I spent most of my long weekend making soap. In my dad's family we give homemade gifts (usually food) instead of buying things for each other. Since cooking isn't really my thing and baking is definitely not my thing I went with something non-edible. I used a goat's milk base for my soap and added lavender essential oil. I also picked some lavender flowers from my garden and dried them and added them to the soap as well. It was a fairly easy process once I got the hang of getting the base the right consistency. If you want to try making your own soap you can buy everything you need at the craft store:
- soap base (I used organic goat's milk, but you can also get a plain glycerin base as well)
- essential oils (if you can't find the scent you want check out the health food store for a better selection)
- soap molds ( I also found that the super flexible ice trays work too and come in pretty shapes)
- color (this is optional, but would add a nice touch to the soap)
- dried flowers (I picked my own, but you could also use silk flowers or other little objects)
Your soap base should come with instructions, but I found that putting chunks on the base into a glass bowl and microwaving it worked best. You want to be sure to microwave in short increments (10-15 seconds) and stir in between. When the soap is melty then add your scented oil and color. I mixed my flowers in at this point, but you can place them in the bottom of the mold and pour the soap around them if there's a specific way you want them arranged. It takes about 20 minutes for the soap to set up completely, but if your in a rush you can put the mold in the refrigerator. After everything is set gently flex the molds then turn over and apply light pressure on them and the soap should pop out (if need be you can run a pairing knife around the soap to loosen it on the sides).
Happy soap making! If anyone actually tries this let me know how it works out for you.
*in other news, I had intended to post some real pictures this weekend, but didn't feel like leaving my house to go somewhere with wifi. Now that I'm back at work I should be able to get some stuff posted this week.