Hollyberry in Holly Swirl

I haven’t done a Holly Swirl in 2 years. I visited the internet to verify the technique and checked my notes on my last batch.


I wasn’t completely satisfied with the straight Hollyberry scent – OOB just doesn’t seem to have enough berry to it, so I added some.

2 oz BB Hollyberry Cybillia
.5 oz BB Sun Ripened Raspberry
.25 oz BB Red Berry Rhubarb (all I had left or I would have used more).

Here’s the description of the scents:

  • Hollyberry Cybilla: The fragrance is a combination of holly (that fabulous green garland-making holiday shrub), pine, and the tart red berries that grow on the holly shrub. It also has some supporting notes of cardamon and cinnamon to give it a bit of a twist. Discolors to a golden/orange/peach within 8 hrs; No A. (This is a discontinued scent.)
  • Sun Ripened Raspberry: This is a basic raspberry with a “ripe” note to it – like a berry that is just ready to fall off the vine into your hand. This FO moves quick in CP soap. No R or D.
  • Red Berry Rhubarb: A tantalizing blend of bursting red berries and crisp, tart rhubarb. This fragrance features opening notes of tart cranberry, tangy rhubarb and sweet Macintosh apple. Mid notes of lemon zest and juicy pineapple are rounded out with a sweet base of Mirabelle plum, peach nectar and red currant. No A or D. (I love, love, love this scent!)

I have used these berry scents: the Red Berry Rhubarb was very docile, while the Sun Ripened Raspberry accelerated fast. Since I planned to used such a tiny bit of Raspberry, I thought that would minimize the acceleration.

The Plan:
Alternating pours with two ITP swirled reds and 2 greens swirled ITP with white; using a 3 lb mold. (This is my go-to mold, and I have been trying to use it more. I can cut my bars with a wire cutter and they are very uniform. Also, most people seem to be partial to the size & shape of this bar.)

I would have preferred to have the traditional white with the reds, but added greens to work with the discolor of the FO. And the green is a good representation of the Hollyberry.

Master batch #5 oils: (Makes 64 oz soap)
Oils: 45 oz/ 1276 grams
Lye 5% SF: 6.36 oz / 180 grams
Distilled Water: (2.85 oz disc): 12 oz / 340 grams
Sodium Lactate: 13 grams

Pour off 10 oz for test samples.

54 oz Batter/Colors/FO:
14 oz – TKB #30 True Red with Hollyberry FO
14 oz – BB Merlot Mica with Hollyberry FO
9 oz – CC Lime Green Mojito (Light Green), Raspberry & Berry Rhubarb FO
9 oz – BB Hydrated Chrome & Green Chrome Oxide (Dark green), Raspberry & Berry Rhubarb FO
9 oz – TD White, Raspberry & Berry Rhubarb FO

ITP Swirl with Red & Merlot
ITP Swirl with light green, dark green, & white
Alternate pour of these.

My plan was to color all my batters, then mix up the reds with the Hollyberry – alternate pouring them into another container for ITP. Then add the raspberry & berry rhubarb to the greens & white and quickly do an ITP swirl with them (to account for the acceleration).

I soaped at 120 degrees for the lye-water and 122 degrees for the oils.

No surprise, that things didn’t go as planned. The Hollyberry accelerated really fast and the Raspberry riced. If I would have know this, I could have done my plan in reverse: get the greens & white ready, then the reds.

I’m not sure why the Hollyberry accelerated. My only thought is that it is an old fragrance. I bought it maybe 3 years ago and forgot I had it. Acceleration has happened to me in the past with old FO’s.

After scrambling to plop everything in the mold, I added some red berries that I had previously made with CP soap & dusted with snowflake silver sparkle mica and merlot mica. Then I added some more of each of the micas and some fine Iridescent Glitter sprinkles on top; covered it with cellophane and wrapped it in towels to gel. At least the top looks festive:


Top of mold


Close up


The Cut:

Is it just me, or can you see red sleighs in these bars?




An Aside:

  • Leftover Hollyberry in rectangular Celtic mold (front & back), dusted with snowflake silver sparkle mica.
  • Pumpkin Latte: 1:1 Pumpkin Pie FO and Espresso FO; natural with orange accents in oval Celtic mold; dusted with copper sparkle mica.
  • Cranberry Orange: 1:1 Orange 10x eo and Cranberry Chutney; natural, red, & orange in round Celtic mold, dusted with gold sparkle mica.

Clockwise: Front of Hollyberry; Pumpkin Latte; Cranberry Orange; back of Hollyberry (I like the back better than the front!):

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