It’s been quiet around here of late, so it’s time for a post with lots of pictures, depicting the making of Blackberry Sage SunSoap. This is not a how-to post; I’ll get around to that at some later date. This is just a bit of inside information for people who want to know some more about how soap happens!
Generally at this point I add the fragrance oil to the base oils, unless I have some specific reason to hold off until later. Another bit of prepwork:
So, the oils have been melted together and then cooled to ~110 degrees, the lye, while not pictured separately, has also been mixed and cooled, and the pigment is blended and ready to go when it’s needed. So, it’s time to make soap!
I didn’t get a photo of the soap as it reached trace – once that happens, it’s usually time to work pretty fast. So we’ll skip over that and go on to the bits with color.
As the soap is fairly thick at this point, it is possible to create a fun, random swirl in this fashion.
Most of my soaps are poured into a trough-style mold at this juncture, to be sliced like a loaf into bars after a few days. This one is made in a flat mold, with dividers, though:
And then the lid goes on, and some blankets on top of that, and this soap, together with the rest of the day’s soapmaking yield, gets put to bed to undergo a pretty awesome chemical reaction – but that’s a topic for another day.
This particular soaping day was several weeks ago, meaning the soap made above is already off the curing rack and into inventory, though the photo hasn’t been updated yet – it still shows the previous batch, made in the other style of mold:
And that’s that – materials to finished product in 13 quick photos! Hope you enjoyed this lightning tour of soapmaking, and do please let me know if there are any specific parts of the process you’d like to hear more about, as I plan to expand on several details in time.