Home candle making has a lot to recommend it as a hobby and a craft. Of course, since it’s my favorite winter pastime I admit to being a little biased. However I can say was entirely easy getting started, but that was mainly because I didn’t have any guidance and wasn’t sure what the best way to get started was.
I hope this article will help you avoid some of the difficulties I experienced and encourage you to give this hobby a try yourself. You’ll quickly discover why so many people enjoy this craft.
I’ve always liked having candles in my home, and as a kid I made some rather primitive candles out of canning wax. With memories of those early candles, I decided as an adult to give candle making a try again.
At first, I found it a little bit overwhelming. There are a lot of different styles and types of candles as well as a wide range of waxes available, all with different characteristics and suitable for different types of candles. It’s fun to learn about all this as you gain experience, but too much information when you’re just starting.
Not only that, but I discovered you can add various additives to the wax (who knew?) to change both his parents and its burning characteristics.
Add to this the necessity for properly matching the wick (yes, there are a lot of different types of wicks) to the candle style and wax and the proper way of adding fragrance and dyes and I think you can see why I found it a little bit daunting at first.
In retrospect, I think I was trying to learn too much all at once. Of course it didn’t help that I had no guidance.
My advice to someone starting out is to keep it simple.
As I mentioned, there are a lot of different types of waxes, but don’t try to learn about them all from the beginning. Use a general purpose blended paraffin wax from a reliable supplier. Most of the candles even an experienced candle maker will make it easier molded candles or container candles. This wax will work well for both.
In addition, it’s relatively inexpensive and readily available so it’s easy to experiment with.
The most important factor determining wick selection is the size of the candle that you intend to make. Again, with experience you’ll increase your knowledge of the performance characteristics of various wick and wax combinations, but just starting out you’ll get perfectly acceptable results if you simply follow the general recommendations of the wick manufactures.
A good beginner project is to make a container candle or a molded candle using a disposable mold. The canning jar makes a good container and something like a quart milk carton orange juice concentrate can makes a good disposable mold.
The only equipment you really need to get going is a double boiler, which you can improvise (visit the site I recommend below to find out how), and a thermometer to keep an eye on the wax temperature.
The main thing you need to do to become a really expert candle maker is to just start making candles. I think you can see from the above that you don’t need to get involved with the complex nuances to make candles at home. What you’ll find, is that you enjoy the process and your first candles will work quite well. This will encourage you to try again, learn more and see what else you can do.
There’s something very satisfying about producing your own candles for use in your home.