Saturday, March 13

melting the blues

Wanting to declutter and make practical use of things that we need to declutter, we recently we attempted the art of candle making.  I know....those two things don't seem to go together, do they?

You see, we have two plastic ice cream buckets full of old crayons as well as loose crayons that inhabit our school cabinet.  It seems wasteful to just toss them, so we decided to try a candle making experiment since I'm rather fond of candles.  My oldest daughter had picked up some nice thick candle wicks at Michaels for me and I've been saving the large jars from candles already enjoyed.
Our first task was to dump out the buckets of crayons and sort out every variation of blue hued crayon to be found.  Once we had our crayon pile, the next task was peeling the paper off each crayon resulting in quite a mountain of crayon papers.
Each crayon was placed into a small metal coffee can which was placed into a double boiler pan.  We slowly melted the crayons over low heat occasionally stirring the mix with a wooden popsicle stick.  Once the crayons were melted, we added some lily of the valley fragrant oil to the wax.  
The old candle jar was prepared by digging out the old wick base and placing the new wick base in its place.  We laid a popsicle stick over the mouth of the jar and taped the wick onto it so that the wick would stay centered while the crayon wax was poured into the jar.  The wax pouring was done by mom with potholder gloved hands very carefully tipping the metal can until melted wax was completely emptied into the jar.  A few candle pieces that for whatever reason refused to melt floated to the top as the wax began to harden.  
We let the candle sit a whole day as it hardened to completion and could hardly wait to trim the wick and light it the next day.
Ahhhhh, and we have a flame!  Oh nooooo, the flame of the candle only burned until the candle wick was about one inch down into the candle wax.  It refuses to re-light at this point.  

I did some online research and found that others had this same problem.  From everything I read, here's a few things I'd like to try the next time we do a crayon candle:

*Try using a braided wick instead of a wax coated wick.
*Consider using a mix of perhaps half crayon wax and half paraffin wax.
*Dump a lot more scent into the wax when it finishes melting as the burning candle smelled a lot more like crayons than lily of the valley.
*Place a taper candle in the center of the candle and pour the melted crayon wax around it. 

All in all, it was a fun project and we will try again with a different color crayon!

Tammy ~@~

1 comment:

The Learning Center said...

Very clever and creative idea! I want to try this project, too. Thanks for sharing.

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