Soap Challenge 2012: Week Three—Mica Swirl

The challenge for week three of Great Cakes Soapworks‘ 2013 Soap Challenge was to create a soap with a mica swirl. Just as with the elemental swirl, I had never done this type of swirl before, mainly because I hadn’t tried micas. I had sold a few bars of my Angel soap, so I decided to remake it with a mica swirl instead of pink soap on the top.

Angel Soap

Wow, what a difference it made in the look of this soap! You can’t really see the detail properly, even in this photograph. The swirls have a beautiful iridescent sheen. I love it! Here is what my first batch of Angel soap looks like, for comparison:

Angel SoapI think the mica swirl is here to stay on this soap! I do not know when or if I would have attempted a mica swirl if not for this challenge, so I have this challenge to thank for both my Hobbit’s Garden soap, which I just LOOOOOVE, and now a change for better in my Angel soap.

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Soap Challenge 2013: Week Two—Elemental Swirl

The challenge for week two of Great Cakes Soapworks‘ 2013 Soap Challenge was to create a soap with an elemental swirl. I had never done this type of swirl before, and I think the general idea is to create a soap with contrasting elements, such as reds, oranges, and yellows to represent fire, and blues and greens to represent water. I didn’t exactly follow the “rules” because I had an idea for a soap I’ve been thinking about for some time, but for which I didn’t have a design idea: Hobbit’s Garden. I had already picked out scents of apples, oak, and English ivy, as well as a rainy/earthy scent, so I decided I would divide my scents as I was not doing as many colors as some of the other challenge participants.

Hobbit's GardenAs you can see, the bottom layer has a green, white, and black swirl, and I scented that layer with apples and oak and English ivy. The thin gold mica line in the middle represents the One Ring. My inspiration for the colors is the cover of the first edition of The Hobbit as drawn by J.R.R. Tolkien. The top layer was interesting because I was originally shooting for the bluer cover of The Hobbit.

Hobbit CoverBut the soap knew what it was doing and decided I needed to be a purist and go with darker blue of the original first edition:

Hobbit CoverIn fact, the blue came out exactly the slate blue of the cover above, as you can see.

I am so, so happy with this soap, and I can’t say I would have thought to try to make it like this if I had not been participating in the challenge, so thank you, thank you Amy Warden!

 

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Soap Challenge 2013: Week One—Tiger Stripe Swirl

I am excited to be participating in Great Cakes Soapworks‘ 2013 Soap Challenge. Each week offers soapers the opportunity to try a different challenge. The challenge for the first week was to create a soap with a tiger stripe swirl. Of the various challenges planned, this particular technique is the only one I’ve tried. I think it is nice to get my feet wet with the familiar.

Spearmint Stripe

I made spearmint-scented soap I am calling Spearmint Stripe. The soap may have been a bit too thin to do a true tiger stripe swirl. Some of the layers broke through a bit, and others seemed a bit wider than I was looking for. However, I am happy with the way it looks, which is exactly like it smells. My inspiration for the colors was the green and white  spearmint candies similar in appearance to peppermints. The colors came out exactly as I wanted, and the soaps smell delicious.

The soap is chock full of goodies for your skin: olive oil, coconut oil, palm oil, sweet almond oil, cocoa butter, and castor oil and a kiss of buttermilk and kaolin clay with a whisper of pure silk.

I just love the way it smells. The spearmint fragrance blends well with other fragrances, but it smells delicious on its own, too. I have noticed, as I said in one of the videos, that this fragrance seems to fade, but it pops back in wet soap, so when you shower with it, you may notice the spearmint scent more than in the dry bar. I am not sure why that is, but as smelling it in the shower is the whole point, I am happy.

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