Embracing failure (again)

Blogtober Day 29:

J.K. Rowling once gave a great talk to Harvard University students called “The Side Benefits of Failure”.


The pumpkin soap was not one of my finest moments!  Slithers of the yellow managed to survive the CP / HP mix, but the soap is largely brown – most disappointing is the fact that the scent seems not to have persisted.  I will give it a few weeks before I make my final judgement though.  I think when I try to re-do and improve this soap, I will use less of the real spice mix, and more of the essential oils, and simply go for layers – maybe all CP.  This should reduce the brown-ness, and increase the scent.   Meantime – here ’tis today  (clearly I have no shame, even the pics are not good …):

Another breakfast catchup with friends today, but a completely different morning at the beach compared to a couple of weeks ago:


This was followed by an afternoon hanging out with my little grandson & granddaughter (3 1/2 yrs & 18 months old), talking to a butterfly, a slater and a snail!

And yet another crack at a coloured soap.  This time I found a recipe for a “pot swirled” Frangipani soap.


I modified according to what I have in the Shed (as usual, running it through http://soapcalc.net/calc/SoapCalcWP.asp to check quantities and properties).  I used jasmine tea for the lye water, apricot kernel oil instead of macadamia, and used the left over colours from my previous CP coloured soap attempt – madder, alkanet and annatto.  I used half jasmine and half frangipani EOs, both diluted in jojoba.  And instead of titanium for white, I added kaolin clay mixed in some yoghurt.

Making the soap seemed to go OK(ish), but of course the alkanet instantly went blue with the lye, and I don’t think I had sufficient madder left – then the colours seemed to just pile up, so it’s more than likely that this will end up simply another dogs breakfast!  I was so unimpressed I didn’t even take a photo, then crept out to check progress just now and found the top cracking as it gels from the centre!  THIS is why I do HP!!


I suspect I might rename this month “Floptober”.  I have never made so many (moderately unsuccessful) strange soaps!  I wonder whether I would have done, if I had not tried to write something every day?

Let’s face it, I couldn’t have written about my normal boring range of HP soaps that consistently work, right?

Nearly there – tomorrow, hopefully I have a better picture to show you when I cut this evenings Frangipani / Jasmine CP soap.  Wish it luck!

Blogging on and nearly there…  #blogtobersoapers2017

Sarah x



2 thoughts on “Embracing failure (again)

  1. We do somehow seem to be conditioned to see things that don’t go to plan as failures, when we should see them as ‘learning experiences’ It’s obvious (to me anyway) that one learns more by making, not mistakes as such, but unsuccessful experiments. How does the pumpkin lather? I would imagine the extra sugars would give it a lovely feel? It is a shame about the fragrance not sticking though. Florals can be buggers to work with, so you did really well to avoid too much acceleration, and I really like that yellow colour!

    Liked by 1 person

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