We made candles with my sister. I've previously made candles using molds but those have never been a huge success. Those were not difficult to make but they did not burn well, they smoked and the melted wax run everywhere. This time we made the candles by dipping and I must say that even though it was bit more laborious to make them this way it was worth it. They burn really well and don't run.
First we prepared our dipping settings. We covered the floor with plastic and old sheets. We took two dining chairs and placed two brooms on them. Then we used flower stakes for the dipping, which we hung on the brooms. The dipping vessel, which I got from cafereria at work, was placed on a stool that I covered with an old T-shirt.
I had collected leftover candle ends and candles that had killed them selves by melting so much wax that the wick drowned. We divided these to almost white ones, red ones and lilac ones, because those were the colours I happened to have most of. I read from the web that making candles by dipping is slow, but I assumed the dipping itself would be slow, I never realized that the dipping was quite fun and time seemed to fly, but waiting for all the leftover candle ends to melt was really slow!
The candles were on a metal bowl on top of a pan of boiling water. I think it took almost a half an hour for the first batch of candle wax to melt. At least felt like that, it was so boring. But once it did melt we poured it through cheese cloth to the dipping vessel which was almost full of hot water.
But then the dipping started. And it was a lot of fun. The candles got bigger and bigger so easily. We dipped ones then left them on the rack to harden, dipped another one and that is how we proceeded. When it seemed like there was not enough white wax on the vessel to make all the candles thick enough, we consentrated only on few candles and dipped them until they were nice size. Next we melted the red candle ends and added them to the vessel. We dipped in the red wax the rest of the white candles that were not yet thick enough. Once in a while we added hot water to keep the wax warm and to keep the wax level high.
Of course we immediately had try out one candle. It was suberb. It burned so well. I've got to say we were pretty pleased with ourselfves. The pointy end of the candles was cut of to the wick. One tip: the pointy end is easiest to cut off while the candle is still bit soft, once it has hardened the cutting gets much more difficult. Once that is removed the candles can be again hung to harden.
Once we had done those colours we still decided to make the lilac ones too. It was maybe a bad choise, since there was so little of it that we were only able to make four candles from that and it was really dull to make because after each dip we had to wait for the wax to harden in between dips. Also the water in the dipping vessel had got bit colder and the surface on the candle got a bit wrinkly and bubbly. One time we dipped the candles too quickly and the wax started to slide down from the wick because of the heat. Also because the lilac was mixed with some other almost lilac wax and there was still some white wax in the dipping vessel the colour of the lilac candles did not end up to be very pretty. To tell the truth the lilac candles remind a bit of a certain manly body part. So I decided to burn them away immediately. But if one ignores the assosiation those too are very functional candles.