Candle Making Tutorial
Basic Tealights Candle Making Instructions
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These are instructions for beginners who have never made a tealight candle before. There are no chemical additives, added steps, or advanced candle making techniques in these instructions. Just fun and simple instructions to get you making your own tealight candles. You can have new tealights to enjoy in about 2 hours from start to finish!
So gather your supplies, set up your work area, and follow these simple instructions for making your own tealight candles.
What You Will Need - Supplies
· Container Candle Wax
· Tealight Candle Cups – Aluminum or Plastic
· Tealight Wick
o Either pre-tabbed tealight wick or
o 34-24 Cotton Core Waxed wick and self-centering wick clips
· Steamer Pot or old Sauce Pan to create a double boiler
· Standard Size or Small Size Melting Pot with pour spout
· Wood Stir Sticks, chopsticks, or something else to stir the wax
· Candle Fragrance (optional)
· Color Dye Chips (optional)
Also a good idea to have around:
· Paper towels
· Windex (Window cleaner)
· Aluminum Foil
· Newspaper, butcher paper, or scrap paper to cover work surfaces
· Fire Extinguisher (just in case)
How to Set Up Your Work Area
- Put down newspaper or butcher paper on tables and countertops to catch spills and for easy cleanup.
- Have paper towels and Windex on hand for cleaning stovetops.
- Wrap stove burner bowls in tin foil to catch drips of wax, and for easy cleanup afterwards.
How to Prep Your Tealight Cups
- Put out your aluminum or clear plastic tealight cups on the work surface, make sure it is a FLAT LEVEL SURFACE
- If you are tabbing your own wicks, do that now. For instructions of how to tab a wick, visit our section on How To Tab A Wick
- Set the tabbed tealight wicks in the tealight cups. Try to get them at center, although during pour they will probably shift to one side a little
Prep your tealights before pouring the wax
NOTE: Some candle makers prefer to pour the wax first and place the tabbed wick in the tealight cup right after the wax is poured. The choice is yours. We advocate the pre-placement of wicks in the tealight cups to reduce the chance of wax overflow and drips from the tealight cup.
Melting The Candle Wax
You will need either a steamer pot or deep sauce pan, and you will also need a melting pot with a pouring spout. These two items create a double boiler to melt down your wax.
A simple double boiler using an old sauce pan and a meting pot with a spout.
Fill the bottom part of your double boiler (the steamer pot or the deep sauce pan) with about two inches of cool water, and place on the burner set to high temperature. Place pieces of wax to be melted into the melting pot with a pouring spout, set the melting pot in a boiling water, and attend to it as the wax liquefies. When the water begins to boil, turn the heat down to medium low or low.
If you have a large block of wax and need instructions on how to safely break it into smaller pieces, please visit our section on How To Break Up Wax Blocks
When the wax is entirely liquid (i.e., when there are no solid chunks any longer in the pot) you have successfully melted the wax.
Our 130 degree container candle wax melts at about 130 degrees F. The wax will continue to grow hotter as it remains in the double boiler. The temperature of the wax should get to 190 degrees F.
After the wax is entirely melted and at about 190 degrees F, add your candle dye, if you are using any. Each of our diamond shaped dye chips colors 1 lb of wax. Use more or less for lighter or darker colored candles. Drop a dye chip (or part of a dye chip) into the melted wax, and stir until the wax chip is entirely dissolved.
Adding fragrance is the last thing you do before you pour the candle. This is because the potency of the fragrance can be reduced if subjected to high heat for too long.
After the wax is entirely melted, and after you have added candle dye (if you are using candle dye), add your candle fragrance, if you are using any. The standard ratio for our candle fragrance oils is one ounce of fragrance oil per 1 lb of wax. Use more or less for lighter or heavier scented candles. Add the candle fragrance to the melted (and colored, if you are making colored candles) wax in the melting pot, and stir thoroughly to get even distribution of the candle fragrance.
Pouring Your Tealights
Remove the double boiler from the heat source to allow the wax to cool. For tealights, you may pour at any time after the wax is melted; no specific wax temperature is required. My favored method for tealight candles is to wait to pour until I can just begin to see the wax solidifying (congealing) on the inside surface of the pour can. This is because wax expands when it is melted, and the cooler it is when you pour it, the less the wax will shrink in the tealight cup.
You need a spouted container to pour tealights. You can also use a wood stirring stick or a chopstick for added pouring control to reduce dribbles.
There are two methods of making the first pour for tealights, Method A is to fill the tealight cup to the rim, and Method B is to fill the tealight cup ¾ full. The choice is yours. Be sure to save about 20% of your melted wax for the second pour you will make after the candles set.
After making the first pour of wax into the tealight cups, let the tealights stand undisturbed while the wax shrinks and they cool completely. It generally takes a tealight anywhere from half an hour to an hour and a half to cool completely and shrink as much as it is going too.
Setting Tealights - As the tealights cool, the wax shrinks creating a depression in the center around the wick.
The “second pour” is made after the wax in the tealight cups has cooled completely. The reason for making a second pour (pouring more wax into the mold after the first pour wax has cooled) is that the wax from the first pour will have shrunk into a sink-hole around the wick. This is normal, as wax expands when melted and contracts when it cools.
To make the second pour, re-heat the remaining wax and pour it into the depression of the cooled wax in each tealight cup. Let stand another half hour or so to cool completely.
The 2nd pour on tealight candles
When the tealight has completely cooled, that is it! You are finished with your tealight!
About Your Finished Candles – Remember:
· Never burn a candle unattended
· To protect wood and other delicate surfaces, burn your tealights in a tealight holder
· Remember to save your used tealight cups to use again and again!