Made the first of the Alba Range today (this is a scheduled post) which is inspired by my home country of Scotland. Scotland is always inspirational to me – the scenery, history, people, community, traditions, my childhood memories. And specifically for me, living in the bonny coastal town of Dundee, the scent of the sea. There’s always a salty fresh tang in Dundee that has defined my upbringing here. The sound of seagulls. Always by the water – we’ve played, grown up and now bring our own children to the beaches and coastlines.
It’s surprising to me that for some reason I needed to bring out a soap inspired by Bonfire Night (or Guy Fawkes Night), a night that falls on the 5th November, in the middle of spring. But when I was thinking of Scottish inspired things, this kept creeping into my mind so just felt right.
Cinder Toffee (or honeycomb) is traditionally eaten on that night although admittedly it wasn’t a tradition that we really kept with – we just crammed in all kinds of sweets without discrimination. We always had sparklers though. And it was always freezing in November when I was a child. For some reason it’s not as cold in November as it used be 20-25yrs ago. I distinctly remember frosty nights and even snow some years. But always cold cold hands clutching brightly burning sparklers. The smell of burning cinders and damp leaves was always prevalent in the night air. Good happy memories.
The soap itself is hot process with a base darkened with charcoal, organic raw cocoa, Scottish oats and black treacle. I added gold and red mica, just a little, to the base to give a subtle ‘cinders’ effect and silver glitter on top for the starry night sky.
I really like how this turned out. I could maybe have used more of the coloured mica’s inside the soap as they don’t seem to be very apparent. I’m fairly new to hot process (HP), just picking it up this last year but I love love love the rustic effect it gives to soaps. It’s much more in line with the look I like to go for (heh I am called Rustic Stuff…). Although I’m much more experienced in cold process (CP), I just know that I will be dabbling with HP a lot more when making soaps.