Woohoo, I finally did it! Something I've wanted to do but put off for years (too expensive an outlay for equipment, too scary!) Those were my excuses anyway.
After chatting with Julie I realise this was something I could do on a really tight budget. I got a cheap stockpot that was missing a lid, inexpensive silicon mould and stick blender, husband fashioned a curing rack for me out of bamboo from our backyard and probably the most expensive ingredient was the coconut oil, which I had to order online.
I used this basic recipe and found the whole process very easy (how cool to watch that beautiful saponification process!) Using lye is not fun but entirely manageable when you follow the safety precautions really carefully.
Now for the really hard part - waiting 4 weeks for the soap to cure!