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1st SMF Soap Challenge- July

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newbie

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I'm posting early because I am having no end of trouble with my computers, so I'm cutting to the chase.

WELCOME to the first of what I hope are many SMF Soap Challenges!! This month's challenge is PATTERN COMBINATIONS.

To enter, you must have a minimum of 50 posts AND been a member for a month. Sorry, house rules.


This challenge is about pattern combinations. There are 6 patterns to choose from and they can be done in any size, from small and done numerous times within the mold to one gargantuan sweep, but you must use the entire pattern over your entire soap; no doing a tiny circle in a corner and that's it for that pattern. See pics for the patterns>

Slab only, no loafs.

You may pour the soap however you wish; lines, faux funnels, squirt bottles, random pours, etc...

You must use a minimum of 2 patterns. You may use as many as you wish and you may do the same pattern more than once, such as the zig-zag in one direction and then turning your mold 90 degrees and doing it again to get a chevron, but you must use two separate patterns. Turning the mold and going in a different direction is perfectly fine.

You may use a comb or free hand the design.

You may use any thickness of swirl tool or comb. If you decide you'd like to use a fork to swirl in a fit of creativity, feel free but no turning over the top of the soap.

You must show your swirl tool. You don't have to get a professional looking artsy photo of it. Just make certain it's in a picture of your soap. If you change swirl tools at any point, please show that tool in the picture of the pattern you did with it. Sitting alongside in view is fine.

You must post the letter and order of your patterns. No secrets on this one!

DO NOT enter a chevron or a peacock or a serpentine. Those patterns are well-established, with well-established steps. We're on a quest for new things, new ideas. If you end up with a new and brilliant pattern, please be quick to Name It and thereby solidify your place in the soaping world. If two people come up with the same new and brilliant pattern, I suggest mediation, hyphenating, or a duel.

Many pictures required, and they are required! This is to learn about stacking patterns and what they do, how they pull the soap so sharing the steps is part of the process.

Please post the following pics:

1) your soap in the mold before you swirl. Seeing how you have poured helps us learn how that affects the final outcome. Spinning is allowed after the pour, if you would like, but we need a picture of how the soap goes into the mold and then how it looks before your swirl tool hits the soap. No spinning or other alteration after swirling is allowed.

2) A picture after each pattern has been done. This applies even if you use the same pattern but in different directions. We want to see how the patterns build on each other.

3) A picture of the entire soap in the mold after you are done swirling.

Pictures of individual bars are optional but of course we would love to see them. Hearing about your process is always fun. Sharing the colors and scents you used is great. You are under no obligation to share your recipe.

Slow recipes, low temps and slow-moving scents are the order of the day with swirling. Recipes with a good proportion of lard or tallow or olive oil work well, in general. A good basic recipe to try, if you need one, is:

Lard 40%
Olive 35%
Coconut 20%
Castor 5%

The only prize offered in this challenge is the accolades of your fellow soapers. Even without tangible prizes offered, following the rules is expected and required. If an entry comes in not meeting the rules, the person will be contacted to fill the gap or fix the problem. If they opt not to do so, their entry will not be considered valid nor included for voting. We all want a level playing field and structure within which to work, so toe the line, people!

If you need it, here is a abbreviated checklist of the rules for you to copy out and checkbox to make certain you are playing fair and square:

Slab
Two patterns, minimum
Order of patterns divulged by letter and preferably the name, to aid our tiny minds in remembering which is which
Pics of each step in the process, including entire finished soap in the mold
Swirl tool(s) visibly included in pic(s)
No entries of chevrons, peacocks, or serpentines

Please post your entries by July 25th on the entries thread. All entries posted by then will be considered for our illustrious Survey Monkey Poll. If you're late, you can still post because we love looking at soap, but you won't make into the voting.

This thread will also be open for questions or troubleshooting. Encouragement is always allowed. Constructive criticism should be welcomed by all but if there is nothing constructive in what you have to post, it really doesn't meet the definition so you should probably not post it. A separate thread will be used for entries.

Feel free to PM Sonya, Saponista, Lionprincess, Galaxy, or me with questions.

[ame]https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TYx0PJ4OoCs[/ame]

[ame]https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=X3omG9e732Y[/ame]

[ame]https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lic_KCtRz34[/ame]

Trying to get some pics of the soap up. This will have to do. One is blurry because of my lens, but you will get the general idea.

Screen Shot 2015-06-30 at 9.05.21 PM.jpg

Screen Shot 2015-06-30 at 9.05.05 PM.jpg
 
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newbie

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Okay, trying for a 4th time up upload pics of the patterns. Will get pics up of the soap as soon as I can. Damnation!!! Okay, this will have to do for now until I can get something better up.

Also meant to add that you can use only 2 colors if you wish or as many as you wish.

TIP: You can easily do this challenge using a 14 ounce oil batch in the bottom of a green 8 inch loaf mold. The scale of the patterns will be restricted by the size of the mold but that's perfectly fine; they don't need to be huge at all to get a good look. You will get about 4 thickish bars, so you won't drown in soap if you want to make a few tries.

Screen Shot 2015-06-30 at 9.01.25 PM.jpg

Screen Shot 2015-06-30 at 9.01.13 PM.jpg
 
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not_ally

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Whoo-whee, this looks like it will be fun! And a good way to really think about how swirls work. Thanks for taking the time to plan all this stuff, you guys, and especially to you, Newbie, for the videos and diagramming. I am still trying to figure out exactly how things work, so will probably have questions in a bit.

Newb, you are so articulate. I did not detect a single "um" or "you know"!
 

newbie

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Please ask any questions! It's hard to know if I've been clear or added everything you need to know. Just a newbie at this!

Not too many ums but plenty of hesitations, I noticed. Ah well.
 

KristaY

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Nice job on the videos, Newbie! I love your tip about pouring half then flipping over and repeating. By watching you actually do it (as opposed to still photos) it really clarified what you want in this challenge.

Do we need to enter somewhere or just post the photos by your deadline? I'm hoping I can carve out time to get into the challenge because I think it will be a blast and a great learning experience!

Shame I dont have a slab mould. This would have been fun. Maybe next time
If you have something like a shoe box around, that would work. Sturdy sides are best. Just line it with a plastic trash bag. :p
 

newbie

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Dills, as I said in the second post, you can easily use a regular (not tall and skinny) loaf mold as a slab mold. You just make a smaller batch and use the bottom. You can do each pattern easily in there and any combination. Also, many things can serve well as a slab, including the top of a shoe box, a plastic storage box, a cake pan lined with saran wrap...It certainly doesn't have to be an official mold.

Yes, TViv, a video would be fine as long as we can get a clear shot of the soap between each step (my camera is a bit far away to get a clear look, for which I apologize but I'm limited on my equipment) and you give us a good look at the finished soap. Also, if you make a video, could you please make sure you are saying the pattern letter or name as you do them and/or state the order at the end?

We were posting at the same time, Krista! I'm glad the video was helpful. I was thinking about how to explain it but it was much easier to show. The double sided soaps are kind of fun plus it allows more tries at things with fewer bars, which is a big plus. After doing a few of the other challenges, I was dying to unload soap.

We don't have any official registration. You can just enter your soap. In future, we may have some sort of sign-up but we didn't think it would be necessary. We shall see!
 
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newbie

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Hmmmm, it feels kind of unofficial without a sign-up, doesn't it? It's not meant to be hard core or anything but signing up just seems right. We'll use swap mode for sign up. There is no limit to the number of participants. Please copy the entire list and paste, putting the next number and your name down.

1)Newbie (I haven't combined many of these patterns, so this will be new to me too)
 

mazimazi

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Great job with the videos and the instructions. I cna't wait to see the entries, definitely some interesting new patterens coming! :)
 

Saponista

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1)Newbie (I haven't combined many of these patterns, so this will be new to me too)

2) Saponista (Can't wait to get started :) )
 

not_ally

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OK, Newbie, I watched the videos again and read through the directions, I think I got it. This will be a good disciplinary exercise, just taking pictures of each step along the way on all the practice tries will be a good learning tool, I think. I need to open up a new notebook in Evernote :)

Will you be posting the signup sheet here, or is it in a link/someplace else already? I know that at some point a separate subforum/sticky type thing for contests/swaps was discussed.
 

galaxyMLP

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1)Newbie (I haven't combined many of these patterns, so this will be new to me too)

2) Saponista (Can't wait to get started
)

3) Galaxy (Woot! Lots of cool swirls will come of this!)

NA, You can just add your name to this list! (also, do you prefer B, or NA?)
 

not_ally

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Either is fine, Galaxy! Ok, list w/me added is below for next person to sign up as no. 5:

1)Newbie (I haven't combined many of these patterns, so this will be new to me too)

2) Saponista (Can't wait to get started
)

3) Galaxy (Woot! Lots of cool swirls will come of this!)

4) not_ally (Lots of hair-pulling will come of this! Hopefully some cool swirls as well.)

5)
 

Seawolfe

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Oh this sounds fun! And I need to work on swirling and hitting the proper trace.

Ok since you said we can use combs - does that mean any kind of pattern goes (besides the proscribed peacock etc)? The lettered patterns you posted are for example? Or do we need to use at least 2 of those specific patterns? Not that it matters, because I have no clue...

1)Newbie (I haven't combined many of these patterns, so this will be new to me too)

2) Saponista (Can't wait to get started
)

3) Galaxy (Woot! Lots of cool swirls will come of this!)

4) not_ally (Lots of hair-pulling will come of this! Hopefully some cool swirls as well.)

5) Seawolfe (no idea what I'm doing, but will get soap batter in my hair and have fun))
 
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soapswirl

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1)Newbie (I haven't combined many of these patterns, so this will be new to me too)

2) Saponista (Can't wait to get started )

3) Galaxy (Woot! Lots of cool swirls will come of this!)

4) not_ally (Lots of hair-pulling will come of this! Hopefully some cool swirls as well.)

5) Seawolfe (no idea what I'm doing, but will get soap batter in my hair and have fun))

6) Soapswirl (excited to try something new!)
 

dixiedragon

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1)Newbie (I haven't combined many of these patterns, so this will be new to me too)

2) Saponista (Can't wait to get started )

3) Galaxy (Woot! Lots of cool swirls will come of this!)

4) not_ally (Lots of hair-pulling will come of this! Hopefully some cool swirls as well.)

5) Seawolfe (no idea what I'm doing, but will get soap batter in my hair and have fun))

6) Soapswirl (excited to try something new!)

7) Dixiedragon (got something in mind!)
 

Saponista

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I have some new micas that I want to check for morphing so I am going to give them a go for my trial attempts. Yay!
 

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