Why Soaps? I was interested to explore a new hobby beyond baking and the original intention was to do flower arrangement, but that didn’t happen and soap making came up because a good friend was interested in aroma therapy.
We started with pour and melt soaps because they were the easiest and we can explore mainly with colours and moulds, great for beginners.The downside of this method is the fact that soap bases are already done and it is not as pure as some soap makers would like them to be. This method is however suitable for engaging children as long as they know not to consume the soap. We did some gifts with the pour and melt method and it was pretty nice because we could play with dried flowers and beans and himalayan salt. Basically, you can add anything dry and does not spoil over time. Here are some pour and Melt soaps.
After the one day course, we got interested in the cold process soap, which allows one to choose the type of oil to put in the soaps and thus, is purer since we have control over the ingredients of the soap bases. The downside is that the use of lye or NAOH is controlled in Singapore and hence cold process soaps can only be made in places licensed to use lye. I enjoyed the cold process soaps better though. The other downside is the need to go back to the place to unmould the soaps about 2 to 3 days later and given how out of the way it is, I thought it could have been better to allow participants to bring the soaps back in the mould so we can unmould at home. The soaps are then left to cure for about 1.5 months to allow the PH level to drop to a level safe for use on our skin. As I am writing this, I realised I can use the soaps I have made in September starting tomorrow.
When I went back to unmould the soaps, Terri, one of the partners was doing soap art and I was so drawn to the pretty soaps that my friend and I went back to do soap art.
It was a 3 day workshop where we learnt to make soap clay, sakuras and roses from the soap clay and then arranging the flowers on the final cold process soap. Terri, our teacher, is extremely patient and fun. Oh, our lessons were with Sugar and Spice. Look how pretty.
I would go back to do my own Soaps in future because they are pretty and good gifts, plus our soap clays are enough for 1000 flowers I think. Hopefully, I will be able to develop this hobby.