Dipping is the traditional way to make candles. Dipped candles have a beautiful tapered shape and can be made in a solid colour, or translucent effects can be created by adding a coating of dyed wax to a basic white candle. The technique is simple-repeating the wick priming process over and over again. By repeatedly dipping the wick in molten wax, you can build up any thickness of candle. The candles are dipped in a dipping can standing in a large pan of hot water-or you can use any tall metal or heat-proof glass container. Candles are usually dipped in pairs and separated when they are cool.
Basic dipped candles
The materials listed for this project are sufficient to make six candles, 250mm (10in) tall and 12-20mm (Â½-Â¾in) in diameter.
Dramatic effects can be achieved with this simple technique. Once you have dipped your candles, add a further 600g (1lb 5oz) of paraffin wax to the dipping can, heat it to 82oC (180oF) and add two dye discs.
While dipped candles are still warm, they are malleable enough to model into other shapes. A spiral candle is simply a dipped candle flattened and then twisted.
As an alternative to tradi-tional dipped candles, you can make your own wax sheets by dipping flat temp-lates into liquid wax.
Properly cut and smoothed 6mm (Â¼in) thick glass makes an excellent tem-plate, but good quality plywood of the same thickness can be used. Allow room for holding the template during dipping; attach a string loop at the top to hang it up with during the cooling process.
If you are using a wooden template, first soak it in water, then wipe off any excess.
The quantities given for this project are sufficient to make a large quantity of candles. This amount of wax is required so as to fill the dipping cans. Any wax that you do not use, may be reheated and used again at a later dated.
Begin by dividing the wax in half and transferring each half into separate dipping cans. Add chalky white dye to one of the cans, and a coloured dye to the other.Heat the wax .
Dip and carve wax can be made into beautiful floating candles. Add a little perfume to create a stunning scented centrepiece for a special occasion. First melt the wax and prime the wicks.
These candles are made from preformed honeycomb sheets, which are beautifully textured. They are simple to make, and add elegance and a touch of class to any dinner table.
Beeswax sheets are approximately 300 x 200mm (12x 8in) in size. They are workable at room temperature, although in cold weather they may need to be held near a heater for a few minutes until they soften, or you could use a hairdryer. Natural sheets are available in creamy white to rich medium brown; and dyed sheets can also be bought in a variety of colours.
Beeswax sheet candles are simple to make. A sheet of wax will make a candle 300mm (12in) high and 20mm (Â¾in) in diameter. This wax is best worked at a warm room temperature and candles should be rolled on a damp surface. You will need a beeswax wick, which is round, not flat like those used with paraffin wax candles.
You can make a spectacular spiral candle by simply using a triangle instead of a rectangle of beeswax.
Beautiful decorated candles can be made easily, using just a few simple techniques. The surface of a candle can be embellished by painting, stencilling, carving, or by inserting corrugated card into the mould. You can also cast candles in sand. The candle must be set and cool before applying any Decoration. Always follow the manufacturers' instructions when using any of the products for decoration. When using the spray paints, work in a well-ventilated area, and never use them near a naked flame.
Beautiful candles can be created from shapeless sand and wax-this is simple candlemaking at its very best. For sheer flickering, glowing effects, nothing compares with a sand candle, as the light soaks through the textured outer layer.
Use a repeat pattern to create delicate effects. Stencils are available from most craft suppliers and they can be used to create borders or motifs.
Before you begin, check that the stencil you have chosen will cover the surface of the candle, then fix the stencil in place with tape. Follow the manufacturer's instructions and lightly coat the surface with paint. Do not worry about a smooth finish-textured effects can be attractive, especially in candlelight.