The Joy of learning a Simple Life-Skill


Soap-making is such a simple pleasure.  I bought a couple of bars and just loved it, so decided to try it for myself.  I found a simple recipe and got my resident handyman, Bud, to build me a couple of devices from scrap lumber.  The only purchases were the clamps and soap cutter.

I followed the simple soap recipe and have been making various types, scents, and textures.  I use it for bath, face, and shampoo.  It is wonderful for dry skin and a Godsend for psoriasis sufferers since it is so rich.

I am always so pleased when I learn a new craft, especially if it is an old one.  I would caution anyone who is interested to use caution with the lye.  Be sure to mix outdoors or in an extremely well-ventilated area, wearing long sleeves, eye protection, gloves, and a mask.  The fumes are horrible.  Also, add lye gradually to water, not water to lye!  It mix gets very hot, so have pot holder handy.  Flaked lye dissolves much more easily than gables.  I had to order lye off Internet.  It goes without saying, store lye careful and mix only what you need.  Be sure to weigh all ingredients, not measure.  You will need a GOOD mixer when mixing.  I burned up two hand-held cheaper models before I found that out.  I wouldn’t try stirring, since it might take more than an hour of hand stirring to reach right consistency.  A good electric mixer has it ready n five or six minutes.  Be sure to ms lye n glass, not metal.  It will ruin metal.

Soap has to cure 3-4 weeks, so don’t get in a hurry if you are making gifts.  It won’t hurt to use sooner.  It will just feel slimy instead of nice and soapy.

33 thoughts on “The Joy of learning a Simple Life-Skill

  1. I learned to make soap when I was a child as part of a course on Pilgrim arts and activities. I’d love to do it again, and good lye soap is wonderful for getting out stubborn stains.


  2. Just Plain Ol' Vic says:

    My wife used to do this as an EBay business, all natural handmade soaps. I miss the stuff she made, especially the soaps that had a loofa sponge in it (scrub and clean in one swipe)!

    Liked by 1 person

  3. I need to get my eyes checked. For some reason two of those pics looked like bacon to me… maybe I’m just hungry. Very cool about the soap making. I have dreams of learning to knit – my mom made it look so easy and meditative.

    Liked by 1 person

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