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People Watching: Slime Sisters

  • Viva Cohen, left, and Inez Dole, both 10 and of Florence, make slime out of Borax, laundry detergent, glue and shaving cream Nov. 15, 2017 at the Rise + Fall design studio in the Florence Arts & Industry Building. GAZETTE STAFF/SARAH CROSBY

  • Viva Cohen, 10, of Florence, mixes food coloring with slime made from Borax, laundry detergent, glue and shaving cream Nov. 15, 2017 at the Rise + Fall design studio in the Florence Arts & Industry Building. GAZETTE STAFF/SARAH CROSBY

  • Inez Dole, 10, of Florence, mixes food coloring with slime made from Borax, laundry detergent, glue and shaving cream Nov. 15, 2017 at the Rise + Fall design studio in the Florence Arts & Industry Building. GAZETTE STAFF/SARAH CROSBY

  • Inez Dole, 10, of Florence, right, looks on as Viva Cohen, also 10 and of Florence, reacts to the staining on her hands from mixing food coloring with the slime they made out of Borax, laundry detergent, glue and shaving cream at the Rise + Fall design studio in the Florence Arts & Industry Building. GAZETTE STAFF/SARAH CROSBY

  • Inez Dole, 10, of Florence, mixes slime made from Borax, laundry detergent, glue and shaving cream Nov. 15, 2017 at the Rise + Fall design studio in the Florence Arts & Industry Building. GAZETTE STAFF/SARAH CROSBY



For the Gazette/Hampshire Life
Friday, December 01, 2017

If you went to the open studios and holiday sale at Florence’s Arts & Industry Building a couple of weeks ago, you might have caught a glimpse of the Slime Sisters, Viva Cohen and Inez Dole, two 10-year-old girls who were selling homemade slime in an assortment of colors at the Rise + Fall design studio, run by Viva’s parents, Josh Cohen and Laura Manning. The friends, both students at Jackson Street School in Northampton, quickly sold out of their product. In all, they unloaded 72 jars of slime: More Glitter Less Bitter, Tie Dye Pink, Purple Ring, Unicorn Barf and Camel Spit, to name a few.

But on a recent fall day at the studio, they weren’t having as much success. The budding businesswomen were mixing hot-pink slime, among other colors, in two plastic basins — it’s a bit like making a dough, only using glue, glitter glue, Borax, laundry detergent, shaving cream and other ingredients (not recommended for little kids, by the way) — and the results were a bit disappointing. “I bought them the wrong kind of soap. Don’t go for the hippie stuff. Lesson learned,” Viva’s father, Josh, said as he walked by. “Tide works the best,” Viva added. 

Every year during the open studios and holiday sale, the two girls get together and make something. “They usually just do portraits for people for $2. This year they came up with this idea,” Laura, Viva’s mother, said. “We are using it as a math lesson, because they have to figure out how much does it cost to make it, how much to mark it up by, what percentage they want to give to their school.”

The lesson was very much in progress — when asked how much profit they made, Viva looked at her mother and asked, “What is profit?” — but the girls knew that they had $190 left to buy new ingredients. “We are raising money for ‘Stomp,’ ” Inez chimed in, referring to the Broadway musical that is now touring in Hartford. “We will raise money so that people in our school and our grade that can’t buy tickets can go.”

But slime is banned at their school. “Because it’s messy and distractive, I guess,” Laura said.

“Actually our teacher has it,” Viva said. “Yeah,” Inez added, “he bought some from us, remember?” 

How did you discover slime?

Inez: I went over to my friend’s house. She made slime and I really liked it, so I made it at my house one day.

Why do you like it?

Viva: It’s satisfying. It’s fun to have something for your hands, I guess. It gives you something to do. (As Viva squeezes a lump of slime into the jar, it makes a ffffttt sound.) I like when you poke it, it just goes up straight away.

Why did you start?

Inez: Every year at open studios at Arts & Industry, our parents were involved. We have a mini business, and the past year it has just been clay and stuff. We just did it for fun. But then we thought we should do something we can make money for and something we can keep building.

What’s the cost of a jar of slime?

Viva: $4 for each. 25 cents from each jar goes to our school.

Where do you sell it?

Viva: Anywhere we can, basically. Last time we did it here. Next time we’ll do a holiday sale at our school. And we’re getting a website on Etsy — we do the design ourselves, but my dad will help us.

What colors have you made before?

Inez: Pink, purple, blue, orange, minty… like a toothpaste color.

Viva:We called it Minty Fresh.

What’s your favorite? 

Viva: Metallic blue — it was clear and blue like the ocean.

Ingredients?

Inez: Glue, shaving cream, glitter glue. I know that a lot of people use Borax, and a lot of people use liquid laundry detergent, so we decided that maybe we should use both. And contact solution — it just makes it stretchy.

Viva: And less sticky.

Where did you find this recipe?                              

Inez: Viva watched a YouTube video; I had also watched one, and I had already made slime before this. And we changed it up a little.

Viva: That’s why sometimes our slimes can feel a little bit different.

How do you know when one is done?

Viva: You kind of just feel it and see if it’s all colored evenly.

Inez: Sometimes we add toppings. (She squeezes some glitter glue on top of a jar of slime that she just packed.)

How’s the process going now?

Viva: It’s really soft and fluffy. Let’s see how stretchy it is… not very. It looks like a dead squid.

Inez: Mine just turned into water. It’s really not working out for us today.

How will you name the new one?

Inez: I think this one should be called Tie Dye, but I’m not sure. You can see the waves in it.

Viva: It should be Pink Bubble Bath.