This month I sort of stumbled into this challenge. I had not really intended on participating as I was not familiar with hot process/rebatch soaping and also simply lacked design ideas. So I planned on just watching what the others come up with and learn from a distance…
However, I managed to ruin two entire 3-pound batches of honey & beeswax soap last week…ugh! They were still usable but with the partial gelling my freezer had not been able to battle the design I had had in mind did not work out. What an extravagant waste of ingredients… Therefore I finally found myself looking into rebatching techniques.
The first rebatch went wrong too – I added too much liquid and ended up with wonky bars, odd texture and weird feeling lather. I had tried to throw in some rose petals and Himalayan pink salt to improve appearance, believe me, it did not help.
The second rebatch I did around the time that this month’s final chat forum was done and was able to use some of the tips and tricks the ladies shared about hot process & rebatch soaps from the transcript. I am glad to say the second rebatch attempt worked out much better! The base soap recipe is all natural and unscented to cater to those with sensitive skins and who cannot handle scent. Ingredients are olive oil, coconut oil, palm oil, castor oil and beeswax, distilled water and honey. When I rebatched I added distilled water and coconut cream (50/50) as a liquid and kept it at 8 oz of liquid to 3 lbs of soap.
So long story short, this is how I ended up with a rustic looking honey and beeswax soap…
…and when I decided to actively join the challenge for this month:).
Obviously I had to figure out how to spruce up this plain old soap a little. I found a Spellbinder’s Embossing Folder that had served me well for many crafts. I really like the musical design! Today it would be used in my soaping for the first time!
Let’s see how it goes! I rubbed some glycerin onto the raised parts of the plastic folder and then dusted it with dark cocoa powder.
I used a rubber mallet (can’t get much more rustic than that! :)) to – gently – tap the pattern onto the surface of my soaps:
It actually worked quite well! I had to redust the folder for each soap but it was no problem getting the image onto the soap. Sometimes I had to wipe down the surface of the soap a little with a clean, damp cloth to make the dark musical lines pop out more.
Then I got out some more of my paper crafting tools (die cuts, punches, distress inks etc.) and designed the wrapping for the soap. Here is the end result, my Soap Opera Bar:
Here are some more pictures of the bars:
So again I am really glad I got inspired to try and do my best at rescuing a batch of failed soap – instead of tossing it out. Now if you’ll excuse me, I have to go practice singing those lines in the shower…;)
Bye for now,
PS: I forgot to mention in my original post: I used the raised side of the embossing folder to be able to use it as a stamp and that is why the image ended up being mirrored. Otherwise I would have had the image colored with cocoa powder in the negative spaces, which I guess is ok but not the look I was going for. I like the musical notes being the colored part. Also the powder would have rubbed off much easier if it had not been engraved into the soap this way. In general this kind of embossing folder works great but you could decide to use one that has a pattern where it does not matter if the image is mirrored or not :)!