Candles in the current scenario are used for several purposes like decoration & gifts. They are always an indispensable part of the festivities and usual home décor. But candles are not something new for the human civilization. Candles date back to the age of cavemen! Candles serve an important role in religion, aesthetics and more recently in wellness and healing (read aromatherapy).
There is a belief that the French cavemen used candles while etching and painting the walls. Some remains of candles made out of animal fats are found in the French cave areas. Further, evidences of candles in the old ages are said to be found in Egypt. Historians believe that the Egyptians made candles by dripping bees’ wax on leave stems.
The sense of creating something – something colorful, beautiful, attractive and soothing – it is indeed a great feeling. The artists such as potters, writers and designers love their each piece as their children. They put all their love, emotions and thoughts in their creations. One such cherished and beloved activity now-a-days is – Candle Making. Many people have a hobby of making candles in their free time or the vacations. Very often it is seen that those who know candle making shift to it to vent out their overwhelming emotions such as stress & anger.
Along with light, candles are also a great source of aroma and fragrances these days. Vanilla, jasmine, chocolate cake, cinnamon rolls…….. the fragrances are endless. Similarly there is a never ending list of the shapes, sizes, deigns, shades and looks of the candles.
This activity is a great pastime for special moments as well, for instance parents making candles together with their children, or gifting the same to your family & friends on special occasions. Some time people just gather the basic information, skip all the important safety aspects and dive right into of candle-making. But this way we often miss out the necessary safety prospects and other interesting parts of this great art.
Here a few basic facts pertaining to the art of candle making:
1. The process of a candle burning involves all 4 elements of matter that are liquids, solids, plasma and gas.
2. To make the body of the candle usually paraffin wax is used. It is a natural wax that is extracted from the plants.
3. Bees’ wax is also a great alternate to make the candles’ body. This is a natural wax extracted from honeybees. The bees use this substance in constructing their honeycombs.
4. Paraffin wax is readily available at petroleum refineries and the specialty wax processors and is very easy to find bulk quantities for cheap.
5. To make the candles, before the wax getting dried, wick is placed in the center. Wick is usually made out of cotton fibers braided together. It is quite thin, yet very strong. In order to have a larger flame, some candle makers use a wider wick that is wider than the normal one.
6. One must be extremely aware and cautious of the safety prospects while making candles. Hot wax has quite high temperature that may cause severe burns.
7. Candle making also involves great risk of fire. Re-assure that the candle making area must be equipped with a fire extinguisher and should be well planned.
8. Make sure to clean up the spills quickly. They become very slick and walking over them can make you fall.
9. Candle making materials are relatively inexpensive and fun.
Candle Making Supplies
The materials required for candle making primarily depend on the size of the candle you are making and other related factors are shapes, shades, etc.
The basic requisites for any candle are:
iii. Candle holder
To make the body of the candle the usual choices are paraffin wax and beeswax. Do not forget other equipments that would add ease and fun to the art of candle making:
1. Double Boiler
It would melt wax for the candles properly.
2. Stir Sticks and Thermometer
In order to melt the wax rather easily you need a thermometer and stir sticks. Wooden stirrers are cheap and environment friendly too.
3. Wick Clips
Adding wick clips at the candle’s base ensures that the users make use of it until the last bit.
4. Candle molds
These are quite popularly used for designing the candles. Candle molds are available in various sizes and styles. These molds are generally made of aluminum and other metals which will make it easier to remove the cooled candles out of the mold.
5. Wick Holder Bar
A wick holder bar makes inserting the wick quicker and easier.
6. Silicon Mold Release Spray
This ensures that your candle slides out from the mold easily, maintaining the perfect shape.
7. Mold Cleaner
A mold cleaner would help you ensure the maintenance of the mold.
Colors make the candles more attractive. Along with the primary colors, there are wide range of pastels & bold brights to choose from. Many times candle makers prefer mixing colors on order to create some unique & attractive shades. The colors for candles are available in dye forms.
9. Scents and Aromas
While even plain candles sell big, scents make the candle livelier and are all the rage right now. Cinnamon, potpourri and vanilla are some of the traditional choices. Yet, there is a wide variety available in the market to choose from. These aromas also help you relax. Some fragrances also water your mouth.
In order to make the candle scents strong enough, watch the amount of scents you are adding.
As a rule of thumb, add 1 ounce of scent for 1 pound of wax.
10. Candle Paints
With these create designs on your candles. Enhancing the overall look of the candle, these paints help you develop wonderful contrasts.
11. Luster Spray
This adds a shiny look to the candle.
12. Base Leveler
Aligning the crooked candles, it ensures that the bottom of the candle is flat and smooth. A candle with wavy bottom would not settle well in the holder.
Purchasing the above listed equipments for candle making would help you design your candles better and work faster. While the quantities and amount of the material required varied for each individual, on an average, one can get all the required supplies for $100. These can be purchased from the near by craft stores or the online resources. In order to save money on these purchases, consider picking a candle making kit. It contains small supplies of all the
requisites at a discounted price.