Soap, soap and other stuff!

As I mentioned in my last post I am enjoying soap-making….rather too much. I have made alot using different recipes. It is now becoming too much to make in the kitchen so my craft room has been taken over. I would like to think I can do well enough to sell some at the markets but we will see – it was clear I would need better equipment so I finally caved in and bought a few molds and have been trying to source the cheapest places for ingredients but the extra work I have been doing recently has meant I can have spare money to buy yummy oils etc.

My painting/craft table at present

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The pink slab in front is a Rose Clay Facial Soap which I have high hopes for in the battle against  wrinkles and aging skin 🙂 It has olive, coconut, apricot, jojoba and castor oils in – I added frankinsense and rose essences. The purpley / blue soap in the molds is lavender, a problem with keeping everything natural is learning about and sourcing the right colourings – this was hoped to be more purple.

I have alot to learn!! When I made my first batch of lavender soap I naively thought you could just chuck all sorts of pretty florally things in soap, you can’t! I put lavender on top and it went grey, the lye affects flora in soaps, apparently grinding dry lavender buds first works better. I wanted petals, some people have them on soaps and they guard the secret of “HOW….?” very closely but I did read you could do so with rebatching – grating a cured soap, melting it down and pouring it in molds. I added too much water so it’s taking forever to dry and this is very rustic in appearance but for my own use it will be fine. This is an area I would like to learn more about because it’s just too pretty not to. To me this is what lady soap should be like!

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An old shelf has come in handy for curing and storing, these all have to sit for at least a month.

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There are the calendula and lavender ones I showed early on, the musk and apricot which looks like Russian Fudge, Gardenia, Patchouli and a lovely blend of oils, A Cedarwood and Juniper Berry for men which smells gorgeous (coloured with spirlulina which disappointedly changed to a very muted green, and a mountain of Coffee Hand Scrub which I made double the amount for Roger and it turned out to be an awful lot lol

I also made the most divine night cream full of luscious oils….olive, sweet almond, jojoba, apricot and cocoa butter. I created it myself and it’s beautiful but I didn’t write down the amounts I used which was dumb! This is better than anything else I have ever made or bought, my very own fountain of youth in a jar!!!  I now just have to remember how I made it.

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Soap wrapped in lace and ribbon and a jar of my special cream is a nice pressy for my best friend for her birthday I thought!

 

 

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47 thoughts on “Soap, soap and other stuff!

  1. A lovely present, and I do like the lace and ribbon wrapping. My parents used to make all our laundry soap when I was a young one. It was good stuff. I wish I had paid more attention to the process, but I was only about 10 or 11 so I guess I can be excused.

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  2. The lady soap sure does look pretty! I might even be tempted to put that on my face. I don’t use soap as a rule – I don’t wear foundation and stuff like that and just smooth coconut oil blended with my favourite essential oils into my skin.

    You have gone bonkers on soap making – but obviously have a feel for it as you are whipping up your own recipes – but do, for heavens sake, note down what you are adding ion – what will happen if you stumble upon the magic elixir of eternal youth and can’t remember exactly how many drops of patchouli you put in! Yikes!!

    The presentation of the gift looks gorgeous! I’m sure you will find a market for your pretty soaps!

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  3. Gav calls cheese making addicts “Curd Nerds”. In trying to think of a name for a soap making addict I could only think of “soap dope” but that’s not exactly what I was after. 😉
    Your soaps are GORGEOUS! I am envious of your time to make so much and I need to get my butt into gear and make a couple of batches and soon for Xmas and birthday gifts. My parents will both be getting a whole batch of soap each for Xmas. Easy and they LOVE the 3 bars I gave Mum for mothers day. 🙂
    As for laundry soap, I made some using 100% sheep fat (sheep tallow) and I grate it for laundry soap and add some borax and washing soda. It’s great. 🙂 I wanted to try it on the skin though and now I use it for washing my hair (it’s lovely) and sometimes on both face and body. It’s so awesome to now I can make my own soap for any occasion. 🙂

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    • Lol, “soap dope” is probably quite fitting 🙂

      I am fortunate that my time at home is my own and I can potter away at anything, I imagine once the garden starts doing it’s thing though I will have little time for such luxuries as soap making. I have told my kids this year that Christmas should be a homemade one so I expect they will be getting soap too 🙂

      Do you have to use warm water for your washing using the soap?
      The first batch of soap I made with lard and olive oil (that I actually made for Roger) is now what I use and I also wash my hair with it and rinse off with cider vinegar. I have really dry hair that prone to brittleness but now it’s very soft, I am super pleased with it.
      It was reading that you made a batch a soap a few months ago that made me think I really needed to get over my fear of it and just do it. So glad because I love beautiful scented things but never bought them so am in my element now!!! I can give wee pressies to my friends as a treat for them too which is nice 🙂

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  4. Oh my LORD you are addicted! What a magnificent addiction to have and that rose clay soap sounds heavenly :). I wish I lived closer to you guys so I could learn from the deft hands of my guru ;). LOVE your soap Wendy, you are the soap Queen 🙂 Have you tried heading to Pinterest and looking for “natural food colours”? I went hunting just then to see if I could find my list of them that I saved but it would take me half an hour to find them. If I find them later today I will send them to you in Pinterest 🙂 GORGEOUSNESS on a heady scented stick 🙂

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    • Oh yes, I am addicted!….I found pretty again after years of not having it I think and I like it lol.
      I have pinned heaps of stuff on natural colourants. Knowing how they change or fade in the curing is important I am finding, but it’s all experience.
      I am hoping the Rose Clay one is as good as it sounds, it was one of the first I pinned and I knew I would try that one as soon as I got the hang of it all.

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  5. The soap looks amazing, I like the one with bits in it, very pretty. I like the sound of the facecream you made too, hope you remember the recipe lol. The main thing is for the soap to smell devine…

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    • Oh, I hope I remember it too….I just put in a splash of this and a chunk of that lol. Didn’t realise it was going to turn so gorgeous, I was just fulfilling a need at the time.

      I love nice soaps…I fear I am going to become a “cat lady” of soaping!!

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  6. Wow! You have been busy making soap. Way to go. Oh… and I have the same red mold for bar soap. It is so much easier to pop soap out of a silicon mold than my wooden mold made by my hubby.

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  7. Wow your soaps are beautiful! I can’t believe how quickly you took to soap making once you got over your concerns about the lye. Your cream looks good enough to eat. If you remember the recipe I hope you will share it so I can fight off the signs of aging too.

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  8. This is on my list to try one day, but haven’t done it yet. Awesome to see you and Jess getting into it, though! I love the name ‘lady soap’ and the presentation is perfect. You MUST remember that formula for the cream . . . My Mum’s mother and grandmother made soap every year; probably just the plain, useful sort back then. My son made some with his kidlets a few years ago and they all had tonnes of fun . . . If you can get some matcha tea, that might work to darken your green; I’m not sure, though. I wonder if you poured wee soaps into that mould, then experimented with colourants, etc. . . . patchouli, eh? my favourite hippie scent, but my Mum can’t stand it, so my perfume is tucked away for ‘someday’; All yours sound lovely. BTW, did you know you can use rose oil and lavender oil for cooking? I made a great fruit salad dressing with lavender oil once; took it ot a potluck and it won raves. Along with that, I took regular baking powder biscuits (scones, I think they’d be down there, definitely not cookies LOL) I sweetened them a bit and mixed rose oil with the butter to go on them. YUM!

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  9. reneeliamrhys says:

    Love your presentation and storage for your soaps…love the name Soap Lady. Great name as I should say only a Lady in a bygone era would have a soap like yours.
    As to selling soaps have you ever taken some to a market / organic market or shared a market stall space with anyone?

    Lovely post:)
    Alexa from Sydney
    http://www.Alexa-asimplelife.com

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  10. wow! You are starting a new career:-) It looks like a soap shop:-) I admire your ability to make soap, I am too nervous to try-lol. I know it is not that easy, but some how when you write about it you make it feel like something we all could try! I love all the exploring you are doing. It seems like you are showing a “gift” for this soap making-new career???? When I find myself doing something and enjoying it it seems less like work.
    OH boy, can I relate to forgetting to write recipes down. I have been making garden soup for winter eating + I keep trying different things, but I always forget to write the recipe down…I just put what is “extra” from the garden and roll from there-lol…Love the way you put everything together- I would love to watch you make this stuff it looks like fun!shoot maybe I would be less afraid!

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    • Hi Robbie 🙂 I was too nervous to try for many years, honestly I should’ve just given it a go then. It’s a good winter hobby 🙂 I do enjoy it and it is easier than you think if just doing it for yourself. But selling it is a different thing, appearance and smell are everything…and packaging. So I am practicing and hopefully will get it all right!!

      I do that, don’t often follow recipes but just chuck stuff in. Not a good idea when you get something perfect for you and you can’t remember how big your splash of everything was! Never mind, ya live and learn.

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      • Wendy, I am really excited for you for you are finding your passion! Why does it take us till our later years to find our passion….maybe wisdom does not set in until the wrinkles do-lol..but you have a lotion/soap for that soon to come to market…..part of the fun is splashing around in life! look forward to hearing more about your soap making:-)

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      • I think probably we are so busy raising kids and working for so many years then we forget we used to be people in our own right who liked just doing different things, then when everything goes quiet and we have too much time on our hands we start going stir crazy…then we sit for hours wondering where that creative girl went…then we remember we liked trying new things…but now we have no confidence and a few years later even more stir crazy we try them and wallah.Except now we are too tired and have to rest between each effort!!

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  11. Ooooh! so wishing you WERE my neighbour Wendy.. 🙂 Looks like you have been very busy.. I can almost smell that soap… I am sure if you decide to have a stall and sell some you will have no problems selling some…….. I wish you well in your future endeavours.. and love what you have been doing.. xox

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  12. Lynn says:

    Just read some of the comments…gosh, was I excited to read about folks using sunlight (dishsoap?) on their hair.

    I have been doing this for yrs and yrs (thirty, more), and while I do use a conditioner/cream rinse after, and sometimes I also use a regular shampoo after the sunlight.

    My hair seems to do really well with the sunlight dish soap, but I sure have gotten some weird weird looks/comments from others. Most seem to think I will go bald. However, when I go in for a trim, the hairdressers always comment in amazement at how healthy my hair is/how thick my hair is/how long my hair is, so I think I am “ok”.

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    • I used it for a long time and and had a wee dog whose skin was very sensitive and it was the only thing I could use on him. Gosh it has been around 50 years at least (since I was a kid) and I think must be one of the original untouched products on the market 🙂

      Aren’t people funny when you say you are doing something different from the norm lol. You sound pretty “ok” to me 🙂

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      • Lynn says:

        grin…oh my. I can finally confess to someone that it is also in hand pumps beside my sinks. These days I usually also have some “normal” hand soap, but this is usually what I have used for my hands too. grin.

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      • 🙂 Nice to hear of someone else who doesn’t have fancy liquid hand soaps, shower gels and hand sanitisers everywhere then 🙂

        When I was a kid at secondary school we used sunlight in those little wire holders for dishes and I found an old holder a couple of years ago so thought I would use it for my dishes as it would be better and cheaper than detergent, but I confess I didn’t like it when I tried it – do you use it for your dishes?

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      • Lynn says:

        I confess, I have a dishwasher, and got a huge whack of discontinued dishwasher powder on sale. likely enough to last many yrs more. when that is done, I will give a try to some of the many homemade dishwasher soap.

        having said that, I handwash a fair bit, and for that yes, I use sunlight dishsoap.

        am surprised you didn’t like it. did it not clean? I have noticed there seems to be some variance in what I buy (same looking bottle). for ex , the large jug bought at Costco seems stronger than the smaller bottles. me, I wait until they are on super sale and buy then, but, it has seemed to me, that maybe the seriously cheap sale bottles are not the same as the more regular/less discounted bottles. I have wondered if there was some skulduggery going on with the manufacture when they put out the seriously cheap sale bottles?

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      • Ohhh! You mean bottled sunlight, I thought you meant the cakes of sunlight soap 🙂 YES, the bottled Sunlight cleans dishes fine but the soap is hopeless for dishes – they used it before detergents came along but I certainly prefer bottled for dishes.

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