Soap making questions. : LUSENET : Countryside : One Thread

I am new to soap making. I have recipes for one pound batches. If I want to double or triple the batches do I also double or triple all the ingredients, or would there be a difference in the amount of lye I use? Also, how do you get those beautful swirly effects like white soap with blue swirls or white with lavender swirls? Thanks for any info. Kathleen

-- Kathleen (, March 14, 2000


Kathleen, I learned most of what I know from Millers Homemade Soap Page; I got ingredients that I couldn't find locally from Sweetcakes and Lavender Lane. Do a search for "making soap". I've had lots of fun with this hobby. It"s a great way to make some extra money, too. I started with the idea of giving something a little different as gifts one year, and folks loved it. Now I have them in a local shop, and sell at craft shows and flea markets when I feel like it. I have always just gone ahead and doubled or tripled ingredients, with no negative effects. Best of luck! Cathy

-- Cathy Horn (, March 15, 2000.

I have a question. What do you use as a mold for your soap? I wish I could find some sort of molds that were individual so I don't have to cut the soap in bars. Seems they would look better.

-- barbara (, March 15, 2000.

I save the 1 Quart containers that 1/2 & 1/2 comes in. I then make a large batch of plain soap and mix the individual scents in the quart containers. Let the soap cure in the quarts for 2 days, peel away the paper from the quart containers and slice the soap. This method is very neat and easy to use. Chris

-- Chris Dehne (, March 15, 2000.

I bought a few plastic molds at A.C.Moore (craft store) for $1.59 each. I also got 2 pieces of PVC that are 3 inches across and 1 foot long. Grease them good, put plastic on the bottom end secured with a rubber band, and pour in your soap. Wrap wih a towel for at least 24 hours. If the soap is fairly firm, you can push it right out. If not, give it another day. Sometimes it wants to stick, so I put it in the freezer for 20 minutes or so. Usually it will slide right out. I slice it into 3/4 inch thick rounds and let it cure. I really try not to get too fancy, since part of my handmade soaps appeal is it's low price compared to many others that I see. I still like bars the best.

-- Cathy (, March 15, 2000.

For swirly effects, also called marbling,after the soap traces,pour most but not all of it into the mold- it needs to be something you can stir,not individual molds.Working quickly, color the reserved soap with soap dye chips or herbs or whatever you are using, and stir it well until it is all the same color. Pour the colored soap onto the plain soap and use a slotted spoon or a stick to go back and forth through the two layers a time or two.Too much stirring will ruin the effect. The plastic trays that storebought cookies and muffins come in make very nice individual molds.YOu can ask friends to save them for you and give them a bar of the soap after you make it.I also like the small size yogurt containers, the ones made with soft plastic, filled about 1/3 full they make a very nice round soap that is tapered just enough to pop out nicely.

-- Rebekah (, March 15, 2000.

I actually make a five pound using the receipe for the one pound. I did run in on the lye calulator chart to make sure. I also bought an expensive mold for Summers Past in CA., but my husband has since made me a couple of molds using the Miller cite deminions. My husband's is better because the sides unscrew(wooden mold) and you just push the soap out. I also have a few Milkey Way Molds which are really neat but are expensive and each mold only makes about three bars (lg bars). My mom really loves the molds so I use them for her as gifts. I would read the Kathy Miller site before buying the books. I have tried receipes in several books that have been flops. Since I started messing around on her web site I have put out some really nice bars. There is also a great forum on soap owned by Sugar Plum Sundries. Visit it it is wonderful. Whenever one has a question you get an answer in minutes. Good Luck,

-- Debbie (, March 20, 2000.

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