Winter Wonderland sampler: Handmade in Florida

Zahida from Handmade in Florida so appreciated the Fall themed photo backgrounds from my first Earthy sampler that I planned some wintry outdoor shots for this Winter Wonderland order too. As it happens to be colder than a witch’s caress outside, at a frigid 6 degrees, I optioned to cue the fake snow instead! 20171227_130558I had such fun setting up this wax village; an adorable part of the November pre-order sampler offering approx. 15 oz. for $25.20171227_095417Merry Main Street- black currants, raspberries and juicy apples blended with creamy vanilla, peppermint and warm musk.
Crisp green and sweet red apple notes extend over and above the other fruits with a cool minty background. Fresh outdoorsy breezes waft by, uplifting the berry studded fruit de pomme. The minty base possesses a medicinal tone, although well-blended, so it doesn’t overwhelm.

Frosted Gingerbread- vanilla frosting, cinnamon sticks, toasted graham crackers and juicy raisins. Delicately spiced swirls of creamy chilled icing slathered onto cinnamon biscuits, forming thick frosting peaks. Plump raisins gently hint of oatmeal cookies. Warm and nostalgic.20171227_094005The Sugar Mill- caramelized sugar, warm vanilla, gooey marshmallows and crisp peppermint. The iciest of the peppermint scents tempered by a glossy breath of crystalline sugar. Genuinely cool and tingly, sweetened by a candy-coated glaze. A pretty scent with enduring appeal. 

Sweet Cranberry-tart cranberries, juicy citrus, sweet strawberries and pomegranate. Deeply intense pomegranate juice intoxicates while zesty berries and snow-kissed petals foretell an inkling of coming Spring. I shouldn’t love this scent, yet the more often I sniff it, the more in love I fall.20171228_094010It was a challenge to melt such sweet cottages, but essential to review a few. I recommend cutting the substantial melts in half for medium/strong throw. 20171227_131346 (1)Lady Luck- blend of tart cherries, juicy citrus, powdered sugar, fresh coconut, and creamy vanilla. Unluckily for me, I’m not a Serendipity fan. However, Lady Luck is less inauthentic cherry syrup scented, more sophisticated for a Serendipity blend. The coconut is a rich, body care version of cocoa butter topped with sugary vanilla. 

Warm Mittens- reminiscent of warm mittens, a toasty fireplace, greenery and musky base notes. Pretty petite snowflakes dusted in gold look lovely, but smell rather like wet laundry. Snow-damp woolen mittens drying by a hearth is a fine idea in theory, but less so actualized. As was the golddust. After handling, I was completely coated in shimmer from my clothes to my nose. Melting didn’t prove unpleasant, yet it developed a light musty cellar aroma fading to unnoticeable with slight throw for 2 pieces.20171227_100457Those last scents may not have knocked me out, but these two luscious shapes put the stars in my eyes. The 2 oz. pine cone is perfection. The pink meringue puff, tempting enough to eat. 

Peppermint Place- a comforting blend of apples, berries, peppermint, pine, clove and warm firewood. Overripe apples tossed onto a glowing bonfire popping with blistered skins and bursting with juicy flesh. Bristling pine cones crackle merrily as a mellow powdery sweetness descends through the night. Complex inviting notes pull me in, sending me off to cozy dreams. If memory holds, this is similar to a version of Radiant Red Maple.20171227_101129Raspberry Cream- bright juicy raspberries blended with sweet cream. Instantly recognizable raspberry syrup drizzled upon mountains of whipped cream. Sweet, simple and absent a single note of berry-flavored cough syrup. Fruity scents wouldn’t be my handpicked choice but as with so many of Zahida’s blends, typical preferences don’t apply. The combinations elevated to the sublime in many cases, like the authentic subtle tartness of Raspberry Cream. I know at least 3 people who love this and it will be difficult to share. 
20171230_090606Couldn’t pass up more of my ultimate HiF scent, Ritual Lavender, because it’s the best. I’m set for awhile.

20171227_150453Wax samples:

Frosted Berries- sweet spicy blend of berries, amber, vanilla cinnamon and caramelized sugar. Cinnamon provides an unexpected zing to the punchy berries of the lil snowfella. But a thick cherry note affronts my nose with unnatural tang. Doesn’t suit me.

Mischief- a mysterious blend of dark patchouli, sandalwood, citrus, vetiver and black pepper. A fitting name, as the spritely vetiver and peppery notes add lightness and brightness to the powdery patch. Bewitching.

Peppermint Cupcakes- vanilla cupcakes with buttercream icing and a sprinkling of peppermint candy. Layered with swirls of creamy frosting, the freshly baked cake aroma prevails as pieces of crushed peppermint enliven the blend, staving off too much indulgence. Holy moly, to all the bakery devotees, I actually love this scent.

20171230_085830I was stoked enough at the chance to try Zahida’s hand-poured soaps, I went in for a second order after securing the wax. This was $8 for 5 oz. and she combined shipping. 20171230_090207Flamingo cold process soap– Sweet fruity, floral with zesty citrus notes. This scent is an ode to summer and although I won’t wait quite so long, I plan to hold off using until maybe February. Pure, fresh, certified organic goodness. I know my skin will thank me for the calming almond oil and enriching butters.20171230_085508 Crushed Roses cold process soap- A beautiful blend of Turkish roses, geranium, lemon and musk, all crushed and sweetened to perfection. I wanted to keep this sliver tucked into my pocket to inhale the sweet blushing rose buds when needed. It was so creamy and velvety soft while showering, though, I’m glad I didn’t.

Two mini-pots of pink whipped sugar scrubs also included in Iced Berry Bliss and Pistachio Macaron. When and where can I get more of this rich pistachio blend? I must have it!20171230_091811I managed one outdoor photo of the snow-globe inspired package, just for you Zahida!

The Winter sampler shipped for $8 and was supposed to be delivered in time for Christmas, and it was, but not for Christmas Eve, as it arrived around 2 pm that Sunday (my apologies, mailman). This made it too late to tuck into presents for my gathering because we were already on our way. In fact, I didn’t know it had arrived until midday Dec. 26th. Notwithstanding the close Christmas cutoff, it was the utmost charming wax I’ve received yet. Zahida’s blending skills are a marvel, I’m looking forward to more magical  Handmade in Florida hauls in the upcoming year.20171227_093414

7 thoughts on “Winter Wonderland sampler: Handmade in Florida

  1. A vendor I have yet to try but on my radar for 2018. Great photos. The cottages are like you said almost way too cute too melt so I can imagine them being difficult to melt. Stay warm!! Goodness, that is blasted cold!!! ❄❄❄⛄⛄⛄


    1. Thanks! It’s a record-tying low temp for NYE here, but it could be worse. At least we haven’t been dumped with feet of snow like some parts of the North. Handmade in Florida is so worth it, also her soaps are amazing! I’ll give you a heads-up when I see them available, usually it’s pre-orders so no rush to fill your cart and get outta there. I’ve found I rarely buy any wax that’s a race to order anymore.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Bahahaha, I read that as “witch’s carcass,” not caress. I was like, “Holy crap, Jay, that got dark fast”! Heh.

    Such cute pictures! And so nicely composed. And looking so much like this friggin’ frozen wasteland that I have returned to (having said that, I saw it was but eight degrees this morning in Orlando. Still a far cry from the -20s we’ve been “enjoying” for weeks.)

    I love the look of Handmade in Florida’s products so much – they’re just beautiful. The soaps in particular are so lovely. I love your little winter wonderland – and is that one of your Jadeite (or Jadeite-esque) cake stands under there? It looks fantastic. This whole post looks fantastic!


    1. Of course you read it as carcass! I try to class it up a bit and not refer to a witch’s tit and my restraint is wasted on you, lol. Thank you for the compliments, those melts made my photos look better. And yes my pseudo jadeite makes it’s appearance every few hauls, I love it with pastels, especially. I battled the lighting elements in my dark dwelling and tried to think of any way to get more into the shot, hence underlighting the semi-transparent plate stand, voila.
      Sorry to hear you are dealing with the frozen tundra, it’s been frigid here but nothing too extreme yet. Friday’s predicted to be negative 25 wind chill and a snowstorm headed for Sunday. The worst part is it’s too cold to walk Johnny or get out much at all. Stay toasty up there.
      P.S. I’m obsessed with the Crushed Roses soap, best!


  3. These houses make for an adorable winter village. I love your set up. So cozy and snug. We have a few overlapping scents a few different ones too. Frosted Gingerbread does smell incredible on cold. Warm Mittens didn’t tickle my fancy too much and I can see it being a lighter scent. I may tuck it away and see if it cures? Not always certain that actually works though. You Peppermint Place sounds gorgeous. I recall enjoying Radiant Red Maple. Keep warm up there Jay! Love the new look of your blog. Very chic.


    1. I love that Zahida mixes up the scents in the samplers, makes it more intriguing and of course creates interest for future scents. Still aimining to get my hands on her Eastern Oud! I haven’t melted that Gingerbread house yet, but it does seem deliciously different. WM may cure somewhat better, I’ll use the remaining snowflakes as a blender.
      Oh you’d love Peppermint Place, I will save you some:) It’s RRM with smokiness and a minty edge, pretty fabulous.
      Hey, thanks. I’m digging the new look myself, new year, new vibes;)


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