Whether they are used for scent or gentle light, candles can change the mood of a room. They add a romantic atmosphere to any situation. I always enjoy getting candles as gifts. I love to light candles in the evenings or on a rainy day to add a warm glow. I also enjoy a scented candle while I relax with a good book. But quality candles can be expensive to purchase. I’m going to share with you how to make candles as holiday gifts. It’s easy, and you get to control the ingredients, using eco-friendly wax and quality fragrance oils.
To put it simply, you can make candles by melting wax, adding fragrance or color if desired, pouring into a container or mold, adding a wick, and waiting for it to harden. There is more to it, of course, like choosing the wax, the container, and the appropriate size wick. Blending fragrances can be an art. And you have to know how much to add so that the candle is nicely scented in the container and while burning.
When I was first learning to make candles, a friend recommended a company called Candle Science, which sells all the supplies for candle making. I wanted to make scented container candles in glass jars and tins. I also wanted to use soy wax, because it’s more environmentally friendly and cleaner burning than paraffin wax. It also burns slower than paraffin wax, so the candles last longer.
I had no idea there were different size wicks. You have to match the wick to the wax and the size of the container you want to use. There is a handy wick calculator on the Candle Science website that makes this easy. The appropriate wick will help your candle burn properly. You want your candle to melt all the way across and not just burn a hole down the center.
Another item that has made my candle journey easier is the Chandler & Me candle maker. This little machine makes small-batch candle making so easy. It melts the wax, alerts you when it’s time to add fragrance, mixes everything together well, and lets you know when it’s time to pour. It only works with soy wax, however. Be sure not to use other types of wax or you’ll clog up the mechanism. Ask me how I know. I tried it with beeswax and almost broke the machine. Fortunately, I was able to clean it out. It’s a great little device that will help you produce a candle in 20 minutes.
Besides scented candles, I also enjoy making beeswax tea lights. Sometimes, I want to light up a pretty candle holder without adding scent to the room. Beeswax is a 100% all-natural and non-toxic wax. It has a lovely natural honey scent, but very light. It burns for a long time, and has been used since ancient times. If you have allergies or asthma and want to burn candles, beeswax is your safest choice.
I love to make candles as gifts to give out during the holidays. I use 6 oz. tins with soy wax and a variety of fragrances. I usually make a few at a time using my Chandler & Me machine. The soy wax comes in flakes which makes it easy to pour into the candle maker and quick to melt. Then I add my fragrance of choice. In the winter I like to use scents like evergreens, berries, spicy fruits, and sweet baked goods. I usually don’t bother adding color. You can’t really see the color when it’s in a tin.
After the candles cool, I make labels on my home printer. I design them in Canva, a free graphic design website. I then transfer the images to the Avery label template website, download the labels in PDF format, and print them on my inkjet printer. I also add a sticker on the bottom of each candle with safety instructions. You can get these pre-printed warning labels at the Candle Science site.
It’s that easy.
Here is my candle making in action:
And here is the final product ready for gifting:
The photo at the top of the page shows a beeswax tea light inside a pretty glass candle holder I bought on a trip to Paris.
Have you ever tried making candles? I hope this article on how to make candles as holiday gifts helps make it easy for you.