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Thursday, December 11, 2008

My Favorite Day--Smells so Sweet

We've been candle making. A while back, a friend and I went to visit a beekeeper. My friend bought a case of honey to give as Christmas gifts. I came home with a grocery bag full of beeswax bricks, candle wicking, and a mold.

Our boys love to hand dip candles and I bought a taper mold for the extra wax. What a sweet scent the wax makes. I can hardly bear to melt the bricks, but it must be done. They're so beautiful.

We melted the bricks on the stove in an old pot put on top of simmering water and then placed them in a tall can for dipping. We placed the can in a rice cooker filled one quarter of the way with hot water and kept the cooker on. We used a Hunt's spaghetti sauce can for the wax and it worked great. Early in the dipping, we realized that the wax on the wicks was melting off when it was re-dipped, so the boys came up with the idea of dipping it in cool water between wax dips. (The alternative is to wait a bit before re-dipping, but they were too impatient for that!) That worked great, but distorted the candles from neat, layered tapers to grotesque lumps. In other words, the boys LOVED them!
I wish I had pictures, but I had forgotten my camera that day. I'll see if one of my friends got some. The boys were so proud and they actually burned very nicely despite being a bit hideous to look at. No, I don't mean that in a negative way. It's the way they WANTED them to look. "Mine looks like a monster zombie dude." "Mine looks like a mutant turkey leg." "Mine is melted vomit." "No, MINE is melted vomit after eating school lunch!" Eleven year old boys. Gotta love 'em.
We used the excess wax to make tapers in a silicone mold. The mold is basically a silicone tube that you run wicking through from the bottom. Pour in wax, allow it to cool for 30 minutes or so. We found using the frigid outdoor air speeded up the process. Then you have to tug harder than you think you should (it actually feels like you're going to pull the wick right out). And out, pops a beautiful, golden taper candle.
We have a little extra beeswax left. I think we'll make ornaments or something out of it. Any excuse to smell that sweet scent again!

1 comment:

  1. what a cool idea to do with the kids!! You are so creative at EVERYTHING!! :):)


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