitiakitanga.