Handmade Soap with Home Grown Lavender

Every spring I go out and buy several of my favorite herbs, fully intending to cook and craft with them.  I occasionally cook with the basil, I usually don't do anything with the rosemary and lavender but enjoy their beautiful scents. This year, despite the super hot temperatures, I have managed to keep the plants alive long enough to actually use the lavender! 

Yep! I made lavender soap using my own homegrown lavender!  I am ridiculously happy with myself! 

If you have been following my blog for a while, you know that I like to make soap to give as gifts, decorate my bath and kitchen and even, occasionally, to wash with!  You have seen my pumpkin spice soap (my favorite), my peppermint soap (nope, I think this one is my favorite) and my honey almond bumble bee soap (truly, this has got to be the one!), just to name a few. But never before have I used an ingredient that I grew myself.  Here is how I made it: 

Lavender Soap with Herbs

1 pound of soap base (I used a clear glycerin soap from Michaels)
Blue and Red Soap Colorant (Must be made for soap so it doesn't get on your hands,etc)
Lavender Essential Oil (Adds more scent to the soap) 
Lavender flowers, dried (I had about a tablespoon)
Soap mold, preferred shape
A microwave safe bowl (I use an old four cup Pyrex measuring cup)

Now, this takes some planning.  A couple of weeks before you wish to make your soap, harvest your lavender flowers, leaving a few inches of the stem on them.  (you can also purchase them at craft stores or online if you don't have lavender or don't want to wait).  Tie the buds together and hang them upside down in a cool dark place.  

When they are dried and you are ready to make your soap, pull the flowers off of the stems. 
They will look like this. 

Melt the soap base in the microwave for 30 seconds, stir and melt for 10 more seconds, repeating until the soap is melted.  Once it is completely melted, add your lavender oil about 20 drops or so, depending on how strong you want the scent. (Big thanks to Cousin Gail- I can grow my own lavender, but forget to get the essential oil from the health food store!)   Add your flowers. This is also the time to mix in your color.  I did this slowly, adding a few drops of red, then a few less drops of blue until I got the color that I wanted. It is a little darker purple than I had originally planned, but it works for me! Pour into your mold. Be sure to gently tap the mold on your work surface to get out the bubbles (seen below). 

Leave the soap to harden for at least 45 minutes.  Longer if you can wait that long! 

Here is one block after I took it out of the mold.  I may use more lavender flowers for the next batch. 

Since these soaps are going to be gifts, I stamped a cute little heart on some craft paper (in lavender colored ink) tied a ribbon with some lavender and placed them into little treat bags. 

Super fun little just because gift. Or, if you are of a Christmas in July mindset, a head-start on Christmas gift! 

I hope that you are staying cool with some fun craft projects of your own these days! Thanks for stopping by! 



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