I had the great privilege of attending the PNW Soap Gathering. Held in Lakewood, Washington at a private home (thanks, Jenny!), soapers from all over Washington State arrived in great spirits, laden with food and soap. And really, what better type of soap to arrive with than cupcake soap? I snagged one of them right away.
Can you believe the soap on the right was an entry into the Ugliest Soap Contest? It didn’t even make an Honorable Mention in the Ugliest Soap Contest. It was far too cute. The actual winner is the soap at the top of this post. The brown soap clinched the win by being both unfortunate in looks but also spongy soft after 6 months of cure time. In a laugh worthy twist, the Runner-Up Worst Soap was also made by the Worst Soap Winner. It was a dubious prize to win Ugliest Soap and Runner Up Ugliest Soap but we’ve all been there so it was all in good fun.
We were so lucky to have a sharing group of soapers. The demonstration were varied and interesting. Chris S. did a wonderful Double Boiler Hot Process Soap demonstration. Many of the cold-process only soapers were amazed at the no-cure-time reality of Hot Process soap. Chris made some converts with her demonstration.
Jacquelyn did an amazing demonstration on how to make Lavender wands. All I wanted to do was sniff these fresh lavender bud hem with fresh wands. She made them with fresh lavender that she interwove with beautiful ribbon. The various varieties of lavender she wove smelled dramatically different but all were luscious with a full bodied, calming scent.
The entire group loved SoapyLove’s Sillouette Soap technique. There wasn’t a bad looking soap in the bunch and that was even with some brand new melt and pour newbies.
The biggesst “Ooohs” and “Ahhhs” came from Jeanine’s demonstration of making soap gems. Like most melt and pour techniques, it was surprising simple once the “secret” was shared. Even with its deceptively complicated looks, this project can be done by the newest of newbies.
Finally, we ended the day with door prizes and goody bags. Big thank you to Diana from Southern Garden Scents for her generous door prize of fragrance oils and Jen from Lotioncrafter who sent a gift certificate. In a surprise finish, Jenny our gracious hostess won the Grand Grand Prize – a Bramble Berry 10 pound log mold (with collapsible doors) and a Beginning Cold Process Soapmaking DVD.