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Simple Candle Making Basics

Updated on November 15, 2011
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Candle Making

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Candle Making Basics


The basics of candle making

Candles have been used as a source of heat and a source of light for a very long time. There is evidence to suggest that even our caveman ancestors used candles. The cavemen used candles to light up their caves so that they could paint on the walls of their caves. Historians have deduced that these primitive candles were made using animal fats. These were chunky candles that were often misshapen.

We no longer need candles as a source of heat or a source of light due to the fact that we have gas and electricity in our homes. Also we invented torches that can be used to light our way if there is a power cut. This does not mean that candles have become obsolete. Candles still have a place in our society and candles are used a lot in restraints and other such places because they provide an ambiance that is difficult to get with electric lighting. Flickering candles can make a room seem festive or romantic so the candle making industry is still worth billions of dollars.

Candle making has become quite a popular hobby in this modern age. Some people turn their candle making hobby into a profit rich business. People still like candles because they remind them of a simpler time. Modern candles are no longer just a stick of white wax with a wick sticking out of it. The candles of today come in various shapes and sizes and are made from all sorts of different materials including a type of gel that burns quite slowly and looks really cool. Some candles even produce wonderful aromas when they are lit. This is generally caused by a scent being added to the wax. The variety of scented candles is immense there are candles that smell of apples, mulled wine, pine, lemon, cinnamon, chocolate, a crackling fire and many, many more. The scents are almost unlimited.

Your standard candle tends to be made of a paraffin based wax but there are many other varieties out there that are just as good as paraffin wax, beeswax is another good basis for a candle. Paraffin wax is a naturally occurring wax that is extracted from certain types of plants. Both beeswax and paraffin wax are easily available from craft shops or from online stores.

The most important part of a candle is the wick. The wick is often made of braided cotton fibres that are dipped into melted wax and then stuck in the candle before it sets. The size of the wick denotes the size of the flame and how long the candle will burn for. The wider the wick the wider the flame will be.

Candle making can be quite dangerous so you must always be very careful when making candles at home. You will be dealing with a lot of hot materials and there is always a risk of burning yourself so be sure to wear protective gear when needed.

If you are attempting to make candles at home it is a good idea to start out by making simple designs. Candle is one of those hobbies that is really quite easy to learn but is difficult to master. When starting out in the world of candle making it is best to begin with simple designs and then use the knowledge gained from making easy simple candles and expand on that knowledge by attempting to product more complicated candles.

Once you have learned to make simple candle sticks you can then look at making scented candles that can make a room smell really good. Or you could look into making decorative candles that are colourful and look very pretty. You could experiment with different moulds and different waxes or even use gel. If you get really good you may be able to produce candles that float on water smell like the ocean.

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    • carcro profile image

      Paul Cronin 6 years ago from Winnipeg

      Great info here on how to make candles. We make our own out of Bees Wax during the xmas holiday season, quite easy and lots of fun for the family. They burn fairly fast though so you want to be present in the room once lit. Thanks for sharing your ideas!

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