Chamomile Tea – August 31, 2012

 

Chamomile Tea soap is made with brewed, cooled and chilled chamomile tea, enriched with colloidal oatmeal, vitamin E, and coconut milk, tinted and swirled with yellow and green, then topped with tiny sugar seed pearls and a light sprinkle of sugar crystals.  The scents is a blend of EO’s I made up over a period of several days with sniffing sticks left to air dry and rest for a few days before making the decision on which one of the three made would finally go into this soap.  It took me a week of blending to come up with one that I  liked enough to add to this soap.  This one has notes of lemongrass, patchouli, rose, geranium, bergamot, lemon, lavender and clary sage.  Complex, yet light,  sweet, and clean smelling.  The soaping temps were kept on the cooler side to prevent burn off of the fragrance.  Well under 100°.  It will be probably be user-friendly around October 12th.  I will not be posting them into the web site or the Facebook biz page until then.  For now, I’ll just look forward to cutting them in a couple of days.  🙂

The other two EO blends are totally different scents, one is mainly rose, but has a bit of a powdery finish.  The third is all very floral and powdery.  They’ll be used in something else later on down the road, but for now, this one works very well in today’s soap batch.

It’s a complicated recipe to use in that the final amount is too much for one mold and not enough for the next higher size, so this one will be upscaled to make it into a two loaf batch.  I like the basic recipe over all as it exceeds all the benchmarks for firmness, fluffy lather, stable lather, and moisturizing, but it’s just not quite big enough, so it’s going to be upscaled to make two loaves or one bigger one.  This is a bit under two pounds and makes two loaves that are too short for my liking.

Cut pictures will be posted probably by Monday, Sept 3rd.  Have a great Friday, everybody!

The cut pics

I just realized I hadn’t posted the cut pics.  So here they are.  The Green Tea scented with Green Tea and Cucumber done in a white with green swirl.

 

and the White Tea with Mango & Peach, done with a light touch of coral color and scented with Peach fragrance oil.

 

They’re slightly superfatted in that I discounted the lye by about 8%.  But since they were made with all liquid oils, no butters, I used a bit of sodium lactate.  This caused a bit of a problem when it came time to put them into the mold as they started firming up a bit while I was still trying to ‘play’ a bit with the appearance, which caused a few small andone big bubble.  But the bubbles won’t effect the soap’s character, only its appearance.

I still haven’t made the chamomile tea soap yet because I haven’t found that perfect scent to use in it.  Until I’m happy with the scent choice, it won’t be made.  But I’ve found the blends recipes I’ve been looking for for about 2 1/2 days, so now I can put together a blend and make the scent blend chamomile either Wednesday or Thursday.  I bought a few other goodies to use on the soaps to prettify them, so there’s another new thing to try out when I get to the chamomile.

 

Green Tea & Cucumber, White Tea with Mango & Peach

Here’s today’s batches made with two of the teas brewed up yesterday and chilled in the fridge overnight.  The two loaves on the left are one batch, but made a bit shallow in two loaves rather than deep in one loaf like the one on the right.

On the left, Green Tea & Cucumber, made with the chilled brewed Green Tea (unsweetened), slightly superfatted, enriched with Vitamin E, and the lush lather that the oils will lend once its cured about 6 weeks.  There’s also a bit of a green swirl throughout each loaf and the tops are pearlized.  There are two shallow loaves of these so they’ll be cut thicker to give a 5 oz bar.

L – Green Tea & Cucumber, R – Juicy Peach Tea

On the right,  though it looks more pink than peach in the lighting of the room, but I’m hoping that in the bright light of earlier daytime hours the true color will shine a bit better.  There’s a swirl of peach within as well that will show up once it’s cut.  The scent is pure juicy, peach!  Mmmmm!  Like a sweet peachy parfait!  Made with a bit of superfatting from a bit of Mango Butter, enriched with Vitamin E, and plenty of lather is promised from the oils this recipe contains.

There’s one more tea waiting to be used and that will be done as soon as time allows early this week, maybe Monday if time allows.

Tea time!

Looks like a brewery has taken up residence here, but it isn’t beer, ale, or anything close.  These are four differently flavored teas, freshly brewed and now cooling before capping.  These are not destined for the tea cup alongside crumpets, angel food cake, or even a couple of chewy chocolate chip cookies.  No, nothing as tasty as that, for the taste buds at least.  These are going to be used in soaps. I’ve made soaps with tea before and they turned out yummy, but for showertime rather than the taste buds.

From left to right, in pairs of two bottles each flavor, we have Green Tea, White Tea with Peach and Mango, Chamomile, and Peppermint.  Still too hot from brewing up to be capped just yet, but they’re being closely watched and will be capped asap.  Can’t wait to get started on these.  The peach tea soap a couple of years ago turned out so well, with peach tea in place of the water, in addition to the peach fragrance added in at the end of the stir, but very little color, that the recipe was saved and will be used again with these as substitutes for the tea that was used in that one.  The only color in that soap batch came mainly from the tea, which was a brownish-amber colour and from the fragrance oil, which had a small amount of vanillin in it, which tends to darken soaps unless you use something to offset that.  I didn’t use that at the time, so they turned a lovely burnished peach colour.  I may use the modifier to prevent further browning depending on what I decide to to with the rest of the soap, colorwise. I now have several very nice colours I’d like to try out in these soaps that were touted as being stable in cp soaps so these might finally be used in a couple of these future batches.

Also, there is a plan to use aloe juice in at least one other soap that’s in the planning stages at this time.  Fall is just around the corner and so are the soapy days ahead.  Can’t wait!

L to R: Green(2), White with Mango & Peach(2), Chamomile(2) and Peppermint(2).

The Moonflowers

Every year we plant these and anxiously anticipate their appearance of huge showy snowdrift colored blooms, but this year’s cool temps into the latter part of spring and heavy rains made us later than usual in planting them, so they’re appearing alter than usual this year.  Finally they’re starting to show off in their typical exuberant fashion with big, beautiful white blooms in at least locations along deep green vines covered in heart shaped leaves.  They don’t have any scent that i can detect, which is a bit disappointing, but their bountiful faces more than make up for that!  This stunners are roughly the size of a dessert plate!  Fabulous, big white blooms that only open after dusk has fallen and their paleness nearly glows in the dark it’s so white! Every year we get an amazing show and once their done, we leave the pods on the vines until they dry to a brittle brown husk, harvest the seeds, save them, share them, and plant again the next spring.  This should be a b-i-g harvest year as these beauties are not only growing up the trellis on the porch like William originally did in the first year I was here (3 yrs ago), but now they trail all along small wire fencing (nearly pulling it to the ground with their weight in a couple of places!)that runs along the edge of our driveway down one side of the house.  The vines are more than halfway down the fencing now and bloom buds are showing up everywhere.  I love these flowers as much as he does now.  So pretty!

We’ve shared the seeds with a couple of my sisters and they’ve started enjoying these lovelies in the evening hours as well.   

The Chatelaine Purse

Two white with black paisley pattern bandannas, wide, white satin ribbon overlaid with a white satin with black filigree pattern, white button & loop closure, and antiqued finish key accent at the front and at each corner.  So cute, feminine, sturdy, lots of room, and since it’s white with black it will go with virtually anything and everything!  Best of every possible world!  This is a part of a set, though it can be sold separately.  There is also a tote bag from the same pattern of bandana.  I’ve also included close ups of the details like the front key under the closure button, the corner key accent and the little ties are also visible in this,  the  distance shot shows the pretty double layered straps of white and black & white satin.  This one turned out pretty good, though there are a couple of things I’d like to change if I do it again, but it’s doubtful that I’ll ever do any two exactly the same.  I like for things to be unique, no two of anything exactly the same

The latest purse, the Chatelaine. Black & White bandannas, double layered satin ribbon of wide white and narrower white with black filigree. Key accents.

The front detail of the largest key beneath the button & loop closure.the strap ribbons are also very visible here, too! Pretty!

.  It was certainly a great time to be getting crafty indoors since it was stormy outside, lot of rain gushing, wind whipping, flooding streets, lightning flashing, thunder booming going on, so indoor activities were much safer.

This one is $25, not including shipping or NC sales tax.

The corner detail with the tiny key accent and skinny ribbon ties shown

The Light & Shadow Totebag

This is the Light & Shadow Tote bag, also made this afternoon while the storms crashed around our rooftops.  Plenty roomy, sturdy, feminine, practical, so nothing more is needed.  Personally, if I was using this tote bag, I forget the purse and use just the tote bag!  Saves having to carry them both around, but of course why not have both!  I’d offer a discount of 10% off if both were purchased at the same time.  This tote bag is tied at the tops like the purses are, though not quite so snugly that they can’t be opened up if needed.  Sometimes it needs to be a bit snug at the top or a tote bag can be difficult to keep up on your shoulder.  If your hands are tied up with other things, like toddlers, stroller handles, other parcels, well, there aren’t enough hands to go around, so this makes it a bit easier to keep up on the shoulder.  The flip over closure isn’t a tight fitting closure since tote bags are typically kept closed up at all much less tightly.  This just gives a small amount of weight on the end of a ribbon tied on securely inside and out, that can be flipped over the top to pull the sides together slightly so things will stay inside and the straps will stay put on your shoulder.

White with black paisley print bandanas, black & white satin slightly Renaissance patterned ribbon straps, grosgrain accents, and a beaded flip over closure. $45