Carve this “Whale of a Tale” Simple Soap Carving
By Janet Bolyard in the Complete Guide to Soap Carving: Tools, Techniques, and Tips
Soap carving is a great way to introduce children on how to carve wood. It is also an economical way of finding out if you like carving enough to graduate to a whittling knife, gouge, and wood. You can create your own soap carving tools from sharpened popsicle sticks.
The Whale of a Tale project is fun to learn this soap carving technique, yes, but the real fun happens in the bathtub. Oh, the adventures that the whale’s creator will share! Not only is this happy whale fun at bath time, it can also be ready for action near a sink to clean dirty hands. The whale can be carved into the reverse side for a soap-on-a-rope project. Carved in the round, as here, it can be set upright on its own base of Irish Spring ocean waves. This project takes about 30 minutes to complete.
What you need:
• 1 Ivory bar, 1 Irish Spring bar for base (optional)
• Marking tool of choice
• Carving popsicle stick knife
• Small popsicle stick gouge
• Large popsicle stick gouge
• V-tool popsicle stick
• 2 brushes, water
Discover the art of carving soap with this comprehensive guide. Fun and easy to learn, soap carving is both a perfect craft for beginners and an ideal practice medium for advanced carvers.
“Whale of a Tale” Soap Carving Step by Step
3. Leave extra.
Leave extra soap around the tail to decrease the chances of the tail breaking off during carving.
5. Add curves and movement.
I wanted my tail to have movement. Using a small gouge, I added concavity to the end of the tail. This gives the tail more dimension—more natural looking than a flat tail. Note how I’m supporting the backside of the tail while I carve. This prevents the tail from breaking.
7. Add details.
Using a detail knife, mark out the mouth and the underbelly lines. You can make a V-cut with a detail knife, especially in tight workspaces.
Other Carving Titles
Chris Lubkemann has been writing about whittling for over 45 years, and he actually holds a Guinness World Record for the smallest branch rooster carving! His friendly guidebook, the Little Book of Whittling, will encourage you to whittle away the hours with 18 fun projects for canoes, forks, spoons, birds, animals, trees, flowers, and more. Chris also includes vital information that every scout needs to know about wood selection, knife handling, safety, and sharpening.
Learn to carve today with fun, fast and easy whittling projects! Whittling Volume 5 is packed with 26 projects that you can make in only minutes, using just a pocket knife. A handy whittler’s starter guide covers all the fundamentals you need to know.