Oct 14

Wood Grain Design Challenge

First off, let me apologize for not bringing a new video to you all in weeks! I realize this has let down a few of my loyal viewers, however I hope you’ll understand when I say the last month has been CRAZY. Between getting soap made at lighting (for me) speed and taking care of my family (between three kids and a husband that is a school teacher, I’ve seen more vomit in the last week than I ever want to see again in my life.) Seriously though, tell these guys to stop getting sick, I’m tired of cleaning that stuff up.

Anyway, I’ve found a little time to try a new technique as part of the Great Cakes Soap Challenge Club (link here!) called the “Wood Grain” technique. Now there are probably several ways you could accomplish a wood grain technique in soap, including the simple use of a fondant mat*, however, I stuck to the squeeze bottle technique demonstrated in the challenge tutorial.

The only thing I did different, or my own, is change up the colors to match the scent. I chose a Dr. Pepper (type) scent for this soap and therefore chose a deep red, accomplished using a combination of Really Red and Raspberry Red (both from Nurture Soap) mixed with a little brown (I used both Mocha Brown and Bronze Brown, also from Nurture) in these colors. I also used a little titanium dioxide to help make the browns differ and provide a little contrast.

After squeezing as much soap as I could out of those poor bottles, I learned something. When working with these techniques, make MORE soap batter than you need, because you’re going to leave at least 10% of it in the bottles, no matter how hard you tap and squeeze.

After unmolding, I cut the bars about 2 1/2″ wide, in hopes that these bars wouldn’t be TOO small, but really, like I said, I wish I had realized I needed more soap batter to make them tall enough to my liking. They’re only about .8″ tall (or wide, if you turn it?)

Anyway, after a little bit of planing to make them a little less weird looking around the edges, I came up with a couple of really gorgeous looking bars of soap! Now, because these are in such a small batch, I likely won’t list these on Etsy, but if you’re a friend or family member that typically receives holiday gifts, don’t be surprised to find one of these on your doorstep come Winter!

Another bonus I learned? This technique, if cut the regular way (1″ bars from 3″+ tall loaf) creates a REALLY cool effect on the cross cut! I may use this in an upcoming, regular batch of soap.

Overall I’m extremely pleased! And this last photo is probably my favorite. The lighting wasn’t behaving at all, because my timing was bad and the random chaos that is our life right now doesn’t cooperate at all, but it has a fun effect that I really enjoy.

*Affiliate Link Disclosure! The link for the wood grain fondant mat is an affiliate link to Amazon. Clicking this link to purchase helps us gain a small amount of money that helps support running of this website at no extra cost to you.


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