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Workshop Projects

Rolled Beeswax Candles

posted 29 Sep 2011, 08:18 by judith scales

Our third project is one of the easiest and safest way to make candles. Suitable for all ages, but especially for children as no molten wax is involved, only beeswax sheets, a length of appropriate sized wick and a knife, although with youngsters the cutting would best be done by an adult.

Instructions for Rolled Candles

  1. Decide on the finished length of your candle, a standard 16" x 8" sheet, when rolled lengthways has a diameter of just over 1" which is a bit big for tapered candles to fit a standard candlestick, so you need to remove about two inches lengthways.
  2. Use the size of wick the same size as the diameter of your required candle, normally with cast beeswax candles you use one size larger, but because the sheet wax melts much quicker than solid beeswax it will not clog or swamp the wick.
  3. Cut the wick 1/2" longer than the sheet and place it 1/4" in from one edge, if you want to make your candle with a taper top, then you need to remove a angular section from the sheet of wax, at approx 20mm down to nothing across the sheet. 
  4. Carefully turn up the edges of the wax and fold over the wick to enclose the wick full length, starting with the widest part of the sheet if you have opted for a tapered top. 
  5. Gently roll the wick & sheet, ensuring the candle is square. If it gets out of square, simply unroll and start again.Take care whilst rolling that you do not put to much pressure on the candle as it will go out of round. 
  6. The final edge of the sheet can be secured by warming the wax gently and pressing carefully with the fork handle or similar in tow or three places along the candle, so that the edge is moulded into the layer beneath.. Alternatively, a few small spots of wax glue can be used along the length of the edge.

Tips and Ideas.

  • The sheets should be kept at room temperature for at least 24hours before use to ensure the wax is pliable without cracking.
  • Work in a warm room.
  • To make tapered candles, cut the sheet slightly at an angle.
  • Make them in Red and Green for christmas, add to a candlestick and use chritsmas candle rings to further enhance a christmas display

Cinnamon Chunk Candles

posted 20 Sep 2011, 09:19 by judith scales   [ updated 20 Sep 2011, 09:57 ]

Our second project will be to create "Cinnamon Chunk" candles , nothing nicer than a christmas candle rustic and smelling gorgeous.
First you must decide what shape you want, either a pillar, or my favourite in a glass bowl type container.
Layout all your materials and tools before you start and set down a clean cutting board , beside your working area, this is to make your chunks on without cutting up the kitchen sides.
Mix your paraffin wax and stearin, approx 1 kg is a good working batch and melt completely, when fully melted, add the some red dye in accordance with the dye instructions to create a reddish brownish wax molten solution, stirring well to mix the dye
Take a Cinnamon concentrated fragrance (or liquid oil if you prefer) and add to the melted and dyed wax , (I like them smelly so I use half a block which is meant to fragrance 3.25kgs of wax) and remove from the heat , stirring continually to ensure the fragrance block has melted and is evenly distributed into thewax.
Pour the molten liquid into a tupperware container, or baking tray , so you have a level of about 10mm and allow to cool, the wax will start to set firstly around the container edges and then on the surface, wait until the wax sheet is fairly solidified, with just a bit of softness and give to it.
If you can, upturn the container or baking tray to allow the warm wax sheet to ease out of the container and lay flat on your cutting board, when out proceed to cut the sheet into strips and then chunks 10mm x 10mm approx.
You will find the wax cuts easily when still soft, but importantly it cuts claenly without leaving white edges, which you get with hardened wax.
You may find it necessary to lift the chunks from the cutting board with a frying spatula, so take care to keep them as square as possible, and leave them to fully set, preferably to the next day.
Prepare a second batch of wax and stearin, but this time you will only need a small amount, say 250 grams and melt as before, but this time add a different red or brown dye to slightly contrast against the chunks made previously, making this wax slightly lighter in shade to the chunk colour.
Take your glass bowl and fill with chunks after fitting your tabbed wick or wicks, ensuring the wicks remain upright and supported, fill the glass so the chunks are slightly high and hicklety pickelty, so create a rustic uneven surface.
Take the second batch of dyed wax to a high temperature , again remove from the heat and add the rest of or part of the fragrance block  and stir well until fully dissolved, and before the wax has cooled very much poured this wax over the chunks in the glass until you can see the liquid point reached for a full glass less 5 or 10mm.
The hot wax will bond together the chunks and set as a single candle, let it cool and harden for a few days or keep until christmas and you have a lovely festive candle simply made. If it looks and smells goods make a few more and give as presents.


Snow Candles

posted 24 Jul 2011, 11:04 by judith scales   [ updated 26 Jul 2011, 12:20 ]

Our first project will be to create "Snow" candles , nothing nicer than a christmas display with candles made over with a snow like effect in stunning white and sparkling just like new fallen snow.
First you must decide what shape you want, either a pillar , a taper or a snowball and either make or purchase your candle blank that you want to snow, enuring it has fully set and hardened, ready to accept a layer of snow wax
The best way to create snow is in a tupperware container and one sized 300mm x 150mm x 100 mm high is ideal , otherwise you cannot get a taper into the container, but you do not want it too big as you will have to make much more snow wax.
Layout all your materials and tools before you start, as you have to work fairly quickly when "snowing" base candles, and set down a folded clean towel or non fibrous cloth , beside your working area, this is to lay your snow tapers on whilst cooling, as a cold hard surface will flatten one side of the taper.
Mix your paraffin wax and stearin, approx 1 kg is a good working batch and melt completely, when fully melted, add the chalky white dye in accordance with the dye instructions to create a milky white wax molten solution, stirring well.
Pour half the molten mixture into the tupperware container, so you have a level of about 15mm and allow to cool, the wax will start to set around the container edges and on the surface, as this setting takes place, using a table fork, scrape the setting wax away from the sides and surface so as to form a thick paste, like wax in partial molten wax, keep doing this until you have a container full of whipped wax looking like mash potato. 
Keep adding molten milky white wax wax and stir gently to form a slush, similar to wet snow, so that you have sufficient wax to cover the candle surfaces completely.
At this point immerse you candle base within the slush covering the complete blank, by holding the wick and using the fork to heap the wax slush upon the base surfaces, it does not matter about how much covers at this point, but what is happening is the heat from the molten slush is also penetrating the candle blank, both softening its surface and providing a bonding surface for the snow layer.
Do not press the wax onto the candle heap it on so it rests against the surface, after 15-30 seconds depending on your candle blank size , gently pull the candle by the wick from the slush pile ensuring all sides are coated.
With the candle suspended above the container , gently using a the fork remove the excess snow slush, do not pres hard or you will get marks from the fork tines and even out any high points on the candle, so that the candle has a layer of snow like wax covering it.
When satisfied with your snow effect, and with Pillar candles or snowballs, just lower sharply onto a hard clean surface, and this will flatten the molten wax on its base, then leave to set.
If making snow tapers, then gently lay the taper down on the soft towel and leave for 2-3 minutes to set partiallly. After that time lift the taper into your hand gently so as not to squeesze your snow effect, as the candle is still very warm at this point, and will have softened.
Talking a ordinary table knife , run around the circumference to the depth of the added snow, at approx 20-25 mm from the end of the candle, at the same time twist this end piece and remove the small cap of snow wax , to reveal the original taper base, which will then still fit into a standard candlestick. Leave to set overnight. 
Next day, take your snowed effect candle , using a soft brush apply pearlised / irridescent gliitter paint , to give that sparkle all over look of fresh snow, allow glitter paint to dry for 24 hours and you have you "Snow " candles.
Optionally, whilst making the milky white snow, add a christmas fragrance , which will add to your snow candle when burnt, by giving off a wonderfull christmas smell, but make sure you use a clear coloured fragrance oil, or this will discolour your snow. You could alos use some snow to put in the top of your container candle to give that christmassy feeling.
You can also use this technique for preparing whipped wax, for making cream cakes or other types of candles which have whipped cream on them such as cup cakes or even ice cream candles.Remember white dyes are particulate and suspend particles in the solution, you cannot make a solid white candle as the dye would clog the wick and give bad burning results.
All the materials for this project will be available from our webstore and we shall later create a download attachment for you and add some helping hand pictures.

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