Saturday, 9 September 2017

If at first you don't succeed.....

I rebatched my first lot of soap a while back which you may have read about in the post Learning to rebatch soap and was less than impressed with the result but it was just a trial run for the big failed batch I had made which I didn't want to waste. I read that it was better to rebatch within a week to ten days so, as eight days were up, it was time to take the plunge once again. I don't want to bore you with soap stories but it helps if I record what I have done for future reference.


The soap in the photo below looks a different colour from the rest of the photos but it is the same soap. As I take photos on my old point and shoot...still!...instead of my newer camera I take them on different settings....Macro, Auto and Foliage and the Foliage setting always make the colours look more vivid. Once on the computer I then have to pick out which ones look reasonably okay as the foliage ones often turn out blurry for some reason. Hence one photo in the blog post which is taken on Macro and the rest were taken on Foliage :-)



2.10pm

 Anyway back to the rebatching. This time I put the slow cooker on low instead of high and was prepared to let it melt over a period of a couple of hours. I basically used the method shown in the Rebatching Soap on Savvy Homemade but didn't use the petroleum jelly on the moulds. This was a bit batch of soap and completely filled the slow cooker which is a big one. I added a little water to start off with.


3.40pm

 After 3 and a half hours it was well on its way without being stirred...


4.25pm
 Another hour on and it didn't seem to be melting any more so it was time for the additives.


4.30pm Adding Annato Red and calendula petals

I thought I would add calendula petals so rang up Green Living Australia where I bought the Annato Red from which is used to colour both cheese and soap and asked how much to add and whether the soap would turn out red. Apparently if you used the whole bottle which I certainly didn't want to do then it would end up red but by just adding a small amount it would become a golden colour which was just what I wanted as I thought it would look good with the calendula petals. 


Last lot being put into moulds

So firstly I turned off the slow cooker then I packed the loaf mould with soap and took a while packing it down as it is certainly not like cold processed soap when you pour it. I then covered it with petals and set about filling the other moulds. By then the soap was drying out with the lid off but I tried to pack it down as much as I could but I could see it was already too dry. I rolled some into balls like I read in one of these posts on rebatching on The Soap Queen which was just for fun. I was pleased to see on that site that there were some soaps that looked as bad as mine :-)


Hmmm, not impressive
 Once out of the mould it was time to take stock and I wasn't impressed with the individual soaps which weren't packed down enough and had dried out too much I would say so I wasn't in a hurry to touch the loaf mould for a while and left it a little longer.

Presentable result
However, I was pleasantly surprised when it finally came out of the mould and some of these slices are actually giftable if there is such a word. The flecks are from some white embeds I had made a while back. A soapie friend told me that embeds are supposed to be used fresh so I thought I would add them to the mix as well as they were a few months old. There are a few air bubbles here and there even though I did a bit of banging on the bench to get rid of them but all in all I am quite pleased with the soap in the loaf mould. 

I have no desire to make rebatching a habit so will do my best to produce better batching in the future and check my scales before soapmaking each time. I have put new batteries in and hopefully it is onwards and upwards from here. 
 
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On a totally and more important subject, as I type this Hurricane Irma is heading towards the US after creating havoc already plus there are two other hurricanes on the way as well. Unbelievable! I want to wish all my readers in that area all the best in the coming days and I will be praying that you and your families stay safe. I daresay you won't be reading blogs at such a time but just in case you are I wanted to send my best wishes. 

16 comments:

  1. The soap did turn out a lovely golden colour, and they would make lovely gifts.

    What they are facing in the US and Mexico at the moment is hard to comprehend. So much destructive force in such a short time.

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    1. Sherri, I have a couple of friends over there I am quite concerned about. I hope they stay safe. It must be terrifying.

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  2. The loaf mould, did the trick! But I'm sure, all are still very usable. The individual moulds will surely smooth out, with a bit of use in water. :)

    My thoughts and prayers are with those facing such extreme weather events too.

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    1. Chris, I have used one of the 'balls' and there is quite a bit of lather. Yes, I think it is easier to press down on the loaf mould to get a better result.

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  3. I haven't had to re batch yet, touch wood. I like the way the loaf turned out, artistic looking. Just saw a news report about Irma, very scary for those affected.

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    1. Deb, this is the first time I have had a really bad batch so I am pleased it wasn't wasted.

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  4. Your soap making journey is fascinating Chel and quite scientific. It's inspiring that a bad batch is redeemable and all credit to you for persisting. They look like lovely gifts. It's incredible to comprehend that Florida has the same population as Australia. Best wishes, Pauline

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    1. I didn't realise that about the population of Florida, Pauline. I was saying to someone the other day that even though our cyclones cause a lot of damage they don't usually hit major cities as is happening in the US with Houston and the current one.

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  5. One day, I'd love to have a go at soap making - when I've actually got more time. Yours looks great to me. Cheers Lyndie

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  6. Lyndie I don't think I made any soap before I retired. Now I like to experiment with varying results :-)

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  7. That looks great. I wish I had the courage to make soap. I love to see those beautiful homemade soaps, but never tried it.
    Have a great day. Hugs from The Netherlands.

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    1. Be brave, Monique. You just have to be careful with the lye.

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  8. I am hoping to get into soapmaking a bit more and so I'll know what to try when I have to rebatch something ... which I inevitably will! Meg:)

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    1. Yes it is a good trick to have up your sleeve, Meg. Then there is no wasteage.

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  9. Chel, the rebatching looks great to me! Rebatched soaps are common in a commercial sense, and they are called French Milled Soaps. So when you see them in the pharmacy or upmarket department store, you now know what they are! Mimi xxx

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    1. Mimi I am sure they look smoother than mine though :-)

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