Bramble Berry was recently mentioned in the 2011 Martha Stewart Holiday Handbook. Yippy! (And yes, we all did the Happy Soaping dance in the office when we saw our name in print in the Divine Ms. M’s magazine). If you don’t have that issue already, you should definitely get it. There are lots of yummy cookie recipes included. Martha did a wonderful red and white striped soap project using melt and pour soap. Even though Bramble Berry was just noted as a supplier (and not the author of the recipe), we received a ton of calls in customer service asking how to make the “Martha Soap” which we were so happy to help with (and so proud to be associated with! Thanks Martha and team!). The calls inspired me to create my own “Martha Inspired” peppermint layer loaf. This is obviously an iteration of the soap by the Martha but it also takes inspiration from last year’s uber popular Peppermint Bark soap.
See the snowflake ornaments in the background? These beautifully crocheted ornaments for the tree were a gift from a customer. Thanks Eleanor, that was so sweet of you!
28 oz White MP Soap Base
40 oz Clear MP Soap Base
Heat safe containers
Buy all of the ingredients you need in the click of a button!update: The buy it now button contains Opalescent Bordeaux Mica instead of Merlot Mica since we’re currently out of stock. It’s a great substitute for this project.
This recipe combines two intermediate melt and pour soapmaking techiques: Embedding and Layering. If you have never soaped using these methods, brush up on your melt and pour skills by watching the Soap Queen TV episodes on Embedding and Layering.
PREP: The first step is to prepare our embedding pieces for the center of the soap loaf.
- One: Melt 8 ounces of white soap base in a heat safe container (30 second bursts in the microwave). Mix in .1 oz (that’s POINT one) of Peppermint 2nd Essential Oil. Pour the soap into the 9″ Loaf Mold. Let cool.
- Two: Melt 8 ounces of clear soap base in a heat safe container (30 second bursts in the microwave). Mix in .1 oz (that’s POINT one) of Peppermint 2nd Essential Oil, 25 drops of Non-bleeding Red and 1/2 mini scoop of Merlot Mica (this is the perfect combo for a non-bleeding red in my opinion). Let the soap cool down to 125-130 degrees the spritz the white layer with rubbing alcohol and pour the red layer over the white. Let cool.
- Three: Once the soap has cooled, unmold the soap and cut into small, irregular pieces.
ONE: Melt 20 ounces of white soap base in a heat safe container (30 second bursts in the microwave) and mix in .3 ounces of Peppermint 2nd Essential Oil. Pour half of the white soap into the loaf mold. Weigh it if you want to be precise but I’m sure that you can all guess that I eyeballed it. Spritz the soap with rubbing alcohol to get rid of any air bubbles and let the soap cool.
Tip: Cover the remaining white soap with plastic wrap to keep it warm. You’ll probably have to reheat by the time we use it again but this may shave off a minute in the microwave depending on how fast you work.
TWO: While the white soap is cooling, melt 20 ounces of clear soap base in a heat safe container (30 second bursts in the microwave). Mix in .3 ounces of Peppermint 2nd Essential Oil, 45 drops Non-bleeding Red, 2 mini scoops Merlot Mica and 1/2 Teaspoon of Iridescent Glitter. Mix well and let the soap cool down to 125- 130 degrees. Once the white soap is completely cool and ready to support another layer, spritz it with rubbing alcohol and pour half of the sparkly red soap over the white. Let the soap cool.
Tip: Cover the remaining red soap with plastic wrap to keep it warm.
THREE: Now for the fun part- embedding! Melt 12 ounces of clear soap base in a heat safe container (30 second bursts in the microwave). Mix in .2 ounces of Peppermint 2nd Essential Oil and let the soap cool down to 130 degrees.
Hint: Have you heard of the “blueing technique”? Add just the teeniest, tiniest amount of Liquid Blue Colorant to the soap to get a “clear” effect in the soap. See the trick in action on the Embedding Episode of Soap Queen TV.
FOUR: This next step will involve a lot of rubbing alcohol and a fast paced tempo. Liberally spritz the embedding pieces ahead of time. Next, spritz the red layer of soap with rubbing alcohol and pour half of the clear soap on top. Add a big handful of the peppermint pieces. Then repeat. Spritz. Pour the rest of the clear. Add peppermint pieces. Let cool.
The aftermath and chaos of embedding the peppermint pieces. Hey, I never said this was going to be a clean project =)
FIVE: Once the soap has cooled, pour the final layer of sparkly red soap followed by the rest of the white soap. Depending on how fast you’ve moved, you may have to reheat the red and white soap. Remember to cool the soap down to 125-130 degrees and spritz between layers!
SIX: For the textured white top, push the melted soap back and forth with a spoon while the soap cools. Keep pushing the soap as it starts getting gelatinous and hard. Then immediately sprinkle on the jojoba beads while the soap is still warm.
Cutting Tip: Avoid drag from the jojoba beads by cutting the soap on it’s side. If you cut from the top, the jojoba beads will drag down into your soap causing drag marks and stripes.
I hope this project inspires you like Marthat Stewart project inspired me. If it does, I’d love to see a picture of your project. Just post it on our Facebook page – I’m there every day! Happy Soaping!