Monday, February 06, 2006

Candle Making Tips

Making candles is a unique hobby because it allows for so much creativity. While there are store-bought molds and ideas out there, the candle-making hobby itself is one that allows for limitless possibilities. You are your only limitation in making candles. If you need ideas, there are plenty to be found. Just look around you or try some of these ideas.

First you should go to local stores. Check out their candle displays and see what they have done. Then go home and try to emulate those styles. Take note of candles wherever you go. (When you start making candles, you will find it impossible not to notice them everywhere.) If you go to a restaurant and see a beautiful candle lay-out on the table, try to match that at home for yourself or as a gift for others.

Next you should stop by a local second-hand store or a discount store. One of the wonderful things about candles is that you can make them from so many different materials. You should stick with glass in the beginning because it is the easiest to work with, but soon you will be able to branch out into metals, wood, and possibly even plastics. You will need to have more control over the temperatures then, but you can still experiment in the beginning phases. Look at the glass containers you see. Be creative. Do not limit yourself to the craft aisle.

You may see champagne glasses or vases that would work. To make a candle that will be free-standing (meaning the container will not go with the candle), then you need to be sure that the bottom of the container is narrower than the top of the container. If you will leave the candle in the glass to burn, then you can go with any container you would like. Pick up a few odd-shaped containers and bring them home.

Once you have a few candles made, decorate them with some elegant, yet simple ideas. If you have made several pillars the same size and color, you can jazz them up easily. You can get a mirror or silver serving tray large enough to hold all of them. Try adding in faux flowers (or real ones for a temporary design) for a splash of color.

If you have pillars of different sizes, you can make them more exciting by intertwining ivy between the candles. Just be careful not to put the ivy close to where the flames will be. You can try running ivy between the pillars, or you can try to twirl it around a single pillar and move forward from there.

Use glass beads (the inexpensive ones you find at the craft stores) to decorate the small glass jars. This design is wonderful if you are planning a themed party or if you are using white candles. It will add some color to them. Using a hot glue gun, glue a row of the beads around the top and the bottom of the glass container. You can even use this idea without a container. You will need beads with holes in them (made for jewelry). Also get some unobtrusive stick pins and stick the beads around the candle to use as design. Although you will need to be careful of actually using these candles, they make wonderful decoration.

Another idea is to make a nature candle. Gather up leaves and very small twigs. Make your candle and let it dry. Then after it has dried, you can dip it one last time into warm wax and then roll it onto the nature stuff you have gathered. It will meld into the candle.

These ideas are only a few of the ways that you can begin to design the candles you want. Regardless of the occasion or your mood, you will be able to find a candle to match. It is important only to be sure that burning the candle will be safe or to be happy not burning it. Some candles are for decorations only, while you will want to be able to burn others. Just be sure that you are making the one you want. Relax and enjoy! Candle-making is an amazing hobby that is surprisingly soothing to the soul!

By Julia Mercer

No comments: