Thursday, May 17, 2012

WEEK 9 SOAP CHALLENGE peaked soap attempt # 2

Okay, let's try this again.  Peaked soap attempt #2.   Really, how difficult can these peaks BE? 
 I just need to get my top layer thick enough to hold a peak, right?  I must have had too light a trace last time.  I'm going to get this right.

Here's a look at my first attempt: Attempt #1

For more soap maker's gorgeous peaked topped soaps, be sure to check out:
Soap Challenge Week 9 link up

Again, a big thanks to Amy Warden for this challenge series.  It's pushed me to try techniques and to think about why things are working or not working, search the internet and ask questions.  

No sodium lactate this time and double the recipe.  Here it is:

12 oz olive oil
10 oz organic palm oil
4 oz coconut oil
4 oz cocoa butter
2 oz castor oil

4.34 oz lye
9.56 oz water
1 oz frozen cream added to oils prior to lye water

Fragrance:  Brambleberry's Orange Spice ( good)
Colors:  Azure Blue lab color (high ph) from Brambleberry and enough titanium dioxide to lighten it just a bit - it was too blue/gray 

I've never tried a cocoa powder layer, but think they look so cool.  I decided to use nutmeg instead of cocoa powder.   We'll see how it turns out. I think the smell goes well with the Orange Spice.

Here's what we have so far:

Here's the color of blue I used for the base. Sort of a cornflower blue I guess. 

This is the cream color used on the top half. I thought about white, but I always seem to attempt white and decided cream would look better with the blue this time. 

First layer with nutmeg on top. I love the dark color and the smell is amazing !!

So, here it is !  I see a couple air bubbles....just can't pound this thing down hard enough to release them, no matter how hard I try.  They're small, so I hope they don't show too much.

Here's the top...I was trying for a swirl in the center, but when I put the lid on  my mold, there went my swirl !  Next time I won't fill it so full.

The colors in this photo are off - it's really a cream on top - but you get the idea anyway. Now the waiting begins. That's always the hard part for me because I am NOT a patient person.  This is only the second time I've used it, but I'm really liking this 1-1/2 - 2 lb acrylic mold from Soap Making Resource.  Their customer service is great, too !  Thanks, Steve !!

More pictures to follow ...................

I'm happy with the blue - it held up well and actually lightened a bit rather than darkening. I wish I'd made the blue layer taller and kept the ends higher - I think the nutmeg line would have looked better. I'm still not getting the peaks to look like meringue, so I'll keep practicing!! 
My OCD comes out big time with soap making,  but I'm learning to be happy with the results and use them as a learning platform for the next batch.  


Amy W said...

I love how this one turned out! The blue looks great with the dark nutmeg line and cream on top. I bet it smells fantastic too! The wave-like peaks look great!!

Simple Pleasures Handmade Soap said...

These look so nice, and I love the blue. Nice job!

lwal50 said...

Lovely, Suzy, really like this one and love your nutmeg line, what a good idea!! Your peaks are great, xx Linda

Suzy Whitten said...

Thanks, Amy !! I was really hoping for some meringue-like peaks, but I'm happy with this batch overall.

Suzy Whitten said...

Thank you!! The blue turned out to be a nice surprise - it was to be more of a light blue, but I like it with the cream top...sort of a Dresden look to it.

Suzy Whitten said...

Aw, thank you, Linda !!! The nutmeg and the orange fragrance go well together I think. This isn't the blue I'd hoped for, but I really like the way it turned out. I guess that's the fun of soaping - you get some pleasant surprises once in awhile.

Anonymous said...

These look so cool, Suzy! I love the layers with nutmeg between. Now you've got me wanting to try it, too! And your wavy peaks turned out great! I'm pretty new to soaping too, having only been doing it just over 2 months now. When did you get started making soap?

Suzy Whitten said...

Aw, thanks Katy !! I'm pretty pleased with these - I'd have a taller (more soap) bottom layer and make sure my sides were raised so the nutmeg line doesn't dip - but for once I'm happy with the color. I'm color challenged when it comes to soap making. The color I have in my head usually doesn't translate to the soap. Sometimes I get a nice surprise though. This soap was going to be a light blue, but I'm happy with the cornflower blue color, too. My first batch of soap just finished curing and was made on March 24th, but I'd done a lot of reading and video watching prior to that. I had such a fear of lye, that I didn't know if I wanted to even try it. A sweet soap maker by the name of Catherine McGinnis (Newt+Fig soaps) encouraged me. I'd purchased soap from her before (and still do!) so I knew SHE knew what she was talking about. Your kids are SO cute, by the way...super sweet photo of all four. Thank you again for your comment, us newbies need to stick together ;-) ~Suzy

Andi @ We Love Soap said...

I think it looks really awesome!

Suzy Whitten said...

Thanks, Andi - I appreciate that !!!