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Thursday, July 28, 2011

"Have I Lost My Marbles? No, I Fried Them!" Soap

This is a Fullamoon original I dreamt up in honor of Tamra of DelightfulU who nominated me for the Versatile Blogger Award. I figured I'd better come up with something original and fabulous to live up to this award.

Ladies and gentleman (that's you, Kevin, I think you're the only gentleman who follows me) I give you (drum roll)...Fried Marble Soap!

Okay now first let me explain I've never actually fried marbles myself, but I do recall hearing that jewelers make crackled marbles by frying them in a pan and then dumping them into freezing cold water, which crackles the marbles from the inside out. Here's a photo I found of the real McCoy:

From these beautiful fried marbles, you can make earrings, slides and bangles by bending wire cages around the marbles.  Now here is my melt and pour soapy interpretation:

And here they are embedded in a solid color bar:

Like gemstone soaps, these were quite time consuming but worth it. I documented each stage so I can post a tutorial. I am delighted to share this with you! 

For this project I used Bramble Berry's:

White Ginger Tea fragrance
Copper Sparkle Mica
Liquid Orange color
Clear soap base
Goats milk white soap base

12-bar soap mold from Bramble Berry
Melon baller
Spritzer with rubbing alcohol
Glass container to melt soap base in microwave

Here are blocks of opaque orange, copper sparkle mica and clear. 

To make the ribbons, slicc the copper and orange into thin strips.

Give each strip a twist and set aside. This will form the "glass" ribbon inside the marbles.

 Chop up the clear block this way and that. These small cubes will form the cracks inside the marbles that give them a crackle appearance. See where I'm going with this?

I like marbles with more than one color inside them so I also made orange ribbons to complement the copper. I could have used solid white or some other color as well.

I layered the embeds in the following order - clear chunks, mica ribbon, orange ribbon, then clear chunks again. This ensures that the ribbons will appear in the center of your marbles.  Spritz with alcohol and then pour melted clear with the fragrance in it to fill the rest of the mold.

Get your melon baller ready!

I used the larger side of the melon baller but smaller marbles would have been cool as well. I think the bigger they are the more dramatic they are. I was able to scoop out 5 marbles per square using the melon baller.  The soap was a little soft, so I could really dig deep and get a full sphere.

I plopped them into colored soap and as I use the bar the marbles will appear from within. Of course once I unmolded the soap I wondered why I didn't just use clear to fill the bar. Oh well. Next time.

So there you have it. Soap marbles. Pretty cool, eh? I think next time I will skip the crackle part, use two colors for the ribbons and sink them in clear soap base.

  Thank you for looking!

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Versatile Blogger Award

I am delighted to announce that I was nominated for a very special award, The Versatile Blogger Award! It's an award from bloggers to fellow bloggers. Thank you so much Tamra of DelightfulU, a handmade boutique of soaps, bath soaks, scrubs and jewelry. Please do check out her site - it's chock full of neat projects like crochet, the coolest quilts, adorable costumes and, of course, SOAP!

Recipients of The Versatile Blogger Award are requested to:

1 – Make a post and link it back to the person who gave you the award (and include their website address).
2 – Share 7 random things about yourself.
3 – Award 7 recently discovered bloggers with this award and contact them to let them know they have won.

How fun is that! Here are seven random facts about myself:

1. I like to play the keyboard. Although I think I'm pretty good, I absolutely cannot play in front of people other than my two boys and my husband. But I also like to make soap, and I share that with anyone who shows any interest what-so-ever. I give it away, I explain how I made it, I e-mail pictures, I post pics on Facebook, etc. I think the gemstones are my favorites so far, but I am working on a special soap in honor of my nominator, Tamra, who is very crafty and might like something that looks like glass, and that's the only clue I'll give. Stay tuned...

2. I'm in an arranged marriage. Well, not really. But our moms did introduce us! And we've been happily married for 21 years. I am C-R-A-Z-Y about my husband!

3. I live very close to the beach, but I hate going there. Yes, I really do. I get sticky, sandy, windblown, chewed by sand fleas and the water is freezing! The only condition I will agree to go is if it's after supper so I don't get sunburned, the tide is low so the seashells are visible and there is at least one tide pool to wade through. If the sun, moon and all the planets are in alignment, like maybe once a year, I'll go. But that's it.

4. I can juggle. Yes I know all moms can juggle things - work, kids, relationships - but I mean balls. Or apples. Or oranges. But not eggs. Because I'm allergic to eggs.

5. I love to decorate. It takes me a while to get it right but the whole process fires me up. I've been decorating this house for three years now. I've only made a small dent, but the process of "becoming" is fun.

6. I'm a night owl. Most of my blog entries are created between 11 PM and 2 AM. Who-o-o, who-o-o!

7. I am a Maxxonista. I love shopping for clothes and home goods at T. J. Maxx.

Without further ado, here are 7 other blogs that I think deserve this award! And the nominees are:

Lindsey of Five Healthy Hearts - Lindsey blogs about her life, her family and her crafty projects like knitting, quilting and she's even sewn dolls. Seriously, do check out her Starry night quilt. It's beautiful. Thank you for putting things into perspective for us. Life is fragile. But I still don't like the beach. lol

Cindy of Scherenschnitter - Cindy is a papercutting designer. Hers are the most sophisticated and artsy designs I have ever seen. Way cool. She has a papercutting design for every occasion. You've got to check it out.

DeShawn Marie of DeShawn Marie's Handcrafted Soap Blog - Mint Julep Handmade Soap. Need I say more?

Eliz of Tatknot -  I never knew what tatting was until I visited this site. Beautiful handmade lace projects from jewelry to bookmarks. Beaded and buttoned, they are beautiful!

Lyndsey of The Stationery Place - a California girl who loves funky handmade invitations (check out her inflatable invites!) and theme parties. This is a fun site for ideas!

Wendy of Ganksmom is about my age (well, a little younger). She has two children and is a stay-at-home mom. Wendy recently lost her mom and hasn't been blogging very much lately. I think she could use a lift to get her back into her blog. She writes as if she's talking to you. Her blog speaks to me. Say hello to her. I'm going to.

Marcel the Shell With Shoes On is not a blog, but a YouTube video. It deserves an award. It's hysterical. If you have three minutes to spare I guarantee Marcel will make you smile.

t.s. poppy of Frankly Esoteric has the most beautiful photographs of fashion, decor, nature, food. Just visit the site and you'll see what I mean.

So there you have it. Thank you again Tamra of DelightfulU, for nominating me. I was having blogger brain freeze and now I'm back into the swing of it. Have a beautiful summer.