I DREAM about the bathrooms I see in home decor magazines or pinterest. As I've said before, nothing is so bad that a glass of wine and a bubble bath can't cure. I think most women feel the same. Behind the doors of the bathroom is a mother's haven of solitude. Believe it or not this is something I had to teach my husband after our son was born. Because I was breastfeeding I was getting ZERO sleep and my son was attached to me all day every day as well. I would never trade it for anything in the world, but by the time my husband came home... bubbles and solitude beckoned me like you wouldn't believe. Just as I would sink in to my neck, my sweet husband would come in (while holding our son) and sit down next to me in the tub. I would ask him what he wanted and he would say "Nothing, we just miss Mommy". Now how could I complain about that? So I didn't..at first. LOL. But eventually an understanding had to be made and it has stayed that way ever since!
So when I getting soaps/bubble baths/ANYTHING bath related is an absolute treat for me. That's what I love about these DIY Decorative Soaps. I can use them to not only decorate my home, but as an easy cost effective gift to give for Mother's Day, Birthdays, Baby Showers, Bridal Showers, or Valentine's Day. I plan on making the heart shapes in a variety of candy heart colors and giving them to my nieces Leah and Sage (both 6 years old) for a Valentine's Day gift. I will be making my own soap soon and I have a special candy hearts scent I will use. That, along with my own sugar scrubs, bath salts, laundry detergent, Do-It-Yourself Fe-breeze...anything that smells good :) You do not need to make your own soaps to make your own decorative designs.
All you need is:
--Your favorite brand of soap (some are already colored so keep that in mind when purchasing)
--Cheese grater (I bought one from the dollar store to specifically for this project but you don't have to)
--Food coloring (store brands are fine)
Grate your soap into the first bowl. The large sized grate is fine. I have found you can make three medium sized balls from one bar of Lever 2000. I did this one bar at a time but you can do it any way you want.
In the second bowl, combine 1/2 Tbsp of water with about 4 Tbsp of grated soap. This doesn't have to be exact. Mix the soap and water together with your hand to make sure the water covers as much of the soap as possible. Let it sit for a minute. To save time, (after knowing how many I could make with one bar) I just mixed a full bar (12 Tbsp of soap) with the 1 1/2 Tbsp of water it required and let it sit together before separating it to make the balls.
This is the part where you add the food coloring if you are wanting a different color than the soap that you bought. You will need no more than three drops per bar of soap. I would add the coloring to the water before you mix it with the grated soap. My bathroom is green, so the color of the original soap was fine for me. If you are giving a gift, I think having a least two colors adds a nice contrast.
Grab a section of soap and squeeze it together REALLY tight to help make it look smoother when you are done. Use your hands to shape the soap into balls (much like you would do with playdough). They might look frothy at first (because of the mixture of soap and water). Let it dry and then take the balls in your hand and reshape them again. In the picture above the front ones were reshaped after they dried and the back ones were before I reshaped them again. You might like the texture. It's totally up to you.
At this point, you are done!!
You can put these in a basket, or bowl to use for display (again I think two colors would contrast better for design purposes).
I go to Ross or Marshall's and look in their glassware section. You can usually find REALLY beautiful glass pieces to put your soap/bathroom pieces (like Q-tips or cotton balls) in for really cheap. The cut/crystal pieces can really add an expensive look to your decor or jazz up your gift and I usually don't spend more than $3-$5 a piece.
If you want to go a step further.....
I bought this ice cube tray at my local Dollar General for $1. Its silicone and flexible (which is important) and I know they have different shapes available for new seasons.
Take the already dried soap balls and squeeze off enough to fill the heart
Press it in tightly and make the exposed part as flat as you can (clean off any excess).
Because the trays are flexible, all the pressing and compacting will mis-shape the form a bit like the picture above. Just use your hands to reshape it back to a heart shape. It's really easy and the re-shaping helps loosen the heart for removal.