Learn to make your own traditional cold process soap with Medical Herbalist and experienced Soapmaker Catherine Marshall in the beautiful Dorset countryside.
On this beginners course, you will learn about the basics of soap making using natural ingredients, including natural colourings & essential oils.
In the morning, we will look at the soap making process and ingredients, including learning how to calculate your own soap recipes, followed by a live demonstration of soap making.
After lunch, you will get to make your own 2 batches of soap (approx. 1.2kg of soap), using a wide range of natural ingredients & recipes provided on your worksheet.
Recipes provided are all palm oil free and suitable for vegans.
Most courses are run at the Herbal Harmony studio at Mapperton, west Dorset and also occasionally (once or twice a year) in a studio at Holton Lee, Poole, Dorset.
If you will be redeeming a CraftCourses gift voucher on this course, the voucher code must be provided at the point of booking.
What's included in the price?
The course fee includes making & taking home 2 batches of soap (1.2kg/10 bars approx), a worksheet with recipes and refreshments throughout the course.
Lunch is not provided, so please bring along a packed lunch on the day.
An absolute brilliant day learning to make soap. Lots of information to take in but explained very clearly and with a demonstration and then a chance to have fun and experiment with colours, smell, textures etc. I feel I have enough information to have a go myself and can’t wait. Thanks so much.
A great course with easy to follow, clear instruction. Catherine gives detailed information together with handouts which allow you to feel confident and safe in the process of soap making. The venue is lovely and the straight forward directions on how to find were really helpful. Just impatient for my soap to cure! Would definitely recommend.
I really enjoyed the course, Catherine was a brilliant host and teacher, was very helpful with giving directions to get there. Had everything we needed prepared for us and was very informative and even made us all tea :)
Thank you for your review Vicki! I'm so glad you found the class enjoyable and informative! Have fun making more soaps at home!
My friend and I had such a great day at Catherine's studio. We were both really impressed with the amount of detail she goes into so you can go home and feel confident enough to try soaping on your own. A really really well thought out course that I would highly recommend and plan to do more courses in the future! Thank you Catherine!
Thanks Elaine! I'm so glad you both enjoyed the class and I hope you have fun making more soap at home!
I had a very enjoyable time with Catherine, learning how to make soap. Her studio is lovely and she is a very good instructor, with lots of patience and full of information! I would definitely recommend this course.
We loved the course. The venue was excellent and the course was tempered well for beginners soap making.
Catherine was really knowledgeable about the products and process she uses.
We’re looking forward to using our soaps this week and doing another course with Catherine next year.
We attended Catherines soap making workshop last week and had the most informative day, learning all about soap and the process of making it, followed by Catherine making a batch - and then it was our turn! We made two batches which will be ready for Christmas pressies. Which is very exciting. I would highly recommend this day, Catherine was ready to help and answer questions and has been fantastic at answering my email questions.
The day learning about and making soap last Friday was the best ever run course I have been on. The setting is glorious, the welcome warm and wonderfully perfumed; the delivery of so much interest and informative detail brilliantly presented with wonderful easy to follow handouts.
Now I am really looking forward to cutting my large blocks of made soap - too delicious to use for washing at present - as drawer scents just for a while!
I will always look at the ingredients on soap labels from now on - something I had not even noticed before.
My friend Lynne and I enjoyed this soap making day immensely - we had wondered whether the day would be worth the £60 fee - it was worth every penny! Catherine is very knowledgeable, and shares the knowledge and her expertise with participants brilliantly - it was great to sit and learn and then put the learning into practise immediately. We came away with some beautiful soap that we had made ourselves from scratch using an array of different essential oils, colours and decorations and we are very proud of our creations! Catherine's workshop is in a lovely spot in quiet countryside. It is set up perfectly for 5 participants with good quality equipment - and scrummy biscuits! Thanks Catherine - we will be back for more soon!
Catherine’s soap making workshop represents excellent value for money!! My daughter and I came away with x2 batches of soap each, using high quality ingredients and essential oils. I came with an idea for soap and Catherine helped me calculate, produce, and achieve my goal. The choice of ingredients, various clays, butters and oils etc were excellent, everyone was able to make their own unique soaps and blends. Everyone had their own work station with all the necessary equipment and could work independently or with guidance. From the moment we arrived and stepped into the studio, we were warmly welcomed and Catherine is a wonderful hostess! Nothing is too much trouble. A beautiful tranquil setting, a must for anyone needing time out to relax and recharge. I will be booking again, and again.... Thank you Catherine!
Catherine was brilliant, she is so enthusiastic about what she does and explains everything in such a nice detailed way. She is also very hands on and ready to help or answer any questions if you have them.
She is ever so friendly and also the location is fantastic and shelves are full of soaps, so there is plenty to get inspiration from.
There were only 5 people in the workshop, which was ideal. My and my friend made two batches of soap and we're looking forward to using them. Hoping to make more soaps in the future as well. Thanks a million Catherine, really enjoyed getting to know you and thank you for your patience.
Wow! What a wonderful day! Cat is an amazing teacher, who went above and beyond to make the class informative, interesting, friendly and fun!
Cat's demonstration was easy-to-follow and understand, and when we were making the soap, she was so patient, kind and supportive. (She has an absolute wealth of knowledge about soap making, herbs and natural skincare and was more than happy to help everyone out and answer any questions we had!)
The soap we made smells absolutely divine, and I love that it's made with natural, vegan ingredients!
Thank you so much for such a beautiful day. I couldn't recommend this class more highly, and we'd love to do another of your courses in the future! <3 xx
My husband and I had a fantastic time with Catherine, learning how to make soap. The information provided was in depth and thorough. We have left the workshop with two kilos of soap and a confidence to make more by ourselves in the future.
The hardest bit is now though, having to wait for our creations to cure before we can use them [impatient foot tapping sounds].
Me and my friend went to the 8th June workshop and it was one of the best craft workshops I've been to. The location was fantastic and the workshop itself was very informative and full of fun. Catherine is really friendly and helpful. At the workshop, Catherine will demonstrate how to make a batch first and you will have opportunities to make two different batches of soap. I can't wait to cut my soaps this weekend!
A rare day out for me which didn't disappoint. Catherine was so knowledgeable, whilst being calm and friendly. On the day she had both complete novices and medical herbalists to deal with, which she did with ease and professionalism. We came away armed with a huge amount of knowledge and 2 boxes of our own hand made soap. Pure joy! I will definitely book again 😊.
What a great day, I had a lovely time! Catherine’s knowledge and enthusiasm for soap making meant it was a very enjoyable experience. I appreciated the time spent on background information, followed by her talking through the complete process and introducing the ingredients. The demonstration helped to consolidate my understanding before trying it for myself. The small class size meant plenty of individual attention to check everyone was on task. The opportunity to repeat the process by making two batches of soap was great for helping gain a little confidence while also trying a different recipe. The detailed handouts and recipes will be invaluable for trying out at home. I can’t wait for the soap to be ready to slice and use. Thank you for such a great experience.
Thank you so much for your lovely review! Glad to hear you had a wonderful experience at the workshop and look forward to seeing photos of your soaps!
I had an absolutely fab day. Beautiful setting and Catherine was a great teacher. Clear and concise in her teaching, patient and very generous with her knowledge. I am definitely inspired to try more of the recipes at home. Highly recommended.
Thank you Linda! So glad you had a great day, enjoy your soaps and hope you have fun making more of them at home!
What a great way to spend a day!
As a complete novice in the world of soap-making I was surprised and intrigued by the whole process.
Following Catherine's instructions (although I did go 'off piste' at one point and had to be rescued!!!), the class each produced two individual boxes of fragrant and beautifully coloured soap.
It's a fascinating subject and we all left with plenty of information, so that we could have a go at home. This, coupled with Catherine's enthusiastic support, meant that there are now another bunch of soap-makers released into the community.
So it's all bubbles from here on!!!
Fully recommended. Book now! You'll have a great time and meet some interesting people in the beautiful surroundings of The Liveability Centre.
Thank you so much for your review Julia! I'm really glad you had an enjoyable day and have fun making more soaps!
I had a very enjoyable and relaxing day on Catherine's soap making course. Catherine was very friendly and knowledgeable on her subject. The day was really well structured and very clear handouts were given out to keep. Once we had learnt the fundamentals, we had different recipes to choose from, absolutely loads of ingredients to choose from, and we each made two beautiful batches of natural soap to take home. It was a very inspiring day and I can't wait for my soaps to cure so I can cut them to see how pretty they have turned out !
Thank you for your review! Really glad you enjoyed the day and hope you feel inspired to make more soap!
Thoroughly enjoyed this course. Catherine's knowledge is amazing as is her patience when asked a multitude of questions. This course will give you a very firm foundation into soap making and will definitely inspire you to create beautiful things. If you are interested in learning how to make soap, do this course you will not regret it.
Thank you for your lovely review Clivina! So glad you enjoyed the day and have fun making more soap!
I Really enjoyed this course. It was well organised and Catherine is so knowledgeable about soap making, an inspiring lady! There was a good balance of demo's and practical and I now have 10 bars of soap curing nicely at home that I can't wait to use. The value for money is excellent and the location is idyllic.
I thoroughly enjoyed the soap making course with Catherine. The day was very well organised with informative handouts and easy to follow recipes included. Catherine is very knowledgeable and inspires confidence. I would happily recommend the course to everyone.
Wonderful day and excellent value. I attended the course in Febuary and came away buzzing with ideas to try at home. Catherine is a welcoming experienced host & provides great atmosphere in her studio. I attended on my own, but we all sat round a big table learning the background to soap making, helpful tips and then made our 2 batches of soap together. The day flew past and Catherine expertise and support to all of us as a group and individuals increased our confidence in experimenting with different formulations. Would highly recommend this course.
What a great day! I took my mum as a birthday treat experience.
We learnt a lot about the soap making process and came home with our very own hand made soaps.
Catherine is very knowledgeable on the subject, a very patient teacher and a welcoming host.
Highly recommend this.
Great course; fun, friendly, informal, safe and well taught. Cat explained clearly, gave a demo then we had a go. My soap looks and smells great and is all natural. The notes & recipes provided are excellent and I am confident and excited to make soap at home. Thanks Cat!
Cat is a very thorough teacher. Really enjoyed the day and feel confident enough to do make soap at home now. Group size brilliant - we all had space and attention from Cat when we were making our two batches of soap. Really enjoyed the day.
An enjoyable and informative day, very inspiring! Learned a lot and had fun. Feel ready to try making soap at home now. Lovely studio, delicious fragrances, beautiful natural colours. Catherine is friendly and knowledgeable. AAA+
The introductory soap making workshop yesterday was a lovely day. We were given lots of information but were never overloaded. We had a chance to see all the different colours and natural essential oils that were available and watch a demonstration before making two batches of our own soap. The day was friendly, well paced, and great fun. I would definitely recommend Catherine and her Herbal Harmony studio to everyone.
Really lovely day, well paced, clear instruction, informative and fascinating! There's something rather special about making your own natural soap, the chemistry and alchemy...can't wait to make more (and my two batches from the workshop smell divine and are about to be cut!)
Catherine has a clear and relaxed style of teaching, and is generous in sharing ideas and recipes. Highly recommended.
I've just spent a lovely day with Catherine in her new, light and airy studio and have really enjoyed learning about and making cold process soap.Catherine's teaching style is friendly and relaxed, her notes are good and her demonstration was clear. When I made my own soap she was very supportive with ideas for essential oils and other additives. I've cut my two lots of soap and am delighted with the results. I've already got an order going in for more supplies so I shall soon be giving soap away to all my friends. Christmas may be 'sorted' already .
A truly lovely day doing something that I have wanted to do for a while now. I brought my mum along, who was convinced she would cause chaos by her lack of skill; but in the end really enjoyed herself. Catherine was truly lovely; she explained everything, then did an equally good demonstration and then unintrusively monitored our progress, correcting where needed, as we got on with making our own soaps. I cut my soap last night - the final proof that it had all gone to plan - and all was smelling and looking (reasonably - for a beginner!) glorious!
We thought the day was enjoyable and educational. We learnt a lot on the course. Catherine presented the course extremely well and we came away looking forward to trying to produce our own soap. Handouts were easy to understand. Would highly recommend the course to people who are interested in making their own soaps.
The second of Catherine's courses I've taken - this could become a habit! A really fascinating day mixing science with creativity to make your own bespoke soaps under expert guidance. Catherine has the skill to strike just the right balance between providing training in the process whilst making it fun. In an age of mass-produced everything, how refreshing it is to make something yourself - I can't wait to try out my handiwork.
What a fantastic day. Was not sure what to expect when I booked this as a birthday gift for my wife.
In the lovely peaceful, rural setting at Holten Lee it exceeded all our expectations. Catherine took us through the soap making process and provided a comprehensive leaflet should anything be forgotten later. We made two soap recipes, the first with Catherine leading us, step by step and the second recipe she allowed us more independence. We left feeling excited and fulfilled. We enjoyed Catherine's friendly teaching style, all equipment was provided and we both feel confident enough to have a go at home. Great value. Thank you Catherine.
I went to Catherine's soap making workshop with my daughter because we wanted to do a craft activity together for her birthday. We had a great time! Catherine is not only very knowledgable, but also very passionate about soap making. We learnt a lot, had fun and went home with gorgeous soaps, which not only look great but also smell heavenly. Some will be used for Christmas presents, but some we will keep for our own use. We are definitely hooked on soap making and will make our own soaps again in future
I had a lovely time on the soap making workshop!. Found it very easy to understand and would be confident to try making soap at home! Catherine is a great teacher and would highly recommend going to one of her workshops !
First time on one of Catherine's courses, certain won't be the last! I participated in the soap making course, never made soap or anything similar before. Catherine was very informative & her passion for the natural, herbal approach shone through. Small group, excellent resources & stunning setting. I had an amazing day, & made some delightful smelling soaps which will be ready to give as stunning Christmas gifts!! Win win!
Wonderful course - Catherine explains everything clearly and is very willing to answer all questions. All equipment needed is provided and the small group (6) is ideal. All the materials to make the soap were good - lots of choice of essential oils, colours etc. Notes and recipes from the course are also very helpful. I thoroughly enjoyed the day - thank you, Catherine for all your help.
I couldn't recommend this workshop more! Catherine was so lovely and very informative. Was a bit nervous having never made soap before but she makes you feel at ease and demonstrates very well & has you making soaps like a pro at the end! Was a lovely setting too and nice how its just 6 people so very one to one. I had so much fun. I'll be attending more of her workshops and I've left feeling very confident in soap making.
I really enjoyed the traditional cold process soap making. Catherine provided us with clear, informative instructions, calculations and recipes. Her calm and easy approach made for a comfortable learning environment and a small group meant Catherine was always quick to help and advise. A wonderful day, thoroughly enjoyed it and feel confident now to try by myself. Thank you so much Catherine.
An excellent workshop which was very good value for money. The choice of ingredients, essential oils, natural colouring and dried flowers was extensive. As there were only six people in the class we each had plenty of attention. The information and recipe sheet was well written and easy to follow.
I would like to attend an advanced workshop to built on the skills obtained so far.
Thank you Catherine for a great workshop.
Excellent workshop which I would not hesitate to recommend or attend again! Catherine fully explained everything relating to soap making in a friendly environment, paced at a level that was easy to follow. We came away with two batches that I am looking forwards to using and giving one or two to friends as gifts to sample for themselves. Great value for money. Many thanks Catherine, a thoroughly enjoyable time was had!
I did the soap making course recently, it was excellent, absolutely absorbing and the time flew by. Catherine is an excellent teacher and very patient.
Really proud of my soap, it smells gorgeous. I have shared some with friends and they love it too!
An amazing course and very special as Catherine in a beautifully paced manner carefully explained in full detail the ingredients and method of how to make the most wonderful bars of soap. Catherine had a full range of essential oils, flower waters, dried flowers, different oils and butters etc. on hand to smell and all were available to use during this wonderful chance to make step by step the soap. The class size was small thus allowing an environment where warmth between our group was created as we set about following the recipes. A very clear, easy to follow hand out was supplied. Catherine was on hand to give individual attention when required and waited on us, serving herbal teas and biscuits. I whole heartedly recommend this workshop and have such wonderful memories of my soap making time plus now substantial bars of my very own home made soap.
This is a great workshop and excellent value for money. It is informative with lots of detail and top tips presented in a very user friendly format: notes to take away, an introduction to the various ingredients and a demo to show the full soap making process. and fantastic to be able to take away so much soap (with clever cutting, I think I can get about 18 small bars) in two different batches. Catherine ia very calm and a supportive teacher once it comes to the part where you make your own soap. She provides a wide range of supplies and recipes meaning everyone is able to make exactly what they want - which resulted in a wide variety of end products. I really enjoyed the session and am very happy with what I was able to make and take away - two different types of soap which (with clever cutting) I think I can get about 18 small bars from. Lots of great presents!
My husband and I did Catherine's soap making course in Poole back in May. It was an excellent day. Learnt loads, the set-up of sitting around a big table made a nice learning environment, refreshments and breaks were provided, and the course took the scary out of working with lye. Our soaps came out really well and we have been giving them to friends and family. Great value for money and I would thoroughly recommend.
Recently did Catherine's soap making workshop. It was really informative and Catherine went through everything that you do need to know and we had the opportunity to look at all the different types of ingredients and scents. Making the soap was great fun and certainly easier than you would think. Highly recommend the course and will certainly be looking at doing some of Catherine's other courses.
The soap making day with Catherine is fantastic, i highly recommend it for anyone and everyone! You get lots of information on all the natural ingredients in an easy to understand format and Catherine is always happy to answer any further questions. I can't wait to get my own little production line going, I've been inspired:)
I did Catherine's soap making course and I thought it was really good. Catherine managed to pack so much information into the session, gave a good demonstration and provided us with lots of choice for recipes. Catherine was always on hand to guide us through each stage and answer our questions and was generous with the raw materials. We each managed to make two diffent batches of soap to take away with us, which was amazing. We also have the knowledge basis from which to have ago at home. Can't wait for my soaps to cure as I am really looking forward to trying them out.
I recently went to Catherine's soap making workshop & had a fantastic time! The day was really fun & I learnt a lot & was really impressed with the products we all made! My soap smells divine & looks good enough to eat! I will definitely be booking up more workshops with Catherine, possibly to made a handcream or lip balm next time