Category Archives: candle wicks

May
14

What Do You Need To Make Your Own Candles?


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WWhat Do You Need To Make Your Own Candles?hat Do You Need To Make Your Own Candles?

Welcome to the wonderful world of candle making! If you are new to the craft of making candles, then you may be thinking to yourself; What Do You Need To Make Your Own Candles? While there are quite a few options out there, you just need to learn about your options and choosing gets simplified. At Natures Garden we strive to make sure that our customers never feel lost or alone while crafting. So, we try to provide you with as much information as you need as well as offer a Toll-Free H.U.G Line; HUG stands for Help U Grow. 1-866-647-2368. So, you can call us anytime to receive help. Furthermore, we are creating this blog to have all the basic information that you need to get started and have a reference for when you need it!

What Do You Need To Make Your Own Candles?: What Wax to Use for CandlesWhat Do You Need To Make Your Own Candles?: What Wax to Use for Candles

One of the most important ingredients for making candles is the wax. Your candle wax is what determines the strength and quality of your candle. While you may think that you can just add more fragrance oil to increase the scent of your candles, this just isn’t true. In fact, once your candle wax has been saturated the fragrance oil will simply leak out and be wasted. Also, this leakage can lead to a potential fire hazard. So, it’s best to stay within the recommended amounts. You can check out the Candle Wax Information to figure out which type of canlde wax that you want!

What Do You Need To Make Your Own Candles?: AdditivesWhat Do You Need To Make Your Own Candles?: Additives

Additives are an option that candle makers have to include ingredients into their wax. This is done to try to enhance the quality of their final product. This can be beneficial for some waxes, but we don’t suggest using these additives in any preblended waxes.

What Do You Need To Make Your Own Candles?: How to Make Candles With Crisco

One additive that you can include is Crisco shortening for some of your candles. About 1-2 ounces can be added per pound of paraffin candle wax. This will help to decrease wet spots, increase your melt pool, absorb fragrance oil, and help to decrease the chance of your fragrance sitting on the bottom of the pouring pot. So, this can be used to increase scent throw in candles made of this type of wax. But, you will find that a blended wax like our Joy Wax is already formulated to provide a great scent throw without adding any Crisco.

You will probably read differing opinions on using Crisco in your candles; however, if it had been such a bad idea, then wax manufacturers would not be making wax out of soy. Crisco is soy based. Use your own judgment on this one!

What Do You Need To Make Your Own Candles?: Vybar

Another additive that is used to enhance candles is Vybar. This additive’s primary use is enhancing the scent throw. Plus, this ingredient will create a marble appearance on the top of the candle, which looks very cool! Another thing that this ingredient does is harden the wax consistency and raise the melt point. While some people use stearin, we believe that Vybar does the same thing with less issues.

What Do You Need To Make Your Own Candles?: UV Light Protectors

If you want to sell your candles wholesale or want to have them keep their color for a long time, then you may want a UV Light InhibitorHowever, these can be expensive and aren’t necessary otherwise. Colors that you need to be most worried about are Blue, Violet, Burgundy, and sometimes pink. Also, even after adding this ingredient we would recommend keeping them out of direct sunlight as the sun will still be able to fade your color over time. If your find that your colors our still fading quite a bit even after adding this, then it could be due to your fragrance oil.

What Do You Need To Make Your Own Candles?: Petrolatum

Also, you can use petrolatum as a candle making additive. This ingredient will help increase the number of pores in the candle. So, you candle will be able to absorb even more fragrance oil. This means an even stronger scent! Plus, it will help your wax cling to the sides of your container. However, this may lead to a less clean burn and sometimes even smoking. So, there are some trade offs with this one.

What Do You Need To Make Your Own Candles?: Fragrance OilWhat Do You Need To Make Your Own Candles?: Fragrance Oil

The fragrance oil is another ingredient that is important for making wonderfully scented homemade candles. Firstly, you should make sure that the fragrance oil you want to use is not alcohol based, as this can be dangerous. Next, you will want to consider the concentration of your fragrance. Obviously, you want a good scent that hasn’t been diluted, like our fragrance oils, but there are some companies that dilute their scents and you should be cognizant of it. When using a concentrated fragrance oil, you can use about 1 ounce per pound of fragrance. If you try to use more, it will just be wasted. This is because the wax is already fully saturated and your fragrance will simply be left on the bottom of your pouring pot.

What Do You Need To Make Your Own Candles?: ColorantsWhat Do You Need To Make Your Own Candles?: Colorants

Also, you have the option to add colorants to your candles. There are a few routes you can go for coloring your homemade candles. One thing that we’d like to note here is that candles aren’t a very good candle colorant. While there are many diy recipes on how to make candles out of crayons, we have found that candles should never be used if you want quality candles. Any amount of crayons added to your candles will cause smoking and will clog your wick. Instead, you can use liquid candle dye, color blocks, or powdered candle dye for your candles.

What Do You Need To Make Your Own Candles?: Liquid Candle DyeWhat Do You Need To Make Your Own Candles?: Liquid Candle Dye

First, you can use the Spectrum Liquid Candle Dyes to color your candles. These dyes are very concentrated, so it only take a little bit. Often a few drops or even a toothpicks amount will suffice. Make sure that you never use more than 10 drops of the liquid candle dye because it will cause a sight chemical smell that may ruin your scent! Plus, adding too much color can clog your wick, reduce the scent throw, create smoking, and may reduce the melt pool of your candle. But, as long as you stay under our recommended maximum you should be fine. Plus, the liquid dye allows you to make candles that have consistent coloring each time because you can simply count the number of drops you add to your melted wax.

What Do You Need To Make Your Own Candles?: Color BlocksWhat Do You Need To Make Your Own Candles?: Color Blocks

Next, you have the option of color blocks for your homemade candles. These candle coloring blocks are dye that has been concentrated in a wax medium. This block will provide enough color to deeply dye 15 pounds of wax in total. However, the color blocks do not provide as vibrant of a color compared to our liquid candle dye or a powdered candle dye. We have these colorants available in red, coral/peach, yellow, blue, green, purple, burgundy, brown, teal, cinnamon, and cranberry. You can mix these colors, but make sure not too add too much as it may clog your wick, cause smoking, reduce the melt pool, or inhibit scent throw. To use this colorant you can cut just a piece off the block and add it to your melting candle wax. Just make sure that your color blocks are fully melted before pouring your candle wax.

What Do You Need To Make Your Own Candles?: Powdered Candle DyesWhat Do You Need To Make Your Own Candles?: Powdered Candle Dyes

Lastly, you can use for your homemade candle creations. These are the most concentrated form of candle dye out there. You can use very small amounts of the dye to provide some vibrant color results. Plus, you can combine colors to create any color that you prefer! Also, you can add this powder to melted Stearic Acid to provide a better dispersion in your candle wax. Stearic acid can be added to your candle to help harden them. Also, you should avoid using too much as it could clog your wick, create more smoking, reduce the melt pool of your candle, or inhibit the scent throw.

What Do You Need To Make Your Own Candles?: Candle WicksWhat Do You Need To Make Your Own Candles?: Candle Wicks

Another important aspect to candle making is the wick. There are two things you need to consider when picking a wick, which are the type of wax you are using and the size of your container. First, you need to think about the type of wick that you want to use. While there is some preference involved, there are some wicks that will work better in certain types of waxes. You can see on the website for each wick or at the bottom of the Science of Candle Making page.

Next, we need to think about what size wick that we will need. The size of your wick will determine the radius of wax that the flame can cover. If the flame doesn’t reach the edges you will be wasting perfectly good candle wax. However, a wick that is too large can result in mushrooming or even smoking, or loss of scent.  So, you will need to make sure that you choose the correct sized wick for each of your different container sizes. If you need help figuring out which type of wick and the size you need then check out our Candle Wick Chart for sizing.

Also, you can check out our Types of Candle Wicks for a condensed version of candle wicking information.

What Do You Need To Make Your Own Candles?: EquipmentWhat Do You Need To Make Your Own Candles?: Equipment

Next, we have some basic equipment is important for candle making and can potentially last forever. Both the pouring pot and thermometer are important pieces of equipment in the candle making process that you really can’t go without.

What Do You Need To Make Your Own Candles?: Pouring PotWhat Do You Need To Make Your Own Candles?: Pouring Pot

First, the pouring pot is great to have for your melting wax. If you are using a pot from your kitchen, then it will be nearly impossible to reclaim it for cooking. Plus, you won’t have the convenience of a pouring spout in a typical cooking pot. So, its best to just get a pouring pot that is more efficient for candle making.

What Do You Need To Make Your Own Candles?: ThermometerWhat Do You Need To Make Your Own Candles?: Thermometer

Also, the thermometer is crucial for making sure that your wax is used properly. Firstly, this allows you to monitor the temperature to prevent you from getting your wax to hot. If your wax gets hotter than 200 degrees Fahrenheit, in some cases, it will burn. At this temperature the wax’s molecules begin to break down and the wax will take on a burnt smell. Another issue that this helps you with is pouring your wax at the right temperature. You need to make sure that your candles are poured at the temperature recommended for the candle wax you are using.

What Do You Need To Make Your Own Candles?: Worlds Largest Candle

In the spirit of candle making, we figured we would talk about the largest candle ever! According to Waymarking.com, the largest candle in the world is in South Deerfield, MA. It is a big, red giant made of 1,377 pounds of wax and standing about 6 feet tall. If you are curious in seeing this phenomenal candle, then check out the World’s Largest Candle in World’s Largest Candle Store.

What Do You Need To Make Your Own Candles?: Learn With Us

If you are interested in learning more about candle-making, you can find more details in the Natures Garden candle manual. Also, you can reach out to us at Natures Garden with any other questions that you may have. One great way to reach out to us is through social media. We are on Facebook, Twitter (@ngscents), and Instagram (@ngscents). We hope to hear from you soon!

May
09

Types of Candle Wicks


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Candle WicksTypes of Candle Wicks

Choosing the right wick for your homemade candles is one of the most important parts of candle making! The candle’s wick is what feeds the flame to keep it going, as the wick collects the candle wax vapor as the wax is heated. So, a good wick will keep your flame burning evenly and for a long time! Since there are many types of candle wicks, we thought it would be useful to have a guide with candle wick information all in one place. So, this blog explains the importance of choosing the best wick along with some details on the wicks available from Natures Garden!

Types of Candle Wicks: Choosing a TypeTypes of Candle Wicks: Choosing a Type

There are three main types that nearly all candle wicks fall into. First, we have the most common type of candle wick, which are flat wicks. These are usually made from three bundles of fiber knitted together and are very consistent in burning. Plus, they curl in the flame for a self-trimming effect. Second, we have square wicks, which are often braided or knitted. These will curl in the flame, but are a bit more rounded than flat wicks and are better able to resist clogging. Lastly, we have the cored wicks, which use a core material around the braided wick to keep it upright. These wicks have a round cross section and use different materials, like cotton, paper, zinc, or tin, to keep the wick upright.

Types of Candle Wicks: Why Are Wicks Different Sizes?Types of Candle Wicks: Why Are Wicks Different Sizes?

Choosing the proper wick is very important.  The size and type you need depends on the size container and type of wax you use. Every candle is unique and many come in different shapes and sizes, so wicks come in different sizes too!  For the wick, both its length and width have a purpose for the candle. Also, you will need to know that the different numbers signify the size of the wick. This means that a CD-10 wick is more narrow than a CD-12, which is why the CD-12 wick can cover a larger candle radius compared to the CD-10.  We should also note, when a candle wick is created, it is then coated in wax.  At times, this coating can make a smaller wick appear larger than a bigger sized wick.  It’s not really larger, it simply has a thicker wax coating than the larger candle wick.

Types of Candle Wicks: Why is my candle wick mushrooming?

One issue that you can have due to choosing the wrong size wick is mushrooming. This is when a build up of carbon forms on your wick and creates a sort of mushroom-like shape. If your wick is too large for you container, then your candle will burn way too fast. This rapid burning leads to an increased amount of build up in a short time and causes the mushrooming appearance.

Types of Candle Wicks: What is tunneling in candles?

Another issue that you could run into is tunneling. This is when the flame doesn’t burn all the way to the edges, which leaves a ring around the outside. Not only does this waste parts of you candle that could’ve been put to good use, but this can make it difficult to relight as the flame begins to drop further. Some times you can have this with the correct sized wick, but there are ways to prevent this from happening. For example, a memory burn and longer burns can make sure that all of the wax is used as the flame burns. However, a wick that is too small for your container will tunnel no matter what you do.

Types of Candle Wicks: CD Candle WicksTypes of Candle Wicks: CD Candle Wicks

First, we have the CD Candle Wicks – 100 count, which are made of a flat, cotton braid with a special paper around it. This is perfect for a hot flame as this gives the wick excellent capillary action. Also, this wick will provide a cleaner burn, is basically self- trimming, and can be used in any type of wax. If you are looking for the best wick for soy wax or vegetate wax, then this is a good option to try out! So, its no wonder why this wick is a favorite for many of us  at Natures Garden

Types of Candle Wicks: Guide for CD Candle Wicks
  • CD5 candle wicks- Use with votives and containers 2 inch in diameter.
  • CD7 candle wicks- Use with containers approximately 2.5 inches in diameter.
  • CD10 candle wicks- Use with Medium sized containers approximately 3 inches in diameter.
  • CD 12 candle wicks- Use with medium sized containers approximately 3- 3.5 inches in diameter.
  • CD14 candle wicks- Use with Large sized containers approximately 4 inches in diameter.
  • CD16 candle wicks- Use with large sized containers approximately 4.25 inches in diameter.
  • CD18 candle wicks- Use with large containers approximately 4.5 inches in diameter.
  • CD20 candle wicks- Use with extra large containers approximately 5 inches in diameter.
  • CD 22 candle wicks- Extra large wick for use in large containers approximately 5.5 inches in diameter.

Types of Candle Wicks: Hemp Candle WicksTypes of Candle Wicks: Hemp Candle Wicks

Next, we have the Hemp Candle Wicks- 100 count. These are braided wicks like many candle wicks, but they use natural hemp fibers instead of the typical cotton fibers. This makes the wick more rigid, so it can stay more on its own. Plus, these fibers allow the candle wick to provide a hotter burn. This wick can be used perfectly for any and all candle waxes. Plus, this wick is another great one to try for anyone looking for the best wick for soy wax!

Types of Candle Wicks: Guide for Hemp Candle Wicks
  • 838 Hemp candle wicks- use for votives and small candles- 1.5 to 2 inch diameter.
  • 1400 Hemp candle wicks- use for large candles- 2.5 to 3 inch diameter.
  • 60048 Hemp candle wicks- use with extra large candles- 3.5 to 4 inch diameter.

Types of Candle Wicks: HTP Candle WicksTypes of Candle Wicks: HTP Candle Wicks

Also, you can try out the HTP Candle Wicks – 100 Count. These wicks are mad from a blend of paper fibers and cotton fibers that create a flat, braided design. This design provides the wick with a hotter and cleaner burn that you are sure to enjoy! Plus, this wick’s cleaner burn is able to reduce any issues with either smoking or mushrooming. Although these wicks can be used effectively in any kind of candle wax, we would recommend these wicks for your Gel Wax or Soy Wax. HTP wick’s performance for these two types of wax is phenomenal!

Types of Candle Wicks: Guide for HTP Candle Wicks
  • HTP-31 candle wick (2.5 inch) (20mm tab, 3mm neck)- Use for votives or small containers with a diameter of approximately 1.5 inches.
  • HTP-52 candle wick (4 inch)(20mm tab, 3mm neck) – Use for containers with a diameter of approximately 2.5 inches.
  • HTP-73 candle wicks (6 inch)(20mm tab, 3mm neck) – Use for medium sized containers with a diameter of approximately 3 inches.
  • HTP-83 candle wicks (7 inch)(20mm tab, 3mm neck) – Use for medium sized containers with a diameter of approximately 3.5 inches.
  • HTP-104 candle wicks (7 inch) (20mm tab, 6mm neck)- Use for large containers with a diameter of approximately 4 inches.
  • HTP-1212 candle wicks (7 inch) (20mm tab, 6mm neck)-Use for extra large containers with a diameter of approximately 4.5 inches.

Types of Candle Wicks: Zinc Core Candle WicksTypes of Candle Wicks: Zinc Core Candle Wicks

Lastly, we have the Zinc Core Candle Wicks- 100 wicks. These wicks are the most popular for creating homemade candles. These wicks have a cotton fiber braid surrounded by a zinc core.  Also, these wicks can be used in all applications.This style of wick is great for creating container candles as the zinc core allows the wick to stand up. While you can use these wicks in vegetable waxes, you will need to go up a size on your wick. Instead of using the normal size wick for your container, just get a size bigger as these wicks don’t burn as hot as other candle wicks.

Types of Candle Wicks: Guide For Zinc Core Candle Wicks
  • 1 3/4 inch zinc core candle wick (44-20-18z)- great for tealights, and small containers with a diameter of about 1 inch.
  • 2 1/2 inch zinc core candle wick (44-28-18z)- great for votives, and containers with a diameter of about 2 inches.
  • 7 inch zinc core candle wick (44-24-18z)- great for candles with diameter of 2-2.5 inch diameter.
  • 7 inch zinc core candle wick (51-32-18z)- great for candles with a diameter of about 2.5 to 3 inches.
  • 6 inch zinc core candle wick (44-28-18z)- great for candles with a diameter of about 2-2.75 inches. Also, a nice wick for cylinder candles.
  • 7 inch Extra Large zinc Core candle wick (62-52-18z)- great for candles with a diameter of 3 inches to 4 inches.
  • 3 inch self centering zinc core candle wick (44-24-18z)- great for votives and candles with the diameter of 2-2.5 inches. These wicks self center themselves due to their 33 mm wick tabs.

Types of Candle Wicks: Spooled Candle WickingTypes of Candle Wicks: Spooled Candle Wicking

Another fun option to consider when choosing your wicks is the Spooled Candle Wicking- 8 oz. Roll. You can get about 400 feet of this spooled candle wick in either the 44-24-18 zinc core candle wicking or the 34-30 cotton wicking. According to our own candle testing, both of these types of wicks will be able to handle a diameter of between 2 inches and 3 inches. So, this wicking could be beneficial for making pillar candles, as they are taller than most of our other wicks. Further, you can cut each wick to the exact size. This means you will have less wasted wicking due to trimming.

Types of Candle Wicks: Candle Wick TabsTypes of Candle Wicks: Candle Wick Tabs

Additionally, you may want to get Candle Wick Tabs – 1/2 Pound to go along with your spool of wicking. These tabs come in a few different sizes that vary in width and neck height. The width of the tab gives your wick a base to hold the wick in place. There are 15mm, which are great for tea lights, and 20mm, which are most popular for candle making. The neck size controls how far down the wick will burn and protects the bottom of the container from getting too hot, without this the candle glass could over heat and break. This comes in either the 3mm, which is most common for candle making, or the 6mm, which is good for gel wax candles. Unless you are making tea lights or using gel wax, you will likely want to use the 20mm standard 3mm neck tabs.

Types of Candle Wicks: Votive Candle Wick PinTypes of Candle Wicks: Votive Candle Wick Pin

While the Votive Candle Wick Pin isn’t necessary a wick, it can be very useful tool for wicking! If you want to create fun candles without containers, then the wick pin is a great way to keep your wick centered. While this pin was designed to create votive candles with perfectly centered wicks, this pin is great for other fun shapes, too! We have use this pin to create cupcake candles, smores candles, and so much more! This particular pin is 2 and 5/16 inches tall, so you can use it for smaller candle designs and, of course, votive candles.

Types of Candle Wicks: History of Candles

According to the National Candle Association, candles are an ancient tool that have evolved right along side mankind. Beginning as primitive candles with reeds or beeswax, early Egyptian and Roman societies used these to light their homes and perform ceremonies. Then, the candles changed over the centuries as the ingredients were improved and changed. Overtime, they went from a source of light to a method of scenting the home, as we use them today. If you are interested in how candles have changed though time, the History of Candles article has some interesting details of what was used for all kinds of different candles from the past.

Types of Candle Wicks: Give Us a ShoutTypes of Candle Wicks: Give Us a Shout

We hope that you learned something new that you can use in future candle making. If you are interested in learning more, then you can find more detailed information on either our wicking chart or Science of Candle Wicking Class. Also, you can reach out to us at Natures Garden with any other unanswered questions. An easy way to contact us is through social media. We are available on our Facebook page. Also, you can find us on Instagram and Twitter with @ngscents. We can’t wait to hear from you!

Note: We do not accept returns on our wicks, so we advise you to purchase sample packs before committing to a larger sized bag of wicks.

Mar
14

Easy Soy Candle


This entry was posted in candle colorants, candle dye, candle fragrance oils, candle making, candle making supplies, candle scents, candle wax, candle wicks, Fragrance Oils, Natures Garden, Natures Garden Fragrance Oils, soy candles, soy wax and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on by .

first soy candleHello everyone! My name is Cindy and I am the new Marketing Rep for Natures Garden.

Although I am not new to the candle scene; I used to sell paraffin candles for Deborah back in 1997, I am new to the making homemade products world.  After working for Natures Garden a few days, I quickly realized that one of the most important aspects of my position is that I know all of these products in and out.  Since I am a hands on learner, the best way for me to understand these products is to put myself in your shoes and become a candle and soap artisan.  And, today I did just that.

Since I already have some knowledge in the candle market, I decided to start my venture with soy wax.  Now, I want to shout it from the roof tops, “I made my first candle….ever….in my whole life”.  It was super easy too!

Although secretly, I do have to admit I was a little concerned at first.  I actually thought I might burn down the test kitchen, a common fear that I assume many new crafters have.

Realizing it is now or never, I stood up straight and pulled myself together.  You will never learn if you never try, right?  So, I gathered all of my ingredients and supplies, and went to work.  The step by step instruction I used to make my candle came from the How To Make A Pure Soy Wax Candle Recipe.   This recipe as well as hundreds of others are offered in the free recipes and classes section of Natures Gardens website.    I now understand that every recipe created by Natures Garden came from the trial and error process.  A process that is done to put forth the BEST end product.  Natures Gardens creative team makes all the mistakes so you don’t have to (I think I hear a commercial in there).

Anyway, I worked through the easy to follow steps and before I knew it (about 30 minutes later), I was standing before my first candle creation.  A beautiful purple colored, Lavender Sage scented candle.  I could not believe my eyes.  I actually thought to myself….well, that was easy.  Who knew?  I then realized I could have been doing this for years, guaranteeing the candles I burned in my home had the best scent throw and longest burn time.

Now that I know just how easy it is to make candles, the possibilities are endless.  Guess what kind of gifts I’ll be giving this year…lol?  Overall I really enjoyed my experience; that is after I got over the initial fear.  A word of advice for anyone that wants to give candle making a try… I strongly encourage you to do it!  Candle making is easy, fun, and the accomplishment of your creation is inspiring.

Well kids, until my next adventure, have a FABULOUS day!
Cindy

Mar
13

Soy Candle Recipe


This entry was posted in candle colorants, candle dye, candle fragrance oils, candle making, candle making supplies, candle recipe, candle scents, candle supplies, candle wax, candle wicks, candles, Fragrance Oils, Natures Garden and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on by .

how to make a soy candle Soy candles always seem to be the craze.  The soy wax 415 that Natures Garden carries is a 100% all natural vegetable wax.  This also means that this soy wax is biodegradable, and is made from a renewable resource.  When used to make candles; soy wax provides a nice, clean and long burn.

For this recipe, we have figured everything out for you (measurements, temperatures, color, and scent).  We are also presenting it to you in an easy to follow step by step form (with photos).  This recipe will make (1) 16oz apothecary jar candle.

Your finished soy candle will be colored in a light red hue, and scented in with a matching apple orchard fragrance.

We will be double wicking our apothecary jar with (2) CD-10 wicks.  This wicking will provide the candle with a nice hot burn, and allow the scent to travel nicely through the wick; guaranteeing a wonderful hot scent throw.

Besides the ingredients hyper linked above, you will also need some other candle making equipment.  This includes: Thermometer, POURING POT, Warning Labels, Glass Apothecary Jar (16oz), Hot Glue Gun with Gun, Scale, Pot, A cookie sheet, and a Stirring Spoon.

Now, normally prior to making a soy wax candle, you must first check the flashpoint of the scent.  This is important because the flashpoint will indicate the temperature at which you will add the fragrance oil.  However, for this recipe, we have already figured out this information.  Apple Orchard has a flashpoint of 155 degrees Fahrenheit.  What this means is that the temperature at which we will be adding the fragrance oil to the soy wax is 155 degrees Fahrenheit.  Our rule of thumb is:  If a fragrance flash point is below 130F, then add it to wax at 130F.  If the fragrance oil flash point is between 130-185F, then add the fragrance to the wax at its flash point.  If a fragrance oil has a flash point above 185F, then add the fragrance to the wax at 185F.

So now, before we get started making our soy candle; it is important to get all of the supplies and equipment ready that we will be using.  Most of these supplies can be purchased at Natures Garden.  Once you have all of this ready to go; lets get started!

supplies for making a soy candle

Step 1:  Get your pot.  Into the pot, place several inches of tap water.  Next you are going to put the pot on to the stove top and set the heat setting on medium.

prepping for double boiler method

Step 2:  Now get your pouring pot.  Inside the pot, weigh out 440 grams of the 100% soy wax flakes.  Once you have the amount, place the pouring pot into the water pot.  This will be how we melt the soy flakes.  This process is known as the double boiler method.

the double boiler process

Step 3:  Set your oven to 170 degrees Fahrenheit.  Next, place your apothecary jar on your cookie sheet.  Then, place the cookie sheet inside the oven.  Allow the jar to warm for 10-15 minutes, then remove.  Also, plug in your hot glue gun now.

warming your apothecary jar

Step 4:  Now, place your thermometer into the wax.  This is important because you will want to monitor the temperature of the wax while it is melting.  Never let the temperature go higher than 200 degrees Fahrenheit.  This will burn and discolor the wax.  As the wax melts, stir it occasionally.  Also, keeping melting until all the wax is in a liquid state.

melting soy wax

Step 5:  Once the wax is all melted, remove it from heat.  When the temperature reaches 185 degrees Fahrenheit, add the 4 drops of Spectrum Red Candle Dye.  Stir.

coloring soy wax

Step 6:  After the wax has been colored, check your temperature again.  When the temperature reaches 155 degrees Fahrenheit, add your 35 grams of Apple Orchard fragrance oil.  Stir again for a full 2 minutes.  This thorough stir will help the wax, fragrance, and color adhere.  Then, place your thermometer back into the wax.

scenting the soy wax

Step 7:  Next, grab your hot glue gun and place a small amount of glue on the bottom of your wick tabs.  Then, center and secure your candle wicks.

center and secure your wicks

Step 8:  Now, stick your warning label to the bottom of your jar.

applying your warning label

Step 9:  Check the temperature of the wax, you will be looking for it to reach 110 degrees Fahrenheit.  Once it does, give your wax one final stir.

checking for the pour temp
Step 10:  Then, slowly start to pour your candle.  You will want to stop your pour once the wax reaches where the jar changes shape.  Then, straighten your wicks.

pouring your soy candle
Step 11: 
Now, allow your candle to fully set up undisturbed.

allowing your candle to set up

Step 12:  Once the candle has hardened, trim your wicks, and lid your jar.  Allow your candle to cure for 24-48 hours.

Congratulations, you just made a soy candle.  Your 100% Soy Wax Candle is now finished and ready to burn.  Enjoy the sweet apple scent that will fill your home and make your house smell good!

Feb
07

Homemade Zebra Candle


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make your own zebra candleHow to make your very own homemade Zebra Candle!

This easy to make project is even fun to create.  Besides the standard candle making supplies such as: soy wax, wicks, scent, color, and jars; you will also need beeswax.  We will be using the beeswax to make the zebra stripes in the candle.  Because of the pliability of beeswax, it has the capability of being shaped easily into stripes.  Plus, due to the high melt point it has, beeswax can withstand a pour of another wax (soy), as long as the temperature isn’t too extreme.

Although for this project, the scent that was selected was Hot Pink Pomegranate Fragrance Oil, when you make your own zebra candle you can scent it to your pleasing.  The same is true for the candle color.  Since our fragrance oil has the name hot pink in it, the decision was made to make the zebra candle stripes pink on a white (or uncolored) background.

To see the full list of possible candle scents, please click on this link.  There are over 800 different fragrances to choose from!

Here are your total recipe weights to make (2) 16oz. Zebra Candles:
190 grams beeswax
2 drops candle dye (if making the candle like pictured)
About 4 oz.  of candle scent
1100 grams of soy wax (Golden Foods 444 soy wax)

Other items that you will need for this recipe are:
wax paper
pencil
knife
9×13 cake pan
2- 16 oz candle jars
4 wicks (we used 2- cd10 wicks per candle)
scale
2 pots (for double boiler method)
stirring spoon
cutting board
thermometer

Below are the steps to make your very own zebra candle (pictures included):

Step 1:  Using the double boiler method, weigh out and melt 190 grams of beeswax.  You will want to set the temperature of your stove top between medium and low heat while melting.  Stir the beeswax occasionally as it melts.

steps to make a zebra candle

Step 2:   This step is the colorant of your zebra stripes:  Once the beeswax is melted, now you will add 2 drops of your candle colorant, and stir.  Once you are done, place your pouring pot back into the heat source.

color for the zebra candle

Step 3:  To make the zebra stripes, you will need to concentrate your beeswax in a portion of the area in your cake pan.  To do this, lay out your cake pan on a flat surface.  Next, roughly measure out at least 9 inches in length.  Hold this place by setting your knife across the pan.  Finally, lay the wax paper over the cake pan and knife.  Carefully, tuck the corners of the wax paper down.

how to make zebra stripes

Step 4:  Now it is time to scent your beeswax:  Remove your beeswax from the heat source.  Weigh out about 19 grams of your candle fragrance oil.  Then, add the fragrance and stir to incorporate it throughout the wax.

zebra candle scent

Step 5:  Now, take your beeswax and slowly start to pour it over the flat portion of the wax paper.  Allow this to fully set up.  Do not try to rush this step.  Cooling beeswax too quickly, may cause it to crack!

making the zebra candle stripes

Step 6:  Once the beeswax has hardened, and is cool to the touch; gently remove it from the cake pan.  Carefully stand the square on one end and starting in one corner, peel away the wax paper.  Then, place the beeswax on your cutting board.  Finally, cut off any jagged edges using your knife.

zebra candle recipe

Step 7:  For the background of your zebra candle, you will be using soy wax.  In order to have enough wax for 2 candles, weigh out and melt 1100 grams of soy wax.  Melt this wax using the double boiler method.  While the wax is melting, stir occasionally.

soy wax zebra candle

Step 8:  You will create the zebra stripe pattern using the tip of a pencil.  Trace this lightly into the beeswax.  The shape that you will want to draw will be various sized long and irregular lines similar to tree branches.  When you are finished, cut these lines out.

making zebra stripes in beeswax

Step 9:  Once you have a few of your stripes cut out, carefully begin to place them individually against the inside wall of your candle jar.  It is best to start at the bottom of your jar and work in an angular direction.  Apply slight and even pressure until the stripes stick.  Repeat this step until you have the zebra design you are looking for.  Then, do it again for your second candle.

zebra candle pattern

Step 10:  Center and secure your wicks to the bottom of your candle jars.  Then, set aside.

centering your wicks

Step 11:  When your soy wax is in a completely liquid state, remove it from the heat source.  If you are adding color to the background of the zebra candle, do this now.  Then, add 110 grams of fragrance Oil.  Stir again.

Step 12:  Using your thermometer, wait until the soy wax reaches 115 degrees Fahrenheit; this temperature will not melt your zebra stripes.  Pour the soy wax into your candle jars.  Don’t forget to straighten your wicks. Allow the candles to fully set up undisturbed.

pouring a zebra candle

Now it is time to celebrate, your Zebra candles are now ready to use.  Simply trim your wick, light, and enjoy your new awesome candle.

Jan
06

Candle Instructions


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triple layer candleCandle Instructions

Burning candles in your home can be very enjoyable.  Candles are relaxing, soothing, and can fill your home with the most pleasurable aromas.  But, since burning a candle does involve an open flame, you must always burn candles with caution.

Here are some candle instructions to ensure candle safety when burning a candle.

Where to Burn a Candle:

Some things to consider when selecting the right candle holder for your candle are the material it is made of, size, and design.  You want to make sure the candle holder is made of sturdy and heat resistant material that can endure the high heat that some candles may give off.  Size is another factor because you want to ensure that your candle holder is large enough to hold your candle and also to prevent your candle from tipping over anytime that it is lit.

Never place your candle on a surface that cannot withstand heat, these types of surfaces may become damaged if the candle becomes too hot, or the candle holder breaks.

Never move a lit candle.  If you need to move your candle once it has been lit, extinguish the flame and allow the wax to set up before attempting to move it.  If a candle has been burning for an extended period of time, the container will be hot.

Always burn candles where they are out of reach to children and pets.  A flame can be very captivating to a small child.  You also do not want to burn a candle where it can easily be knocked over by an excited dog’s tail, or places where indoor cats frequent.

Never burn a candle by any object that is flammable.  Never burn candles near paperwork; especially on desks.  Draperies can also easily catch fire so avoid window sills and end tables near windows.

Never burn candles where they will be left unattended.  You only want to leave candles lit where an adult is in the room to monitor it.  Also, before going to sleep, extinguish all candles in the house.  You will want to ensure that your wick is completely out and no longer “glowing”.  Never use candles as nightlights.

When burning candles, make sure they are placed somewhere away from drafts.  Be wary of burning a candle in a room that has a ceiling fan going; you want to place the burning candle where it will not be affected by the breeze.

When burning multiple candles in one room, make sure they are at least 3 inches apart.  This is especially true for pillar or votive candles.  Burning candles too close to one another may result in the candles melting one another.  This can also create a draft situation where your candles will flare.

If you are interested in viewing other tips and tricks of candle making, or the homemade candle making process, please click on this link.  Natures Garden also provides free recipes and classes for candle making.

Jan
03

Candle Burning


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candle burn Candle Burning

Regardless of whether you are making candles for personal use, gifts, or to earn extra income; candles are flammable.  You always want to make sure that you have taken all the right measures to ensure the safest candle possible.  Not only is candle safety important to the crafter, but it is also just as important to the person that burns the candle.

Here are some great tips for burning candles, the best way to extinguish a candle, and what to do if your candle wax is on fire.

Candle Burning and Maintenance:

Always before lighting your candle; trim the wick!  You never want your wick to be longer than ¼ inch.  Also, when lighting your candle, do not throw the wick trimming into the candle.  You want to keep your candle free of any and all debris such as:  dust, wick trimmings, matches, ect.  You want your candle pool to be scented wax only.

Keep your wick straight.  Once your wick has been trimmed, you will want to pull it straight.  If your wick is bent, your wick will burn hotter than regular.  This will result in a quicker burn time of your candle.

When it is time to extinguish your candle, always use a snuffer.  A candle snuffer is the easiest and safest way to put out a flame.  Using a snuffer will prevent hot wax splatter.  Candle wax is hot, you never want to touch it, or get wax splatter on you or surfaces in your home.

Never put a candle flame out with water.  Water can cause the hot wax in your candles to splatter.  There is also a chance that the glass container of your candle may also break.

If after lighting your candle, you notice the wick flickering, smoking, or the flame of your candle becomes too large; the candle is not functioning properly.  Extinguish the flame, let the candle cool, trim your wick to ¼ inch, check the rooms for drafts, and then re-light.

After a candle has been burned to the point where there is only 1/2 inch of wax left in the bottom of the container, stop burning.  The candle is now finished.  Never burn a candle all the way down.

For Candle Making Purposes: 

For your candle making area, it is wise to purchase a dry chemical fire extinguisher in case of any fires.  If you do have a wax fire, the dry chemical extinguisher or baking soda should be used to suffocate the flames.  Never use water to put out a wax fire.

Dec
15

Candle Smoking?


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candle smokingWhy is My Candle Smoking?

Whenever something is being burned, there will be some amount of smoke.  Naturally, when you limit the amount of oxygen, you will see more smoke than when ample oxygen is supplied.  However, you can prevent your homemade candles from excessively smoking by making your candles the right way in the first place.  There are a few reasons as to why a candle may smoke once lit.  The first check point to examine is whether or not the correct amount of fragrance oil was used in the process.  Using more than the recommended amount of fragrance oil per pound of wax may sound like it is a good idea to have extreme scent, but in the end it is only wasteful (and costly), and can cause your candles to smoke.  Wax has a fragrance load limit.  Since it is a porous object, once each and every pore has been filled, there is no more area for the fragrance to go.

The second reason your candle may be smoking is the wick.  Using the proper wick for the diameter size of the candle is the best way to ensure a clean and even burn in the candle.  Go here to read a very interesting blog post on the science of candle wicks.  A smoking wick will occur if the wick of the candle is too large for the container.  To view a wick suggestion chart for your sized candle container click here  for Natures Garden’s wick recommendations.  Avoid allowing the debris from wick clippings from entering into your melted wax, and keep your wicks trimmed to 1/4″.

Finally, your colorant may cause your candle to smoke.  It is important to know that pigments can clog your wick and can cause increased smoking when burning your candle.  That is why only candle dyes should be used to color the interior wax of candles.  Never use crayons to color your candles as they contain pigments instead of dyes.  When using candle dyes, understand that using alot of candle dye may also cause your candles to smoke more.

How to Solve It!

When it comes to fragrance oil percentage, never use more than the suggested amount of fragrance oil per pound of wax.  Remember, using more may result in a candle with a fragrance oil slick that is a fire hazard.

Do your research first.  In order to know which wick to use in candle making, you must first know your candle’s diameter.  You can figure this out by measuring the bottom of your candle container with a ruler.  You will want to measure horizontally across the center.  Once you have this information, simply look at the wick suggestion chart and select which kind of wick you need.  Keep wick trimmings out of your melted wax, and keep wicks trimmed to 1/4″.  Also, avoid burning your candles where there are fans or drafts.  This can cause your wick to move around and burn too quickly; potentially smoking more.

In candle making temperature is very important.  Many waxes offer a range in temperature for their key steps (melting temperature, scenting temperature, pouring temperature).   It is a very good idea to monitor these temperatures with the help of a testing notebook and thermometer.  Within a few times of making candles, you can have your temperatures down to a specific degree.  With well taken notes, it is possible to have your candle making process replicated exactly time and time again.

Lastly, you always want to avoid using pigments in the interior of your candle.  Only candle dyes should be used to color the interior of your candle wax.

Nov
06

Candle Making- Soy Candles


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Soy wax Candles When it comes to candle making, the wax you use is really up to personal choice.

There are quite a few reasons why candle makers select soy wax for their candles.  Some like it due to the fact that soy wax is 100% natural (it is a pure vegetable wax) and it is biodegradable.  Many prefer soy wax because of the long, even, and clean burn the wax provides with less soot.  And, even still, many candle crafters like soy wax because it is an environmentally friendly, renewable resource that American farmers can plant and harvest; also helping the economy too. Some other reasons for why some people prefer using soy wax for their candles are ease of use.  Since this wax is in flake form, it is a breeze to weigh out, work with, and clean up.  And, soy wax is a single pour wax, requiring no repours.

Soy wax is for container candles.  Due to the nature of this natural wax, the finished candle will have a mottled (or frosted) appearance on top.  However, if you do not like this appearance, you can always apply heat to the finished candle with a hot hair dryer or heat gun.

Supplies and Equipment Needed: 
NG 100% Soy Wax
Fragrance Oil
Spectrum Candle Dye or Color Block
Pouring Pot
Thermometer
Glassware
Wicks
Scale
Stainless steel mixing utensil
Cookie Sheet
Hot Glue Gun
Glue Sticks
Stove
Pot

A little behind the scenes knowledge: 

For this candle making process we are going to suggest the double boiler system for melting the wax.  Fill a large pot half way full with tap water.  Place the filled pot onto the stove top burner.  Turn the appropriate burner on medium heat.  Once you have the pouring pot filled with the correct amount of soy wax, place the pouring pot into the water filled pot.  Once the water starts to boil, you will notice that the soy wax is beginning to melt.  As this occurs, you want to occasionally stir the wax to ensure an even temperature.

Carefully place your glassware on a cookie sheet.  Preheat your oven to the lowest temperature possible.  Once the oven is heated, place the cookie sheet with the glassware into the oven.  Allow your glassware to warm in the oven for 10-15 minutes.  Once the allotted time has passed, carefully remove the cookie sheet using oven mitts.  Set these aside. 

The standard fragrance percent for soy candles is 1-1 ½ ounces of fragrance oil per pound of wax.

For measuring purposes, 20 ounces (weight) of soy wax is equivalent to 16 ounces of fluid volume.

Directions for making a soy candle: 

1.  Weigh out the correct amount of soy wax with your scale.
2.  Place your soy wax into your pouring pot and using the double boiler system, heat the wax to 185 degrees Fahrenheit.  Monitor this by using your thermometer.  Please Note:  Heating soy wax hotter than 200 degrees Fahrenheit will discolor the wax, so proper monitoring of the temperature is advised.
3.  While you are waiting on the wax, plug in your hot glue gun.
4.  Once the wax is in a liquid state, add your candle colorant.
5.  Next, add your Natures Garden’s fragrance oil of choice and stir well to incorporate throughout the wax.  The information we provide below about flash point and burnoff is information we have learned over the years that will help make the best soy wax candles.  When making candles, it is important to understand that ingredients affect the end result.  Testing needs to be done by the candle maker for every fragrance that you decide to use.  We provide the information as a guide, but you will still need to do the testing yourself.
      a.  For this step you will need to know the flashpoint of the fragrance oil you selected.  The right temperature is extremely important to ensure that the fragrance oil binds properly with the soy wax.  You also do not want to risk “burnoff”.  Burnoff is the adding of a fragrance oil at too hot of a wax temperature.  Because a flashpoint on a fragrance oil is the highest temperature the fragrance can handle before breaking down, burnoff can affect the scent in the finished candle.  That is why you want to know the proper temperature to add the fragrance oil.  You can find this information right on the label of the Natures Garden fragrance oil.  This information is also in the Important Fragrance Specifics area on the website under each fragrance oil listing.
b. Fragrance Flashpoints give you the answer as to when you add your fragrance oil to the hot wax.  Any flashpoint that is higher than 185 degrees Fahrenheit is added at 185 degrees.  For any flashpoints that are below 185 degrees, they should be added at or below the flashpoint degree.  The key to remember is try not to add the fragrance oil at a temperature that is hotter than its flashpoint.
c.  Some fragrance oils have a very low flashpoint.  In these cases, testing comes into play.  You are balancing flashpoint temperatures with the fact that the wax needs heat in order to bind the scent with the wax.
6.  Once the soy wax has been scented and colored, you will want to stir your wax thoroughly.  Doing this step will help the mixing and binding of the color and scent throughout the wax.
7.  The next step is allow your soy wax to cool at room temperature.  Place your thermometer into the pouring pot and wait until the wax reaches 110 degrees Fahrenheit.  Pouring at this temperature will allow for a smoother surface in your finished candle.  While you are waiting, prep your containers for the pour.
8.  Using your hot glue gun, place a little amount of glue to the bottom of the wick tab.  Then, carefully center the wick to the bottom of the glassware.  Gently, straighten your wick in each glass.
9.  Once your wax is the appropriate temperature (110 degrees F), you will notice the physical appearance of the wax will be slushy like.  At this point, you are now ready to pour your wax.  Slowly, fill each glass to the point where the jar changes shape.  Filling a jar surpassed the point where the jar changes shape will increase your chance of a sink hole in the finished candle.
10.  Once all containers have been poured, allow them to set up and undisturbed at room temperature.
11.   When all candles have completely set up, lid each container to allow for the fragrance to be absorbed by the wax.  This is known as the “cure time.”  For best results, allow your candles to cure for 24-48 hours.
12.  Once the cure time has elapsed, it is now time to trim your wick, and light your homemade soy candle.  Enjoy!

On a Final Note: 

Anytime you burn a candle for the first time, you want to establish a “memory burn.”  A memory burn is a complete wet pool of hot, melted wax over the entire top portion of the candle.  If the first burn is a memory burn, this ensures that every time you burn your candle, you will not have tunneling around the wick or an excess of unmelted wax adhered to the candle jar.  A memory burn also guarantees that the scent throw of your candle will be the best possible since every gram of scented wax is being used.

If you are interested in making your very own soy wax candles, Natures Garden offers a Soy Wax Kit with all the ingredients you need to make soy candles. 

 

 

Oct
18

Football Field Candle Loaf Recipe


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bonnie-pic1

This is Bonnie of Natures Garden.

It is time to get excited!  Another Thursday has passed which means that we have another employee spotlight creation to share.  We are currently in week 10 of the Natures Garden Employee Challenge.  Each week we ask one of the employees to share their spotlight creation- a project/recipe that they create using Natures Garden’s supplies and one of their personal favorite fragrance oils.  Creativity is highly encouraged!  This week’s spotlight creation was done by Bonnie, one of our newer employees at Natures Garden.  Her project is tactfully named Football Field Candle Loaf.

Bonnie was inspired by the theme of football since she has several family members that are football fans.  She also wanted to produce an item that men can make and use in their own “man caves”.  So, considering all of this Bonnie decided that she would make a loaf candle that would resemble a football field.  The two fragrance oils that she selected for this were Fresh Cut Grass (for the field) and Leather Jacket (for the football).

football-candle1

A image of the finished Football Field Candle Loaf and football melt and pour soaps.

Besides the football loaf candle, Bonnie also brought another unique idea to share with everyone.  One night while she was figuring out the specifics of her project, she had ordered pizza for dinner.  When it arrived, and she opened the box; a light bulb went off.  She saved and washed the pizza saver.  (If you do not know what this is, it is the small plastic table that the pizza companies place in the center of the pizza to prevent the cardboard from falling in.)  She was inspired.  Bonnie thought that this would be a perfect kicking tee; just like the professional punters use.

She was right.  After making her Football Field Loaf Candle, Bonnie made a small second project-  Football Soaps.  Using the same Silicone Football Mold from her candle, she melted Goat’s Milk Melt and Pour Soap.  Using Fun Brown Oxide, she colored the soap.  Then, she selected a manly scent- The Perfect Man Fragrance Oil.  Once the soap hardened, she popped it out of the mold, and the football fit perfectly right in the pizza saver.  An adorable bathroom soap concept for any football lover who occasionally orders pizza too.

Besides football, Bonnie also enjoys spending time with her family.  She is a big pet lover and has 2 Dachshunds (wiener dogs).  Their names are Oscar Myer and Roxie and they love going for walks.  Because she and her husband have an RV, they enjoy camping and the outdoors whenever they can.

Bonnie also enjoys attending Zumba Fitness, and used to be an instructor of Zumba as well.

In her daily spare time, Bonnie listens to and enjoys all music types from Metallica to Miranda Lambert to Glee.  She is also very into the Candy Crush Saga Game.

When it comes to Bonnie’s Moto for life, she lives by words her mother always said:  “Listen to people’s advice, but do what you feel is right.”

To view the complete instructions for Bonnie’s Spotlight Creation Football Field Candle Loaf, you can simply click on the link.  The recipe is also available in the free recipes and classes section of the Natures Garden website.