When I found out Anne-Marie Faiola was working on a follow-up to her uber popular soapmaking book, Soapcrafting, I about died from excitement. (I recommend Soapcrafting to beginner soapmakers often, check out my other favorite recommendations over here!)
I chatted with Anne-Marie about how the new book was coming along at Central Soapers Workshop last year. I was blown away by how much work was going into it! (You can read up on her reflection of the writing process here. It’s obvious that this book was entirely a labor of love!)
Late last year, I was super lucky to receive a galley copy of Pure Soapmaking for review and I fell in love right away:
On the back cover, you’ll find a quote from me stating that it’s a must-have resource, perfect for new and advanced soapmakers alike, and I wasn’t joking!
Pure Soapmaking contains tons of information about creating natural cold process soaps, and 32 fabulous recipes that range in intricacy, which makes it accessible to all soapmakers – no matter their skill level.
The book itself is a hardcover with a hidden spiral binding, so it lays flat while you browse the pages. And it follows a logical flow similar to a really nicely done cookbook: tons of information, clear photographs that tie each step of each recipe together, and lots of little tips and tricks.
Like Soapcrafting, Pure Soapmaking starts off with introductory soapmaking information in the first few chapters, including information about the soapmaking process, equipment and molds, base oils, herbs and additives, using essential oils, and designing recipes. Beginning the book with the basics makes sure that new soapmakers have all the information they need right at their fingertips to be successful in the craft!
The thirty-two recipes included in Pure Soapmaking start off with simple and easy designs for the newer soapmaker, like a 100% olive oil brine soap and a buttermilk honeycomb cylindrical soap (sneak peek shown below!)
As you dig through the pages, the soap recipes become more advanced and intricate. You’ll find absolutely gorgeous designs and complex recipes like the negative space funnel pour using indigo and annatto as colorants, and the loofah bars using dark ale and walnut seeds as exfoliants.
And while Soapcrafting had beautiful photography, Pure Soapmaking nails stunning photography to the wall. The entire book is just as much a work of art as the soaps you can create by following the recipes inside. (Major props to the photographer, Lara Ferroni!)
With our super limited living space, I’m pretty picky about what books take up residence and Pure Soapmaking has a home in my little library. I treasure this book for the layout, design, and photography just as much as I do the inspiration found in the pages!
Anne-Marie’s fabulous team at Bramble Berry asked if I’d like to try one of the recipes from the book, but the timing was horrible with our youngest daughter joining the family in late January. Instead, I got to watch as other fabulous bloggers created recipes from Pure Soapmaking:
- Shelly of Lion & Rose Soap made the Baby Oatmeal Cold Process Soap
- Amy of Great Cakes Soapworks whipped up the Annatto & Yarrow Cold Process Soap
- Emily of Soap & Restless/Shieh Design put her own spin on the Aloe Vera Hanger Swirl Soap
- Kevin of Devinely Designed showed off the Aloe Vera Hanger Swirl in a video
- Zahida from Handmade in Florida also rocked the Aloe Vera Hanger Swirl with fresh aloe from her garden
- Holly from Missouri River did her own version of the Aloe Vera Hanger Swirl, too!
As soon as I can get some spare time, I’ll definitely be breaking out my soapmaking gear to make soap inspired by the Madder Root Ombre Bars since gradient layers are my favorite soapmaking design!
After the release date and really big fun launch, the publisher sent along a copy of Pure Soapmaking for me to share the love with y’all. (Yay!) So, if you haven’t snagged your own copy yet, you’re in luck!
Enter to Win Your Own Copy of Pure Soapmaking
To enter, comment on this blog post sharing your favorite natural soapmaking ingredient and tell me how you use it in soapmaking, any tips you might have for using it, or why you love it. After you’ve popped a comment below, sign into the Rafflecopter widget to snag your entries.
You can also grab extra entries by completing extra tasks, like visiting me or Bramble Berry on Facebook, following us on Twitter, or sending out a tweet!
A winner will be chosen at random via the Rafflecopter widget. I’ll ship the shiny new copy of Pure Soapmaking along to the address left on the winner’s entry. (Make sure to double check your address for typos when entering!) Unfortunately, international shipping is way too crazy, so this giveaway is only open to U.S. residents. The giveaway closes on Thursday, April 7th at midnight, MST.
Remember to leave a comment below sharing your favorite natural soapmaking ingredient to snag your entry to win a copy of Pure Soapmaking by April 7th!
p.s. Make sure to check out the #PureSoapmaking hashtag on Instagram – there are some seriously talented soapmakers rocking this book in their studios! Inspiration abounds!