Growing up, lighting was always a huge part of setting the vibe in our home–holidays, bedtime, movie night–it was never perfect until a certain lamp was turned on or dimmed, most of the lights were off, colored lights were wrapped around a tree or candles were lit around a table. I can’t wait to own a home one day with unique, perfectly moody light fixtures. But until that day, I’m more than happy to settle for candles.
However…candles are an (oddly) expensive habit. How the hell is it a candle the size of my fist is worth $12 or more? Insane. Ain’t nobody got time (or money) fo that! And when it was decided my candle habit wasn’t slowing down anytime soon, I headed over to Amazon to invest in candle-making.
Oddly enough, all up all in the supplies cost about $75 or less. And that included 12 new mason jars. That means if I make eve 10 of those, I will pay about $7.50 for SOY-BASED candles (which are especially expensive). The other supplies were: a candle thermometer, candle scents, candle wicks, soy wax (burns cleaner and longer) and a candle-making pitcher.
The whole process flies by and is actually extremely easy. Though, I will say, it’s probably FAR easier if you have a double boiler. Just a heads up on that one.
First, I took tape and rolled it (to make it similar to double-stick tape), and taped it to the flat, bottom part of the wick. I then used a knife tip to press the silver bottom (with the tape attached) into the center of each mason jar.
Now, I originally didn’t want to use clips to hold up the wicks because they bent the wicks. This ended up not mattering since you clip the tips of the wicks anyways. I cared more that when I poured the wax into the candles, the makeshift aluminum-holder-things I made were sinking into the hot wax. No bueno. So I swapped the aluminum for bag clips, and it worked out perfectly.
I also put a few petals in each candle. This isn’t necessary, but I thought it added a feminine, summer vibe. After lighting the candles (as you may see in my Instagram photo) the petals are flammable, but since they are submerged in wax, it was never dangerous. And I think it looks pretty, so whatever. It’s worth it to me!
Next, it’s time to measure out your wax. Every 1 cup of wax flakes produces 8 ounces of liquid wax, which fit perfectly in my 12 ounce jars. So I measured out 3 cups into the candle making pitcher. I then began boiling a pot of water. Once the water was boiling, I added my pitcher and held it there (this is where, I’m sure, the double boiler really comes in handy). I kept my thermometer at hand since you don’t want the candles to get past 250°F (though soy naturally has a lower melting temperature). This isn’t too difficult since, once all the flakes are completely melted, you know it’s time to quickly add the scent and pour the wax into the jars.
Regarding the scent, there’s this handy measuring chart to know exactly how many drops to pour into your wax. But if you’re like me, those percentages might as well be Greek. I would trust the directions on the side of each scent. And read them before you are multitasking over a double boiler with boiling hot wax.
Once the wax flakes are boiled to liquid, and the scent is added, pour into each jar and let sit. Once the candles are cooled, release the clips and cut the wax tip. Boom! You’re done! Light the candles and enjoy the ambiance.
1. Double stick tape ends of wicks to bottom of mason jars.
2. Use clips to hold wicks in place (add petals if you are feeling adventurous)
3. Boil wax
4. Add scent to melted wax
5. Pour wax into candle
6. Let sit and cool
7. Cut wick and have at it!
Tip: Set up an extra jar, in case you don’t measure things properly and have extra hot wax. Luckily I did this and, sure enough, mis-measured. Blerg, math.
P.S. These make pretty easy/perfect Mother’s Day gifts, just sayin’.