We spent a few hours making felted soap recently (one of the days we didn’t have torrential rain, that is)
This has to be in the top three favourite things to do for my children: they LOVE it. Everyone can get involved, get wet and sudsy and very clean in the process! Even our smallest has her hands in the basin. They take ten or fifteen minutes to make, and at the end each child has a unique, beautiful and useful thing in their hands. These make really super presents, and are incredibly economical and much less messier to use than conventional bars of soap or liquid soap. We have been making soaps to store away for Christmas presents- but more on that nearer the time!
This craft is simplicity itself, and teaches so much about felt-making in the process. It can even be done in the bath- in fact, why waste all that hot water and soap in the sink or a basin?
All you need is:
a bar of soap (we sometimes cut a bar in half or quarters, or use small bars like we did here that we had made previously)
a basin, sink or bath (a water receptacle basically!!)
about 10 inches of a piece of tights (enough to cover the bar of soap and tie a knot either end)
Wrap the bar in fleece until it is covered- we usually cover it in a base colour then add the other strands of colour. (note: we had to pull the fleece tighter on this one as it was clumping at one end- check before it gets wrapped in the tights that it is wrapped around the bar regularly on all sides)
Tie a knot in one end of the tights,
carefully put your fleece wrapped soap in,
knot the other end,
then into a basin of hand hot water,
wash the soap, rubbing it and rubbing it, dipping frequently into the hot water
(we keep topping it up with water from the kettle especially when outside and the water cools quickly) Every so often we wash in cold water and back into the hot.
Felt is created when the fleece fibres are “shocked” from the hot and cold water, combined with soapy suds, and they shrink together and form felt.
While we were at it, we decided to make felt balls to hang up for the kittens to play with.
Make in the hot soapy water,
we rolled a ball of fleece back and forward between our palms.
We added a bit more soap to it and kept rolling between our palm until it had shrunk and was a firm tight ball of fleece.
These are our soaps and felted balls, aren’t they gorgeous?
And here are a few more I made in the past few days-
I must say, I could spend the rest of my life making these…
it’s like a 10 minute meditation in the middle of the day- I stand in a daze at the kitchen sink, with my hands in the hot soapy water, squidgying around a bar of soap staring out the window at the ivy covered shed (a henhouse in a former life) and treehouse and changing leaves and the odd chicken or child who makes a dash past…
(and ignore the pile of washing and all the other pressing chores…!!)
Felted Soap kits will be available in our shop in the coming weeks
(I’m linking up to Lush Friday-go check it out!!)