I know that Mother’s Day is still a while away (15th March here in the UK) but this year I have decided that I want to make as many gifts as possible, so I made a head start on Mother’s Day back in January! I decided to use Mother’s Day this year as an excuse to try out some new crafts, and the first one that I have been wanting to try for ages was soap making!
Ever since I saw some handmade soaps in one of my craft books I have been meaning to give it a go, and James gave me the perfect chance to try it when it bought me a Kirsty Allsopp soap making kit for Christmas. As soon as we were into the new year and had a free weekend I got out the box, eager to give it a try. The box made a large block of lavender and lemongrass soap, which we were able to cut into 8 bars.
Making the soap was fun but in the future I may use a pre-made soap base, rather than the chemicals for ease. I know it is cheating but our dining-room table and my skin would probably thank me! It is definitely a craft that I want to explore some more though! I picked out some lovely purple handmade tissue paper to wrap the soaps, tying it with a piece of string. I’m really pleased with how they turned out and I’m sure my Mum will be too! Plus I have plenty of bars to give away for other occasions such as birthdays that we have coming up.
I had such a good time making the soap that I decided to treat myself to a soapmaking book. How To Make Your Own Soap: . in traditional bars, liquid or cream by Sally Hornsey is a beautiful collection of tips and advice on how to make beautiful soaps using several different methods. It has some wonderful recipes in it that I can’t wait to try, and even has a section on making liquid soaps, body washes and lotions. I’m feeling inspired to make so may lovely soaps!
To go with the soap, we made a matching lavender bath bomb. Despite the fact that it uses only a handful of ingredients and a small number of steps, these things just refused to go right! It was really tricky to get the consistency of the power right, so that it wasn’t too powdery to just crumble as it came out of the mould, but it had to be wet enough to hold it’s shape without starting to set in the mould. There were several failed attempts before we finally managed it, but we did eventually succeed in creating some bath bombs! I’m really pleased with how they turned out and I have wrapped them in some cellophane and tied it with a purple ribbon to finish it off.
To store the bath goodies, I bought this lovely wash bag. I know, I should have made one! I actually bought this wash bag back in January as my Grandma’s birthday present, but I couldn’t find anything to go with it so I bought something else instead. I’m now putting the wash bag to good use with my Mum’s presents and I know she will love it! I’m sure she won’t mind if one of her presents isn’t handmade!
Finally, we tried out one more new craft for Mother’s Day – candle making! When I was looking at soap making supplies, James noticed the candle making supplies and said that he would like to try it. When I was unpacking some boxes I came across a bowl that I bought for my Nanna when I was younger, which had some floating candles in it. It had made its way back to me after she died, because my mum remembered me choosing it. It was one of the first gifts I chose myself when I was old enough and it meant a lot to both me and my Nanna. I decided to reuse the bowl to save it from being stuck in a box, and I turned it into a large candle for my Mum.
This time I wanted to steer away from the purple of the lavender and do something a little different. My Mum loves Jasmine scented candles, so I chose a Jasmine and Rose scent, and a delicate pink colour to match the rose scent, but it also turned out the perfect match for the pink flowers on the bowl too! I think this is my favourite of all of the Mother’s Day gifts; it was so much fun to make, has a really impressive finished look and puts the bowl that I put so much effort into choosing all those years ago to good use. Just like soap making, I am definitely going to be making more candles and exploring the craft some more. I think these projects are really fun and make wonderful, professional looking gifts that you can proudly tell the recipient you have lovingly handmade.
I’m absolutely thrilled with what I have made for Mother’s Day and I’m sure my Mum will love all of the gifts too! Are you making your Mother’s Day gifts? I’d love to know what you are making! Or do you dabble in candle/soap making? I’m looking for some tips and inspiration if you have some to share!