This is my 296th post here! So I thought that joining in with the Sew Mama Sew Giveaway day would be a good celebration for reaching the big 300!
So here it is! A little hand made boxy pouch filled with bathtime goodies - all hand made by me ofcourse. The pouch itself is made from lovely linen salvaged from a pair of Laura Ashely trousers. In the pouch there is a large bar of soap containing calendula petals with a fresh citrusy scent made from a blend of pure essential oils of orange, patchouli, may chang, lemon, and orange blossom. There is also a calendula tea bag, and a small bag of bath salts made from pure sea salt scented with another blend of essential oils which includes patchouli, vanilla, and ylang ylang. It smells very exotic and luxurious. Perfect for a pamper!
Calendula petals come from the Pot Marigold plant (Calendula officinalis). The saponins and mucilage in calendula petals have humectant properties which means that it can draw moisture into the skin and for that reason it is beneficial for dehydrated, dry, irritated and delicate skin. Calendula can soothe skin inflamations and help heal damaged tissues where the skin is broken. For this reason it is often used in preparations used to treat dry skin conditions such as exema. It is anti-inflammatory with antiseptic properties.
You can make Calendula oil by steeping the petals in almond or jojoba oil and leaving on a sunny windowsill for 2 or 3 weeks. A stronger infusion can be made by straining the petals and adding new ones after a week or two. It is important the the petals are dried before steeping otherwise the oil will harbour bacteria and go off. You can use the oil as an ingredient in soap, lotions and balms.
You can also put Calendula petals straight into the bath. I make a 'teabag' from net or muslin and just put it in the bath while it is running.
My calendula soap is made by hand with coconut oil, olive oil and palm oil. It feels very luxuriant to use and does not leave your skin feeling dry and taught like commercial soap can. Partly this is because handmade soap retains the glycerin that is made during the saponification process. Glycerin is another humectant which is beneficial for skin hydration and which is removed from commercial soap and sold off as a by product.
To enter this giveaway, please leave a comment on this post - this giveaway is open to everyone. I will do the draw in 4 days time on 31 May with the random number generator. Good luck!