Sunday, March 29, 2015

Picture Tutorial of Side Embeds in Cold Process Soap

This is a simple picture tutorial of how I make one of my favorite soap designs. The sides of the bars are created first using an "In the Pot" Swirl technique and poured into a mold that has acrylic dividers to get evenly sized embed bars. I use sodium lactate (5g per lb of oils) in this formulation because it makes it much easier to remove the acrylic dividers from the soap.

This is a 4 day process and I use the same formulation for the side embed logs that I do for the main soap.

Monday, March 23, 2015

Hobbies - everyone should have one or two....

Everyone should have a hobby or two. Something you really love to do without the pressures of work or other commitments. For me, one of my hobbies is baking especially types that invite creativity. One of my favorite things to do is to make decorated sugar cookies - a creative outlet that is greatly appreciated by many (nom, nom....) These past two weeks I have refined some of my royal icing techniques to create some unique spring and summer designs.

What do I do with all these cookies you ask? Well some get eaten here, some go to friends and family, some are sent in care packages to our college students (college students LOVE getting any type of care package) or donated to charitable events.

I love this hobby of mine and I think others do too.

~ Faith

Thursday, March 5, 2015

Creating Embeds in Individual Molds or Logs

There are so many unique techniques and tools for creating interesting and beautiful bars of handcrafted cold process soap. One of my favorites is to use embeds to create a more structured look that combines the free flowing design element of swirling your colors against a solid color to really make that embed pop. Embeds can be incorporated into your soap in a variety of ways. They can be added to the surface design in either a log mold or individual bar molds, embedded individually or as a long piece into a log mold so that the design shows through as you slice the log and embedded individually in individual single bar molds. This tutorial will show how I embed soap into individual silicone molds and log molds.

One reason I like to do these individually is to carefully control the placement of the embedded element. For these bars, I want the embed to only be on one side of the bar because I am going to use a soap stamp to add a design to the other side of the bar. The one drawback to this method is there is more labor involved and more cleaning up of the individually bars - so be prepared for a bit of waste that will come with trimming these bars.

Key points that I will note in regards to making these soaps:
 - This is a two day process. Day 1 to make the embed pieces and Day 2 to make the base soap. If you wait a long time in between, your embeds will have partially or fully cured and adding them to new soap can cause them to protrude a bit as the new soap cures and shrinks around the embeds.
 - I use the exact same formulation for both the embeds and the main soap.
 - You can scent the embeds or keep them unscented. If you choose not to scent them and you have extra that you want for a different project, you are not limited by an existing fragrance.