Friday, May 1, 2009

How To Friday -- Making Balt Salts in a Bag

There's nothing like coming home from a long day to a nice, freshly drawn bath just hot enough to relax and with just the right combination of emollients and aromatics to soothe both the body and the spirit from a busy week! This version is my own and makes the skin so soft and body relaxed enough, it is ready for a good night's sleep and a terrific weekend!


To Make the Bag:

1. Cut 7" by 11" strips of muslin cloth. Fold the 7" side and sew a 1/2" seam. This should leave you with a 3" wide, 11" long tube.

2. Fill tube with between 1/4 cup and 1/3 cup of bath salts or other filler. Fold in half and shake the salts down.

3. Fold the open ended side into envelope corners (forming a point) and then fold that section down to seal the open ends of your bag. A portion of the raw edge may show through and I've used my serger to finish these off after folding and filling the bag which also helps to seal the salts in. There are several ways to secure the top. I take a piece of jute string or twine about 2 feet long if I'm making a bath bag, shorter for hanging potpourri, and tie a knot in each end. I then use my sewing machine on the setting for attaching buttons and secure the twine to the bag and seal it up at the same time. I've been told you can use fabric glue as well, but I haven't tried it. I have stapled the bag to close it but wasn't happy with the results.

4. If the bag is not going into water, glue small silk rosettes and/or bits of lace and/or trim. I don't add other embellishments if the bag is going to be used in water since I want to keep everything as pure as possible and I haven't investigated what types of glues and embellishments might work without adding impurities to the water.

Bath Salts Recipe:

In a large bowl, mix well: 3 cups of Epsom Salts, 1 cup of Borax and 1 cup of oatmeal. This is the basic recipe. To this, add the scent or essential oil of your choice and mix well again. If the salts are going to be given and used from a jar, instead of using regular oatmeal which will not dissolve in water, use colloidal oatmeal. Food coloring can also be used for salts to be presented in a bottle or jar. Glass should be used to store salts made with scent as the aroma will dissipate over time in plastic.