Thursday, 5 June 2014

Soap Making Workshop coming up.

On Saturday 21st June our Simple Living Toowoomba group will be holding the second workshop of the year which will be a Soap Making Workshop. We did have one last year and it was hugely popular so I am sure this year's workshop will be too as there is currently a lot of interest in making soap.

Our next workshop will be run by Mandy from The Old Dairy and Helen.  They will be showing us how to make soap and giving lots of tips about using goat's milk and adding extras like oatmeal. 
Date: 21 June
Time: 10-12noon
Cost: $5
Place: Good Shepherd Lutheran Church, 23 Glenvale Road.
Bookings required

We had such a successful swap before our last workshop that we will do it again before the Soap Making Workshop.  So the homegrown and handmade swap will start at 9.00am with a cuppa following at 9.30am.  The swap and cuppa are free and don't require bookings!  Just bring along up to five items that you have grown or made for the swap table.  You are welcome to come to both the workshop and cuppa/swap or just one of them.
Mandy made the double choc fudge soap I brought home from our last swap and it smelt so good that the menfolk thought it actually was fudge so I am eager to pick her brains about adding colours and essential oils, basic soap as well as to goat's milk soap. 
If you are from out of town and will be visiting for the weekend, you would be most welcome to join us and you can book here so that we know how many to expect for the workshop.  

Just an update on my goat's milk experiments for those who might be interested and who are also  moving on from making just the basic soap, you can have a look at my first batch in this post. For my second batch which I made on the weekend, instead of pouring the soap into individual moulds I put it into one silicone cake mould to see if it would heat up as it had kept the same temperature in the individual ones and hadn't heated up at all.

I had seen all these swirly things on top of some soaps on different blogs so I did a couple of different patterns with a knife on top of the soap to see how it turned out. Then I got distracted and left the soap for an hour or so then went back to see if it had heated up and sure enough..... was certainly heating up so I kept an eye on it just in case I needed to put it in the fridge but it was okay. You don't wrap up the goat's milk soap like you do with the basic soap but if you did happen to take a peek at your basic soap a little while after wrapping it in towels, you will see the same process happening. It is so interesting to see the process the soap goes through and you learn a little more with each batch you make.

As you can see in the photo, the first batch of soap which is on the left is much lighter than the latest batch as I gather the darker one looks that way because the mixture got hotter and the milk burned after being poured into the one mould instead of individual ones. Correct me if I am wrong as I know there are some experienced soap makers out there reading this. 

 I can't make use of my 'handmade' stamp when I use the individual moulds so was having fun this time trying to stamp each cake of soap I cut without being too heavy handed. The swirly bits on top don't look too bad either...not that the menfolk would notice I am sure :-)

Don't forget about my 1st blog anniversary giveaway! If you would like to win an Australian wildlife book you just have to leave a comment after this post and you will be in the draw. Please note that if you don't live in Australia there will be a special draw for you so just mention that you are from overseas so that you go in the correct draw. The giveaway closes on June 15th!


  1. The soap looks good, I find with my goats milk that each batch can very in colour. I love the stamp that you have used. I am too making soap today with my daughter as she is getting low on supplies..
    Looking forward to the workshop, see you then.

    1. I am looking forward to picking your brains at the workshop, Mandy. I bought the stamp on ebay but haven't used it much as I normally pour the soap into individual moulds and the stamp doesn't fit on. I was quite keen to use the bigger mould so that I could cut the soap and add the stamp.

  2. Well done on your second batch. As Mandy said, my batches of goats milk vary also. My last one I refrigerated straight away and it is a pure white. I have soap making on the agenda soon, although this time I'm trying a shampoo bar.

    1. Next time I make it I will put it in the fridge, Alison. The shampoo bar sounds interesting.

  3. Your soap turned out great. I have a soap making book but have yet to make soap because I am scared of caustic soda. Your community group course is so cheap, I hope to find one like that in my region. I looked online and soap making courses near $200!

    1. If you can get the house to yourself then give it a try, Zena. I always make it when I am on my own which isn't very often as I need to concentrate. Just take the necessary precautions with the caustic soda and you will be fine. I have a healthy respect for it and am always extremely careful but once you have made your first batch you will be fine.

  4. Nanna Chel, the soap looks great. It's fascinating to read all the comments too. Soap making is on my to-do list but I'm nervous about Caustic soda. Like you I need to concentrate and I'll wait till I'll have some time to myself to do that. I have done re-milled soap which was okay but this looks more interesting. I'll be there for the workshop and am following 'Old Dairy' too.
    Thanks for sharing.

  5. Shiralee, just start with the basic soap and I am sure you will do well. Normally I add the caustic soda to the water out on the front verandah as it does get smelly but it doesn't seem to smell when using the goat's milk for some reason so I just mix that in the kitchen. The first time you make it is the worst then you wonder why you put it off for so long :-)

  6. Wish I lived closer, I would go to events like this. There isn't anything like that on offer here, or that I know about anyway. Great looking soap :)

    1. Could you start up a group yourself, Tania? I am sure there would be plenty of like-minded people who would be interested.

  7. Why didn't I think of that? Might have to make some inquiries to see if anyone is interested or already does it. I know there are people at the markets etc, but I don't always get to go along to them. I am a bit of a loner in my life style here, people prefer to be consumerists and think I am a little strange lol!


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