Monday, January 24, 2011

Basic Swirls

Since I am doing research and practicing soap swirling techniques, I decided to start with the most basic of swirl techniques. I swirled with one color in a simple log mold. My soap was 40% olive oil, 30% coconut oil, and 30% palm oil, with 5% superfat. I did NOT discount my water, which I like to do when I'm not trying to be artistic with my soap. It traces way too fast. I mixed my oils and lye between 90 and 100 degrees. I've been wanting to try the "room temperature" method, but that's for another day. I made sure that I didn't do anything that would accelerate trace.

I used rose kaolin clay to get a nice rosy-pink shade and I colored about 1/3 of my soap base. Since I used a log mold for this soap, I decided to pour my colored soap in the mold in layers. First, I poured in about 1/2 of my uncolored base. Then, I poured my pink soap in, in a zig-zag pattern (see below). Next, I poured then rest of my uncolored soap and finished with another round of zig-zagging with my pink soap. 
Colored soap zig-zag pattern

I used a wooden skewer to swirl the colors together. I ran the skewer through the soap in a diagonal zig-zag pattern, making sure that my skewer went all the way to the bottom.
Alternating layers of soap
Pouring a zig-zag

I think it looked pretty nice when I finished. Hopefully it will turn out nicely when I go to cut it. I did not create my swirls so that they are sitting on top of the soap, but poured the soap so that the color sank. I'm hoping that they color will be all the way to the bottom, but that it didn't all sink. We shall see. If I hadn't used a log mold, I think I would like to see the swirls more on top of the soap, but when I cut the log, I want the color to look nice from the sides. I know what I'll be trying next.

I'm excited to unmold and cut the new soap. I can't wait to see how it turned out!

I've read about swirling with multiple colors using the "In The Pot" method and I think that might be pretty interesting to try.

 Tutorials can be found at: Aussie Soap Supplies, Teach Soap, and