Yesterday afternoon I made the last 2 batches of soap for this summer, which will allow them plenty of time to cure. The gift certificate my brother gave me for Christmas allowed me the freedom to order scents I might not have otherwise, and I went outside my comfort zone: spearmint-eucalyptus, pineapple-cilantro, sage-lemongrass and vervain olive blossom, for example. The above are pineapple-cilantro and spearmint-eucalyptus.
I also ordered some pigments and oxides, which are purified mineral colorants, as opposed to the herbal ones I was using in the past. They give a more vibrant and defined color for swirling and are a nice complement to the natural herbal colors. The spearmint soap is a green oxide with a darker green swirl throughout, which won't be visible until the soap is cut. I'm anxious to see how it looks but need to wait until it is firm enough. Patience is a virtue... The pineapple is a pale herbal yellow, with a green swirl throughout and darker yellow and green swirls on top. I was hoping they'd look a bit more like pineapples, but I'm afraid they don't bear much resemblance to the fruit.
I decided to make small batches of several different types for this spring and summer, rather than loads of just a few as I did last year. I'm happy with the fragrances I experimented with and will definitely continue to experiment a bit more with each batch. Practice really is the best teacher.