Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Crafty kids: Beeswax candle kits

So I decided the kids and I would make Valentine gifts this year. With back to back snow days, we took the afternoon to get a head start on Valentines.

I ordered these kits a few weeks ago. One was the Valentines Collection and the other Winter Set. It yielded us sheets of purple, red, pink, dark blue, lite blue and white beeswax. The sheets were 20 cm squares.

A long string is included, for creating cut to fit wicks.

I broke out the Valentine mini cookie cutters and we got started. 

All in all we made an impressive number of candles and after a few experiments, each of us settled on the form that worked best for us. Some turned out really well and others were a bit rough.

In general you start with one sheet of wax and either cut it out to make 2 tapers (pattern included) or you can cut the sheet in half or thirds and make fatter candles by seaming it together.

Once you have the sheet cut to the desired size, then you need to position the wick and smoosh it tight. You can heat the wax with a hair dryer according to the directions, but I found the heat from my hands was more than ample to soften the wax enough to make it roll-able and no longer crumbly.

 I found using a blunt kitchen knife was useful when creating a smooth, snug seam.

From this point you can be finished or add another layer of wax, using the knife to press the new piece tightly against the seam.

This candle is made with one sheet of wax, cut in half and seamed as described about. At this point you can smooth the top slightly with the knife and add embellishments as desired.

I found using the mini cookie cutters to be the easiest way to create embellishments. (note: you must be patient and press into the wax firmly. The kiddos struggled with this and I had to help them along.)

All in all a very fun snow day project, for one and all. We have a few sheets of wax left over, but in all we made a fair number of candles.

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