Saturday, July 28, 2012

My search for a perfect Watermelon

I have been wanting to make a "Watermelon Soap" for a long time. You would think that it not be too hard to do. Well for starters I will need to find the perfect watermelon color, sounds like it would be pretty simple doesn't it. I have found that to get a good red is really hard to accomplish in a cold process soap. First you start out with a white to cream colored soap base, and when adding a red colorant to that you get pink, add more red you get a darker pink. Getting the perfect watermelon color will be my biggest challenge. I have seen pictures of soaps that  have a really nice red in their cold process soaps, I really envy the soapmaker for knowing the secret to getting that red. I don't feel that watermelon is a really bright red, to me that it has more of a reddish/coral coloring to it.
I ordered several different red colorants and got busy mixing up the colors for my test batch of soaps. This is what I mixed for my test:

Lake Dye #7
Lake Dye #22
Lake Dye #40
Bordeaux Mica
Queen Kathryn Mica
Ruby Rose Mica
Non-Bleeding Liquid Red
Valentine Red Liquid Colorant

Now I would like to show you some pictures of some of the testing process and my finished soaps.

Here are some of the test colors mixed up. I brushed some of
the colors onto the paper towel to see what they looked like.

Here are the test soaps with all 8 test colors.

Here they are out of the molds, you can see some slight
color changes in some of them. I have arrows pointing to
the soaps and what color I used.

I just could not help myself, I had to go pruchase a watermelon to be sure
of the color. And yes it was a good tasting watermelon! Here you can
see the comparison on the top row between the Red #40 & Red #7. The
other colors did not even come close to being correct.

Now for the bottom row. The only color I felt come close is
the Valentine Red liquid color.

This one is looking real close to the right color.
 I wonder if it might fade lighter as the soap cures?

One more comparison before I decide. I think the
#40 might be too light and the #7 looks more like a
tomato red. 

OK, I have now decided how I am going to color my soap, and of course
you need to have seeds for the watermelon. Now on to making my soap.

And here they are out of the mold and cut. They are scented
with at watermelon fragrance oil and boy do they smell good!
They will be available for sale the middle of August, 2012.

I just love how they turned out, and they were very fun to make.

I am wondering what color you would have choosen from the test bar pictures.

Hint: I used 2 of the color choices for these bars.

Saturday, July 14, 2012

Soap Challenge Soap Swap

I was sorry to have the "Soap Challenge" come to an end. I had a lot of fun trying new methods of soap making, but I think my favorite part was getting to see everyone else's soaps and read about their soap making adventure.

At the end of the challenge Amy offered us a 'Soap Swap" with the other participants, we just had to let her know if we were interested. Boy I jumped on that right away. How fun would that be! For the swap Amy teamed us up with another soap maker that had also signed up and we were to send one or two bars of soap that we made to each other.
I would like to share the soaps that I received from Lisa of Willow Moon Botanical Bodycare. They all smell so good and I cannot wait to try them all. I received a bar of her "Cocoa Mint Bliss" which was from her in the pot swirl challenge, along with one of her popular bars from her regular soap line "Comfrey, Oats & Aloe". As a special treat I also received some sample bars of soaps, "Earth Dance", Lemongrass & Ginger", "Rosemary Nettle" shampoo bar, Lavender & Tea Tree, and Apple Harvest". 

I want to thank Amy for all her hard work she put into this series of soap challenges for all of us to enjoy, learn more skills, and to connect us with other talented soap makers. I also would like to thank Lisa as my "Soap Challenge Swap Partner". This has been a fun adventure for me, if you were to ask me if I would do this again my answer would be "In a heartbeat, YES". If you ever get the chance to participate in something like this I would encourage you to jump at the chance, you will not regret it!
Amy makes some beautiful soaps, you can keep up with her creations on her blog and be sure to go to her web site and see what she has available at:  Great Cakes Soapworks