Tuesday, September 18, 2012

A TARDIS A Day Keeps The Doctor At Bay?

As some on you that follow me on Facebook already know, I've been trying to make TARDIS soaps for about 2 months.  In between special orders and other projects, I've taken out the silicone mold that my hubby made me, and I make an attempt. 

I say "attempt" because I haven't made what I would consider to be a successful TARDIS yet!

You wouldn't think that mastering such a plain soap would be that difficult, would you?

 In the picture above, you'll see my three attempts so far (from left to right are my first, second and third attempts).

 On my first attempt, I was SO excited!  Mixed the soap w/ the color (ultra marine blue oxide) and fragrance and poured it in.  How hard could this be?  As it turns out, painfully!  When I unmolded the soap, I obviously hadn't waited long enough for it to harden, so it was very soft.  No problem, I thought, I'll just remelt and pour again.  So I did, and this time I left it overnight.  The next morning when I pulled it out of the mold it was absolutely chock full of air bubbles.  Now maybe to some poor sap on the street it wasn't that big of a deal, but to me it was an abject failure. 

After showing pictures to some more experienced soapers, I got some ideas on what I did wrong, and then moved on to my second attempt.

 One suggestion was that I should make it darker, so I did.  And I'm happy with that part.  In fact, I'm pretty much happy with everything about this attempt!  The only problem?  As this soap was in the mold my 5 year olds decided it would be fun to sprinkle it with glitter.  *sigh*  There goes my perfect TARDIS! 

Also, after having this one sit around my house for a while, I started to think that maybe it was too dark.  In this picture you can't really tell because it's in the nice sunshine, but inside the house it looks almost black which was not quite the look I was going for.

Ergo, TARDIS #3.  This time I thought for sure, that I would get it right.  Third time's a charm and all that rot.  Well, not so much!  Instead of re-measuring the mold to figure out how many ounces it would take I had the bright idea of putting one of my other attempts on the scale.  I made the terrible assumption that they'd be the same, right?  Wrong.  I totally should have known better, my earlier attempts had of course shrunken due to water evaporation.  If you scroll to the top or bottom you'll see that this one is noticably larger than the other two.

So you can guess what happened next.  When I poured in the soap it wasn't even close to enough, so it didn't completely fill the mold.  So I dumped it back into my measuring cup (which of course added air bubbles), added more soap, adjusted the color, and then poured it back into the mold.  This morning when I unmolded, I saw all the air bubbles, and then repeatedly bonked my head on the counter because I'm such a dork.

Moral of the story?  Don't even bother trying to rebatch TARDIS soaps.  Oh, and measure the dang mold before you even get started (or write it down somewhere for pete's sake!).

I am trying to get these perfected before Christmas, in the hopes that some Whovians out there will get their wish.  But obviously, I still have some work to do before they're ready for that!  My goal?  To make a TARDIS every night until I get it right! 

Thursday, September 6, 2012

Fall Soap and other fun stuff!

In my dreams, I'm a regular blogger.  But I just read an encouraging post about how to be better at that, so hopefully as I apply those tips I'll get better about it and you'll see more of me here!

But has gotten crazy here!  I started homeschool this week, so I've figured out a new routine to our day, and hopefully it makes room for both making kids literate, and for soap!

In the meantime, I've made some fun stuff!

 I made leaf, turkey, and pumpkin soaps using fallen leaves fragrance oil!  The girls helped me cut out the shapes, and were extremely cooperative that day so I let them help with other stuff too!  Hopefully this will be the start of more joint efforts.

 Here's a closer look at the leaves.  Each soap has two layers of color, so they're reversible to match holiday bathroom decor!

 And with the scraps from cutting out shapes, I made this fun autumn confetti soap!

I got a special order and part of it was for Peppermint Soap.  I was completely out, so I thought I'd try out my new colorants!  And WOW, what a result!

Since the Peppermint bars turned out so great, I thought I'd try something new and broke out the lollypop mold that's been languishing in the bottom of my mold bin.  Love the result, and I'm already sold out of them so looks like I'll have to make more!  I'm thinking these will do great at craft fairs this fall, and would make awesome stocking stuffers!

Since the girls were so helpful with the cut out soaps, I thought I'd let them make bath bombs with me.  Was my kitchen a wreck when we were done?  Absolutely!  But does bath bomb mix get mixed up faster with 4 little sets of hands in the bowl mixing away?  Yup!  It sure does!

 We made Green Tea w/ Himalayan pink salt and Pink Grapefruit Bath Bombs.  Both smell fantastic!

And then the pretty part!  I had someone special order bath bomb cupcakes for bridal party gifts, and her wedding colors are red/gold so I made these lovely little numbers for the bridal shower!  Honestly, they're the best ones I've made yet!  Maybe I'm actually getting the hang of piping bubble icing!  But let me tell ya, my wrists and hands were hurting for 48 hours after making them!  Not sure what I'm going to do if they turn into great sellers.

Anyway, hope your back-to-school week is going well at your house!  It's shaping up to be a great school year here at Sunbreak headquarters. :)