Homemade Candles

Sometime in 2001 or 2002 I was doing computer repair service in Kingwood, Texas – which is part of Houston. The day started out typical enough, I got the work orders from the dispatcher and went on my way. One house that I was to visit changed my life forever. I knocked on the front door and this nice looking lady, maybe in her mid 30s answered. As soon as we went into the house I noticed the smell of candles and oils. The dining room table was covered with all kinds of supplies for making lotions, candles and other arts and crafts stuff.

The computer was fixed in no time, so I had a litle extra time before my next appointment – so I asked about the stuff the lady was making. She showed my a wide assortment of candles, oils, lotions,,, stuff that she made at home in her kitchen. I thought my girl friend might like a candle, so I bought one from her.

A few weeks later I went back and bought some more candles and a couple of bottles of lotion. The lady told me that her and her husband were moving to another town several hundred miles away, so no more candles. Well then, its time to start making our own candles.

Lets fast forward to December 20th, 2009, that is when Kristy made her most recent batch of candles.

Lets go over some candle making tips:
Do not use jars with thin glass
Do not use jars where the wick is close to the glass
Use hot glue to glue the wicks into the jars
Use popsicle sticks to hold the wicks in place until the wax dries
Do not use cheap wax
Do not use cheap wicks – Sometimes you get what you pay for, and cheap wax and wicks may not burn as good as the more expensive stuff.
The wax will shrink a little bit as it cools
If you use liquid dye, be careful with it. If you spill the liquid dye, it will stain anything it touches – this includes your floor or cabinets.

To melt the wax, you will need 3 things – a tall pot, a fat pot and something to stir the wax. You only need to stir the wax if you are adding dye or scent.

Put the tall pot into the big pot, add water to the big pot, and put your wax into the inner – tall pot. What happens, instead of the burner of the stove heating the wax, the boiling water heats the wax. This heats the wax enough to melt it, but not enough to catch the wax on fire or burn it.

We use heavy mason jars to make the candles. This puts the wick about 1 – 1 1/4 inches from the edge of the jar. This provides a little buffer from the heat of the wick. If the glass gets too close to the wick, the heat can cause the glass to break. So never use jars where the wick is close to the glass, and never use jars with thin glass.

Jars with lids will help keep the scent in. If the candle is open all the time – with no lid, the candle will slowly lose its scent.

Put a little hot glue on the base of the wick, us something like a butter knife to push the wick onto the bottom of the jar, and let it cool for a little while before adding wax.

After the wax is poured into the jar, use some popsicle sticks to hold the wick in place while the wax cools. You can use the same popsicle sticks over and over. so just a few of them will last a long time.

Let the candles cool for several hours, maybe even overnight, then put the lids on. Store the candles in a sturdy box, in a place where they will not be moved around very much.

Keep in mind that candles are a fire hazard – keep them out of reach of children, keep them away from edges of tables, away from anything that can catch on fire, never leave a candle burning while you sleep, never leave a candle burning when you leave your house,,,, lets use some common sense here people.

Post your comments in the how to make candles thread of the forums.