This is an ITP swirl using Bramble Berry Spring Meadow Fragrance and infused Indigo for colour. (Spring Meadow has been deleted so we suggest White Rose Fragrance or Lavender Forest Fragrance in this project). It is the same recipe as the Cucumber Kiwi Log, but you can see how the Indigo Blue is such an amazing colour!
What is ITP? This is a Soaper's abbreviation for "In the Pot". This means you don't actually swirl the colour through the soap, the colour is simply poured into the main pot and the colours mix themselves as you pour the batch from the main soap pot into the mould. A slab, column (vertical) or log mould are best for this kind of soap.
The most important thing with ITP style colouring is to avoid overtracing the soap. If it is too thick, it won't swirl well and will clump instead of flowing. Also important is to use a Fragrance or Essential Oil that doesn't accelerate trace. (Just check the notes on each of our Fragrances so you know what to expect).
This log is scented with White Rose Fragrance we coloured our batch with an infusion of Blue Indigo Powder. In the swirl portion 3/4 teaspoon White Pearl Mica lightens up the base nicely to provide good contrast with the blue. I used my "cutting corners method" to infuse the Indigo Powder - see below. However, you can use the traditional methods of infusing botanical materials using our tutorial here
If you are comfortable pouring traced cold process soap into the vertical mould, the technique is relatively easy to achieve. We do recommend you make a few batches before trying an ITP swirl with the vertical mould
If you are a beginner, we recommend you make a few batches before attempting this soap. For how to make soap from Scratch, please see our Cold Process Soapmaking Instructions. You can also watch Soap Queen's You Tube Series on Cold Process Soapmaking.
First step - infuse the indigo powder! I use my "Cutting Corners Infusion Method" for this batch. Traditional infusing methods can be found on the link below. A few hours ahead of your soaping session, infuse the Indigo Powder. You can even do this the night before if you are an early morning soaper! Remove approximately 40g of Rice Bran Oil from the allocation and add 15g of Indigo Powder into a glass beaker or jug. Remembering that Beakers are NOT high heat tolerant, warm the mixture gently in the microwave on medium in short bursts. When it's warm to touch, mix through the indigo. You can use a popstick, stirrer or mini mixer. Then allow it to sit for an hour or so. Then repeat this heating, stir again and leave it for a few hours. If you prefer to and you are using the "Tea Bag Method" you will be able to make the mixture quite hot - but not boiling. Instructions on different methods of infusing herbs can be found on this link
Make the Soap:
- Prepare your workspace and set out the ingredients ready to go Prepare the mould - ensure you have locked the tongue and groove sides of the mould together securely, if in doubt you can use bulldog clips for extra security
- Prepare Lye Water, and weigh the oils. Check the indigo powder is a nice dark smooth paste or slurry with no lumps
- Also prepare the White Pearl Mica, mix 3/4 teaspoon Pearl White Mica with 2 teaspoons of distilled water
- Set aside the spare moulds, and a 500ml jug ready for the white portion
- Bring soap to thin trace, and then pour approximately 1 1/2 cups of traced soap into the jug, then add the White Pearl Mica mixture and give a quick blast with the stick blender to mix though - do not increase trace
- Add the dark indigo blue mixture to the main soap pot and give it a blast with the stick blender to mix thoroughly - don't over trace
- Now add the fragrance into the main pot and stir through thoroughly manually, so you don't increase the thickness of the trace
- Now work quite quickly - pour the white portion into the main pot in 3 or 4 places towards the edge of the pot
- DO NOT MIX THIS THROUGH AT ALL - you want nice thick chunks of white to contrast with the dark blue
- Still working quickly, pour the soap into the column mould, beginning cautiously unless you have someone holding it steady for you. Continue pouring until you fill to 1 cm below the rim
- By slightly twisting the soap pot as you pour you can alter the pattern a little if desired. You can see it has started to thicken and set up on the top of the column mould. Hold the sides firmly and tamp down the mould on the bench top a couple of times to remove any air bubbles.
- Pour the rest of the traced soap into the spare moulds. Insulate to gel
- Column moulds hold their heat through gel, so only insulate if you are making this on a really cold day, the single moulds will require insulation if you want them to gel consistently
- You can see from this graphic, the gelled soap is a darker, richer shade of Indigo, so if possible encourage your soap into a nice hot gel.
- Allow to sit in the moulds for a few days longer than usual and then unmould and slice
The first batch we made was using Chrome Green Oxide and Cucumber and Kiwi Fragrance.
Note: If using the "Add to Trolley" you will need to purchase Olive Oil, Sodium Hydroxide and Distilled Water separately