Hello Light Bearers!
It's time for the May entry of the Soap Challenge Club! This month, we are doing the Column Pour. This means that the soap is poured over a column of some kind. . . could be a coke bottle bottom, could be a wine glass, could be a embed like a star or snowflake. The soap must be made entirely of cold process soap and may not utilize dividers or embellishments during the actual pour. Dividers can be placed and batter can be swirled as you wish after the pour is completed.
I made quite a few soaps with this technique and found it enjoyable and not too fussy (meaning that I would use it to actually make soap to sell on the regular). I used a slightly modified recipe this time, using shea butter instead of cocoa butter, mainly because I had so much shea butter that needed to be used up. I also cut down on my liquid oils by quite a bit as I'm trying to make a bar with better longevity. This worked out fine and my batter worked well with each fragrance (all of which were new to me this time around!)
For my first attempt, I decided to make block bars utilizing my nine bar divider mold from Brambleberry. First, I poured white batter into the mold hoping to achieve more of a "slide" . . . I didn't really find this to be helpful actually. The pour went fine and I used 50 Shades from WSP. . . but I didn't love my color selection that I had such high hopes for. I also decided to pour some of the colors with a big coke bottle bottom and then pour the other half of the colors using a small bottom bottle after removing the larger one. It still made a cool soap, but I didn't love the outcome, didn't feel like the block bars really showcased what I was going for, and the colors just didn't jive well together. No worries though! Another attempt was in the wings. . .
On my second attempt, I used 2 rocks style cocktail glasses as my columns (I really liked this because they were heavy and easy to clean). I used Sweet Pea fragrance from WSP and it also worked beautifully. I thought the colors worked together really nicely and had great pop. Alas, I had the expected muddying with the removal of the glasses and neglected to hold back enough batter to "fix" the muddy spots. The muddy parts don't bother me in a serious way (I think they look neat actually), but I wanted to avoid the muddy parts for the competition in order to achieve a more uniform look. These soaps turned out so smooth and gorgeous! I'm entering them into the bonus category.
On my third attempt, I wanted to use my small bottle bottom in which I had cut out some panels in between the pour points in the hopes the the batter would fill in underneath the bottle. I also wanted to turn the bottle in between each color sequence. I'd be interested to try this particular technique again but perhaps with a different color scheme. I used Bay Rum for the fragrance and it is YUMMY! It also behaved very well. I was trying to go with a more masculine color scheme to match the fragrance and it just doesn't have much contrast. The twisting of the bottle made the pour lines a bit chaotic for the challenge in my opinion.
On my fourth and final attempt, I just thought I hadn't quite nailed it just yet. I decided to use a medium size bottle bottom that had five pour points. I was under a bit of a time crunch and so I just picked four colors that I liked and then added black and white. For this pour, I used Sweet Rain from WSP. . . and it also behaved really well! I thought the pour lines were dainty and elegant and the removal site from the bottle was covered in an acceptable way. This is the one I will entire into the competitive category for the Soap Challenge.
I hope you've enjoyed this peek into the soap making process!
Have a lovely rest of the month everyone!