|Posted on October 13, 2013 at 12:50 PM|
When i decided to take on candle making a few years ago, I thought it couldn't be easier. Melt the wax, pour into molds with a wick, and let it dry. "How hard can it be?"- famous last words!!
Making candles can be fun and easy if you know a few tricks, and I am here to share mine with you today! I purchase all of my candle making supplies at Candlewic- they have excellent quality, and haven't steered me wrong yet. (Yes, I am an affiliate, but only because I believe in their company so much!)
So let's get to it!
What You Need:
Candle wax: (1 lb. of wax will make about 10 votive candles)- votives are small, so a specialty wax really isn't necessary. Beeswax works fine as well as the soy wax work just as well as the pillar/votive wax for these.
Double Boiler (if you don't have a double boiler, a soup pot and a glass pyrex measuring cup with canning lids in between works great)
Wicks: I prefer to use wicks that are made for votives- they have metal discs at the bottom to keep them flat and anchored.
Coloring: This is optional. I use coloring made for candles, but I have heard of people using crayons as well.
Scent: Also optional, but who doesn't love a great smelling candle! I use scents designed for candles. A good amount of scent to use is 5-7%. Essential oils work for this as well, but remember that essential oils are potent, so start small and increase as desired.
Molds: I as lucky- When I first decided to make candles, there was an offer for free votive molds, so mine were free! In case don't want to spend the money on metal molds, I experimented for you, and found that the little plastic "bath cups" you buy at the grocery store work too! The cups I used were 3 oz. plastic cups that I picked up for a couple of dollars for 100 cups. These are bigger than votive candles, so you will get fewer candles per pound.
After the tutorial, I will show you a few other candle ideas I have done with make shift containers and molds.
Thermometer: A candy or meat thermometer is great for this- 175 degrees is the perfect temperature for votive candles.
Parchment or Wax Paper: No matter how careful you are, making candles is messy. Having this layer between the molds and your counter not only speeds up clean-up, but will save your counter from the coloring stains. (voice of experience)
Let's make candles!!
1.) Set up the double boiler on the stove and put your wax on top to melt.
2.) While you're waiting for your wax to melt, set up your molds, wicks, coloring, and scents. Don't forget your layer of parchment or wax paper!!! Once your wax is melted, it goes pretty quickly.
3.) Once your wax is melted and consistently has a temperature of 175 degrees, it's time to put in your color and scent. Stir for several minutes to make sure evenly is mixed evenly.
4.) You're finally ready to pour you wax into the molds! Pour it close
to the top, but not quite. Save some wax- once this has cooled, you're
going to top it off with more. This is one of the tricks I had to learn
along the way...
5.) Once you start to see a bit of wax hardening along the top edge, it's time to put in your wicks. Focus on getting the bottom centered- once that's centered, you'll have a few minutes to play with the string part. Don't worry about messing up the wax- we're going to add another layer, remember?
6.) Once the wax had hardened and cooled, reheat the remaining wax, and pour to top off your candles. I personally like a little lip at the top of my votives, so I pour as much as I can in mine. Make sure your wicks are straight. This will dry relatively quickly- about 15 minutes and you can remove from the molds.
7.) Enjoy your candles!
Tips For Easy Clean Up
Since you used parchment paper on the counters, that's easy, but you still have your molds (if you're using reusable molds) and your pans from your double boiler. Here's a fantastic trick I learned along the way:
Heat your oven to 200 degrees. Place your waxy stuff upside down on a parchment paper lined baking sheet, and put in the oven for about 15- 20 minutes. The wax melts off, and can be wiped clean with a paper towel! Then, wash as normal.
Other Fun Candles:
You can use just about anything that will hold hot liquid as a mold, but there are a ton of things you can use for container candles as well! The only differences in technique from above is that you will hot glue your wick to the center bottom of your container, and obviously, you won't pull your candle from the mold! Check these out!
Tea cups or coffee cups! Hot glue the saucer to the cup- these are too cute! Keep an eye out at thrift stores for cute looking cups!
Using canning jars is an easy, accessible option. These are little 4 oz. jars. I have done up to pint jars. If you want bigger candles, make sure your jar is a wide mouth so the flame gets enough oxygen to keep it going.
I have seen cute candles made with terra cotta pots as well, but I haven't personally tried it yet. Use your imagination and see what great things you can come up with!
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