First instructable so bear with me.....
Last year my wife out of work and bored so she started making soaps and beads etc.
She was getting bored with the molds she could buy commercially so I decided to try and make some for her.
Step 1: Materials
The materials I used where either laying around the house or picked up at Michael's. But I am sure any crafts store will carry what you need. The only thing I bought was the mold builder latex. I think it was about $15 for the tub and I get about 5 molds out of it.
So my cost for the mold was under $5. The Buddha head was on clearance for $1 or $2 I think.
Cheap Paint Brush
Scrap of wood (About the size of a bar of soap or whatever size you want your soap to be)
Accent piece for the soap ( I used a Buddha Head 'cause that's how we roll)
Castin Craft brand Mold Builder - Liquid Latex Rubber
Additional scraps of wood for a box
Plastic garbage bag
Mold release for the actual pouring of soap.
I make a wooden box to hold the mold while it sets. This is just a box made out of scrap 1X6 with a top and bottom.
I don't have pictures of making the box but hey its a box.
Step 2: Set the Wood and Cover With Glue
So lets get started. Grab your paper plate and glue. You need to put a small dab of glue on the center of the plate. Put your wood block on the plate in the center. Let the glue dry. This step is not absolutely needed but it will help stop the piece of wood from sliding around.
Once your wood block is stable start painting the wood block with the Elmer's glue. You want to cover the entire block and the space between the block and the plate. This will be the base for your mold so take your time and make sure there are no bubble. The reason for the glue is it creates a smooth surface for the mold builder. Take extra time on the cut edges with the grain showing and make sure it is smooth. You don't want the mold builder being able to grab any of the grain or it will be very hard to remove.
When you are done with the glue layer, but before the glue dries on top, place your accent piece and give it a thin coat of glue as well.
Step 3: Applying the Mold Builder
After your glue base is dry you need to apply the Mold Builder. This step should be done outside as the mold builder has a very strong odor.
Paint the mold builder onto your wooden block just like you did with the Elmer's Glue. Take extra time on the first coat to make sure there are no bubble. This first coat is actually going to be your soap mold base. The additional coats build up the thickness of the mold.
The more coats you put on the stronger your finished mold will be. I do at least 6 coats. Allowing dry time in between each coat. Read the instructions for your particular mold builder to determine proper dry time. You can put your mold out in the sun to help dry the mold builder as well.
Make sure with each coat you get the paper plate as well. I like to put about a 2" area around the mold.
After 6 or more coats let your mold dry completely.
Note: This is not a 1 day project. The actual steps only take a few minute but the drying take time.
Step 4: Demolding the Mold
Now that you have given your mold plenty of time to dry completely you want to cut the paper plate around the mold.
Cut about 2 inches all the way around the mold. Gently peel the mold from the paper plate (Leave the paper plate attached for now if you are going to make the optional box in the next step.) You may want to put some baby powder or Talcum powder on the mold to keep it from sticking to itself.
No gently peel the mold away from the piece of wood. Take your time here.
Now you have a custom soap mold. Congrats !!
Step 5: Optional Pour Box
The mold is not super stiff and when I try to pour soap it would warp.
You can actually build a frame into the mold using popsicle sticks by adding them into the mold around layer 3 then building up over them. I have had mixed results with this method.
My preferred way to do it is to build a box for the mold.
I don't have pictures but you build a box about an inch wider on each side of the mold. So if your mold is 2 X 4 X 1 you will build a box 3 X 5 X 2. Screw the sides and bottom together. Screw the top on but then remove it leaving the screws partially in so it will be easier to put back on.
Place the wood back in the mold and carefully wrap it in a plastic bag with the bag going around the plate.
Fill the box about 1/2 way with expanding foam and as the foam starts to rise you want to put the mold in with a little bit sticking above the edge of the box. Put the lid back on and screw it down. Give it time to dry and when you take the top off you should have a stable place to hold the mold while you pour it.
Step 6: Finished Soap
Thanks for looking !!