Saturday, February 27, 2010

Tutorial: How to Line a Soap Mold with Freezer Paper

Having problems lining your wooden soap mold with freezer paper?  Here is a great tutorial by Ruth Esteves on the Nova Studio Blog.  It has great step by step pictures to help you line your soap mold perfectly.

Friday, February 26, 2010

How to Make Your Own Vegan Milk Bath

Milk baths have been well known in spas for hundreds of years for their skin benefits. Vegans can't enjoy a more traditional milk bath since they are opposed to the use of animal milk, but there's still ways to enjoy excellent milk baths if you're a vegan.  Here is an article written by aflowercross, on How to Make Your Own Vegan Milk Bath.

What I find interested is the use of coconut milk as a replacement for cows milk. From the milk recipe I received in Lori Nova's class, we used powdered milk that you can find at your local grocery store.  I do not think that coconut milk came in a powdered form, but if you cannot find it in powdered form there are probably other non-dairy powdered milks out on the market.  But any rate this would be a great for someone you know who is a vegan.

Thursday, February 25, 2010

Balloon Candles

Are you looking for a different technique in candlemaking?  Then why not check out this tutorial that has step by step instructions on how to make this interesting balloon candle from  It would be great decorating for birthday party or any other celebration.

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Learn How to Make Your Own Candles

If you are interested in creating your own candles, I have found these instructional videos from Expert Village to help you. Hope these are useful. Go and have fun with your new craft!

History of Candle Making

How to Make Scented Candles

Colors and Dyes Used in Candle Making

Wicks Used In Candle Making

Using Molds In Candle Making

Safety Tips for Making Candles

Setting Up Your Workspace

Keeping A Candle Making Journal

More Materials and Supplies

Making Soy Candles

More Ways to Make Soy Candles

Additional Recipes for Soy Candles


Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Ways to wrap handmade soap

by Debra McDuffee on Jun 9th 2008 2:00PM

Making handmade soap is an art form in itself. You can create swirls, layers, confetti, and textures in your cold process soap. It makes sense that you'd want to wrap your soap in a beautiful way too.

Your first instinct might be to use cellophane or another clear wrapper so you can see the gorgeous details of your soap, but if you make cold process soap from scratch, you will want to choose a more breathable wrapping.

The cold process soap likely retains some moisture from the curing process, which, unless you have been drying your soap for a year or so, is still not complete. Also, due to the high amount of naturally occurring glycerin in cold process soap, moisture is naturally attracted to it and you'll possibly end up with a soggy, moldy bar of soap if you use plastic.

After the jump, I'll share multitudes of wrapping ideas to make your soap look classy, country, funky, or somewhere in-between. In the meantime, peruse the gallery for some visual ideas.

If you like simply-wrapped soap:

*try the cigar band style using simple copy paper (white or colored, or even some of the stationery papers) or cardstock. Wrapping your soap so that some of it is still showing lets people see what your artistic bar looks like.

*wind a ribbon or metallic stretchy cord around the soap. It's simple and eye-catching, perfect for gift-giving.
inspired wrapping paper that fits the theme of your soap may be just the thing. Paper inspired by Turkish tiles wraps the Turkish soap in the gallery.

Your favorite handmade paper with a small tag attached, stating the type of soap.If rustic styling appeals to you:

*Wrap soap in muslin fabric and tie with twine, like a present.

*Corrugated cardboard may lend the look you want, tied with raffia.

*Brown kraft paper can be paired with raffia and twine again, or a gingham ribbon. If you are a funky monkey:

* try wrapping your soap in brown kraft paper and fastening with a thin wire embellished with colorful beads.
browse the remnant table at your local fabric store for the wildest material you can find. Wrap your soap in it and fasten with complimentary ribbon.

* use unique charms and embellishments when you tie your wrappers on with ribbon, raffia, or twine. You'll find little shovels for gardening soap, perhaps, or silk roses for a rose-scented soap.

*you might like a whimsical scrapbooking paper tied with ric-rac. If classy is your middle name:

*opt for the soap box, with your printed label on the outside. A metallic or patterned label will add some pizazz.

*a solid Thai mulberry paper with a complimentary cigar band label is eye-catching.

*a simple cigar band made of parchment paper and printed in a monochromatic color scheme may appeal to you. For even more soap wrapping ideas, visit The Ponte Vedra Soap Shoppe. What's your favorite wrapping for handmade soap?

Monday, February 22, 2010

How to prevent mistakes in soap making

I like to think of making soap along the same lines as cooking. Two people may start out with identical ingredients and depending on technique and skill level both may end up with totally different products - either mush or a gourmet dinner.

In making soap, technique is as important as the ingredients we use to make soap.

Soap making is a precise measurement of chemicals that when combined together with certain variables in place forms a reaction. The end product can be altered either by changing the variables or the ingredients. Mistakes occur when we do not measure accurately or inadvertently change a variable that is not accounted for.

Mistakes can be prevented by following proper procedure and sticking to it, even after your 200th time making soap.

1.Take the time to calculate your recipe using percentages, not volume measurements. This enables you to make adjustments easier and more accurately. By calculating your recipe based on percentages, you can better keep track and modify the recipe. Plus its easier to see what works and what does not. If you get a recipe from the internet, calculate it back to the percentages. This is easily done through the calculators available on websites such as Majestic Mountain Sage. Write down all formulas and check off as you add ingredients. This is the way nurses are taught to give medication. If you check off on your list, there is no second guessing if that portion was added. Do not rely on your memory.

2. Always weigh soap ingredients with an accurate scale. Most shops that sell scales also sell calibration weights to check the scale to make sure it is accurate. Again, volume measurement can be inaccurate. Invest in a scale that can measure in small increments. When making a sample batch less than 2 lbs, convert all measurements to grams. And Measure additives with an appropriate scale. Cosmetic scales ar especially good for weighing small amounts.

3. When making soap do not rush, be patient. Incorporating ingredients at the wrong time can seize the soap. If the recipe calls for combining the fats and lye solution at a certain temperature, do so. This can speed up or slow down trace. You may need to slow down trace because of the addition of fragrance or additives.

4. Know your recipe and ingredients. Make sample sizes before making big batches. Always test scents and additives in small batches. Although some scents will not seize a small batch, it may seize a larger batch. Your fragrance should be cp/hp compatible. Many manufacturers and fragrance retailers will provide you with this info if requested.

5. 90% of my soaping mistakes occurred because of being distracted by the phone or because I was in a hurry. I have learned that if you do not have time to dedicate to making soap, it is best to postpone it until there is sufficient time to do so.

Reprinted with permission from Winsome Tapper, Soapmaking Editor,


Sunday, February 21, 2010

Basket Weave Candles from Martha Stewart

If you would like to learn how to created this interesting basket weave candle, check out this tutorial from Martha Stewart Living. This decorative candle would be a interesting accent to any room.  They would even enhance your table or mantle.

Saturday, February 20, 2010

NEW! Shea Nut Whip Recipe from Fresholi

While checking the website for Fresholi I found this unique recipe for Shea Nut Whip.  It looks very similiar to a whipped body butter recipe that I learned how to make from Joan Morais at The Nova Studio back in 2008.

Check out Fresholi's website  for other great recipes. I see that they have a Wax Melt recipe that I am interesting in accessing.  But you need to become an author before you can have access to it.  I guess I will have to be patient.


30g Unrefined Shea butter
10g Hazelnut oil (light and slightly astringent - good for circulation)

7g Macadamia oil (moisturising and a good choice for mature skins, absorbs easy)

3g Squalane
2g Emulsifying powder

.8g Chicory inulin (don't worry about this one - just raise your emulsifying powder up 5g instead - that is a guess since I've not tried it)

2g Cetly alcohol
2g Vitamin E


38g Water

2g Marine extract (don't worry about this one either - just add in your own water soluble extract at this level or raise your water content to 40g)

2g Glycerine

.5g EO or FO of choice (this is optional, I didn't use it as I am quite enjoying the aroma of the unrefined shea)

Preservative (according to manufacturers instructions)


1) In a seperate bowl, whip the shea, squalane, vitamin E and a slight drizzle of the oils with an electric whisk - Whip until light and fluffy (Don't do this in a very large bowl, you will lose too much around the sides of the bowl)

2) Heat the oils, emulsifier and cetyl alcohol in a double boiler to 75 degrees. (make sure you give them a really good stir)

3) In a seperate double boiler, heat the water (try to get the water slightly hotter than the oils)

4) When both phases are hot enough, place a stick blender in the water phase and begin to stir the water while adding the oil phase in s thin, steady stream. Continue to blend over the heat for a further 3 minutes.

5) Transfer the bowl to an ice bath (while continuing to stir).

6) When the mixture has cooled to around 25-30 degrees and is showing signs of thickening add in your additives and blend again.

7) Then add your shea mixture carefully and continue stirring this time with an electric hand whisk.

8) Add in your EO's/FO's (optional) and your preservative and continue to whisk for a further 5 minutes

9) Then pop in the freezer for 5 minutes, whisk for 5, freeze for 5, whisk for 5 - keep doing this until you have the texture you want.

10) Jar and label (then begin the big clean up)


Friday, February 19, 2010

Body Butter Benefits

If you are not sure what the difference between a body butter and body balm is I found this great article from Magic Senses with the definition of what a body butter actually is and what are the benefits.  Read on.

What is Body Butter?

Body butter  is a type of skin moisturizer used by many for extremely dry skin, particularly in the winter. It is usually much heavier than creams and lotions as it is made with a lot less water. Most body butters use a seed or nut oil as their base ingredient to produce the most hydrating formula possible and because it is made with nutrient-rich ingredients, it protects as well as hydrates the skin.

To make body butter, the seed or nut of choice is ground up to release its oil. The oil is then extracted from the pulp and mixed with other ingredients to produce the fragrant body butter.


There are many different benefits to using body butter, when compared to creams and lotions. Natural body butter is made using only natural ingredients, which are better for your skin and your body in general. They contain a higher level of emollients, which are absorbed into the skin and keep it moisturized. Body butter forms a protective layer over the skin, helping reduce the effects of the sun and hot and cold air. Many find that their skin is much softer and less prone to cracking or becoming inflamed when they use body butter.

Shea body butter created from Shea nuts, has high levels of vitamins A, E and F. These vitamins help to keep the skin moisturized and clear, plus they help to protect and rejuvenate the skin. Shea body butter can reduce fine lines and wrinkles and is beneficial for many skin complaints, including sun damaged skin and some skin conditions, such as eczema.


Thursday, February 18, 2010

Recipes for Winter Stress

Heather Howell, talked on her radio show  "Aromatherapist On-Call"  last month about essential oils that had great calming qualities. I will list the oils that were discussed and I encourage you to research these oils more. She discussed some of the calming essential oils and posted recipes on her blog Educating Your Seneses.

If you are feeling stressed out and would you like to find out what theses recipes are please visit the following link  -

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Recipe: Lime and Basil Soak


1kg Sea Salt (or a mixture of sea salt & Epsom salt).
5g Bicarbonate of Soda.
10ml Almond Oil.

Essential Oils:

5 Drops Lime.
4 Drops Basil.
1 Drop Yellow Colouring.
1 Drop Green Colouring.

1. In a bowl, mix together the salt and bicarbonate of soda.

2. In a small cup, blend the oils, and the colouring.

3. Add the oils, to the salt mixture and blend together.

4. Allow the mixture to sit for half an hour to absorb aroma and colour.

5. Place in a jar with a tight-fitting lid.


Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Rose and Ginseng Toner (Alcohol Free)

Here is a rceipe I found on Duffin's Soap Bakery site that I thought you might like to try:


25% Witch Hazel
25% Rose Water
42% Distrilled Water
1% Glycerin
1% Sodium Lactate
0.5% Tocopheral Acetate (Vitamin E)
2% Panthenol (Vitamin B5)
2% Polysorbate 20
0.5% Ginseng Extract
0.5% Aloe Vera Extract
0.5% Preservative

Note: After I use it, my face feels clean and fresh. It’s totally different from some toner that mix with an alcohol. Iuse my toner every morning and night after my cleanser. Now, I don’t need to buy any products from store. I have my own toner and lotion. wowowow!!


Monday, February 15, 2010

Coconut Rose Body Whip Recipe From Sapphire Blue

Here is a recipe for a Body Whip from Sapphire Blue that you may enjoy if you are not allergic to coconut or roses. Since this product is made with water, you may want to add a preservative to extend the shelf life. The author mentions this at the end of the recipe. 

This recipes makes a creamy, whipped up body butter that smells fantastic due to the virgin coconut oil and rose hydrosol.


60 grams (about 2.2 ounces) rose hydrosol
16 grams (about 1/2 ounce) extra virgin olive oil
10 grams (about 1/3 ounce) virgin coconut oil
8 grams (about 1/4 ounce) emulsifying wax
4 grams (about 1 teaspoon) cocoa butter
2 grams (about 1/2 teaspoon) stearic acid

(Note that both grams and ounces and ounces in this recipe are for weight, NOT volume.)

Blending Procedure:

•Combine the cocoa butter, olive oil, coconut oil, emulsifying wax and stearic acid in a large heat proof (I use Pyrex) glass measuring cup with a pour spout. Place the mixture in a hot water bath until the waxes are completely melted. Remove from heat.

•Place the rose hydrosol in a separate Pyrex cup and warm for about 15 minutes in a hot water bath.

•After stirring the oils/waxes together to make sure they are evenly combined, begin stirring the oil/wax mixture with an electric mixer on medium speed and add the hydrosol as you stir. You will see the mixture begin to thicken as you blend it. Continue mixing until until Coconut Rose Body Whip thickens to a creamy, buttery consistency. This should take about 5-10 minutes at most.

•Pour the product into clean jars and allow to cool before capping. Remember that you can add a preservative to your product to extend the shelf life. If you do this, follow your supplier''s instructions. If you don't use a preservative, your Coconut Rose Body Whip should last up to a month if you are careful to use a clean cosmetic spatula instead of your fingers to dispense it. Storing it in the fridge between uses will also extend shelf life.

•You may add the preservative of your choice to this product by following the preservative manufacturer's instructions for use. If you do not use a preservative, your cream should last up to 2 weeks if you have used fresh ingredients and if you dispense it with a clean utensil (like a cosmetic spatula) and store it in a cool, dry place. Refrigeration between uses will extend shelf life.



Sunday, February 14, 2010

How to Make Peppermint Herbal Tinctures: Recipe and Uses

If you are interested in learning how to make a peppermint herbal tincture and what it is used for, then check out this article by HS Schulte on 


Valentine Embedded Candle Tutorial (Variation) from Bonnie Bath

Are you bored with the way you are making your candles? If you are looking making your candles look different from any other then take a look at this cute variation of making an embedded candle from Bonnie Bath Company.

Saturday, February 13, 2010

Bath Tub Whoopie Pies

This is a three part recipe. So much so, that the third part will have to be completed at least 24 hours after the first. To start this recipe, we'll begin with the "chocolate cookies" that make up the top and bottom of the Whoopie Pies.
Phase One: Making CookiesWhoopie_pies

Combine all dry ingredients in a large mixing bowl. Stir the ingredients very well. There should be no clumps in the mixture. To achieve a completely even color, as shown in the picture, you may need to put the powders in a food processor, blender or other closed topped mixer.
Melt your Cocoa Butter in a double boiler, or in the microwave. If you use a microwave to melt your Cocoa Butter keep a close eye on it. Microwave in short 5 second bursts and mix well in between each burst of heat. In small mixing bowl combine the melted Cocoa Butter with your other wet ingredients. Stir well.
Slowly pour your liquid ingredients into the container with your dry powders. Stir this mixture well, making sure to distribute the moisture quickly and evenly.Add just enough liquid to make the mixture packable. This is a similar technique to making Bath Bombs.
Cover a baking sheet or sturdy tray with a sheet of waxed paper. With clean hands, knead the Whoopie Pie mixture. Make small balls of "dough" with your hands* They should be roughly the size of a clementine or a small lime. Separate each ball of dough into two equal portions, making each portion into it's own smaller ball of dough. Gently press the balls of dough onto the cookie sheet. Use your fingers to press them into small circles or domes. Keep each set of two cookies together so that you can match them up during phase two of the recipe.
Allow your cookies to dry for about 24 to 48 hours. The longer they sit, the better. They will become harder and more durable as time passes. Make sure your cookies sit in a cool, dry place. Humidity can be disastrous to this recipe.
*Note: If your "dough" is not sticking together try adding a little more melted Cocoa Butter to your mixture. If it is too slimy to work with, try adding more Oat Flour.
Bath_tub_whoopie_pie_closePhase Two: The Icing on the Cake
Melt the Beeswax in a double boiler. Once it has completely melted, remove from heat and add the Shealoe Butter. Shealoe must be melted gently or it can be damaged. Make sure to mix it continually as it melts. When the Shealoe has liquefied, add the Cornstarch and the Kaolin Clay to the double boiler, continually whipping as the mixture cools.
As soon as the mixture in the double boiler is completely mixed and uniformly melted, pour the contents into a large mixing bowl. Beat the mixture until it becomes cool using an electric mixer or a whisk. When the mixture cools to room temperature add the Buttercream Fragrance Oil and mix once more. The mixture will not set up and harden as soon as it becomes cool, this can take up to twenty four hours. While the mixture is cool, but still very soft, transfer it into a pastry bag. Make sure the tip and the open end of the bag are properly sealed and leave your mixture in a cool dry place until it is ready for the next phase of the recipe. Leaving the mixture in the refrigerator is unnecessary as it may cause the "frosting" to become too hard to use.
Bath_tub_whoopie_pies_stacked_2Phase Three: All Together Now
Over the next twenty four to forty eight hours you should check your cookies periodically to see how quickly they are hardening up. When they are firm enough to pick up, turn over and handle without crumbling they are ready for the final phase of the recipe.*
Also keep an eye on your "frosting". If you made it the same day that you made your "cookies" it should be quite firm by the time your cookies have hardened. Apply a frosting tip to your filled pastry bag to get started. You'll be frosting every other cookie, leaving half of the cookies to top the Whoopie Pies. Start frosting from the center of your cookie, drawing a swirl to the outside edge. It won't take very much frosting for each Whoopie Pie. When your cookies are frosted, take their corresponding un-frosted cookie and place it on top. This completes the Whoopie Pies! You may want to give them an extra day or two after you frost them before giving them out or attempting to ship them anywhere. That should give them plenty of time to harden up.
*Note: Due to the humidity or dryness of the air this hardening time may vary. If the weather is too hot or humid this recipe may fail.
Using these sweet little treats is as easy as pie. Just drop one Bath Tub Whoope Pie into the bath tub for a deliciously fizzy treat. To make your treats last longer, try using 1/2 a Pie at a time.
Packaging Bath Tub Whoopie Pies can be almost as fun as making them. Cello bags tied with colorful ribbons or bakery and candy boxes would make lovely presentations. Just be careful to mark them well or someone is bound to take a bite! It is also important to keep the Whoopie Pies dry. Make sure to use packaging that is as air tight as possible.


**Note: To create an all natural version of this recipe simply leave out the fragrance oils and colorants. The natural color of the Cocoa Powder and the aroma of the Cocoa Butter will provide a hint of chocolate scent and brown pigment. Also, if you would like to make a vegan variation, the Beeswax can be substituted for 1 teaspoon of Candelilla Wax. The Whole Milk Powder can also be replaced with Coconut Milk Powder or additional Cornstarch. Please be aware that making any changes such as these to the original recipe will alter the results.

Friday, February 12, 2010

How to Make Scented Candle Melt/Tarts

Do you love to burn candles but do not like the mess? Or you have purchased Candles Melts/Tarts and wondered how to make your own? Well, here is a tutorial by Jane Lake on how to make your own. This project looks easy enough that you could make these in your free time.

Thursday, February 11, 2010

Essential Oils - Blending Scents

A great natural fragrance begins with essential oils. Wouldn't it be great to have the nose of a perfumer? To be able to pick out the different scents in a blend without being told what they were.

Alas, I do not have that nose and must settle for simpler fragrance blends using only 3 or 4 essential oils. Sometimes I become daring and throw in one or two more.Toothpicks are a good tool to use to create scents without using too much of those expensive oils. I just dip the toothpick into the oil and call that one drop. After I have a few toothpicks scented, I put them together to see if I like that blend. Very little essential oil is wasted and if I put the toothpicks in a container, I can come back later to see if I still like the blend or if it needs more work. My best advice is to follow your nose. Everyone has a different idea of what smells good so you might as well make one that you like.

Historically, essential oils were put into catagories based on the musical scale system. This classification process, invented by a Frenchman by the name of Piesse, is still followed today though to a lesser degree. The oils are classified as being a top, middle or base note.

Top notes are fleeting. Their scent is highly volitile but provide that first flush of scent.

Middle notes take longer to notice and provide body to the scent blend.

Base notes are rich, heavy scents that are long lasting. They are slow to evaporate and act as a fixative in the blend.

A table ( with the oils listed under their corresponding note. Some essential oils can belong to more than one catagory and there are many different opinions as to where each belongs, so treat this table as a guideline only.

For more information on essential oils, go to the essential oils page ( of the site.

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Aromatherapy Recipes: Pillow Mist

Combine these aromatherapy oils and ingredients:

4 drops Lavender (Lavandula augustifolia) essential oil
4 drops Neroli (Citrus aurantium bigaradia) essential oil
8 drops Spikenard (Nardostachys jatamansi) essential oil
3/4 oz. Neroli (Citrus aurantium bigaradia) hydrosol
1/4 oz. Everclear (or other high proof alcohol)

Combine all ingredients in a 1 oz. amber glass bottle with a spray top. Just before bedtime, shake well and mist over pillows and sheets.


Tuesday, February 9, 2010

What are Floral Waters?

What are floral waters and what are they used for?  Well, they can be used for? To get to the bottom of this question, people at have an anwer to that burning question.  According to

"Floral waters are waters which have been infused with the essences of various flowers. Some common floral waters are made with flowers like lavender, rose, orange blossom, chamomile, and rosemary. There are a variety of uses for floral waters, ranging from body care to cooking, and there are a number of styles of floral waters to choose from. These products are often available at large markets and health food stores, and they can also be ordered directly from the companies which produce them.

Many companies distinguish between a hydrosol, which is a floral water made with the water used during steam distillation of essential oils, and a floral water, made with essential oil which is added to water. Some people believe that hydrosols are superior, because they often integrate a wider range of scents, and they can be quite strong. Floral waters made with essential oil are also of varying quality, because the strength depends on how much essential oil is used, what kind of water it is suspended in, and how well distilled the essential oil was to begin with.

In cooking, floral waters have famously been used in the Middle East for centuries. Many Middle Eastern pastries and desserts include floral waters like orange blossom water and rose water, and floral waters can also be added to savory dishes, as well. Typically they are used in moderate amounts, so that the strong scent and flavor do not become overwhelming. Floral waters can also become cloying if they are applied to food in excess.

In beauty care, there are all sorts of ways to use floral waters. Some people apply them directly to their skin after bathing, using them as a mild natural perfume and taking advantage of the substances in the floral waters which can be beneficial to the skin. Others apply floral waters to change their mood, using things like lavender to calm down during a stressful day. Floral waters can also be added to bodycare products like moisturizers and scrubs.

If you want to use floral waters in cooking, it is important to use food-grade floral waters. While many cosmetic floral waters are perfectly safe to consume, this is not always the case, and it is better to be safe than sorry. Some cosmetic hydrosols and floral waters are treated with additives to prolong their shelf life or enhance their scent, and these additives are not safe for consumption. Look for floral waters which are clearly marked for cooking when you want to use floral waters in recipes; food grade floral waters can also be used cosmetically."

Monday, February 8, 2010

Altered Valentine Tag Project

I am a big fan of the show Creative Juice on HGTV/DIY.  And I found this cute Altered Valentine Gift Tag on Cathie Filian's blog. Even if Valentine's Day has past, one could probably "alter it" for any celebration.

If you are interested in the other projects she posts on her site, please visit


Mod Podge matte
Folkart paint 437 lipstick red
Folkart Extreme Glitter red
1 wood heart
1 wood or chipboard tag
decorative paper – 2 styles
Foam paintbrushes
Hot Glue or tacky glue
Paper flowers


1. Paint the wood heart red. Topcoat with 3 coats of extreme glitter. Allow to dry.

2. Trace around the tag onto the decorative paper. Cutout the shape. Apply Mod Podge to the tag and the back of the paper. Place the paper on the tag. Apply more mod podge to the top, press with your finger until smooth. Apply more Mod Podge is necessary. Smooth your brush strokes.

3. Cut a heat shape that is slightly larger than the wood heart. Glue the heart and paper flowers to the tag using Mod Podge.

4. Once everything is dry, hot glue the heart in the center and add rhinestones. Tie a ribbon through the hole on the tag.

Soapylove Tutorial: Ombre Heart Soaps

Here is another cute Valentine's soap project from Soapylove.  Debbie had taught a class at Otion in 2008, where she meet Paula Kates of PJ Soaps (  Debbie had learned this method from Paula and did not use it until now.

So check out how what Debbie learned from Paula with this easy tutorial.  Have fun!

Sunday, February 7, 2010

Bath & Body Gift Ideas

I found this creative gifts  on Bath and Body Craft Gossip ( site:

#1 Butter Cream Bath Jewels from Dearly Yours (

#2 Gift Sets by Wild Women Soaps (

#3 Bath Teas by A Little Something Wicked (

#4 Majesty Gift Sets from Primal Elements (

#5 The Birthday Box by Seascape Soap Company (

#6 Bee Refreshed Gift Basket by Bee Beautiful Natural Skin Care (

My favorites if these gift ideas are  #1 and #5.  I like #1 for the actual cuteness of the bath bomb. The frosting seals the deal for me on that one.  And #5 I like the whole packaging aspects from the bright foil wrapping to the clever box container. Anyone of these would be great presents but my favorites would be great for Valentine's Day, Mother's Day, or birthday.

Make Your Lavender Eye Masks

A cloth eye mask filled with fragrant herbs can make all the difference between having a fitful rest or a deep night's sleep. For centuries, lavender has been prized for its use in perfumes and soaps, and it is also believed to combat depression, stress, nervousness, and insomnia. This simple project requires only a few materials; you can download our template for the mask or draw one of your own.

Lavender Eye Mask How-To

Tools and Materials

12-by-10-inch piece of woven silk
Template (Optional)
Tailor's chalk
Needle or point turner
Funnel or paper cone
Pinking shears

1. Fold silk in half horizontally, and place the template on the fabric, aligning the straight side of the template with the fold. Trace the template with tailor's chalk, and cut it out, making sure not to cut along the fold.

2. Pin the layers together, and machine-sew a 1/4-inch seam around the perimeter, leaving a 1 1/2-inch opening on both sides of the mask. Pink the seam allowance to prevent fraying, and cut notches along the nose area to ease the curve.

3. Turn the mask right side out, and use a point turner or needle to shape the corners. Fold the mask in half vertically, and press a crease into the fold.

4. Unfold the mask, and stitch over the crease from top to bottom.

5. Mix 3/4 cup flaxseed with 2 tablespoons lavender. Use a funnel or paper cone to fill each side of the mask with about 4 ounces mixture per side.

6. Close the openings of the mask with small hand stitches.


Saturday, February 6, 2010

Cupid's Heart Melt & Pour Soaps Tutorial From Go Planet Earth

Looking for something different to give for Valetine's Day, but do not want to give the traditional sweets?  Do you want to make something but you do not want it to take alot of time?  Then take a looking at this simple Valentine's soap project from Go Planet Earth.

This tutorial will show you how to make these cute soaps in addition to suggested card verbiage.  So check it out today!  And have fun!

Make Your Own Laundry Soap Tutorial

Little by little, I am being more enviromentally conscience.  I always wanted to learn how to make my own laundry soap.  Well, I found a recipe that I am interested in trying. Here is a simple recipe that has nice step by step tutorial with pictures.

If anyone has a recipe they would like to share, please let me know about it. Even the horror stories.

Friday, February 5, 2010

Altered Valentine Candy Boxes

I found this cute idea on Cathie Filian's blog. This would be a cute packaging idea if you made small soaps that looked like candies.  But you may want to place a warning inside the box.

For other craft ideas, please visit Cathie's blog at


Mod Podge matte
Folkart paint 413 pink
Folkart Extreme Glitter hologram
Clear heart shaped favor box
Foam paintbrush
Hot glue
Decorative paper
Wood heart
Ribbon or trim
Silk or paper flower


1. Trace the lid of the candy box onto decorative paper. Apply a layer of Mod Podge on to the box lid and to the back of the paper. Place the paper on the lid. Apply more mod podge to the top, press with your finger until smooth. Apply more Mod Podge is necessary. Smooth your brush strokes.

2. Paint the wood heart pink. Topcoat with 3 coats of extreme glitter. Allow to dry.

3. Using hot glue, add trim across the box, the heart to the top of the box and a silk flower and rhinestone to the heart.


Camilla Oil Soap Recipe (Cold Process)

If you would like the recipe for these beautifuls soaps, check out the recipe from Soap Making Essentials website.

Thursday, February 4, 2010

Aroma Putty Recipe

There's a little history that goes with this....

Well, I'll divulge all... I get a lot of headaches and frequent migraines (any migraine sufferer will tell you that the two are very different, one is a pain the other is dished out by the Devil himself). As a mum, or I should say 'Mema', as my two call me for some strange, unknown reason, I do mum things. No I'm not referring to the roles of cook, cleaner, room service, teacher, taxi driver, personal bum & snot wiper, story teller, taxi driver, ATM (Automatic Transfer Mema), counsellor, etc... etc... and so on (maybe the cause of many a 'bad head'). I am referring to the role In-House Entertainer.

One thing my children love to do is play with play dough and I have found that they also love to tread on it, embed it into the carpet as well as the dog, poor Norman. Anyway, one time, a few years ago when my daughter was very little, as she was making sausages a plenty, I was nursing another one of those icky headaches. My daughter thought it was highly amusing to slap a great lump of play dough right on my forehead. As she rolled about laughing at her amazing discovery that play dough sticks to Mema and make's her look all funny, I made my own discovery. My goodness, that cool play dough felt really good on my poorly head. Needless to say, it remained there for the rest of the duration of the play dough onslaught.

I decided to set about making and experimenting with different play dough recipes using different materials (I wanted something a bit more special than the usual) and found that cooked play dough was better than uncooked as it is more pliable, stretchy and lasts longer. I also used different vegetable oils and added essential oils and I even used shea butter. It just got better and better... although the kids are a little confused as to why they can't play with it. When combined, this dough smell's divine and as you palpate it, the essential oils are diffused and are being absorbed by the skin. The vegetable oil (and butter if used) has a softening effect on the skin.

A year or so later, I was at a Complimentary Therapy trade show. What did I find? Aroma Dough!! The most surprising thing of all is that is was being sold at around £10.00 a pop!!!! Looks like someone else had the same idea I did except this was for the purpose of palpation to not only release the essential oils but also to help with arthrits and to maintain hand joint mobility.

I keep mine in the fridge and use it as a cold compress when my head pound's. It's also fantastic as an eye compress as it just moulds to the contours. The good thing is, it stick's to the skin so you can carry on with all your usual little jobs, just tear some off the lump and place and mould to the head. I've also made a version for the children with lavender which has a calming effect when they are playing with it and also helps when they have a temperature. I also mould it to the shape of my head and then freeze it as an ice pack (no mess, no drips) but always put a cotton cloth on my skin first before applying the putty. Take on day's out and keep it in the cool box, you never know when you might need it.

I've used all sorts of essential oils, including mint and eucalyptus for colds/congestion, marjoram for migraines and I've even do a self-cooling version using menthol. There are endless uses and I am always being asked to make some for this or for that, it is very popular and very adaptable.

So here's the base recipe...

2 cups plain flour
2 cups water
1 cup salt
2 teaspoons cream of tartar
2 tablespoons of sweet almond/grapeseed or other favourite oil
20-30 drops of essential oil


10g shea butter (or other soft butter such as mango or avocado)
A few drops of food colouring (colour to reflect essential oils used)


Mix together the cream of tartar, flour, salt and place in a saucepan

Mix the water, oil and colouring and add to the dry mix

Heat slowly stirring all the time (at first it will look an icky mess but keep going and gradually it will begin to come together)

When the mixture forms a ball in the saucepan, remove from heat and turn out onto a sheet of greaseproof paper.

While still warm, begin to knead the dough (be careful not to burn yourself)

When cool, flatten out the dough and make several dips with your fingers in the dough

Add to the dips half the essential oils, knead thoroughly

Flatten & create some dips again and add the remainder of the essential oils. Knead thoroughly

Place into airtight containers and store in the fridge until required.

And that's it - I'd love to hear how you get on if you do give this a go!!


Wednesday, February 3, 2010

Melt & Pour Soap Making: Last Minute Valentine Cupcake Soaps

These Valentine Cupcake Soaps are adorable!  And they look good enough to eat (without the calories). Way not make them as give them as gifts this Valentine's Day? If you would like to make these, check out Go Planet Earth's tutorial for these adorable soaps. Wouldn't it be cute to put these in a pink bakery box?  Go Planet Earth also sells cupcake boxes that you can package your cupcake soaps in.

Mandarin Chocolate Truffle Soap

Recommended scent blend:

Satsuma fragrance oil, 1 oz.
Chocolate by Matsushima-type fragrance oil, 1/2 oz.
Chocolover's by Aquolina-type fragrance oil, 1/4 oz.
Vanilla Bean fragrance oil, 1/4 oz.
Oils (by weight)

Sweet almond oil, 8 oz.
Avocado oil, 4 oz.
Cocoa Butter Natural, 7 oz.
Coconut, 76 degree, 8 oz.
Jojoba oil, 9 oz.
Mango butter, 3 oz.
Palm Oil, 4 oz.
Palm stearic acid , 2 oz.

NaOH = 5.9 oz. BY WEIGHT
Total Liquids = 16 FLUID oz.

Making Chocolate Soaps 101 Directions:


Tuesday, February 2, 2010

Melt & Pour Soap Making: Miss O Princess Heart Soaps

If you loved the Miss O Princess Soapsicle Soaps from Denise at GoPlanetEarth, then here is an instructional video clip to make the Heart Soaps.

Both of these projeccts would be great to give out as gifts for Valentine's Day!

Monday, February 1, 2010

Valentine Cold Process Soap

If you are a cold process soapmaker, I found this cute Valentine's Cold Process from Anne Marie (The Soap Queen and Brambleberry fame) that would be great to make for Valentine's Day Gifts. Check out this step by step tutorial.

Ever since I took Ruth Esteves's Advanced CP class at The Nova Studio, I have been intrigued on what kinds of techniques I could do with this process of soap making.

3 D Heart Soap from Crafter's Touch

Here is a cute soap to create for your Valentines From Crafter's Touch. Or even to make as guest soaps for your powder room.  If you would like to create these cute soaps, check out the link below for full instructions.

Have fun and Happy Valentine's Day!