Candle making is an old age craft which has been in existence for so many years. Candles were first made to satisfy two purposes of providing heat and as a source of light for seeing and appreciating our environment. The above stated reasons for inventing the candle remain the same even thousands of years after.
The methods of making candles have changed considerably over the years from the earliest method of making candles from twigs tied around a stick to rags tied around a stick and dipped in a flammable liquid to the present wax candles.
Over the years there have been different products that have been used for making candles, such as one of the most recent, gel wax. Gel candles have proven to be very popular as they can be made to look so beautiful given some practice and with the various embeds they can be made to be very personal as well.
One word of caution though, is that all wax that is being melted on an element needs to be done with care. Candle wax has a flash point and if the temperature is not controlled with a thermometer a serious fire can be caused.
When starting out making candles it is important that if the melted wax methods are going to be used that the hobbyist takes the time to learn about:
- what equipment is needed
- how to melt wax, safety precautions
- how to prepare the molds
- other parts of candle making before they start their new hobby
Two other parts of the candle making technique which a beginner candle maker needs to learn about before starting is the adding of color and candle scent. These also need to be done with care and it is best to remove the wax from the heat before adding them and to stir them in with a wire whisk as this mixed them through the best.
Some popular candle types that beginners can make are:
- pillar candles (round or square)
- ball candles
- votive candles
- floating candles
- ice candles
- beeswax candles
Generally speaking, votive candles are the easiest to start with as they are small and not a lot of wax has to be used to get good results. It is possible to buy a set of molds in a silicone tray and this does a great job or otherwise an investment in six single molds would work well.
When a beginner starts out they do not need to invest a lot of money in molds and can start making their first pillar candles in waxed milk cartons and these work really well. It is just a matter of peeling the wax carton away when the candle is set.
Beginners need to do a little experimenting to start with and the great thing is that all wax can be remelted so nothing is wasted. I hope these candle making basics have helped you get a picture about starting candle making and that you enjoy your new hobby.