Collecting candles may be a feminine interest in our modern age; however, chandlery, or the craft of making candles, was considered a very masculine skill thousands of years ago. In medieval times, villages and kingdoms only relied on candles for light. Medieval craftsmen made candles from wax or animal fat, which is also known as tallow, and this was when the common use of chandlers started. Even though candles are not as necessary nowadays, they are still used to add a romantic atmosphere to any room, or maybe a masculine ambiance in certain settings. Homemade candles are a lot cheaper than store-bought ones and create the same aura and mood. If you’d like to learn how to make your own candles at home, you’ll find this article really helpful. Keep reading.
For the type of wax you need, you want to use either paraffin or soy so that you can add any fragrances you want to your candles. Bring a double boiler and add a pound of wax with a good amount of water in the bottom pan. Stir the wax as it melts to get rid of chunks, and use a thermometer to make sure the wax’s temperature does not go over 160 to 170 degrees. It takes about 10 to 15 minutes for the wax to melt completely; you can watch paraffin as it dissolves into a puddle of wax; it’s actually fun to observe. If the temperature of the wax goes up beyond 170 degrees, take it off the pan.
Adding Fragrance Oils
This step comes after letting all the wax melt and taking it off the heat. Simply wait for all the wax to melt completely, and then add your favorite fragrance oils to the boiler. Keep in mind that different wax types will require different wax amounts. So, if you’re using a special type of wax that is sold specifically for candles, make sure you read the instructions before adding fragrance oils. However, if you’re just using the normal way, the average would be 1 oz for each pound of wax. Add the oils and stir the mixture inside the boiler for about 30 seconds to make sure it’s distributed evenly, then let it sit to cool.
Adjusting the Wick
This step is done while the wax is melting so that you can have time to place the wick inside the jar or cup you’re using to mold the wax. There are also molding kits that are designed for candles. Silicone molds will help you shape your candles however you want, so check it out if you don’t want to use a jar for your homemade candle. Some candle wicks have a sticker on the bottom, but you can also use superglue to make the wick stick to the bottom of the jar or mold. However, you can also dip the metal tab of the wick in the melting wax and adjust it inside the jar quickly. When the wax hardens in a couple of minutes, the wick will be stuck to the bottom. To ensure that the wick stays centered and in place while pouring the wax, you can use a pencil and tie the top of the wick to it, and then place it horizontally across the top of the container or jar.
Pouring the Wax into the Mold or Container
The best temperature to pour the wax into your mold is 130 to 140 degrees because the wax sets better this way. Let the wax cool for a few minutes after adding the fragrance oils, and keep your eye on the thermometer. Hold the wick firmly and pour the wax once it reaches the perfect temperature, and make sure you don’t tug too hard on the wick while doing so. This is because you can pull it out of place, especially when pouring hot wax on it, which may cause the wax holding the wick in place to melt.
Letting the Candle Cool and Trimming the Wick
While the wax you poured sets, it may for a little sinkhole in the middle, so after letting it sit for a few hours, re-heat the wax from the boiler and pour just a little to fill the flaw and create a smooth top. Don’t add too much wax or else you may end up with another sinkhole in your candle. After you smoothen the surface of your candle, you may want to trim the wick so that it does not stick out the candle more than needed.
Candle-making, unlike popular opinion, is very fun and creative. It’s also a hobby that won’t take much of your time. Making candles at home is a lot cheaper than buying expensive brands in stores. As a matter of fact, homemade candles burn just the same, and you can add your own fragrance preferences to them.