It's been a couple years since I made soap. After I closed my soap business in 2009 (Sable's Soap), I've only make small batches of goats milk soap here and there to keep my family supplied. Because I've only been milking one doe, I haven't had excess amounts of milk, which was fine during those years. I was so busy going to college to get my copyediting certification that there just wasn't time for anything extra. I'm not sure that I have the time now! But, I will be milking six to seven does this year on milk test. Our family will never be able to use that much milk for our table. And, it's illegal to sell it in the state of Washington, unless you have a licensed dairy. So, I came up with a new recipe with more affordable ingredients (as I'm not sure if I will be selling any or just stocking up for family and friends). I pulled my soapmaking equipment out of its box in the basement and ordered some new supplies as well.
Brambleberry sent me a sample of their Crisp Cotton fragrance. So, I thought I'd use that for this test of my recipe. On their website, they describe the scent as follows: This compex, super clean scent is a combination of Juicy Blood Orange, Sea Berry and Passionfruit notes, laced with Raspberry, Starfruit and Rosewater; and underscored by Violet Leaf, Thyme and Musk. Um, maybe I'm a hick, but it just smells like fabric softener to me. But, folks are raving about it in the reviews, so maybe it smells better after cure.
For my colors, I chose natural indigo for the bottom layer, titanium dioxide (white) for the middle, and an aquamarine blue oxide for the upper layer. My sweet almond oil that I use as a base for my colors was old and, therefore, not performing quite right. Good thing I ordered a new bottle for the next batch.
After getting both oils and lye solution to 91 degrees and a few whirs of the stick blender, the soap is at trace. I can't believe I used to mix my soap by hand with a wooden spoon. My friend Stephanie is assuring me it's OK to embrace technology. I do refuse to get a Smart Phone though!! Here, I divided up the soap into different containers and whisked in my colors. It's time to pour! (p.s. Always have some sort of mat or cover for your counter that you ONLY use for soapmaking. Do not mix your soap equipment with your cooking utensils either. I don't even wash my soapmaking equipment with the rest of my dishes.
Fun, fun. Here is the soap in the mold. I poured the indigo, then most of the white, then almost all of the aquamarine blue. I used my little whisk to do some in-mold swirls through the layers. Then, I poured a thin layer of white and dotted a bit of the aquamarine blue over that. The last step was swirling the blue into the white just on the top layer using a bamboo skewer. Now, the soap has been put to bed. I can cut it in 24-48 hours. I'll have to see how long this takes to set up. Someone is going to think I did laundry today by the smell in here! Ha, ha. Oh wait, I did get to one load of towels. Yay!