Handcraft: Soap Carving

Handcrafts are an important part of a Charlotte Mason education. We don't do as many handcrafts (handicrafts?) as I'd like, but we do some and I'm ok with that for now. It usually takes a bit of time and patience on my part--two things that aren't always in large supply. ;o)

I've been trying to teach Oldest how to knit--it's going ok. Her dexterity isn't quite *there* yet. In her defense, it took *me* a long time to learn and I was in my early 20's! (that makes me sound old. which I'm really not.)

We've also done some embroidery. That went pretty well. 

I thought it would be fun to try soap carving. I'm not sure if I'd recommend it for a 6 year old? Oldest did ok, but her perfectionist tendencies kept getting in the way. I told her there wasn't a wrong way to do it, but she was convinced there was. Poor girl. ;)

Here we are in my messy kitchen carving our soap.

Notice there's only one white chair. We used to have 2, but one's sitting in our garage right now. I bought the pair from a thrift store, painted and recovered the cushions. Turns out, when you have toddlers, it isn't the best idea to have fabric covering your chairs with no protective layer. *sigh*

(I should mention, too, that we got our table for FREE from a friend. The table was in their basement when they bought their house years ago. It was gray and needed a lot of work. Mr. N sanded and polished it and returned it to it's former glory! Isn't it great!? Did I mention it was FREE?)

I cut the end's off of large tongue depressors we had laying around to use for carving. They worked quite well.

Don't you just love sweet, little hands. *swoon*

Another note, if you have a 1 year old, it might be best to wait until naptime to carve soap. I kept having to sweep in fear that he would eat it off the floor!

I made the boat (the end broke off before I finished) and Oldest made the "L" (for her sister's name). I'm not quite sure what the others are supposed to be, but the girls gave it their all! :)

What handcrafts would you recommend for a 6 year old?

Linked up at Crossing the Brandywine.

handicraft bloggy button


  1. Hi Catie! We have that blue rody's twin over here and he also likes to spend his days lying on the dinning room floor.

    As for handicrafts, I've taught my guys to sew on buttons, they glue together balsam models with their father, and we started plastic canvas (which was NOT a hot). I have some Ivory in the closet waiting until I get up the courage to clean that many soap shavings off the floor. Looks like so much fun though! :)

  2. Wait a second...I'm not "Unknown"! I'm Alechia! I just can't figure out how to properly leave a comment :/

  3. LOL! Hi Alechia! Thanks for taking the time to comment! :)

    Sewing buttons is a great idea! And very useful, of course.

    I thought carving the soap was fun! I think my girls did, too. ;)

  4. First, I love your blog's name! And second, that looks fun - what kind of soap did you use? I really want to do some soap-carving with my kids.

  5. Thanks, Amy! Sometimes I think my name is too silly, but it is what it is! :)

    We used Ivory soap. It's REALLY soft and perfect for little hands to carve. :)

  6. My daughter did some soap carving but I let her use a knife and then was paranoid about her slashing herself. She didn't but I might have saved myself some anxiety if I'd done what you did and used a tongue depressor! What a sensible idea.

  7. YOu know what's funny? I totally thought it was *my* idea until I saw it on Pinterest! Turns out I'm not the first to do that! LOL ;o) There is nothing new under the sun!


Thanks for taking the time to comment. It's encouraging!