Saturday, December 15, 2007

Soaps with Stamps: a simple but fun gift idea

If your looking for a very affordable & simple gift idea soap-making is a fun project to do. It's suitable as a gift to all ages, and Kids can make it too (with a little help for younger ones.) The materials are easily found and affordable.


MOLDS: The mold I used for this project (stamped soaps) was 2.99 at Michael's. I've had the sun and moon mold for years and the big green ovalish bar (with the raised edge) is actually made in a ziplock disposable plastic storage container. (You can't get more affordable than free. You can rummage in your kitchen cupboards and see what you find.

If you want an amazing selection of molds, consider Voyager Soap & Candle Co. Their molds are so artistic and also affordable; they have all the essential oils and high quality melt & pour. (I've been drooling over their open-hand mold and goat's milk melt & pour, but had to make do since I didn't order and I'm out of time...) I think the mold is made by Milky way. Here's another source that shows a selection of them.

SOAP: The melt & pour is around 10.00 (depending on the type you use.) I've used a mix of
Glycerin-based transparent and Creamy coconut oil melt and pour. They have easy directions on the package, but you just prepare your images (USE STAZON INK to avoid bleeding), and you do three WAY simple things:

1. Chop soap into squares put in bowl to melt in microwave. (Mine took under a minute.)
2. Add stuff to the melted soap (essential oils should be added last so they don't evaporate as much.) To add images just stamp on white tissue paper, then pour a little clear melted soap, let cool, add image (in STAZON ink) & pour the rest.
3. Pour and let set (in fridge if you're in a hurry like me) and release (by sitting in a hot sink full of water for a second or two.)

ADDITIONS: I love to add natural ingredients only. I use freshly ground cloves, coffee, fresh or dried herbs, and essential oils. These are scented with Opium, Nagchampa, and Rose oils.

This soap above is done by adding chopped (never melted) opaque soap to the transparent pour.It has tissue paper with the mushroom stamp I carved from lino in it. You can also float designer paper or you could draw something on tissue in permanent marker (or print photos or images from your computer on tissue paper--see how here.) [Though I'm not sure if it would bleed. If I had any more clear soap I'd try it and let you know... ;0).]

The soap below has a carved outrigger image stamped and set in it:

So many thanks go out to Sara who first inspired me to try soap with stamping. Her awesome tutorial is here. She has so many great pointers. I must admit that when I made mine I cheated and just floated a piece of tissue paper (stamped with STAZON ink) in clear melt & pour. I just poured a little of the glycerin soap, laid down the tissue (checking for bubbles) then poured more melt & pour. It was so easy!

Well, I'm off to find something box-like to alter, so I can put them in it & make them look fancier. ;0) Just wanted to post this idea a.s.a.p., so you could potentially use it as a gift idea.

Thanks for reading. Happy gifting,

P.S. A whole slew of wicked sweet soap ideas can be found here at

ETA: I find regular inks bleed. I've done some editing & added the pointer to use Stazon ink instead of classic ink. Hope everyone's soap-making works out! :0) Mel


veronica said...

can you use the soap that has inked paper in it? i have a friend that makes soap, and i showed her my candles that have stamped tissue paper on them. she was interested in doing some on soap, but i thought once the soap gets wet, the paper would get washed off. what about the ink? would the ink come off on the skin, if used?
thanks for any info.

mel m. m. mccarthy said...

Hi Veronica,

I tried to respond to you by email but there was none. The best way ink to use is stazon ink (to avoid bleeding.) Once the soap user hits the tissue paper inside the soap, they can just take it out, but another way to do it is in the tutorial on my post (where you use designer paper instead of stamped ink --the paper is sealed by packing tape.)I'll have to try one out in the shower and let you know! ;0)

Thanks so much for being interested. I hope I answered your questions.

:0) Mel