Sunday, December 3

cable socks and soap stories

Two cabled footies from One Skein

As I said when I posted about the first one, these were my first cables and my first sock-like things. The second went really fast. Two days I think. One for the cuff and heel and the second marathon session finished the inseam and toes and so forth. I'm thinking about doing a pair for my mom for christmas in some sort of superwash wool. I have some in the stash, not in any good colors. But not like my mom would really know that the colors weren't that good...
So what is this mess? It's a mid-stage of handmade liquid soap. Not too many soap makers bother with liquid soap. Unlike making bar soap, which is sort of a 'fix-it-and-forget-it' operation, liquid soap requires several steps and none of which are particularly fast.

First you have to source the Potassium Hydroxide, normal soap is made with Sodium Hydroxide (lye) but to get a liquid you need a different form of lye. Once you've finally found that, you make soap like normal but instead of pouring into molds you cook and stir for an hour until you have the crazy paste as seen above.

Instructions that you find will tell you all sorts of things about what you see during this process. I can tell you that it never happened exactly like the instructions, and can be completely different each time you make it. One time I through out a batch that I thought had been botched, but later I discovered that I just hadn't kept up with the stiring long enough.

After you have paste, you make liquid by adding water. This part takes forever until you get it all liquified and smooth. Usually 2-3 days. This is why most folks don't bother. But really, it's so much nicer than detergents.
Here's a quick peak at the paperwhites. Coming right along.

And my other soap story? This week I found a dead mouse in the middle of the basement floor. No biggie. We live in the country, we have mice. We have a cat to catch the mice and sometimes we have to pick them up. The odd things was that this fellow didn't look like he'd had much of a struggle, and the cat wasn't strutting around proud. But I didn't think much of it.

Until today when I was packing some soap orders. I moved aside two bars of the Tea Tree & Sweet Orange Soap that I had used for photos - and there were teeth marks all along the edge! The stupid mouse had eaten the soap. And died! So I guess the lesson is, buy my Tea Tree & Sweet Orange soap if you're tired of baiting a mouse with cheese...

11 comments:

Wendy said...

Liquid soap?? Like liquid hand soap?? I bet it doesn't have nasty antibacterial chemicals in it either??

We use liquid here, but we can no longer find unscented without antibacterial.

We're interested in what you've got!

tamdoll said...

wow. that's some strong soap.

jen said...

ah yes. the mice. i remember the mice in jericho and my cat having many late night ...'playdates'.

homemade liquid soap? nice!

MJ said...

Love the socks!
great job!

Tiffany said...

The footies turned out great!! I'm getting ready to knit a pair of those up as well. :)

kat said...

hee maybe i shoudl use your soap instead of peanut butter around the office...

PMHP said...

You can use liquid soap for napalm although it isn't as effective as styrofoam.

PMHP said...

You can use liquid soap to make Napalm although it dries quickly. You can also use styrofoam.

J&D said...

 

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