Tuesday, December 20, 2011

DTC Molds...for soap making?!?! YES!

Disclaimer...I am somewhat of a new soap maker. My friends and neighbors are clean due to the amount of "mistakes" I have given away. But I am getting better at this crazy hobby and I am ready to try something new.

Glenda sent me several sea urchin molds, aren't they cute?

First step is to fill them with water to get an idea of how much soap they will hold (soap and water weigh approximately the same). The three molds contained about 2.55 oz which I will round up to 3 oz when I make my batter.

I opted for something colorful for my first attempt, thus a lemony floral with lemongrass was chosen. My cold process soap recipe contained olive, palm, coconut, and castor bean oils were all melted together and added to the lye water.

Cold process was used rather than hot process soap, because I wanted to make sure and get all the fine details from my molds. That requires having a thinner soap batter when pouring into the mold...which you can see here. Pretty!

Now...I let it sit. At least 24 hours, maybe longer (depending on the weather...humidity can cause issues). I hate waiting. Oh by the way, while I do not personally make melt-n-pour (MP) soaps, the thinness of the MP batter would work quite well in these molds too. MP is a tad safer for older children to use; I think they might have a lot of fun. But I digress...

Unmolding was a snap...but why no pictures of the beautiful lemon? Some child of mine who will go unnamed TOOK one into his shower. You don't want to see it now. BUT I will show you my next couple of examples: a fun oatmeal stout soap with gorgeous color and just look at the detail from the mold along with the rosemary and calendula flowers in my "woodsy" soap. Just beautiful! And yes, I do need to do a final "clean up" step and trim the bottom, but I wanted to show how they look fresh from the mold.

...and of course clean up is a snap! I have since acquired several more sea-creature molds from DTC and have had a ball with them. Customers of mine with beach themed bathrooms have had me make specific scents or colors, they love the detail of the molds. I love the ease of use!

FUN! Now...off to make more.... :) THANK YOU GLENDA!

April MacKinnon, crazy soap maker at April's Soaps (aprils.soaps@gmail.com)

Products Used:
Sea Urchin Single
Sea Urchin Set of 2

April's Soaps Facebook Page

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

Steampunk Is Trending!

The next DTCPUG post has so much to offer! A cake, cookies and even a tree ornament! Our thanks again to Joanne for sharing her talents and her creativitiy!

Steampunk is Trending!!!

I see it in themed parties, weddings, movies, fashion, music, art shows and even recently in the the Saks Fifth Avenue 2011 Christmas Lights Show in NYC!!! Yes, the old, vintage, industrial era is back and trending!

Decorate the Cake has come up with a new set of wonderful silicone molds of gears and chains and impression mats for your steampunk-industrial-retro-futuristic cake, cupcake and cookie designs.

I had the privilege of doing this special project that aims to tickle your imagination. This sample cake and cookies can fit any occasion. I think that this might be an Engagement cake, a Wedding cake that can mean an infinite love, Groom's Cake, Children's Cake, (Mickey Mouse Clubhouse???), a Biker's cake, an Engineer's cake, it can also be a Christmas ornament, New Year Countdown cake, some Cookies to match the theme to serve as give aways.... The possibilities are endless!!!

There are tricks to make each gear and chains come out of the mold perfectly. It will be best illustrated through the photos that I will be including in this tutorial.

For this purpose I have used straight Gumpaste. Fondant, Melting Chocolate, Modeling Chocolate, Marzipan, Isomalt or Gelatin, can be used with the silicone mold. If using a non edible material such as clay, crayons (wax) or soap, make sure that the molds will solely be used for this purpose and not be used anymore for any food or edible ingredient.

Things you should consider when using this mold:

For use with fondant , gumpaste, marzipan or modeling chocolate is to make sure you have dusted lightly your mold with cornstarch or powdered sugar. The paste should be well kneaded to a pliable stage before pressing into the mold. There may be times when you need to refrigerate before you unmold the the ingredient out of the silicone mold.

For use with melting chocolate , a proper tempering is needed, pour and tap to make sure air bubbles are out.

For use with isomalt crystals, cook isomalt at 338F make sure that the crystalline have dissolved and the liquid isomalt has reached right temperature for pouring at somewhere 275F-300F. Always take caution when dealing with hot sugar, always use gloves for protection against burns.

I hope this will spark up ideas for your upcoming projects. I'd like to thank Glenda and Decorate the Cake for coming up with such beautiful molds and the opportunity to play around with it.
If you have any questions, please feel free to contact Decorate the cake or email me at thelittlecakedecorator@thelittlecakepatch.com

Cakefully Yours!!
Joanne Wieneke

Products Used:
Bike Chain Mold
Mini Gears Mold
Sprocket Set of 9 Molds
Diamond Plate 1 - Texture Mat