SMF JANUARY 2024 CHALLENGE – Mini Drop [Mini Drip] Swirl

Soapmaking Forum

Help Support Soapmaking Forum:

This site may earn a commission from merchant affiliate links, including eBay, Amazon, and others.
Sign-up List for SMF January 2024 Challenge: Mini Drop {Mini Drip} Swirl. To sign up, please copy and paste these instructions and the list below into a new message. Then add your name and the next number for the next person:

1. AliOop - Great way to "drop" into 2024! ;)
2. katili - Why not dive into something I've never done?
3. MichaelP - I agree with katili, I want to try something new and help develop my soap making skills. Looking forward to this!
4. Mrs.Z - this looks fun!
5. McKherring Farm
6. VikingChick - This should be fun!
7. VickiC
8. Blue - Fun project for next weekend!
9. dmcgee5034 - honey, I dripped the soap! 😂
10. Tammyfarms - I made mine today. I didn’t want to enter until I knew I would be able to make soap. It’s in the mold. 🤞🏻
11. Janesathome - Oooh, I’ve been needing a focus for a soap. My biggest challenge will be getting out to pick up squeeze bottles: minus 49 with wind chill tomorrow and my car does NOT like those temps! Hoping for some moderation in weather soon.
12. Relle - I'll try it, need to take mind of things.
13.
 
My grandson in Snohomish was very excited about the dusting of snow they got! 😊
That’s awesome! We got about 15” over a four day period last week. That’s on top of about 4”. It will be here until April. I’m not (really) complaining as I will take cold and snow over heat and humidity any day.
 
Did my second attempt today. From what I can see/how it went I'm pretty sure it turned out more like what I intended than the first attempt, but I'm not convinced I actually made drops. I'm not exactly sure where I'm going wrong, this batter was much more fluid but I don't feel like my lines "sunk" very much into the base layer.
 
Yup it's really cold here in northern BC too it's been -30° plus the windshields on top of that we tried to go for a walk in the bush and froze my older sons beard turned completely white with frost and ice he looked like Santa Claus he he and the dogs didn't recognize him they started barking at him we were all laughing lol🥶
 
Did my second attempt today. From what I can see/how it went I'm pretty sure it turned out more like what I intended than the first attempt, but I'm not convinced I actually made drops. I'm not exactly sure where I'm going wrong, this batter was much more fluid but I don't feel like my lines "sunk" very much into the base layer.
You won’t necessarily see the lines sink down as you make the soap. The magic happens as the lines of batter build upwards and each new line helps to weigh down the lines below. Will keep my fingers crossed!
 
Just cut my bars, and I got... well, something at least lol. It is much better than my first attempt but I'm a little iffy on if it counts as a drip. I'll try my best to give it one more go before the deadline, but I'm prone to repetitive stress injuries in my wrist, and it's starting to feel a little achy; best give it a few days off.
 
Just cut my bars, and I got... well, something at least lol. It is much better than my first attempt but I'm a little iffy on if it counts as a drip. I'll try my best to give it one more go before the deadline, but I'm prone to repetitive stress injuries in my wrist, and it's starting to feel a little achy; best give it a few days off.
Sorry to hear about your wrist. I have a finger locking up on my right hand that Is irritated by the stick blender, which makes me wish that I was ambidextrous.
 
Comedy of errors!🤣

My base color was a little dark, so I thought I'd lighten with TD. Now, I was getting low on TD so I made a new batch, but for some reason it didn't blend as good as it should have so when I put it in my dark blue colorant I saw white specks! Egads! I tried vigorous stirring with a spatula to no avail. Whelp, seems like I have to use the SB even though I know this is going to speed the trace. The SB trick works and I pour the base color into the mold. I start working the spatula on my drip colors and I see that my base is starting to look...uhm... more firm than I like! My drip colors are firming up but not quite where I want them but decide to pour them into the squeeze bottles. At this point I've got a color scheme that I plan to use and take the first bottle and insert it into the base. Yep, the base is much thicker than it should be. I managed to put in a few rows and then the pipette tip that I attached to the squeeze bottle pops off! I can't get the pipette tip back on and time is ticking with that base solidifying, so I start using the other colorants. Fortunately the pipette tips stay on, but now the base is so thick it's sticking to the pipette tips and making a mess of things! I sigh, I laugh at the situation, and I finish as best as I can. As I'm cleaning up, a spatula with black colorant goes flying and sprays my wall with speckles of black batter. I laugh some more, and the it washes up easily.

So that was my soap experience for the challenge today!😂 I'm hopeful that the soap will still turn out, but I would be shocked if there were any drops or drips!! I will post pics of it in a day or two after I cut it since it definitely isn't going into the challenge! Great fun, and great learning experience. Going to make another attempt in a day or two. Have fun soaping everyone!!!!
 
Done and dusted, albeit I ended up with a lye burn on my forehead. Sweaty here, I was using paper towel to wipe my face and it had soap on it, on with the aloe.:thumbs:I cut today, but will leave a couple more days before tidying up, needs to firm a little more, so much humidity.
How are the soaps coming along? The Challenge Entry thread will open up on the 20th, just three days from now. I can’t wait to see what you all come up with.
 
Sorry to hear about your wrist. I have a finger locking up on my right hand that Is irritated by the stick blender, which makes me wish that I was ambidextrous.
Hmmm…I am not ambidextrous at all and do next to nothing left handed. Except I do use my stick blender with my left hand. The outlet to plug it in is on the left side of my workspace. In the kitchen, the outlet is to the right of the stove and I use the stick blender with my right hand. I hope your finger feels better soon.
 
@MichaelP I have had a few soaping sessions just like that, including the soap on the wall part. I hope your next session goes perfectly!

@dibbles I had the same locking issue with a finger on my left hand a couple of years ago and ended up having to get a cortisone shot. Maybe I will give the left hand a chance and see how it goes.

@Relle I hope that aloe is working!
 
Done and dusted, albeit I ended up with a lye burn on my forehead.
Been there, done that. Can't count the number of little speckled burny bits from wiping my forehead or face with a bit of glove that had batter on it.
I will post pics of it in a day or two after I cut it since it definitely isn't going into the challenge! Great fun, and great learning experience. Going to make another attempt in a day or two.
That's one of the good things about challenges, I usually do two, sometimes three attempts so that I can get a better result more quickly than if I was just futzing around with a technique because I read about it somewhere and tried a batch because I thought it looked cool. Challenges really teach you techniques fast through more intense practice.

Plus, I think you learn a lot about how important differences in trace are. It sounds so simple, but I swear it took over a year and 50+ batches of soap before I even came close to having anything resembling real control over thin, medium and thick trace. Actually, most days I still don't, but I think that's part of what I love about the craft, always learning.
 
Plus, I think you learn a lot about how important differences in trace are. It sounds so simple, but I swear it took over a year and 50+ batches of soap before I even came close to having anything resembling real control over thin, medium and thick trace. Actually, most days I still don't, but I think that's part of what I love about the craft, always learning.
I am definitely learning that thin trace doesn't mean what I thought it did 😂
 
Well, I made another attempt today. Things went more smoothly, but it's really hard to say if I will get the desired results. Can't wait to cut and see! One thing that I found difficult was just how much pressure to apply to the squeeze bottle when running it through the base batter. I can tell that this is an experiential thing that can only be acquired by doing.

As promised, here's a picture of the initial failed attempt that I mentioned earlier in this post.
 

Attachments

  • SoapFail.jpeg
    SoapFail.jpeg
    2.3 MB · Views: 0
Well, I made another attempt today. Things went more smoothly, but it's really hard to say if I will get the desired results. Can't wait to cut and see! One thing that I found difficult was just how much pressure to apply to the squeeze bottle when running it through the base batter. I can tell that this is an experiential thing that can only be acquired by doing.

As promised, here's a picture of the initial failed attempt that I mentioned earlier in this post.
It still kinda looks cool your soaps look like 🔥 fire balls are flying through the sky can't wait to see your next attempt 😄
 
@MichaelP That’s a very excellent batch for a first try. You’re very close on technique, plus you pulled off a bold color scheme and the soap itself is very smooth. Little bars of modern art!

I’m wondering if the base towards the bottom of the mold was firming up just a little as you were adding the drops. If the batter for the base wasn’t quite fluid enough, perhaps the drops couldn’t quite settle into the full drop shape?
 
Last edited:
Thanks for the kind comments everyone! @Mobjack Bay I'm sure you're right about the base not being quite fluid enough as it was very very thick when I started to add my drop colors. Very curious to see what my second batch looks like but think I'll need a few more batches under my belt before something like a real mini drop/drip swirl actually happens! ... Hope everyone is getting some fantastic results and can't wait to see what everyone comes up with! Happy soaping everyone!
 

Latest posts

Back
Top