A Nest for All Seasons A Nest for All Seasons: Hand Crafted Microwave Soaps | Day 1: Made By Hand

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12 December 2012

Hand Crafted Microwave Soaps | Day 1: Made By Hand

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Today we are going to be crafting soaps with natural “fillers” in our microwave.  
Nope, you didn’t hear that wrong!  Time for microwaving some soap!

Making soap can be a hot, involved and even dangerous craft. Try working with lye and bubbling cauldrons of the white stuff and you'll be running to the nearest Target for some bars of Ivory. However, handcrafting soap is a different story utterly and completely. You can craft soaps into various shapes with multiple "add-ons" to suit what is in season and your personal taste. Much better than working with lye!

 First things first, you need the actual soap base. Lucky for you, they can be shipped straight to your front door in these thick, heavy grids. Choose from Goat's Milk, Shea Butter, Aloe Vera, Oatmeal and Glycerin. I went with the classic Shea Butter and delicious looking Goat's Milk.

*all materials provided by consumercrafts.com and Crafts Unleashed


The real twist in this process are the "add-ons." I felt like a Cold Stone ice cream maker as I chopped up ingredients, mixed in oils and swirled them all into the hot soap mix. First on the list? Lemon Balm is growing in mass amounts in the garden, so I harvested some fresh, along with basil and lavender. To spike the fragrance even further, I added in synthetic oils for a punch. My mixes?

Fresh Basil with Green Tea and Peony Oil with Shea Butter Base

Fresh Lemon Balm with Lemon Extract, Green Tea and Peony Oil and Shea Butter Base

Grapefruit Extract and Pomegranate Plum Oil with Goat's Milk Base
Dried Lavender Flowers and Relaxation Oil with Goat's Milk Base

    The next step towards crafting those bars of soap into real bars of useable soap is buying a mold. You can buy soap molds for this very purpose, but I wanted to get a little more creative with my soaps and save a few pennies by using molds around the house. Non-stick pans are a great choice for soap molds and you probably have a few in the cabinet. I chose this mini-custard pan.

    My second choice of mold is a silicon brownie pan. The non-stick pan worked well, but the silicon pan worked AMAZINGLY well for soap molding.  The pan can literally be folded and flopped and the soap pops right out perfectly.


    1. Clean, dry and chop all fresh herbs
    2. Clean, dry and spray all molds with a little cooking spray
    3. Break the soap into chunks and heat 30 seconds at a time in the microwave
    4. Place fresh ingredients into molds
    5. Pour hot, melted soap into molds (carefully!)
    6. Be patient and wait 20-60 minutes until the soaps are fully hardened
    7. Pop soap out of molds and enjoy!

    You might have noticed in my soap descriptions that I included a few extracts in addition to the oils and fresh ingredients.
    Those extracts are simply made by pouring vodka over lemon and grapefruit peels and allowing them to sit for several months.

    Note: When using some herbs (like lavender), if the gift is not to be given right away, the herbs can start to brown with age.  Wither gift and use soaps immediately or simply remelt and mold the soaps and browned herbs and create a pretty tan soap instead of a pure white.
    So fresh from the garden and straight from the Consumer Crafts box...

    Now we have soap!

    lavender soap 2 christmas
    So take a look outside your backdoor today and see what is still growing!Check around your house for items that could be used for molds! Could you make rosewater to add to a glycerin soap? Would those silicon cupcake molds work for pretty Aloe Vera Soaps? Perhaps you too, have some lavender ripe for picking! It goes great with Goat's Milk Base!  Whatever ingredients you choose to mix and match, it is a fun process for adults and kids alike and the result is a hand crafted treat!

    Did you miss a day in the series?  No biggie!  Just click on the photos below!

    DAY 1 | Microwave Soaps              DAY 2 | Fern Canvases           DAY 3 | Crafty Jars           DAY 4 | Luminaries          DAY 5 | DIY Snowglobe tips lavender soap 2 christmas_thumb[3]ferns smalljars smallluminarie smallsnowglobe small

    CLICK PHOTO ABOVE                       CLICK PHOTO ABOVE               Coming soon…              Coming soon…              Coming soon…

     If you liked this tutorial, then you might enjoy the BOOK!

    Make your own coconut oil.
    Gather your own sea salt.
    Grow your own grapevines for wreaths.
    Give gifts naturally grown and crafted from your backyard garden.

    Each chapter focuses on a plant or groups of plants and how to grow them in your home garden.  Then, gather up those natural ingredients and get crafting! From lavender wreaths and hypertufa planters to lambsear angels and pickled tomatoes, there are projects for beginners on up!

    Crafting with Nature is available at Amazon, Barnes and Noble, Books a MillionPOWELL's! (!!!!)  Booktopia (Australia!), IndieBoundAlibrisGlose.comThe Book Depository and Walmart.com.  Books are also rolling out to retailers and libraries, so check for them there. 
     If your library does NOT have it yet, this is why you should talk to your librarian!


    Heather SettingforFour Wednesday, December 12, 2012  

    Amy I have been wanting to do this for so long! Great demo and tute with your gorgeous soaps! Now I think I might try it!! :)

    Courtenay@Creek Line House Wednesday, December 12, 2012  

    I've always wanted to try this. The extra herbs and add-ins make it even more tempting. This would be a great craft for after Christmas but before school starts up again! Or fine, if I HAVE to give them away afterwards, they'd make pretty cute gifts too.

    Amy Renea Wednesday, December 12, 2012  

    oh please do friends! They are so easy and lovely!

    Jacque n Matt Knowlton Wednesday, December 12, 2012  

    I can only imagine how fabulous these smell! I am adding this to my make a gift list!

    Beth Wednesday, December 12, 2012  

    Amy this look SO great. Love lavender and I bet that basil smells delish. Pinning!

    Melissa@TheHappierHomemaker Wednesday, December 12, 2012  

    What a great gift idea! And I love it's different than the normal tin of cookies (which is what I've been concocting all week!) Pinning this!

    The Bold Abode Wednesday, December 12, 2012  

    Oh how wonderful! I bet they smell totally amazing!

    Holly Lefevre Wednesday, December 12, 2012  

    I have never made soap and always wanted to. I am so inspired!

    Mary Beth Friday, December 14, 2012  

    Amy ~ these are absolutely beautiful soaps. I have always been intimidated to make some but I think with your help, I will give it a try!

    Amy Renea Saturday, December 15, 2012  

    You girls are so nice - thank you :) They are seriously stupid simple though -- you should try them!

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