Posted Jan. 6, 2009
Sample of the handpainted soaps....I used a pattern by Trish McMurry to paint this one.
Frist....DO NOT.... use Ivory soap. It has too much lotion in it and is too soft. Just won't last, (I learned the hard way).. I only use Pure and Natural. I use canning wax on the soaps. Clean the bar with alcohol, then dip the tops, in about 1/4 in. deep hot wax. I use an old shallow skillet for this--something with low sides, and use a pair of tongs to hold the soap.when the wax is set, in about 5-6 hours (dries sooner but it is recommended to let wax sit that long), add coat of Modge Podge, then add your decal or picture let dry, another coat of Modge Podge, and finish with another coat of wax. If using a picture that you print on your printer it is recommended that you spray with a clear sealer and let dry for 3-4 hrs or over night or the modge podge will cause the ink to bleed. I would print out my pictures, spray them and then do my dipping that way they are ready at the same time. Be sure to size your print to the size of the soap bar before printing. I also do my handpainted this way... follow the same steps as if you were going to add prints, but after adding modge podge and letting it dry good, you can start painting on your design, may take a couple of coats of paint, let dry between each coat. I usually paint a solid base coat over whole top of soap then paint design on that....when paint is totally dry coat with modge podge again. Let dry then dip in wax, BUT do not let it stay in wax too long and do not dip more than once or your paint might just melt off. I usually dip about 12 bars at a time, that way when I need a gift in a hurry I have the prep work done and all I have to do is add art work. Get the wax at the grocery store. I find it on the isle with the candymaking supplies. Or with the canning supplies.There is a method of painting soap that doesn't call for wax. I have just cleaned the soaps good with alcohol and sealed it with clear spray sealer and then paint your design, when dry, seal again with clear sealer.
The wax and modge podge makes it easier to use if you wanted to.... and protects the paint better. Place in clear bag and tie with ribbon or string, add gift tag with instuctions on how to use. Soap is usable if used from the bottom up. Do not leave setting in water. Wet and rub soap on rag. Decal will last till soap is gone.
I hope you find this easy and useful.