October 01, 2005

Tis The Season

Tis The Season.
For many people the change of seasons is such a beautiful experience in different areas of the country. Leaves changing color, mountains becoming snow covered and the ability to open windows in the evening for sleeping all have their special effects.

However, for candle makers the change of season can create havoc and the need to change procedures. As many have learned, the procedures used to make candles are as important as the raw materials used.

In Real Estate everyone likes to use the cliché location, location, location (which I have never understood since a property can only have 1 location) we as candle makers not to be out done have our own little catchy phrase of temperature, temperature, temperature. The ability to create the same finish on the candle year round requires the raw materials remain consist as well as all procedures. Unlike the “location” reference Realtors use there are three temperatures, which must be kept as consistent as possible.

Temperature, number 1 -- pouring temperature of the wax. During the summer months candles will cool slower and will have an effect on the finish of the candle. If your work area is cooler and the candle starts to set up quicker it may change your desired finish you wish to achieve. It is not uncommon to increase your pouring temperatures as the weather continues to cool.

Temperature, number 2 -- room temperature. As the outside weather cools off it may be necessary to adjust your work area to compensate for this change. The cooling process of the candle is important to achieve consistent results. If you are unable to adjust your room temperature increase your pouring temperature can be substituted. One of the things you may experience as the cold weather approaches is for pillars and votives your candles may slide out of the mold easier. Another added benefit in some instances is the candle sets up quicker and you may be able to remove candles earlier.

Temperature, number 3 -- surface temperature of what your pouring wax into. During the colder months the mold or container you are pouring into can start to “chill”, especially if pouring first thing in the morning. It may be necessary to warm either the container or mold up more during the colder weather.

The Key to continued success in making consistent looking candles is to control all three temperatures throughout the course of the year or be prepared to adjust them based on the change of season.

So next time your Realtor uses location, location, location you may want to ask them how can one property have three locations. But now you will be prepared to respond when they ask how candle making can have three temperatures.

CHANDLER'S CORNER

Hi! I'm Chandler!
I can help you
learn how to make candles.

I have never made a candle can you please tell me how to get started?

Without question this is the most frequently asked question I get and the one I always have the most difficult time responding to. As I always like to say there is not a right or wrong way to make a candle if the candle is being made safely and results in a safe burning candle. Inevitable there is some type of initial research by the “future candle maker” which should be undertaken to learn the basics. I have always offered the following:

My Home page which is a “walk through” on the different types of candles and suggestions on wax, wick and color selection.

A sponsored site that helps with different aspects of candle making.

All Past Issues of the Enlightener

Purchasing any type of general candle making book with BK-8 being my first recommendation.

Finally nothing beats getting in and trying the process. Two of my favorite kits:
General Candle Making Kit
Soap Kits


Buy One Get One FREE
at Our Crafter's Site!

At Soap Expressions/Country Lane Candle Supply, you can buy one get one free on your web order during the month of October. Just get your promo code here and start your holiday shopping early! There's something for every crafter on your list!

 


October 2005

PROJECT:
Making
Snowball Candles

It's hard to believe, but winter will soon be upon us -- if it's not already in some areas. One of the most appropriate candles for the winter season is the snowball candle. What is also nice about this candle is that even after the holidays have passed it will not look out of place in your home.

Ingredients

Large Polycarb Ball Mold or Groove Lock Mold
5" (12.5 cm) – 2/0 wick
Concentrated Scent Squares – Peppermint
General Purpose Wax
Iridescent Glitter

Instructions

STEP 1
Place wick in ball mold. Melt wax and add peppermint scent to wax as desired. Pour your candle, referring to page 3 for detailed instructions. Allow candle to cool and then re-fill depression in the center of the candle. Cool completely and remove finished candle from mold.

STEP 2
Add peppermint scent and 1 teaspoon (5 ml) of glitter to 1 to 2 cups (250-500 ml) of melted paraffin wax and stir. Place melted paraffin in a deep bowl. Cool wax until a thin skin forms over the surface of the wax. Then, using an electric mixer or egg beater, whip melted wax until it becomes light and fluffy.

STEP 3
Now, you must work QUICKLY. The whipped wax will cool quickly and become hard and unmanageable. Apply the whipped wax to the outside of the ball candle with a fork. Cover the whole candle in this manner, holding the candle by the wick so that you can work on the entire candle at once. Be careful! The wax can still be quite hot at the beginning of this process. If wax becomes too cool to work with, reheat and whip again.



Fast Fact...

Ancient Egyptians recognized the value of beeswax as a preservative, and early Romans fashioned coins from beeswax to pay their taxes. Invention of the candle dates back to about 400 B.C., but the idea to use beeswax to form candles didn't emerge until the Middle Ages. Source: http://www.wisegeek.com

Editor Note: Boy weren’t the good old days great. If only I could pay my taxes with beeswax now.

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