How to Make a Candle
Candles can add that special touch to any house. They can add to a romantic night. They can brighten a house up. They can also add personality into any home. Whatever the case may be, candles are great for everyday use. So why not make your own? Candles can get to be quite costly, but by making your own you are cutting down the price to a bare minimum. You may even find that you have most of the supplies that you need right at home. By making your own candle you can also create your own style making it more meaningful to you.
Before you begin, its a good idea to cover your workspace with newspaper. This should prevent wax hardening on the surface that you are working on. Make sure that you have all your materials. You will need one pound of paraffin which can be found at most craft stores, vegetable oil, a medium sized cooking pot, an empty coffee can, an old spoon, a clean sturdy container, and store-bought pre-dipped wicks. To add personality to your candle you may also want to include crayons, glitter, fragrant oils, etc.
To begin you must prepare a mold. Ive found that many materials around the house serve as excellent molds such as empty orange juice containers, paper cups, toilet paper rolls, and drink containers. Always make sure that the mouth is the same size if not wider that the base, allowing your candle to slide out easily. You dont want your mold to have any ridges such as in a soup can. Oil the inside of your mold for easier removal of the candle.
Now we must set up the double broiler. Never heat wax directly in a pot since wax is difficult to remove and burns easily when placed on direct heat. An easy way to improvise a double broiler is to use a clean coffee can in a pot of water. Put a medium-sized pot with a couple inches of water on high heat on the stove. Place a clean coffee can in the pot.
We can now begin putting the paraffin in the water while it is heating. Use about a pound of wax per orange juice container. Cut up the paraffin into small chunks and place them into the can. Stir the paraffin with an old spoon.
Now is the time to choose the color you want your candle to be. It is best to use colored crayons. You will need one crayon per pound of wax. Break the crayons into small pieces and when the wax is nearly melted drop the crayons into the coffee can. Stir them in and make sure to mix the color in thoroughly.
Next, remove the can from the boiling water and be sure to use a potholder. If you want a scented candle, mix the fragrant oils into the wax while it is cooling. After letting the wax cool for a few minutes, tilt the mold slightly towards the can for a cleaner transfer. Pour the wax slowly into the mold leaving a little space at the top to make it easier to remove the candle.
Afterwards, we must insert the wick. To do this you will need a pencil and a store bought pre-dipped wick. You can find these at most craft stores. Begin by measuring the wick against the mold and leaving about two inches extra to wrap around the pencil. Insert the wick into the center of the mold. When it has reached the bottom, you will wrap the 2 inches remaining around the pencil to hold it in place while the wax cools.
Allow your candle to cool off for at least a day before removing it from the mold. Even though your candle may look hardened, the wax inside is probably still not solid. Also remember that candles shrink as they dry, so it might be a good idea to add a little more of the left over wax into the mold as it dries.
Finally, we remove the candle from the mold. During the process you must be patient or you may damage the candle. If you use paper molds, simply tear the paper away from the candle. For other molds, try turning them upside down and tapping on the bottom. If it doesnt want to budge, carefully insert a knife between the candle and the mold. Pry just a little bit against the mold. Another way to get a tough candle to budge is by placing them in hot water for a few seconds. The candle should slide right out.
The most enjoyable part of making your own candles is using your imagination and creativity to make an art of candle making.