Friday, November 21, 2014

DIY Repurposed Candles

I love it when I have a spur-of-the-moment inspiration and I'm able to scrounge up all the right supplies to indulge my creativity without leaving the house. That's what happened last week when I decided to "make my own candles" by repurposing some candles I already had and adding a few special touches.

Here's what I did. I have a huge box of inexpensive unscented votives in my china cabinet. I first stripped them of their tin shells and wicks and began chopping up the wax to re-melt. It's best to do this by heating the wax in a jar surrounded by boiling water. (I tried the microwave first and it wasn't effective.) I used a pyrex measuring cup and set it in a tiny pan of simmering water and stirred until the wax was melted. Any kind of glass container would work well, but the measuring cup's spout was helpful when it came time to pour the liquid wax.

I thought it might be nice to add some scent to the melted wax and since I find most scented candles cloying and too sweet, I kept it simple with my favorite essential oils (lavender and lemon). I also made a few jasmine-scented candles using this bottle of roll-on perfume oil.

I hunted around my kitchen for some pretty molds and decided on these teeny tiny china dishes. They're very shallow which ended up being perfect--I was able to use the old wicks from the votives and they were plenty tall enough for these small little vessels.

They were so beautiful as they morphed from liquid into solid. One thing I noticed was that the wax quality seemed better after I melted it and let it harden again. My husband thought that maybe the votives are made with an aerated wax so that less wax is needed per candle, and it results in sort of a crumbly, fast-burning candle. But once melted the wax becomes smooth again and burns beautifully.

This might be a fun pre-Thanksgiving project to try to brighten up your family's feast. I used very little scent so while I usually stick to unscented candles at the dinner table, I think I might sneak these into the mix.

Happy Friday, friends!


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