Stunning In-the-Pot Swirl Winners!

This month’s Challenge Club featured the classic in-the-pot swirl. This was the first swirl I ever learned back in the day, and it remains one of my favorites. A lot of soapmakers prefer a swirl that they have more control over, but if you enjoy having completely unique soaps, no two bars of soap will turn out alike with this technique!

The guidelines for this challenge were to use in-the-pot swirls only. No stirring, swirling or otherwise messing with the soap once poured in the mold. The only variation allowed was for straight layers. Anything else could potentially detract from the star of the show: the in-the-pot swirl.

Our sponsor this month was Nature’s Garden. Our grand prize winner will receive a $50 gift certificate from them. They have recently rolled out a brand-new website, so you should definitely go check it out!

Here is the stunning soap that takes home the grand prize. Congratulations to Zahida of Handmade in Florida who created this lovely coffee soap with several layers of soap:

zahida coffee2 Stunning In the Pot Swirl Winners!

Coffee Soap by Handmade in Florida

In second place is Claudia’s fabulous “Nebula Swirl” soap, created with some help from her daughter. You’ll want to read her blog post about her process, as she has several great tips for achieving this effect:

claudia nebula Stunning In the Pot Swirl Winners!

Nebula Soap by Claudia and daughter

Third place goes to Lisa of Kangaroo Apple Soap Studio in Australia. She spent hours and hours creating this gorgeous rainbow layered soap:

lisa rainbow2 Stunning In the Pot Swirl Winners!

Rainbow Soap by Kangaroo Apple Soap Studio

Huge congrats to Claudia and Lisa! They win free registration to next month’s Challenge Club!

I know you will want to see the rest of the entries as well! They are located HERE.

Do you love the new watermarks for the winning entries? One of our Challenge Club members, Claudia Carpenter, created these logos and a super simple tool to watermark the photos just for fun! From now on, when you join the club and submit an entry, you’ll be able to use the tool to watermark your own photos with this:

entry Stunning In the Pot Swirl Winners!

Now for some more fun! We will be doing petal soaps for the October Challenge Club. Here is the test batch I created yesterday. I will be making another one for the video, now that I have a feel for the technique:

test batch Stunning In the Pot Swirl Winners!

Petal Soap Test Batch by Great Cakes Soapworks

You can do lots of fun things with this technique – even make flowers instead of rows of petals! (Novel idea, I know.) We have a new sponsor for October – have you heard of Mad Oils yet? They are a new company out of Florida with some fantastic fragrances, essential oils, micas, glitters, botanicals and so much more! They are providing a $50 gift certificate to the grand prize winner. (International winner will need to pay shipping only as they do not normally ship abroad.)

Registration will open Monday, September 29th.

NEW: I am also announcing the techniques and sponsors for November and December at this time. You will have the option to sign up for all three months on September 29th for just $15 (saves you a few bucks and you won’t miss the sign-up deadlines for November and December – yippee!!)

November – We are doing combing techniques! You’ve probably seen some of these techniques before – in fact if you’ve been with us since the beginning of the Challenge Club, we started with the peacock swirl. You can do a peacock swirl again, or something different! I will be demonstrating a technique that I have so far not seen in the soaping world. Now you’re curious, aren’t you?
Brambleberry will sponsor and provide the grand prize winner with their swirl tool kit to make all kinds of soaps with combing techniques!

Registration will open on October 27th. If you are pre-registered you will have access to the tutorial on that day. Soap will need to be made by November 12th, voting opens on the 15th and winners announced on the 19th.

December – The Spoon Swirl. Another classic with plenty of applications. Easy to do right before the holidays as well. Majestic Mountain Sage is sponsoring with a $100 gift certificate for the grand prize winner.

Registration will open on November 24th. If you are pre-registered you will have access to the tutorial on that day. Soap will need to be made by December 10th, voting opens on the 13th and winners announced on the 17th.

If you haven’t signed up for the Challenge Club newsletter yet, this is how you can get notified when registration opens:

notify me Stunning In the Pot Swirl Winners!

Negative Space Embedding – Whaaat?

I coined a new term for this month’s Soap Challenge Club! The technique is called Negative Space Embedding – the opposite of regular embedding. With this technique, participants were asked to pour a soap base, then cut holes (any shape or size) in it and fill those holes with fresh soap. I also gave the option of filling the holes with melt & pour soap. Let me tell you, this technique opened up a beautiful display of soap art which I’m sure you are all dying to see!

But before I announce the winners, I must thank our sponsors. Brambleberry has provided a $50 gift certificate, and Alex Kelly is providing a Custom Soap Stamp to our grand prize winner!!

Now we may proceed with the announcements! Congratulations goes to Zahida of Handmade in Florida for her beautiful negative “space” (literally!) embed soap. She created a beautiful soapy canvas of planets, sun, moon and stars:

zahida space Negative Space Embedding   Whaaat?

Negative “Space” Embed soap by Handmade in Florida

The honor of second and third place were such a tight race!! Second place goes to the talented Maya of Infusions blog from Tokyo, Japan. She created this beautiful interpretation of sea glass with her cold process soap base and transparent melt & pour “embeds”:

maya seaglass Negative Space Embedding   Whaaat?

Seaglass soap by Maya

In third place we have Claudia from Los Altos, California! Her 3D rainbow soap really stands out as a piece of soap art, don’t you think?

claudia rainbow Negative Space Embedding   Whaaat?

Rainbow soap by Claudia

Congratulations to Maya and Claudia! They win free registration to the September Challenge Club!

You can see the rest of the entries for this challenge HERE. It is worth taking a look!!

For September, we are doing in-the-pot swirls!! I was challenged to do NINE colors, so this is the soap I will be demonstrating in the video tutorial:

black cherry soap Negative Space Embedding   Whaaat?

Black Cherry soap by Great Cakes Soapworks

The official challenge will be to swirl in at least THREE colors. There’s no limit to the number of colors you can do, but sometimes less is more with this technique! Our sponsors this month are Nature’s Garden who will be providing a $50 gift certificate, as well as a NEW sponsor, Nicci Yeo, who is providing a $25 coupon code toward anything in her silicone soap mold shop, makermolds. So many different whimsical molds to choose from!

Registration for the September Challenge Club opens Monday, August 25th. You can sign up to be notified here:

notify me Negative Space Embedding   Whaaat?

Color Challenge Club Winners!

This month we did something a bit different for the Soap Challenge Club. Instead of doing a design, we worked on color matching – AND, we had two categories: natural and synthetic. Members who registered for the Club could create soaps with all-natural colorants or synthetic colorants, but they had to match either the mineral autumn palette, or the summer setting palette. They could enter either or both categories!

I’m so grateful to our sponsors this month! For the synthetic category, Nurture Soap Supplies sponsored for the first time, providing a very nice prize package of their vibrance micas along with some brand-new glitters, and their super white titanium dioxide. The winner will also receive a copy of Lori Nova Endre’s e-book, Coloring with Confidence! Super generous of both sponsors!

The natural colorants winner also gets a double prize: Majestic Mountain Sage is providing a box of botanicals (or $50 gift certificate), plus Ruth Esteves will be awarding the winner with a copy of her e-book, Coloring Soap Naturally. Also very generous! Woo hoo!!

Second and third place winners in each category receive free registration to next month’s Challenge Club!

Before I announce the winners, I want you to know what the voting guidelines were for this challenge. (Members could choose to use anywhere from 3-6 colors from the color palette for each of their soaps. They also had to photograph their soap with the color palette that they used, and describe the colorants used.)

1. Does the soap match ALL of the colors the creator intended to match? (if 3 colors were used, judge those 3 colors, etc.)
2. Are all the colors the creator intended to use distinguishable in the soap? (if 4 colors were used, can you identify all 4 colors in the soap, etc?)
3. Was the soap difficult to make?
4. Does the soap have a unique design?

So design was the last thing to consider. I think members did an excellent job choosing the winners based on these guidelines! The winning soaps match their color palettes pretty perfectly, AND they are beautiful to look at.

Let’s start with the synthetic category. All three winners chose the summer setting palette for their soaps. Our grand prize winner is a super talented soapmaker. Ladies and gentlemen, join me in congratulating Jodi of Lakehurst Farms in Vermont for her beautiful blue-ringed Energy soap:

jodis soap Color Challenge Club Winners!

Energy Soap by Lakehurst Farms

Second place goes to a brand-new Challenge Club member, Kelly of Soap Monkeys Soapworks in North Carolina!! She created a simple layered soap that accentuates each color of the palette:

soap monkeys Color Challenge Club Winners!

Layered soap by Soap Monkeys

Our third place winner is yet another brand-new Challenge Club member, Claudia in California! You can check out her soap blog here. Her stunning soap has a very unique pattern:

claudia soap Color Challenge Club Winners!

Amber scented soap by Claudia

And now for the winners in the all-natural category! All three winners chose the mineral autumn palette for their soaps. The grand prize winner is someone who joined the Club last month for the first time. This month, her soap couldn’t be more perfect for this challenge. Congratulations to Renee – of Lakehurst Farms in Vermont!! These Lakehurst Farms ladies took home BOTH prizes! Wow!

renee soap Color Challenge Club Winners!

Natural Colorants soap by Renee – Lakehurst Farms

Next we have someone who has been part of the Challenge Club since the very beginning, and her hard work has finally paid off! I am so pleased to announce that Heather of Winberg Bathworks in New Jersey take second place in the natural colorants category!

heathers soap Color Challenge Club Winners!

Natural Colorant soap (with a mystery scent blend!) by Winberg Soapworks

And in third place, we have someone who is not a stranger to placing in the Soap Challenge Club – the very talented Maya in Toyko, Japan!! Maya went to a lot of work to create embeds for her natural colored soap – that perfectly matches the color palette!

maya natural Color Challenge Club Winners!

Natural Color Soap scented patchouli, tea tree, Japanese cypress, and bergamot essential oils by Maya

Yes, you can see all the entries for the color challenge! Check out the Synthetic Category HERE, and the All-Natural Category HERE.

For August, we are back to design. The technique is what I am calling “Negative Space Embedding”. Here is my practice batch, that I’m not altogether thrilled with:

Cranberry Chutney Color Challenge Club Winners!

Cranberry Chutney soap by Great Cakes Soapworks

I will definitely be coming up with something better for the tutorial video! But now I can help you avoid the mistakes that I made…

Our sponsors will be Brambleberry with a $50 gift certificate, AND a new sponsor: Custom Soap Stamps by Alex Kelly. Alex is providing our winner with a custom soap stamp up to 3″ x 2″. Registration will open Monday, July 28th. You can sign up to be notified just as soon as it does:

notify me Color Challenge Club Winners!

Vote in the Saponifier Design Mania Contest!

Saponifier Magazine is hosting another Design Mania contest with four different categories: FruitSopia Swirl, Gradient Design, Miss Betty’s HP Swirl, and Embedded Soap Design. (These were all design tutorials that were featured in their May/June 2014 issue.)

saponfier may 2014 Vote in the Saponifier Design Mania Contest!

Saponifier Magazine May/June 2014

All submissions have been entered, and now it is time to vote! You might be able to pick out the ones I entered, but please vote for your favorites!! Voting ends July 28th.

vote now Vote in the Saponifier Design Mania Contest!

Announcing the Hanger Swirl Winners!

Originally I thought we were going to do the secret feather swirl for the June challenge as many participants had asked to do this technique. However, once I started practicing, I realized this was a very advanced and difficult-to-duplicate process. So I opened it up to include all kinds of hanger swirls instead!! There are so many different ways to do hanger swirls, and as you can see below, the creativity inside the Challenge Club really exploded.

But before I announce the winners, I must thank our sponsor, Brambleberry, for providing a $50 gift certificate as our grand prize!! I appreciate all the support I’ve received from Anne-Marie Faiola and Brambleberry for the Challenge Club – they have been such a faithful sponsor! I hope you’ll show your appreciation by giving them your business.

And now, what you’ve all been waiting for….it may not surprise you to hear that Zahida of Handmade in Florida stole the show with her zebra hanger swirl! Congratulations to her once again!!!

zahida zebra Announcing the Hanger Swirl Winners!

Zebra Hanger Swirl soap by Zahida

In second place, we have a new winner – this beautiful hanger swirl soap was created by Valerie of Paris, France. Please visit her blog, Mignonnes, venez-voir si… and check out her soap:

valeries soap Announcing the Hanger Swirl Winners!

White Tea soap by Valerie

And finally, we have TWO third place winners! First up is Maya of Infusions blog from Tokyo, Japan. She has placed in several Challenge Clubs previously. Her goal was to draw ylang-ylang and honeysuckle-like flowers with a hanger swirl. Check out her beautiful interpretation:

maya hanger Announcing the Hanger Swirl Winners!

Drawing Flowers with Hanger Swirl by Maya

Our other third place winner is Toni of Yale, Michigan with her gorgeous Bird of Paradise soap!! Toni has been a faithful Soap Challenge Club member and tied for 2nd place in our Embed Challenge in February. She’s earned her prize this month with this beauty:

tonis soap Announcing the Hanger Swirl Winners!

Bird of Paradise soap by Toni

Congratulations to the second and third place winners who will receive free registration to next month’s Soap Challenge Club!!

The rest of the hanger swirl soaps that were submitted for the challenge this month can be found HERE.

I am super excited to tell you about the July Challenge Club! We are doing a Color Challenge this time, with two categories to enter – all natural colorants or synthetic colorants. This means we have TWO grand prize winners and TWO sponsors!! Majestic Mountain Sage will be providing the prize for the natural colorants which will be the winner’s choice of a box of botanicals (U.S. only) or a $50 gift certificate. We have a brand new sponsor for the synthetic colorant winner!! Nurture Soap Supplies is putting together a fabulous prize package including a 4 oz. set of their Vibrance colors, plus seven brand-new, not-yet-released glitters, and a 4 oz. jar of their super white titanium dioxide! I will also give free registration to the August Soap Challenge to the second and third place winners from both categories. You can enter either category – or both! Here are the color palettes we will be using and the soaps I created with both palettes:

2 soaps Announcing the Hanger Swirl Winners!

Top soap is Blue Hawaiian, colored with synthetic colors. Bottom soap is Lemon Sunshine, colored with all natural colorants.

You can use anywhere from 3-6 colors from each palette. Either palette will lend itself to using natural or synthetic colors, and I will help you figure out how to do that! I will also provide specific guidelines as to which colorants are considered natural and which are synthetic, as I know the line can be somewhat blurry in this industry.

Registration will open on Monday. If you are not currently subscribed to our Soap Challenge Club newsletter, you can subscribe below to be notified as soon as registration opens:

notify me Announcing the Hanger Swirl Winners!

Congrats to Our Oil & Glycerin Swirl Winners!

Wow, wow, wow!! We had some fantastic, amazing, absolutely gorgeous soaps entered in this month’s Soap Challenge Club – so many great ones, in fact, that we ended up with ties for both 2nd and 3rd place, with so many others trailing by just a vote or two!! You’ll see some repeat winners, as well as some new ones this month…and such a wonderful variety of countries represented! Let me begin by thanking our sponsor, Nature’s Garden for providing a $50 gift certificate to our grand prize winner – and first place ran away with the prize! Congrats goes to Zahida of Handmade in Florida for her beautiful feather swirl soap with mica swirls on top:

zahida mica Congrats to Our Oil & Glycerin Swirl Winners!

Secret Feather Swirl with Oil & Mica Tops by Handmade in Florida

Tied for second place, we have these beauties:

ruth soap Congrats to Our Oil & Glycerin Swirl Winners!

Granberry Soap by Ruth of Seifenkoenigin

Ruth is from Austria, and she created the soap above using a faux funnel technique underneath and the mica swirls on top. She has a wonderful blog about her soapmaking journeys.

Also in second place is this beautiful rainbow mica swirl:

rainbow mica Congrats to Our Oil & Glycerin Swirl Winners!

Rainbow Mica Soap by Lisa of Kangaroo Apple Soap Studio

Lisa is an Aussie soaper, utilizing the beautiful peacock swirl with her oil & micas. You can check out the Kangaroo Apple Soap Studio Facebook page to see more of her work!

In third place, there are two more stunners:

catherine Congrats to Our Oil & Glycerin Swirl Winners!

Purple-Gold Mica Swirl soap by Soaps N Such

Catherine of Soaps N Such is from Virginia, and created this lavender soap with simply elegant glycerin & gold mica swirls. You can follow Soaps N Such on Pinterest

maya mica Congrats to Our Oil & Glycerin Swirl Winners!

Oriental Mint soap by Maya of Infusions

Maya of Infusions blog hails from Japan, and created a unique essential oil blend for her soap, with these lovely oil & mica as well as oil & cocoa powder swirls.

All four of our second and third place winners will receive free registration to next month’s Soap Challenge Club!!

If you would like to take a peek at the rest of the soaps that were entered, you can find them all right HERE.

We will be taking a short break for Memorial Weekend here in the U.S. and will start the June Challenge Club on Monday, June 2nd. I will announce the next technique and sponsor via the Soap Challenge Club newsletter, so if you’d like to be included, please click the link below:

notify me Congrats to Our Oil & Glycerin Swirl Winners!

Check Out These Amazing Floral Design Soaps!

We had a great group of soapmakers participating in the Flower Power Soap Challenge Club this month! The challenge was simply to create a floral design with cold-process soap. There are lots of choices for this type of technique, including piping, embeds, cut-outs, etc. Be sure to click on the photos of the winning soaps to learn more about their soaps and how they created them!

Our grand prize winner invested a lot of time and thought into creating her masterpiece of soap entitled “A Flower Path To…”. Congratulations to Maya of Infusions blog in Tokyo, Japan, who will receive a $50 gift certificate from Brambleberry for this work of soap art:

maya soap Check Out These Amazing Floral Design Soaps!

A Flower Path To…. by Maya of Infusions

Second place goes to a new member of the Club, Katrina of Sego Lily Soap in Utah with her beautiful lilac soap:

katrina lilac Check Out These Amazing Floral Design Soaps!

Lilacs in Bloom by Sego Lily Soap

Our third place winner is Zahida from Florida with this gorgeous rose covered cake:

zahida soap cake Check Out These Amazing Floral Design Soaps!

Strawberry Lemon Ombre Rose Cake by Zahida

Second and third place winners receive free registration to next month’s Challenge Club which will begin again on Monday! I’m sure you’d like to see the rest of the Challenge Club floral design soaps, so be sure to check them out HERE.

For next month, we will be doing Oil & Glycerin Swirls on top of cold-process soap. You can do this with either a slab mold or a log mold. Here is the soap I will be demonstrating for the Club:

Country Clothesline smaller Check Out These Amazing Floral Design Soaps!

Country Clothesline soap by Great Cakes Soapworks

Any soapmaker can join the Soap Challenge Club, whether you decide to compete for the prize or not. Many join to learn a new technique, push their skills, get encouragement and feedback – and get to know other soapmakers from all over the world!

Our sponsor will be Nature’s Garden! They will be providing a $50 gift certificate to our grand prize winner. Again, registration will open Monday. If you are signed up to receive Soap Challenge Club notifications, you will be the first to find out when it opens. If you would like to be notified, sign up below:

notify me Check Out These Amazing Floral Design Soaps!

Congrats to Our Drop Swirl Challenge Winners!

For March we had the largest number of Challenge Club members yet! Our technique was the drop swirl, which was definitely a popular one, as we had the highest percentage of members who submitted their soap as well. Members get three votes to spread out to their top three picks, excluding their own, and as you might imagine, choosing from 75 different entries was a rather difficult task! We had a very tight race up until the very end, but our grand prize winner took a margin of just three votes over second place. Congratulations goes to Zahida from Florida – once again!! She created a beautiful cold-process mixed with melt & pour drop swirl soap:

zahida Congrats to Our Drop Swirl Challenge Winners!

Zahida’s Sea Glass Drop Swirl Soap

Zahida wins the $100 gift certificate from Majestic Mountain Sage – woo hoo!!!

Our second and third place winners were not far behind. In second place we have Maya from Tokyo, Japan with her gorgeous ylang ylang and patchouli drop swirl soap:

maya Congrats to Our Drop Swirl Challenge Winners!

Maya of Infusions Drop Swirl soap with cocoa powder lines

Third place goes to Lisa from Sydney, Australia. Her drop swirl soap was inspired by a dragonfruit! She used yuzu fragrance and some poppy seeds to mimic the dragonfruit seeds.

dragonfruit Congrats to Our Drop Swirl Challenge Winners!

Dragonfruit drop swirl soap by Lisa of Kangaroo Apple Soap Studio

Maya and Lisa will receive free registration to next month’s Soap Challenge Club which will begin again on Monday! If you’d like to see the rest of the Challenge Club drop swirl soaps, you can check them out HERE.

For next month, I have chosen a Flower Power theme. The challenge is to create a cold-processed soap with any type of floral design. Here are the two I will demonstrate for the tutorials:

lemon verbena Congrats to Our Drop Swirl Challenge Winners!

Lemon Verbena soap by Great Cakes Soapworks

hawaiian jasmine Congrats to Our Drop Swirl Challenge Winners!

Hawaiian Jasmine soap by Great Cakes Soapworks

Our sponsor will be Brambleberry! Prize package to be announced soon! Registration will open Monday. If you are signed up to receive Soap Challenge Club notifications, you will be the first to find out when it opens. If you would like to be notified, sign up below:

notify me Congrats to Our Drop Swirl Challenge Winners!

Central Soapers Workshop: What Soapmakers Live For!

kenna amy 150x150 Central Soapers Workshop: What Soapmakers Live For!This past weekend I had the pleasure of attending the 2nd annual Central Soapers Workshop, brainchild of Kenna Cote of Modern Soapmaking, and one of my favorite soapmaking friends.

I am so blessed to live about six miles from the meeting place at Johnson County Community College in Overland Park, Kansas, where 58 soapmakers from the Midwest and beyond gathered for some fantastic networking, learning, and sharing. Simultaneous workshops and soap lab presentations took place during both Saturday and Sunday, which made it difficult to decide which topic to glean from! We also had plenty of time over the lunch break to visit vendors, talk shop with other soapmakers, and I even got to pick Tina Howard’s brain from Majestic Mountain Sage.

I have a ton of photos to show you, so let’s see which ones make the cut!

Chronological order, anyone?

prairie soap gathering Central Soapers Workshop: What Soapmakers Live For!

The pre-party gathering at Prairie Soap Co. in Lee’s Summit, MO on Friday afternoon

intro Central Soapers Workshop: What Soapmakers Live For!

Welcome to Central Soapers Workshop!

This was the first workshop I attended:

liquid soap amy Central Soapers Workshop: What Soapmakers Live For!

Demystifying Liquid Soapmaking with Amy Young, Foam on the Range

Now I feel confident to try this crazy process again! I know my customers are rejoicing!

lunch Central Soapers Workshop: What Soapmakers Live For!

Believe it or not, the next activity was LUNCH!

lela workshop Central Soapers Workshop: What Soapmakers Live For!

Work-Life Balance Workshop with Lela Barker, Lucky Break Consulting

Ironically, this workshop was supposed to be taught by Donna Marie Coles Johnson of the Indie Business Network, but life got in the way. Essentially, we discussed how there is no such thing as work-life balance. It’s about setting priorities and boundaries and then measuring your results.

During this time, the soap lab which was sponsored by Majestic Mountain Sage was also open:

soap lab2 Central Soapers Workshop: What Soapmakers Live For!

Boxes lined with mylar for molds…

soap lab4 Central Soapers Workshop: What Soapmakers Live For!

We used containers of pre-mixed oils with a variety of recipes, and lye solutions were measured into cups…lots of colors and scents to choose from!

tutu tiara Central Soapers Workshop: What Soapmakers Live For!

Tutus and tiaras were the theme of the Soap Lab!

soap lab6 Central Soapers Workshop: What Soapmakers Live For!

One of our Challenge Club members making soap in the Soap Lab!

tanya workshop Central Soapers Workshop: What Soapmakers Live For!

All about Etsy and Farmer’s Markets with Tanya Rasley, Baby Duck Soap Co.

holly amanda swirl Central Soapers Workshop: What Soapmakers Live For!

Amanda Griffin, Lovin Soap and Holly Port, Lotion Bar Cafe demonstrating the Peacock Swirl

holly peacock swirl1 Central Soapers Workshop: What Soapmakers Live For!

Holly’s Peacock Swirl soap

kenna benjamin Central Soapers Workshop: What Soapmakers Live For!

Goal Setting Workshop with Benjamin Aaron, Prairie Soap Co, assisted by Kenna in her tutu and tiara

This was an incredible workshop, that led to me purchasing these:

notebooks Central Soapers Workshop: What Soapmakers Live For!

His and hers notebooks for writing our goals morning and night. New colored pens for added incentive!

charlene perfumery Central Soapers Workshop: What Soapmakers Live For!

Perfumery 101 Workshop with Charlene Simon, Bathhouse Soapery

And the day isn’t over…AFTER PARTY!!!

after party Central Soapers Workshop: What Soapmakers Live For!

Catered dinner to start us off…

Followed by games and craziness!

sack race1 Central Soapers Workshop: What Soapmakers Live For!

Potato sack race to get all the ingredients to make a batch of soap!

sack race3 Central Soapers Workshop: What Soapmakers Live For!

Ingredients even had to be measured – don’t worry, no one was hopping back with lye solution!

ring toss Central Soapers Workshop: What Soapmakers Live For!

Ring Toss, sponsored by Wholesale Supplies Plus. All sorts of fixed oils, fragrance and essential oils, etc to win!

And finally, photo booth fun!!

photo booth collage Central Soapers Workshop: What Soapmakers Live For!

Take us back to the farm – funny farm, that is!

Are you tired yet? That’s just the first day!

On Sunday morning, Holly Port was already opening up the booze for her Happy Hour Soapmaking workshop!

holly happy hour soap Central Soapers Workshop: What Soapmakers Live For!

Holly Port, Lotion Bar Cafe demonstrating how to use alcohol in cold process soap

Next on the schedule was Kenna with her power point presentation of her e-book on Swatch Mania. Everyone who came to this workshop will receive a free copy!

kenna workshop Central Soapers Workshop: What Soapmakers Live For!

Kenna Cote, Modern Soapmaking talking about how to make color swatches for cold process soap

Simultaneously, there was a workshop on product photography:

riley money shots Central Soapers Workshop: What Soapmakers Live For!

How to Get Money Shots by D.H. Riley, Madame Scodioli

You should check out the Madame Scodioli website – it’s super creative!

Of course, we had more time in the soap lab too!

soap lab10 Central Soapers Workshop: What Soapmakers Live For!

Tina Howard, Majestic Mountain Sage, assisting a new soapmaker

soap lab7 Central Soapers Workshop: What Soapmakers Live For!

My turn!! I made this fun soap with amethyst pink and venetian violet colors, scented with Wink fragrance – all from The Sage of course!

After lunch, Lela Barker gave us the low-down on how to get press coverage – for free. It was amazing!

be pr agent Central Soapers Workshop: What Soapmakers Live For!

Professional tips to landing some serious media coverage.

What a privilege to learn from someone who has worked so hard to build her company and is now sharing her expertise with others. Seriously, check out Lucky Break consulting company to get some great information and tools. Lela teaches everything she wishes someone had taught her to get where she is today.

Here’s the soap Tanya made to demonstrate how to do mica veins and swirls in her workshop:

tanya soap Central Soapers Workshop: What Soapmakers Live For!

Mica veins and swirls by Tanya Rasley, Baby Duck Soap Co.

And finally, we had the raffle drawing at the end. Everyone won at least one prize that was donated by our sponsors, and some people won two!!

raffle prizes Central Soapers Workshop: What Soapmakers Live For!

A small portion of the prize table!!

Best part: New soapy friends!!

amy tara justin charlene Central Soapers Workshop: What Soapmakers Live For!

Me, Tara, Justin and Charlene (photo bomb courtesy of Holly Port)

So now that you know how much fun we have, make sure to join us next year! Follow the Central Soapers Workshop Facebook page so you don’t miss out!

Embed Soap Challenge Winners

We have some crazy cool soaps from the Embed Soap Challenge!! Members were asked to create a soap made with pre-made cold-process or hot-process soap embedded into a fresh batch of cold process soap. The design ideas for this challenge are obviously endless…

Our grand prize winner is this soapy work of art by Zahida in Florida:

starry night Embed Soap Challenge Winners

Starry Night Soap by Zahida

This is Zahida’s first time participating in the Soap Challenge Club, and hopefully not her last! She won a $50 gift certificate plus the mini silicone column mold set from Brambleberry!

We had a tie for second place between Toni in Michigan and Ildiko in Sydney, Australia. Toni made this adorable patchwork soap with a denim fragrance:

toni patchwork Embed Soap Challenge Winners

Toni’s Patchwork Soap

Ildiko made a series of soaps all at once, inspired by photos of sunrise, sunset, and moonrise over the water:

ildiko Embed Soap Challenge Winners

Soapy Sunrise-Sunset, Sunset-Moonrise, and Polka Dots by Ildiko

Our third place winner is Margo of Bearprint Soaps in Oregon! She created these beautiful heart embed soaps, scented with Pink Berry Mimosa:

margo2 Embed Soap Challenge Winners

Heart Soap by Margo

All of our second and third place winners will receive free registration to next month’s Soap Challenge Club!

You can see all the beautiful entries in the Embed Soap Challenge Club HERE.

Next month, we will be doing the Drop Swirl technique:

or rosemary2 Embed Soap Challenge Winners

Orange-Rosemary-Anise soap by Great Cakes Soapworks

This is one of the soaps I created for next month’s Challenge Club. It is all natural, except for some titanium dioxide. Smells very refreshing! Registration for this technique will open this Monday (March 3rd). Our sponsor will be Majestic Mountain Sage, and they will be providing a $100 gift certificate for the grand prize winner!! You can sign up to be notified as soon as it opens:

notify me Embed Soap Challenge Winners