Modified Peacock Swirl Winners
August 2022 Soap Challenge
The original peacock swirl is an ebru paper marbling technique that was adapted for soapmaking by Amanda Aaron of Lovin Soap back in 2013 and was the first soap challenge we ever did! The challenge for August was to modify the technique by skipping one of the swirl steps, but keeping the signature “S” curve peacock swirl. Members were given multiple ways to pour their soaps and the results are beautiful and unique!
The competitive categories are regular and advanced, with the only difference being the number of colors allowed for their soaps. For the regular category, members could use 2-4 colors, and the advanced category had to use 5 or more.
Our sponsor this month is Making Soap Magazine, an independent print and online magazine for the makers of handcrafted soap, cosmetics and candles (previously known as Saponifier). They are now in their 24th year and have been read by tens of thousands of makers from all over the world. Their articles are both informative and inspiring for both experienced professionals and new artisans.
They are providing digital subscriptions to their publication for the regular and advanced categories, including the top three voted winners and Sponsor’s Choice winners, plus an additional Sponsor’s Choice winner in the bonus category.
Let’s check out the winners in the advanced category first. Our grand prize winner is Clare Norman of Soda and Ash in Australia! Clare is a long-time member of the Club and this is her first time getting the grand prize and she was the absolute top pick! Congratulations, Clare!! Her Oriental Spice soap is absolutely stunning from the gorgeous contrasting colors, magnificent thin lines, and lovely peacock swirls. She has captured it beautifully in her entry photo as well:
Oriental Spice by Soda and Ash
Clare wins a 3-year digital subscription to Making Soap Magazine! Fantastic job and congratulations!! Click on the photo to read more about her soap on her Instagram post.
In second place we have William Baczek in Massachusetts whose modified peacock swirls are also amazingly beautiful. He mixed a total of eight pigments for this five color soap. I love how the design goes all the way through each bar and the colors transition from green to purple:
Emerald and Amethyst Peacock Swirl by William Baczek
William wins a 2-year digital subscription to Making Soap Magazine – way to go! Incredible work! Be sure to click on the photo to see his Instagram post about his soap.
In third place we have Sayani Biswas of Cocoon Creations LLC in Texas! She has created a beautifully classic peacock colored soap titled “Plumes of a Peacock.” The bright orange accent color is fabulous and the swirls are consistent throughout:
Plumes of a Peacock by Cocoon Creations LLC
Excellent soaps, Sayani!! She wins a 1-year digital subscription from Making Soap Magazine. She has posted photos of her process and more information about her one and only try at this technique on her Instagram post, linked to the photo.
Kathy Tarbox, editor of Making Soap Magazine, has chosen Lauren Gumaelius in Sweden to receive the Sponsor’s Choice award in the advanced category for her Lemongrass Verbena soap. Kathy says, “Great lines, swirls and color usage! Beautiful!”
Lemongrass Verbena by Lauren Gumaelius
This classic peacock design looks amazing!! Lauren wins a 1-year digital subscription from Making Soap Magazine – woo hoo! Her Facebook post is linked to the photo above with more photos of her process and information about her soap.
Recognition Awards for the advanced category are next. For the Best Technique award, I was looking for a soap with consistent peacock swirls in a staggered teardrop design. This was definitely the most difficult part of the challenge! The award goes to Peech Keller in Colorado for her Autumn Joy soap. She did such a great job!
Autumn Joy by Peech Keller
Aren’t the colors fabulous too? Peech made a total of four different batches of modified peacock swirls and you can see them all on her Instagram post that is linked to the photo above.
The Best Use of Color Award is for an entry with smooth, well-mixed colors, and excellent contrast. Edgar Kameraki in Mexico did a phenomenal job using classic peacock colors that are vibrant and beautiful with just a hint of a gold mica swirl. By adding a little bit of black to the mix, he was able to get the perfect amount of contrast:
Peacock Feathers by Edgar Kameraki
In addition to the gold mica in oil, he used a total of seven different colors for this soap, which is very impressive! Click on the photo to see his Instagram post.
The Best Presentation Award is for an entry with well displayed soaps and fantastic photography. My pick for this award is Ginger Peacock by Jessica Krames of Swamp Farm Suds in Florida. I love the deep, moody vibe from the dark background and polished mirrored surface. The soaps are lined up perfectly next to one another to create a full picture of the soap slab with connecting swirl lines. The soaps are exactly the same size, perfectly lit and focused.
Ginger Peacock by Swamp Farm Suds
Excellent work, Jessica! Be sure to click on the photo to read more about her soap and see photos of her process on her Instagram post.
For the regular category, our grand prize winner is Christine Gagnaux in Canada! This is her first time participating in the Club, and her soap turned out fantastic!
Neon Bliss by Christine Gagnaux
Christine’s prize is a 3-year digital subscription to Making Soap Magazine – so awesome!! Such a well-deserved win! (Photo not linked.)
Second place in the regular category by just two votes goes to Ingrid Yiu of Nat + Nik Soap Design in California for her Bali Breeze soaps. The bright, beautiful colors and awesome swirls really stand out on these soaps:
Bali Breeze by Nat + Nik Soap Design
Ingrid wins a 2-year digital subscription from Making Soap Magazine – wonderful work! Her Instagram post with more information and photos of her process is linked to the photo above.
In third place we have Janina Piva of Maraida Soaps in Canada. Her Hot Pink Lime soap looks completely different from the first two winners as she made her swirls going the short way in the loaf mold. Beautiful colors and swirls!
Hot Pink Lime by Maraida Soaps
Her prize is a 1-year digital subscription to Making Soap Magazine. Great job! She has provided more information about how she made her soap on her Instagram post, linked to the photo.
The Sponsor’s Choice prize for the regular category goes to Rachel Turner in North Carolina for her modified peacock swirl called Jade. Kathy says, “Great job with the colors and swirls!”
Jade by Rachel Turner
Rachel wins a 1-year digital subscription to Making Soap Magazine – hooray! You can see more photos of her process and information about the soap on Rachel’s Instagram post. Just click on the photo!
Now we get to do Recognition Awards for the regular category! Again I studied the entries for the Best Technique and found Summer Sorbet by Melanie McNiece in Australia to be an excellent example of consistent swirls in a staggered teardrop design:
Summer Sorbet by Melanie McNiece
This was Melanie’s first challenge and she did such a great job!! Welcome to the Club! (Photo not linked.)
Next is the Best Use of Color Award, and I have chosen Mr Mardi Gras by Kristen Lowrance in Georgia to receive this award. Kristen did an amazing job mixing the colors smoothly, using good contrast, and not muddying the swirls:
Mr Mardi Gras by Kristen Lowrance
I love how the colors are equally dispersed throughout each bar! (Photo not linked.)
For the Best Presentation award, I’ve chosen “Cider by Fire” by Amy Bruederle of Shadowlux Soapery in Illinois. I love how the soaps are arranged and the clean, neutral background with plenty of white space around the edges. The photo is well-lit and focused:
Cider by Fire by Shadowlux Soapery
Amy has created consistently beautiful soaps since joining the Club. Check out her Instagram post with more information about her soap by clicking on the photo!
Finally, we have our Sponsor’s Choice winner from the bonus category! Chriss Bange in Germany has been chosen for this award. Her soap titled “Peacock on the Roof” is inspired by a real peacock named Hildegard who landed on a roof in a village close to Frankfurt and refuses to leave! Kathy chose her soap for this award because of the “striking color combination and nicely defined lines and swirls.”
Peacock on the Roof by Chriss Bange
Truly beautiful soaps, Chriss! She wins a 1-year digital subscription to Making Soap Magazine – congratulations! To read more about Hildegard, be sure to click on the photo above.
Great job to all our winners, as well as everyone else who participated in the challenge this month! If you would like to see the rest of the entries this month, check out these links:
Registration for the September through December challenges opens tomorrow! We have an excellent line-up for you starting with Buffalo Plaid by guest teacher Amy Bautista of Elysian Acres Soap, sponsored by Stock Fragrance in September. You will have the option to sign up for September only for $14.95 or all four months for $54. Check out the Upcoming Challenges page for more information and sign up to be notified as soon as registration opens.