Saturday, 11 January 2020

Back to soapmaking!

It seemed like ages since I last made a batch of soap so I rustled up  a quick batch right at the end of the year so I could start off 2020 with some plans to experiment a little with new recipes. I used one from Jan Berry's Simple and Natural Soapmaking. It is a version of her 'Palm-Free, Vegan, No Butters' recipe.

I noticed that she has a new book out called 'Easy Homemade Melt and Pour Soaps' which might be of value to those who want to make soap but don't want to handle the lye. I must recommend it to our local library as I have been given the ingredients to make some melt and pour soap but haven't been adventurous enough to experiment but will do that this year.

Once my soap is out of the moulds I harden it up in a three shelf trolley and they sit on some old Chux that I unearthed when cleaning out prior to kitchen renovations. I noticed that some of the soap was starting to sweat this morning and it is getting muggy so perhaps the forecasters are right and we might get some rain as our farmers certainly need it as do those in the firezones down south.

 I think some overseas readers have an idea that the whole country is on fire but as far as I have heard there are no significant fires in our huge state of Queensland and in other areas as well but where they are burning down south in NSW and Victoria particularly they are particularly bad this year and it is quite heartbreaking to see so many families losing their homes. There have been a few misleading fire maps put online and if you are an overseas reader you might like to read this The truth behind the misleading fire maps that have gone viral during Australia's bushfire crisis. Much of the country is tinder dry though and it wouldn't take much to start a fire in these conditions.

I am still trying to keep my roses alive and apart from one they are growing in pots. I don't get too many flowers and as soon as they start to open I pick them and bring them inside where I can enjoy them.

I just took this photo of the hollyhocks that have started to flower so that I can remember what colour they are as the one on the left looks quite mauve in the centre as opposed to the pink in the one on the right. Behind the 'make do' fence is our front lawn which, as you can tell, is brown and crunchy. The fence will probably be replaced when the CEO gets organised as part of it was knocked down a few years ago by a neighbour from up the road who starts work in the middle of the night and when leaving for work he noticed his cat was in the car so he got out and crossed the road to put it inside the house and forgot to put the hand brake on. We woke to the sound of an almighty crash at about 2am! LOL!

I will record the recipe I used for my soap for future reference as I can't remember what I did yesterday. Ha ha!

Lavender Palm-Free Soap, Vegan, No Butters

248g water
112g lye
227g coconut oil
397g lavender infused olive oil
113g sunflower oil
57g castor oil
35g Lavender and Mint fragrance oil from Little Green Workshops
       Pink Lemonade Mica and Pansy Mica from Green Living Australia (I just added a little at a time)

Have a great weekend everyone and stay safe!



  1. Chel, Your soaps look so pretty and I'm sure they work very well LOL. Humidity is pretty high here,so as I've said before, I think soap making is a Winter activity here unless the air conditioning is on and the temperatures need to be pretty extreme for us to do that. They haven't been really.Your roses and hollyhocks are certainly defying the heat aren't they and look so cheery. I love flowers inside as well.Take care xx

    1. Pauline, I don't think all soaps sweat as I know some people wrap theirs and keep them for months before giving as gifts. I couldn't do that with mine so perhaps it depends on the ingredients. Maybe palm oil in the soap makes a difference.

  2. Lovely soap, Chel. It's been a very humid day here and we are waiting for some rain to come through. It's there on the radar but not over our place as yet. The melt and pour soap book look interesting; I'd like to learn about that. Meg:)

    1. Meg, we had a storm earlier and it has really cooled down after a 36C day but it looks like we have nice temps for the next few days. Thankfully!

  3. Love how you can whip up a quick batch of soap as if it were a batch of scones lol!

    I am determined to give soap making a go this year, very soon in fact (yeah I know, I have been saying that for years lol). If its as easy as you say I'm in :)

    Love your roses and holly hocks. All my roses have turned to paper with the heat this year. I do try and rescue them and bring inside, but they are usually singed on the edges before they even come out in bloom.


  4. Tania, a lot of my plants have been burnt too. I know you always say you will make soap at the beginning of the year. THIS is the year! :-)

  5. I’m glad to hear there are no fires in your area, Chel.

    Your soaps are so pretty, as always. 😊

    1. Nil, there were fires a couple of months ago. Our fire season starts earlier than the southern states I believe.

  6. Chel those soaps are so pretty. As I write this, late Sunday afternoon, it is raining. I am doing a happy dance as the wet stuff falls. It rained in the middle of last night as well. I so hope our local farmers are getting this rain. Their irrigation water was turned off at the start of the month. Without good rain this years crops are not looking good. So I pray that this is more than just a coastal shower.

    1. No more rain here, Jane. I saw on the news you would get more tomorrow. It has cooled down though and is very windy. Better than the heat I guess.


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