Sunday, March 31, 2013

Saponification Sunday...Easter, Eggs and Tiger Stripes

Well. Amy Warden  has done it again. Challenging soap makers around the world. she drives us all towards being the best we can be.

Once again, I failed.

Not miserably, but enough to feel a little soaping shame.  The first challenge in this round was the "Tiger Stripe" The technique is well demonstrated on Amy's blog and appears simple enough but simple is as simple does. Whatever that means. Sure, it doesn't look too bad from a distance but proof is in the (close-up) pudding.

  I chose two contrasting colors. Alkanet powder infused in olive oil, hoping for purple, and Annatto seed hoping for orange. Hope is not the same as skill. I split my batch in half, colored each and added a combination of Lemon Eucalyptus and Tangerine Essential oils.

I followed Amy's directions and began pouring soap. My "thin trace" lasted all of 15 seconds. I blame the Annetto powder as the soap portion colored with it got thick fast. One thin line became a thick line.

But I was still able to pour one line within another line as she had demonstrated. But they were thicker than I wanted. That is when it dawned on me that large  20 cc syringes would probably work very well for this. I'll use them next time.

By the end of the pour the Alkanet colored soap was thick but still pourable but the Annetto batch was globular, meaning thick as globs. I decided to let the whole batch gel under towels but the top got too hot so threw it in the frig which gave me a very ugly partial gel.

YIKES!  To add insult to incompetence, the bottom began to chip when I cut the soap this am.  Strike three for this soap. Oh wait, the EO's proved too strong and smelled more like Murphy's wood soap than the light and airy forest scent I was aiming for.

Strike four.

But...I did love the blue color I got with the alkanet and I did love learning another technique. I'll try the Tiger Stripe again later this week and share what I hope will be improved results. In the meantime, I am posting this batch on Amy's Blog just to make the others look even better.

Because I'm all about Martyr Soaping, that's why


  1. Sorry you had so much trouble with this batch. I wouldn't have expected that either. But that IS a lovely blue from the alkanet. And the partial gel is the perfect lesson in how gel affects final color. Thanks for taking one for the team! LOL

  2. I still love the look with the thicker lines! You took on the unpredictable natural colorants, and that takes guts!!

  3. I think that the partial gel looks like the sun and the blue and white stripes like the sky and some clouds. And that blue is amazing!

  4. All that may be true, but does it wash hands OK?

  5. I would not be picky about the crumbling or shape or color. only the lack of scent would fit my wants. That is a pretty blue.

  6. It's really pretty! And you are a good writer. Had me giggling through your post!

  7. The blue is so beautiful, your soap is very nice, Donna!

  8. Clearly i'm developmentally delayed in the aesthetics department, because i really like your soap. The belly shaped swirl on the bottom looks like a bird standing in front of the sun.

    I find i'm becoming more sensitive to heavily scented items, so the scent may be a bit more than i'd like, but not having an odorama option, i can't say for sure.

    If it works as soap should, i.e., lathers a bit and gets me clean, i'm happy.

  9. I loved the thicker stripes! And the partial gel adds character. Nothing wrong with it in my humble opinion.

    Kinky Witch Soap

  10. Love hearing and seeing your soap adventures. Love even more the product!

  11. It's still pretty, Donna! I love the blue that you got with the alkanet powder!