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Three More Soaps

Nov
4

I’ve been doing a lot of playing with soaps in the past couple of weeks. Here are three more. The first one is a cherry-scented soap. I took out a small portion of the soap mixture after it came to trace and mixed in red soap coloring.
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Then I layered part of the plain soap mixture in the mold.
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I wanted random streaks of red through the soap, so I drizzled in some of the red.
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And more of the plain.
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And more of the red.
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And so on, until all the soap was in the mold.
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And this is the result.
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Then I made a soap with lemon pound cake fragrance, which was the base of my inspiration for how I wanted the soap to look–reminiscent of a pound cake. I divided the soap mixture in two parts. The bigger part of the soap mixture, I didn’t use any soap coloring (though it was colored some by the fragrance oil itself–some fragrance or essential oils will add color to soap, and some don’t) and I added about a teaspoon of dried lemon peel. I poured that part in the mold, then added some yellow soap coloring to the smaller part and poured that on top. I wanted to make an effect that was like how a loaf cake will rise in the center when it’s baked. Here, the soap is in the mold, tamped down, with a flat top.
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I let the soap sit about five minutes, enough time to start setting and thickening some. Then I used a spoon to mound the soap up toward the middle, to recreate that “risen cake” center effect.
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This is how it came out.
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And then this one–my favorite, really. I think it’s so pretty. It’s a half and half milk soap–meaning, the bottom half of the mixture (to which I added ground oatmeal) is made with water, so that it will stay light and nearly white.
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The top half is made with milk, and has pieces of oatmeal embedded in the top, which I pushed into the soap lightly, to make it stick, after putting it in the mold.
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I’ve been making a lot of candles also, in matching scents.
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I have four shelves full of product in the studio. I have workshops coming up the next three weekends in a row, then two more in a row after Thanksgiving, until I stop for the year in mid-December.

Winter is my season of (workshop) rest!

Note: I used the same recipe you can find here in my hot process tutorial, only I made these soaps with the cold process method.

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Apple Cider Soap

Oct
30

Take a pot of cold process soap.
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Remove a small part of the prepared soap mixture to a small bowl.
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Add red and yellow liquid soap coloring.
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Decide that’s not enough and add some more.
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Mix it up.
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Pour the bigger pot of soap into the mold.
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Spread the smaller bowl of soap over the top.
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Run a fork down through it a little bit to push some of the color down.
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Ponder if this is going to turn out gross.
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Wrap it up and let it sit.
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Unmold.
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Slice into it.
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Interesting!
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I like it!

What I was going for here was an effect reminiscent of an apple. The apple cider fragrance oil itself lends a yellowish color to the soap, and the soap coloring in the part spread on the top looks like the apple peel.

Note: I used the same recipe you can find here in my hot process tutorial, but I made it with the cold process method so I could play artsy with it a little more.

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  1. IMG_6574

    October 28, 2015 - Peppermint Soap

    Just showing off my latest homemade soap.

    This is peppermint soap.

    Not that there are any actual peppermints in it… But it’s made with peppermint essential oil for the fragrance.

    I made this soap with the cold process method, but it’s the same basic recipe that you can find here in my … Continued…

  1. DSC_3111x

    August 5, 2015 - Cheese Days in Pictures

    In July, I had a five-day retreat here that included two full days of cheesemaking and a day of breadbaking. We were lucky enough to have an attendee who is a photographer, and he took photos all day every day! I was so happy about that, and he has given me permission to share some of his photos here.

    All photos in this post are the property of Rick Hutchinson. You can view … Continued…

  1. IMG_6064

    July 22, 2015 - Obituary

    Yellow Squash, Professional Vegetable, dies at age three months.

    Yellow Squash, who was grown from seed, and who became the first vegetable in the garden to flower though his career was cut horribly short, passed away on July 22 in the studio garden as a result of a lack of pollination and flooding rains.

    When he was only 2 months old, he began flowering wildly, competing against a field … Continued…

  1. IMG_6016

    July 21, 2015 - All the Pretty Soaps

    I’ve been playing around with soap lately, trying out different flowers, seeing what happens. Here’s the wild phlox soap.

    Yep, the pretty pinks and purples turned green in the soap. Not all flowers lose their color. Here’s marigold.

    And this is clover on the right, dandelion blossom on the left.

    Dandelion … Continued…

  1. IMG_5998

    July 16, 2015 - Flower Identification Test

    Pop quiz!

    Identify this flower!

    And this one!

    To be honest, I have no idea what they are. I want to dehydrate some of the petals to put in soaps, but I have no idea what to call the soap because I don’t know what the flowers are! Help!

    If you’re the first person to correctly identify both flowers, I’ll send … Continued…

  1. IMG_5809

    June 19, 2015 - When the Rain Came Tumblin’ Down

    It’s been raining here every day. EVERY DAY.

    Even if I do have to wipe off my camera lens between every photo because it’s so humid, the lens fogs up in seconds.

    Though it does lend a magical mysterious ambiance to the garden. But it’s no mystery what the rain is doing! My tomatoes are blooming! And … Continued…

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The Slanted Little House

"It was a cold wintry day when I brought my children to live in rural West Virginia. The farmhouse was one hundred years old, there was already snow on the ground, and the heat was sparse-—as was the insulation. The floors weren’t even, either. My then-twelve-year-old son walked in the door and said, “You’ve brought us to this slanted little house to die." Keep reading our story....



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