Making Soya wax dinner candles
Apparently there is a definite lack of grey soy wax candles in the market so much so that someone I know has to get hers imported. I thought I would give making them a go and now I can gift her some next time I see her. I think they will sell well at the local indoor market come the autumn if GD and I get a stall, along with felted Xmas decorations and jams.
What you will need to make the candles:
A double boiler, there are many versions of a double boiler ours is simply an old thrift shop pan, and a dedicated jug for your wax melting, our jug came from www.4candles.co.uk. An old wooden spoon and some moulds. We brought our 35cm moulds a few months back off of Ebay in a pack of ten. I don’t like to work in very large quantities so this amount suited fine. The wax and wicks also came from www.4candles.co.uk
For 1 candle you will need to measure out 80g of soya wax. GD and I tried 2 types of wax the ecosoya pillar blend and the ecosoya Q230. Both were recommended to me for the job in hand, however unless you want a particularly drippy candle, which by the way would be brilliant for a creepy halloween night, the eco Q230 in our experience performed better, it did drip a tad, but on the whole gave a good even burn. The wicks we tried were VRL 5 and NT14. We found the NT14 gave a nice round flame whereas the VRL 5 we found was too thin to cope with the dinner type candle, we are using the VRL 5 wick in making small jar candles next where we believe it will perform much better.
To make grey candles you will need to add 1 pellet of SD Black dye, the dye pellet is similar to the wax pellets. To make a black candle add about 1/4 teaspoon of SD Black dye. Some of the nicest coloured candles I thought were made just using up what was left in the bottom of the jug after pouring, by adding enough new wax to make two candles this produced an almost silver grey candle.
You will also need some blue tack or simular to plug the wick end while the wax sets, and some form of wick holder to lie across the top of your moulds and keep the wick central while it cools.
The moulds are very easy to assemble and it is best to wrap a little electrical tape around the tubes as a precaution in about 3 places, this ensures the tubes stay tightly together and helps to prevent any leaks.
To make the candles – method:
Make up the moulds as per instruction and set on a metal baking tray, metal is easier to clean than plastic.
Fill the pan to about a third way up with water and put on to heat gently. Place the jug inside the pan and let it warm up. Weigh out the wax pellets and add to the jug, let the pan simmer away gently until all the wax is melted, remove from heat and stir in the dye pellets, return to heat if the pellets need a boost to release, otherwise stir until all the dye has been released. Let cool a little and then pour into the moulds, allow the wax to come right up but not over the join at the top, which in fact is the bottom of the candle when it is released from the mould.
I forgot to allow the wax to cool a while before adding last time and had to scrap all the leaked waxed and reboil to add again. It will leak even with tape if its still too hot when you pour or you overfill.
Once the candle has cooled you will probably find you need to top up the tube once or twice to bring it level with the top, as the wax cools it shrinks.
Once happy with your poured wax, set aside, and leave to cool thoroughly. After about an hour it is safe to tip your candle out of its mould according to the instruction sheet,, however we tend to leave it a good couple of hours, even overnight, before tipping ours out. If you find yours is stubborn pop it in the fridge this will help the wax contract away from the edges and aid a smooth release.
The above candles still need to be trimmed and these show the various effects of the wax being poured too hot or moulds not left to really cool, at the moment the temperature in the south of england is hot! we should have left them in the fridge and not room temperature. The two that came out really ace I was excited to get wrapped up to go to the lady who started us on the whole quest of making grey soya candles and I forgot to get their photo. Below wrapped and ready to go.
Below was a cracked candle and we knew it would drip a lot but I loved this angel wing it produced.
So GD is the expert on candle making and his verdict is that as nice as it is to use the soya wax in his opinion the recycled waxes he uses which are more paraffin based will make a better dinner candle.
The dinner candles I made with soya wax do have a drip and are harder to obtain uniform results, but I love the peaceful flame they give, I love they are made from beautiful clean soya wax, no toxins, and I actually like the drip, okay not on the damaged ones they do get a bit too drippy, but the ones I managed to make unscathed burn gently, I even like that they have blemishes where the dyes have blended or they are a bit rough around the edges.