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Saturday, August 13, 2016

Great Cakes Soapworks Challenge ~ Dancing Funnels

Great Cakes Soap Technique Challenge for August 2016
Hosted by ~  Amy Warden

 ~ Dancing Funnels ~
taught by Tatsiana Serko of:  Creative Soap by Steso

 Here is my entry photo! 

 I chose to go with the all Natural category, as I really want  to expand my skills in this department!
I just have not forced my self to learn to infuse them and put them to use. Better late than never right? :)
 My very first attempt wasn't really serious, it was a combination of  Dancing funnel (mainly just using the bottles) on the bottom and swirl on upper half of the loaf. I like the variation using the sqeeze bottles can add to the design. (The pic of this is my Lemon Eucalyptus & Ylang bar on instagram.(@evassoapbasket).
 My first serious attempt I used Safflower petals in the Lye water. I should have either used more petals or a different infusion method i think. I did not get very much color out of this, using 2 heaped tsp of petals to the lye water for a 1# batch of oils. What color shows in the Lye bowl, disappeared once mixed with the oils. :(.   The border color was made adding Indigo pwdr to 1/4 or the batter.
(oils were: olive, coconut, castor, and shea butter)

 While I had reached emulsion, I found it way to thin. The borders would fade away so easily when adding the center. Next time i will make this portion darker! I did pour the lye water through a strainer to catch the petals. I did not take a pic of my first batch bars yet. Will add later hopefully. They just became a blurred mess from being too runny. Oh well, it's still good soap, and a fine learning experience! They may become interesting embeds : )

 My second and final try, as I was out of time... 
 Oils were 100% Coconut oil with a superfat of 22%. Scent was created using 9ml Tea Tree, 9ml Basil, and 6ml Tangerine essential oils. It smells awesome! After I added the Tangerine, I though it might have been a bad idea due to the orangey color of the oil. It likely affected the color of my batter slightly.
 Heres some pics of the process: 

Alkanet in the Lye water for 20 min while cooling. Strained lye solution while adding to the oils. The color in the bowl is mostly from the powder suspended in the water. It really did not leach out as much as I though. (another lesson!!)

After bringing to a thin trace (I did used the blender a short bit this time.) I divided the batter into my pour bottles, and added the Activated charcoal to 1 bottle (1/4 of the batter).
 1st pic is my first layer in the bottom of my mold. (a cut off Almond mild carton ~ pretty fancy huh?)
 As the batter was thickening up the last 3-4 'layers' i had to lightly tamp it to flatten my surface as I went.
 I recently brainstormed my own 'Brick Oven" to help my soap gel. Using a countertop burner (with a flat/solid surface) Starting close to an hour ahead of time, I placed two cement house bricks on it & turned it on just enough I could tell it was warming them slowly and evenly. By the time I was done with my pour they were close to 180 degrees. I turned it off, set my mold on them and covered it with a cardboard box. 

 I was able to cut after 5 & 1/2 hours (this is why is tried 100% coconut oil!!) I did this this morning, and final entries are 2:00 today!!!

My 'loaf' after unmolding and planing with a cheese slicer. Then another final cut pic.
I like using the squeeze bottles for the interesting affects for sure.
Thank to Tatsiana Serko for sharing this wonderful technique! : ) My appreciation and thanks to Amy Warden also for hosting this terrific learning platform! : )
I look forward, as always to seeing all the other awsome soaps! I always learn tons!

Have a wonderful day everyone! ~ Eva

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