Header linkssubscribesubscribedirectionscommentsteachersbootcampsclasses home

* Last Chance Class *

boot camp boots

2-Day Soap Making Boot Camp

~ with Ruth Esteves, Jen Grimes & David Critchfield ~

"I really enjoyed the variety of information offered. I wanted 'live' demonstrations versus book learning. I feel I have a better understanding & confidence. I really like the record keeping sheets for keeping track of what you did with what recipe. If I lived here, I would take a lot more classes! The boot camp was full of terrific information presented in a very friendly & organized format with no secrets. I so loved the enthusiasm & passion the instructors have for their trade. I love the freedom of experimentation & encouragement given."
- Dawn Westrich
(click here to see more quotes about this class)

Funnel SwirlTextured TopsVeritcal LayersIn-the-Pot SwirlEmbed Bars
hot process (HP) soapmaking classes (crock pot method) at the nova studio in point richmond, ca (SF  Bay Area)soapmaking classessoapmaking classteacher david critchfieldsoap pictures

** PREREQUISITE: Our Cold Process 101 Class OR Equivalent Experience Required **

This unique 2-day intensive soap making workshop covers Intermediate & Advanced Techniques for making soap from scratch. It does not contain the basic prerequisite "Cold Process Soap Making 101" - so that class must be taken before this boot camp (previous experience or classes taken at other locations should suffice). This Soap Boot Camp is for anyone who is interested in increasing their soap making knowledge. For those who need the pre-requisite class, we've scheduled it on the Friday night before the boot camp for your convenience.

Upcoming Classes
Registration Options

Friday, October 17, 2014

This is the Prereq for our 2-Day Soap Boot Camp
6:30 - 9:30 pm (3 hours) $65 (plus $10 materials fee)
Credit Card
2-Day Soap Boot Camp
Saturday & Sunday
October 18 & 19, 2014
10 am - 5 pm (6 class hours/day + 1 hour lunch break)
$325 (plus $35 materials fee)
Boot Camp Full
to sign-up call
Boot Camp Day 1 ONLY
Saturday, Oct. 18, 2014
Advanced CP Soap Design with Loaf Molds
10 am - 5 pm (6 class hours + 1 hour lunch break)
$175 (plus $25 materials fee)
Class Full
to get on the waiting list call
Boot Camp Day 2 ONLY
Sunday, Oct. 19, 2014
Hot Process & Big Batch Soap Making
10 am - 5 pm (6 class hours + 1 hour lunch break)
$175 (plus $12 materials fee)
Credit Card
before signing up, please visit the Policies & Info Page

The schedule is as follows:
(see directly below for the full class descriptions)
Friday Night: (Additional charge of $65 + $10) Cold Process Soap Making 101
Saturday (Day 1 - All Day, 10am-5pm): Advanced Soap Design using Log Molds with Ruth Esteves
Sunday (Day 2 - 10am-1pm): Hot Process Soap Making with Jen Grimes
Sunday (Day 2 - 2-5pm): Big Batch / Production Soap Making with David Critchfield

Other than the materials fees, listed above (which is due in cash on the first day of class), you don't need to bring anything with you. You get thorough handouts for each class, tested recipes & instructions and 6 amazing bars of handmade soap (you'll take home 4 during the boot camp, and 2 will be mailed to you right after the boot camp). Soap Intensive students also receive a personalized frame-worthy certificate of completion.

DAY 1: SATURDAY 10am-5pm

Funnel Swirl Vertical Swirls Embed Bar Swirl

So you make your own cold process soap and you love the way it smells and feels. But are you thrilled with the way it looks? Even before it’s smelled or used, the appearance of a bar of soap can set the tone for the whole experience. If you’re looking to jazz up the look of your cold process soap, this class offers inspiration and step-by-step demonstrations of design techniques that can get your creative juices flowing.

Concentrating exclusively on log- or loaf-shaped molds, we will explore techniques for:

  • Color layering, including a demonstration of vertical layers
  • Color swirling, including a demonstration of “funnel swirls” and “in-the-pot” swirls
  • Embedding soap shapes, including shapes that students will make for the in-class demonstration
  • Adding textural interest to the tops of bars, including a demonstration of adding “waves” to soap tops

Ruth will be making soap from scratch to demonstrate various soap design ideas, as well as offering lots of example soaps. There will also be a hands-on portion of the class when students will have the chance to try out some of the techniques themselves. At the end of the day, you will leave with a thorough handout outlining all of the techniques covered, a list of resources, two little soap batches and, hopefully, a whole lot of enthusiasm about exploring your own soap design! The demonstration soap that Ruth makes during class time will be cut later at the studio and each student will receive, in the mail, a full-sized bar from each batch (2 total). This class uses only vegan/vegetarian ingredients.

And here is an added BONUS: Ruth will be discussing and demonstrating soapmaking with lye solution at room temperature. This is a very efficient method that can save you lots of time and make soapmaking more enjoyable again! No more waiting around for lye to cool before you can make soap!

DAY 2: SUNDAY 10am-1pm

hot process soap class  hot process (HP) soapmaking classes (crock pot method) at the nova studio in point richmond, ca (SF  Bay Area) hot process soap making

Tired of waiting 4-6 weeks to use your handmade Cold Process soap? Or, perhaps you never really got into CP soapmaking due to the long curing time? So, what's a soapmaker to do? The Answer: Hot Process. This class focuses on the Crock Pot Method of Hot Processing Soap.

Hot Process (HP) is another method of making soap completely from scratch. It differs from the more common Cold Process (CP) method in that heat is applied to complete the saponification process before the soap goes into the mold. The result is a great bar of soap, similar to what you get with the CP method, with one HUGE BENEFIT; the soap is technically ready to use immediately (although it's a good idea to allow a few weeks for the soap to firm up). For those of you who plan on selling your soap, a reduced curing time means that you can fill custom orders in half the time.

There are also several additional considerations when it comes to Coloring (some colors are heat sensitive) and Scenting HP soap versus CP soap (like HP soap requires less scent, so you'll save money there). Saving time AND money... what could be better? We'll discuss the pros and cons of both methods so you can decide which is best for you.

Learn everything you need to know about making Hot Process Crock Pot Soap:

  • Introduction to HP soapmaking & how it differs from CP
  • What the benefits (and drawbacks) are
  • Materials, equipment & supplies
  • Several excellent HP soapmaking recipes
  • A hot process specific soap worksheet
  • Clear & detailed instructions for making HP crock pot soap
  • Oil characteristics (which oils harden or soften your soap, which are conditioning, etc.)
  • Coloring HP soap (more complicated than CP - which colors are not heat stable)
  • Scenting HP soap (again, more tricky than with CP soap - and why are Flash Points so important)
  • A list of recommended suppliers

Take home thorough handouts & enough information to make hot process crock pot soap on your own. Also take home a full-sized bar of HP soap!

DAY 2: SUNDAY 2-5pm

 advanced soap making class  teacher david critchfield  products soapmaking classes

Learn to Make 100+ Bars of Soap in One Afternoon! This class is a *must take* for anyone in, or considering going into, the soap business. While demonstrating his budget method for making batches of 100 bars at a time, David freely offers tips, tricks, and practical advice about selling soap as a business. His willingness to share this valuable information is worth the price of the boot camp alone.

Professional soapmaker David Critchfield will demonstrate the process of mixing, pouring, and cutting a 35-pound batch of cold process (CP) soap. David will share with you his inexpensive 5-gallon bucket method and discuss how all the different facets of the process work together to create fabulous home made soap! Towards the end of class, students will be able to ask questions so David can help them troubleshoot problems or answer general questions about their past soap making experiences. Students will take home handouts and a full-sized bar of David's soap to sample.

This class will also cover the following:

• Fatty acid profiles & properties of various oils
• Actual vs. public relations value of soapmaking oils
• Alternatives to olive oil, palm oil & coconut oil
• Inexpensive & effective system for cutting soap & making your own molds
• Trying to make money at soapmaking (don't quit your day job just yet!)
• For those already selling soap, how to make 500 bars in one day!

This is a wonderful opportunity to take your soap production/business to the next level.
This popular series usually fills up in advance - so don't wait too long to sign-up!

This entire boot camp is designed for students who have taken our Cold Process 101 Soap Class OR who have experience making cold process soap (successfully) on their own. If you have never made cold process (CP) soap before, you will need to take our Cold Process 101 Soap Class which demonstrates soapmaking using a 4-pound batch and teaches all the lye safety & other basics needed for a beginner. Also, this is an age 18+ class since making soap from scratch involves working with lye (aka sodium hydroxide). Even though most of this boot camp is demonstration style (the best & safest way we know to teach it), there are some hands-on elements. Please wear or bring a long-sleeved shirt. You'll also need rubber gloves and safety goggles. There will be several pairs of goggles and gloves to share, but if you prefer your own please bring them to class.

This special weekend intensive is ideal for out-of-town students or those who live near by but work during the week and would like to learn all they can about making fantastic soap in one weekend. Due to the nature of making soap from scratch, these classes are mainly demonstration style (the best and safest way we know how to teach it so you feel confident doing it at home).

flying in for a class?


If you're flying in, you'll have two main airports to choose from. Oakland International (23 miles away) & San Francisco International (30 miles away). Click HERE for more information, including accommodations & restaurants.


Click HERE for our directions page, which contains driving directions and public transportation instructions, as well as additional information.

If you are coming from out of town, contact us BEFORE MAKING any non-refundable travel arrangements so we can verify the class has met the minimum and is definitely a go.

At Least 60 Days' Notice: If you cannot attend (for any reason) and you call us with at least 60 days' notice, you will be able to transfer 75% of your class fee to any future class.

At Least 30 Days' Notice: If you cannot attend (for any reason) and you call us with at least 30 days' notice (but less than 60 days before the class) you will be able to transfer 50% of your class fee to any future class.

At Least 7 Days' Notice: If you cannot attend (for any reason) and you call us with at least 7 days' notice (but less than 30 days before the class) you will be able to transfer 25% of your class fee to any future class.

Less than 7 Days' Notice: If you give us less than 7 days' notice that you cannot attend a class, you forfeit your class fee. We are happy to send the class handouts to you. Simply email us a request.



Soap Equipment Mission Peak Soap Bramble Berry Loft Soap

David Critchfield is the owner of Mission Peak Soap Products, Ruth Esteves is the Co-Owner of The Nova Studio & Sirona Springs, and Jen Grimes is the owner of LoftSoap. David has been teaching soapmaking since 2005, Ruth has been teaching since 2009, and Jen has been teaching since 2011. Lori & David joined forces (in 2006) and designed the wildly popular Soap Making Boot Camp. Ruth was added as a teacher to the Soap Boot Camp in 2010 & Jen was added in 2012. You can read more about the teachers on our Teacher Page. All three are proud and active members of The Handcrafted Soap Makers Guild.

Refer to the table above for price, date, time and registration options. Contact us at 510-234-5700 with any questions. Please read the Class Policies & Info Page before signing up.

Copyright © 2003-2013 The Nova Studio. All rights reserved.
No part of this website may be reproduced in any form without written permission.