Friday, December 12, 2014

Easy Travel Soaps!

Every year I go on vacation and I detest using hotel/resort soaps. They are usually the cheapest soaps out there and they do nothing by dry my skin and make my skin feel gross.

I figured out a solution! Make the soaps in clamshell molds! Take it out, break off a piece and use it while you are there. Such an easy solution for a problem that has plagued me for years!

 



Supplies Needed:
Melt and Pour Soap Base *I used Goats Milk
FD&C Dye *I used Blue
Cosmetic Glitter or Mica Optional
Clamshell Molds

Fragrance *I used Angel Type
Thermometer
Digital Scale
Pyrex Measure Cup



Melting the Soap Base
:

  • Microwave Method: Cut the Melt and Pour Base on the score lines and place it in a microwave safe dish. (Pyrex measuring cups work nicely) Place the dish in your microwave. Using full power, heat the base for one minute at a time until it begins to melt. Once it has started to melt, decrease this to 30 second intervals until it is fully melted stirring often. OR
  • Stove Top Method: Cut the Melt and Pour Base on the score lines and place it in a sauce pan. Turn the heat on Medium and stirring constantly, allow the soap to melt fully. Be sure to stir constantly to avoid scorching!

*The melted soap should be between 145-160 F.


Adding the Dye
:

  • FD&C Liquid Bath and Body Dye is the appropriate dye type for Melt and Pour Soap. Once your soap is melted, just add the dye a drop at a time, stirring after each until you reach your desired shade. The amount used will vary.

Adding the Fragrance:

  • For Melt and Pour, it is safe to use up to, but no more than ½ Weight Ounce of fragrance per pound of
    soap base. Each block of Melt and Pour Base is Two pounds. For one full block of soap, you would use up to 1 ounce of fragrance. Stir well after adding the fragrance oil to the melted & colored soap base. Be sure that on the IFRA declaration for each fragrance it is at least 3% safe to use 1/2 oz. per lb of base.

Pouring into Molds:

  • Pour your scented and colored soap base into the molds. Use a fine mist spray bottle filled with Rubbing Alcohol to lightly mist the tops of each of the just poured soaps to remove any bubbles.Try pouring into the clamshells at 150*, pouring much hotter can cause them to melt!

*You can place the mold in the freezer for a few minutes if removal is difficult but I typically suggest waiting longer instead before resorting to this method.

Make and market these to local hotel gift shops, to campers etc. This is the easiest way to bring soap with and not have to tote back a mess!

Happy Soap Making!
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Monday, November 24, 2014

Oh Christmas Tree!

I love Christmas. I love making things that smell like Christmas. I love decorating the tree and the house, I love the faces of the small children and the way they light up when seeing Santa at the mall or the way they squeal in delight upon opening that coveted gift! Christmas cookies and candies and spending time with those you love! It's just purely magical! 

This month, I will be making a soap that is perfect for the Christmas Holiday. Put a bar in the bathrooms and another at the kitchen sink and let all of your holiday guests enjoy the scents of the holidays too! This mold could be used year round for a manly soap or one scented in pine! This project was tons of fun and could be made by the kids this holiday too using Melt and Pour in place of the Cold Process Recipe I used today!





Supplies Needed:
Fir Tree Tray Mold
A Northwoods Christmas
Olive Oil
Palm Oil or Lard (From a local grocer)
Coconut Oil

Sodium Hydroxide
Red
Green
Brown
OR if you want to do melt and pour versus cold process soap use
Mango Butter Melt and Pour Soap Base

First, mix your soap oils and get your lye solution ready. I found this mold took about  30 total ounces between the soap oils and lye mix. 

My recipe was as follows:
10 oz. Pomace Oilve Oil
5 oz. Coconut OIl
5 oz. Palm Oil or Lard
For the lye solution I used 3.05 oz lye and 5 oz water

Mix lye solution per standard safe practices.
When the lye solution and the oils reach about 100* combine them. DO NOT use a stick blender. Just use a small whisk.

Blend a small amount of the soap and color it green, enough to do the trees. 

Then add a bit of the brown and do the trunk portion
it will now look like this when you turn it over
Once you are to this point split the remaining raw soap and color a few oz a bright, red and do an in the pot swirl and pour into the molds.
Your finished soap slab will look like this: 

This is a truly fun project! Make them yourself for resale or to have in your own home this holiday or use melt and pour and make it a fun for the whole family project!

Happy Soaping!
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Monday, November 10, 2014

Christmas Tree Ornies!

It's nearly Christmas once again! This year, make something fun out of your Aroma Beads, make Christmas Tree Ornies! They are absolutely adorable, easy to make and best of all fun!

What you will need:
Liquid Candle Dye 
Fragrance Oils
Aroma Beads
Cookie Cutters
Optional Mica, Glitter and Puff Paint tubes.
Cello Bags






First, make your Aroma Beads following these instructions:  
  1.  Scoop out the desired amount of beads and weigh them on a digital scale.
  2. Once you know the weight of your beads, you can weigh your fragrance oil.The beads will hold up to 30%. I personally find 25% works well with most scents and absorbs fairly readily. For every ounce of beads, using 25% you will add 1/4 oz. fragrance by weight. So for example if you are using 1 weight oz of beads, you will use .25 weight oz of fragrance oil.
  3. If you wish to color your Aroma Beads, you will need to add 1 or 2 drops of liquid candle dye to your fragrance oil and swirl it around until it's mixed well. *Note: Food coloring or B&B dye will not work!
  4. Then add the beads to your colored fragrance oil.
  5. Stir the beads around with a stir stick until the liquid is dispersed evenly.
  6. Then put the lid tightly on the jar and shake! It can take anywhere from 1 day to over a week for the beads to completely absorb all of the oil, it will vary with different fragrances. So keep shaking the jar every few hours! At first it will seem soupy and look as if it will not soak up the oil... but be patient! The oil will eventually soak in! Some fragrances may take longer than others... for example, the Red Hot Cinnamon took 1 day to soak in, but the Vanilla took 2 days, and some take over a week. If you run into a fragrance oil that is not soaking in after a week, try adding more beads and shake very well. Once the beads have absorbed all of the oil they will feel dry to the touch and will not seep or bleed!
  7. Once the oil is absorbed, you are done! Try making a second color & scent, and layering them! You can also add a bit of our White Mica Powder to the clear beads too for a shimmery, pearly effect! 
Next, make the Aroma Ornies from the finished Aroma Beads with these instructions:

  1. First make your scented & colored Aroma Beads as directed. Choose metal cookie cutters in the shapes & sizes you want for your ornaments. Lay them on a metal non-stick cookie sheet. Fill each shape with the beads, completely covering the bottom with a layer about 1/4" deep. Bake in the oven at 350 degrees for about 5 - 10 minutes or until you can see that the beads have melted together. Baking times will vary with different ovens.
    Watch them carefully!
    *Note: They will not be smooth like glass, they will be bumpy.
    *If you want a hole in the top for hanging, stand a flat head nail on it's head where you want the hole to be.
  2. Remove from oven with pot holders, and set on stove top to cool. A small amount of smoking is normal when they first come out. Allow tray to cool completely before touching! Next, carefully remove the cookie cutters.
    *I prefer to cool mine in the freezer for a few minutes, which helps them release from the cookie cutters easier.
  3. Once you remove the cutters, your ornament will be stuck to the pan, but it will peel off the non-stick metal fairly easily. Don't be alarmed if it feels stuck. They may feel like they won't budge at first, but once you start to pull it up it will peel off.
    *Note: I peeled this one off after setting the tray outside in the snow to cool, so the cold may help release them easier! Try putting the tray in your freezer!
  4. Peel the shapes off the sheet, and they are done! You can use a sharp tipped object like a nail to make a small hole near the top, and string some thin cord through to hang it with. Or try using a paper hole punch for thicker ribbon!

Now that you've done this, you have the most amazing Air Fresheners/Car Fresheners/Tree Ornaments! I choose themed fragrances for mine. You can add some glitter or mica or puff paint to them for more interest. This is a cute and fun project even the kids can participate in. This is an exceptionally fun idea for a Sunday School class!

Happy Crafting!
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Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Introducing EZ ParaSoy™!

Bitter Creek North introduces the most amazing new wax in candle making today, The EZ ParaSoy™!

What makes this wax so special? Well we are glad you asked! We have for years known that the blend of paraffin and soy was like a marriage made in heaven.

Paraffin waxes have long been known for their beautiful, creamy appearance and their ability to easily accept most fragrances with amazing hot and cold scent throw. Paraffin candles also have amazing, vibrant, bold and beautiful color and can use literally any type of dye. But paraffin wax can tend to soot some.

Soy is a bit more selective with fragrances and most certainly with colorants. Soy tends to pit and grow if exposed to temperature extremes or it will do so if not poured at the correct temperature. Soy can also tend to frost which to some is unacceptable, but it is so clean burning and that's the beauty of soy!

We have found that this hybrid blend of paraffin and soy creates the very best of both worlds!
EZ ParaSoy™ creates a candle that is smooth, creamy and beautifully colored weather it is a pastel, bright, bold or dark color. EZ ParaSoy™creates a candle that is cooler burning and reduced soot like in soy candle! EZ ParaSoy™has PHENOMENAL scent throw both hot and cold! It's the perfect marriage between two waxes!

Look on our shopping cart for this wax coming this week to Bitter Creek North! It works excellent with the CD series wicks, sizing is similar to soy and works great with the wood wicks as well. Sizing for those is more like the soy as well! We are sure you will love this wax as much as we do!

If you have any questions about this wax or need help with wick sizing, let our Tech Support know and we will be more than happy to help you out!

As always we strive to bring you ONLY the best products available in the market!

Happy Candle Making!
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Monday, October 13, 2014

Tropical Snowmen!

This Christmas, have some fun with your product! There are so many cute ideas out there. The one I am focusing on this month is Beach Bum Snowmen! For those of you that live around the beach, in a tropical climate, have you ever noticed sometimes it just doesn't seem right to market the same "snowy" Christmas products as the rest of the country sells? I know you all wish for that one night of snow on Christmas or Christmas Eve that melts before morning but let's face it, Texas isn't exactly known for the frosty white stuff! 

Here are a few ideas for some fun products to sell this holiday season in the tropical areas of the United States!

As shown in our photo, Beach Bum Snowman! I found this graphic for $5 on a graphics website, there are tons out there for sale, reasonably cheap OR take your own! I loved the idea of the ocean and a "snowman" made of sand on the beach! It just makes this northern girl giggle with delight to see it! I used the Jack Frost Scent from BCS for this particular bottle. This is made with the Lotion Base from BCS, the Labels from BCN and the Bottle and Cap from BCS. I thought it still played on a traditional Holiday scent and yet was fun enough to sell on the beach! It's about fun! Make your products fun, make them different and people will buy them! 

Other ideas: A Palm Tree decorated for Christmas and then scenting it in Coconut or Coconut Lime! A friend of mine does Reindeer Poop and Snowman Poop. To me those are funny but best suited to wax melts! Fill the clamshells just so the cavities are filled with white and or brown wax accordingly. For Snowman Poop, Try the scent Homespun Sugar! For Reindeer Poop, how about Creme Brulee! You could also make these scents into candles! Try any of the same scents in a jar with a cute label too! This is fun....have fun with it!

If you live in a cold climate you can still have fun with this idea! Montana could do a camo snowman with a deer rifle! You could do a Redneck Snowman and his wife, in Camo and Blaze Orange! The sky is the limit with this! People love uniqueness! Things that are different sell! Grab their attention this year by labeling your products uniquely and fun! These are GREAT stocking suffers! People love to buy silly cute gifts around the Holiday!

Happy Candle and Craft Making!
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