DIY Soy Candles for The Handcrafted Occasion

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I’ve been dreaming of creating a special occasion for a small group of my friends and family where we lounge on handmade furniture and linens, dine from ceramics created by local artisans and eat farm fresh food— all outdoor, with West Virginia’s beautiful mountain range as our muse.

Then I was scrolling Instagram the other day and saw that The Little Craft Show in Tulsa, OK hosts an annual Handmade Supper Club! I was so impressed, and seeing that someone else has had success hosting a similar event makes me hunger for it even more. Guys, I’ve already talked to Modern Homestead about hosting it with me, so hopefully we can squeeze this in some day soon!

In my daydream, someone’s blowing out candles. Maybe it’s a birthday. Or maybe it’s just a moment for a wish. Either way, you won’t find a candle from a big-box store here (no way, Jose!). So in preparation for this day, I give to you, my recipe for creating candles for the handcrafted celebration.

Materials and Tools You Need to Make Soy Candles

  • (2) Tall glass mason jars (12 oz.)

    • (1) for cold wax

    • (1) for water

  • 100% cotton light colored embroidery floss like DMC (wick)

  • Soy Candle Wax Flakes

  • Stove and pot with water

  • Sharp scissors

  • Candle Making Pitcher

  • Washers without opening (for weight)

  • Thick dowel rod and support brace

  • Optional Decoration: glitter, rose petals, lavender


How to Make Beautiful Soy Candles

  1. Fill pot with shallow water.  Place pot on stove and turn on medium high heat.

  2. Fill one of the mason jars with wax flakes and empty into the candle making pitcher three times.  This will give you enough wax to fill the mason jar. Set this jar to the side. Heat wax until all flakes are completed melted. This usually takes about 15 minutes.

  3. Set up your support brace and dowel rod.  I used a waste bin from target with an old hand towel dowel rod. Then fill the other mason jar with cold water.  Set aside.

  4. Get washers and cut 10-12” strips of wick.  Tie a knot around one washer on one end, then tie the other end to a washer.  This will make two candles. Next, place the optional decorative accents on a paper plate and combine.

  5. When the wax is melted, pour it into the wax mason jar until it reaches the top.  Let it set for about 5 minutes. The wax hardens faster if it’s not straight from the stove.

  6. Grab one of the washer/wick sets with your hand and pinch it in the middle so that each washer hangs at equal distance.  Dip it into the wax for 1 second, then dip it into the water for 6-8 seconds. Repeat this process for (wax for 1 second, water for 6-8 seconds) 5 times.

  7. After the 5th dip into wax, place the candle on the paper plate with decoration.  Pick the candle back up for a 6th dip into the wax, then place it in the water to cool.

  8. Use scissors to cut the washers from the wick.  Then dip back into the wax for a 7th time, then cool with water again.

  9. Straddle the finished candles on the dowel rod to harden.

  10. Repeat steps 6- 9 for as many candles as you’d like to make. Let candles harden overnight before use.

Expert Tips for Making Soy Candles

  1. Refresh your cold water between sets.  Wax can build up in the water that will turn your candle into a weird shape.

  2. Leave the candle in the cold water for at least 6-8 seconds before returning it to the hot wax.  It has to have a chance to harden before going back into hot wax. If you use a colored wick, you can see the wax hardening in the cold water.

  3. Only dip the wick into the hot wax 6-8 times.  This should give you a nice sized candle.

  4. The embroidery wick is a neat concept for aesthetic (and it’s super cheap!), but it doesn’t burn very long.  This might be OK since they’re only intended to be lit for a few seconds. If you want a longer lasting flame, you can use wick specifically made for candles.

  5. Don’t use a thin dowel rod, or your candles may stick to one another when hardening.

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*now make a wish*