Frequently Asked Questions

1. I can't carve anything and I have no talent, how can I do this?
2. Is it really soap?
3. What is the stones real name?
4. Where does soapstone come from?
5. What do I use to carve it and how long will it take?
6. Can My children really do this?
7. What else is soapstone used for?
8. How long have you been doing this?




1. Our bear and dolphin kits are the two that we recommend which are the best for your first try. The shape is pre-drawn for you and the shapes of the file were kept in mind when drawing our animals. The file is excellent and really goes through the soapstone; almost anyone can finish either of these two patterns from 1/2 hour to 2 hours depending on age and wrist strength.


2.  No, it's talc.



3. Steatite is the proper name for soapstone.



4.  The entire west coast and Alaska all have soapstone rock. It is found a lot where gold is found and also there are old talc mines in the Mojave Desert that are soapstone. Soapstone is also found in about thirty states nation wide.



5. Our kits come with everything you need.  Good soapstone can be carved with a sharp pocket knife like a bar of soap. I usually start kids with a file then on to pocketknife or wood carving tools. One of the good things about soapstone is you don't need any special tools; you can cut it with wood saws or drill it with any drill bit easily. Most people will finish their carvings from 1/2 hour to 2 hours depending on age and wrist strength.



6. Yes they can. Even Children as young as seven can carve (with proper supervision) using one of our kits. I usually start kids with a file then on to pocketknife or wood carving tools as they progress. The short attention span kids (and adults) makes this the perfect project that they will stick with because you start seeing your results real in minutes. The size of this project is perfect for the first time and as soon as it is finished you will want to do a second.



7. Soapstone has long been used by Native Americans  for the making of smoking pipes, for carving and bead making .The Indian people used the talc powder just like we use it today. Soapstone can be heated very hot and is excellent for a cooking stone because one can also cook directly on top of it. Soapstone has been used for tools such as scrappers and weights. All California Indians used soapstone in their daily life as well as many other tribes through out the United States.

 


8. We have been in the soapstone craft business since 1971.


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Vincent Castanon
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