Last spring, I made candles for the first time as part of my Adventures in Homesteading series. While it was easy and fun, the forms I spent on those candles were pretty spendy. Today I’d like to share a way of making candles that’s not only less expensive, I think it’s easier (and cuter!). Today’s instructional was inspired by and adapted from this tutorial over at inspiremecrafts.
Here’s what you’ll need:
- Candle Wax (I used soy candle wax – it’s easy to work with!)
- Old baby food jars, cleaned (one tub of soy candle wax fills 5 stage-2 size jars)
- Wicks (make sure they are for soy candles if you’re using soy!)
- Tacky wax
- Fragrance & color (optional)
- Decorations for your jars such as ribbon, lace, stickers, etc. (optional)
The next part is to affix your wicks. I found these very to easy wicks at my local Michael’s store (sold in a 12 pack). It’s important if you’re using soy wax as I am in today’s post, that your wicks are for soy candles. I used a bit of tacky wax to affix each wick to the bottom of the jar.
Now I’m using soy wax for today’s post because it’s easy to use, and also practically speaking, because I had a bunch left over from my candle making project back in April! If you’ve never made candles before, it’s a great entry. You simply melt the flakes over your stove or your microwave! A 1 lb tub will run you about $8-9 at Michael’s, but you can always use one of the 40% off coupons they regularly put out in the weekly ad to help offset the cost. (Tip: my Michael’s did not carry the ad in store and I forgot mine with me on my last trip….and they were unwilling to help me out. So heads up.)
Here’s what the soy flakes look like:
I microwaved mine for this project and it worked out really well! Just nuke for 30-60 seconds at a time, stirring after each interval. When it’s all melted and clear, you’ll know you’re ready to roll. At this point, you could add some fragrance if you want. I opted to add lavender (also found at Michaels).
Pour into your baby food jars. Careful! It’s hot! I propped up my wicks a bit using butter knives as they were titled off to the side. I left them in place until the wax had hardened.
I then went for a three mile run and when I came back, my candles were nearly done!
Once the jars are cool, you can decorate them! (My favorite part.) You have a couple routes you could go for this part. You could use ribbon and Mod Podge, or you could use some stickers, or any combination, really. Check out these awesome stickers I found at Fred Meyer!
See that Smash tape? It’s really, really awesome. It’s like a thick tape with a design on it. I thought it would be perfect for this project. So make sure to poke around the crafting and scrapbooking section of your Fred Meyer store for ideas, too!
If you’re going the Mod Podge route, well then, the sky’s the limit! Make your own labels, find any sort of ribbon you have laying around and voila! There you go! (And by the way, if you’ve not discovered Mod Podge yet, you’re missing out – the stuff is AWESOME! You’ll also find it at Fred Meyer.)
Once all your decorations are dry and you’re ready to light your candles, make sure to trim down the wicks.
This project is easy, not terribly expensive, and it’s also surprisingly quick! I think this project would be a perfect introduction to candle making or a fun project for baby shower gifts, small wedding or party favors, or to decorate your home. I hope you’ll give it a try!
And a huge thanks to Inspiremecrafts for the inspiration and guidance on this one.
For more on this series, see my Love: in a Jar page. Watch this Friday for another craft involving baby food jars!
Bought at Fred Meyer for this post: Mod Podge, Stage-2 Baby Food Jars, Stickers, Mash Decor Tape.
Disclosure: Fred Meyer has not compensated me to run this series, but has teamed with me by providing me with store credit to use to purchase and highlight items throughout this series. All opinions expressed are my own. For more information on how this site makes (and does not make) money, there’s no mystery there – just visit my Disclosure Policy.