So my first experiment was making laundry powder. (I got the idea from BrownThumbMama) I made a small variation to the recipe and my food processor hasn't come yet so I had to grate the soap by hand. I used a bar of Dr. Bronner's Magic Soap instead of Fels Naptha but I personally think it came out just as well and this way I didn't need to add the essential oil. My house smells fantastic right now, so I think this was a great experiment overall. Eventually I might get around to making the laundry liquid, but I really don't think I want to do the extra work.
This was a great investment. I have LOTS of washing soda and borax left, so there will be lots more experimenting. Overall, it's taken longer for me to write this post then it did for me to make the laundry soap. I think I could finish the whole process in less than 4 minutes once my food processor comes.
I'll try to remember to take pics for the next batch.
My food processor came and I made another batch. It took me about a minute to make this batch. So here's what I did:
I gathered my ingredients
Grated my bar of soap (I used my food processor).
Mixed in the borax and washing soda
Put in the scoop (I found a 2 tbsp coffee scoop in the junk drawer)
I also calculated the price per batch. Here's what I came up with:
1 cup of 20 Mule Team borax: $0.48
1 cup of Arm & Hammer Washing Soda: $0.33
1 bar Dr. Bronner's Magic Soap: $2.64
GRAND TOTAL: $3.45
Per my calculations, I think this recipe should yield about 32 load (PRETTY GOOD, RIGHT?)
Update 1/25/10: My food processor apparently cannot handle chopping up the soap. (I have a KitchenAid mini chopper). However, I do have the Shredder/Slicer attachment for my KitchenAid Stand Mixer. Thus, I grated the soap with the stand mixer, then put it into the food processor to get that fine soap dust that's needed for proper dissolution. Problem solved!
Until my next experiment......