I haven't been brave enough to try making soap from scratch yet; I'm waiting for next summer when the required ventilation doesn't freeze me to death and small child can be outside when I mix the lye! I let someone else make the soap base I used, a pure olive oil soap that's still made the traditional way in Greece, and tried something I'd read elsewhere on the internet to produce the "liquid" soap - chopped up soap, and water :)
I chopped up half a bar of soap and put the pieces into the newly cleaned out empty bottle, and filled it up with water. To this I added ten drops of Thyme essential oil, great for its antiseptic and antibacterial properties, and ten drops of Rosemary oil because it has a nice clean, herby aroma.
Leaving the soap bits to "dissolve" in the water for 24 hours, and giving it a good shake every time I passed it has resulted in a surprisingly nice liquid soap. OK,
More importantly, I know exactly what's in this soap and am happy that not only is it chemical-free, it's also very frugal, having cost about 60p to make against the £1.99 or so for the original bottle of anti-bacterial soap that's full of unnecessary chemical crap. Result!