Saturday, August 17, 2013

2013 Soap Challenge ! -- Holly Swirl

Singapore celebrated her 48th birthday on 9 Aug 2013. I was getting tired of the typical 'National Day' soap in red and white, with stars and crescent moon or a Merlion; and I wanted to create a soapy version that embodied the true 'spirit' of Singapore.

So, when Amy Warden of Great Cakes Soapworks shared the Holly Swirl, I knew that it would be the perfect technique for the soap I had in mind. The Holly Swirl is essentially a swirl in a swirl technique created by Holly Bailey of Missouri River Soap Co. You can see her lovely Green Apple and Rose Soap here

Bramble Berry is sponsoring this month's prize. The winner will receive a signed copy of Anne-Marie Faiola's new book Soapcrafting as well as everything needed to create one of her recipes in the book. Second and Third place winners will receive free registration of next month's Soap Challenge Club. So exciting!!!

My entry for this month's Soap Challenge is the "Singapore Sling".

The Singapore Sling is a long drink created by a Mr Ngiam Boon Tong who was working as a bartender at the Long Bar in Raffles Hotel Singapore sometime before 1915. Today, there are many versions of the original recipe. MeiMei and I were happy gals when we found a bottled version in our local supermarket.

Our inspiration ... 
Singapore Sling


The cocktail mixture was heated gently to allow all the alcohol content to evaporate. The leftover mixture was poured into an ice-cube tray and allowed to solidify in the freezer. I used part cocktail mixture (sans alcohol) and part distilled water combination in my recipe.

I prepared a slow moving blend of Avocado Oil, Coconut Oil, Olive Oil and Palm Oil and lined my favourite 2 lb mold from Bramble Berry. Choice of colourants: Copper + Gold Mica, Merlot Mica, Red Oxide and Yellow Oxide. Fragrance blend: Pineapple Cilantro and Kumkuat FO. (colourants and FO from Bramble Berry)

M&P embeds that MeiMei and I prepared in advance.

Pineapple slices and Maraschino cherry M&P embeds 

I did not manage to take any WIP photos (A-G-A-I-N). I was head-scratching most of the time as I watched the cocktail mixture turn my lye solution from a bright red to yellow to orange-red and the soap batter morphed from dark orange to bright yellow. After I added my colourants to a portion of it, it turned a sad brown.

Then I carefully pushed the embeds into the soap ... only to watch them sink ... *wail**

Fresh soap

It was v-e-r-y different from what I had planned and I was getting really frustrated. Then MeiMei came hopping along and squealed, "oooohhhhhhhh!! It's ssssooooooo NICE Mummy!"

My heart melted :)  I felt renewed. Sprinkled some glitter and everything got better - magically.

Freshly cut. I love the swirls but the colours turned out very dark due to the reaction of the cocktail mixture. 

"Singapore Sling" soap

"Singapore Sling" soap

I love the Holly Swirl and will surely use this technique in my soaps! Thanks Amy for this soapy challenge!