We’ve spent a LOT of time over the past months working out the most effective ways to recycle old candles into new. We’ve set up a Recycling Group which receives the latest projects and advice on how to recycle candles, please think about joining it by clicking the link: it’s entirely free!
We’re going to be releasing a series of projects containing full instructions on how to make candles using recycled wax. Some of them, such as this one, require a mould but the next project is a container candle for which you can use an old mug or jar. We’ve listed ideal ingredients and materials below but feel free to experiment with odds and ends at home.
Here’s our first project which enables you to make this gorgeous pillar candle using recycled wax. You can either follow the instructions here or download them to print out (right click the link and select “Save As” to save it to your computer).
This project enables you to make a gorgeous pillar candle using recycled wax. The candle is 11cm (4+ inches) tall by 6cm (2+ inches) wide at the bottom and it burns beautifully. Not including the cost of the mould (which can be reused time and time again), the cost of materials for this beautiful recycled candle works out at just over £1.50! And you get the fun and satisfaction of making it – quite apart from the enjoyment of burning it or giving it to someone else.
You will need these materials:
An old coloured pillar candle (we used a red one)
15g stearin (optional but recommended)
a wick pin or pencil and a little blutack
…and this equipment
2 old saucepans, one smaller than the other. Or a double boiler/porringer set
1. 1/3rd fill the bigger saucepan with water and put it on the heat
2. Place the stearin and pillar candle wax in the small pan and place it within the larger pan to melt. No dye is used
3. Take your old coloured candle and carefully cut it into chunks of around 1cm in size. You’ll find this much easier if the wax is fairly soft. You need 100g of chunks if you’re using our mould
4. Thread your wick through the hole in the bottom of the mould and seal it with blutack
5. Pull the wick tight and place across a wick pin or pencil so that it is central. Fix it to the side of the pillar mould with a blob of blutack
6. Arrange the chunks around the wick, ensuring that it remains straight. Fill the mould with chunks to around 1.5 cm of the top
7. Place the prepared mould onto newspaper and, once the paraffin wax has melted, pour it into the mould ensuring that all the chunks are completely covered. You should have around 20% of paraffin wax left at this point
8. Leave the mould to completely cool. You’ll notice that the wax drops around the wick, forming a tunnel. Reheat and pour the remaining paraffin wax into the tunnel.
9. Leave the mould to cool again. Once it’s cool (after an hour or so), place it in the fridge for at least 2 more hours or, preferably, overnight.
10. Remove the blutack and wick pin and the candle should release from the mould by tapping the base of the mould (the wider part). If it doesn’t come out easily, pop the candle in the freezer for 30 mins before trying again.
The end result is a beautiful candle. When you light it, the wick burns the red chunks (or whatever colour the old candle was), forming a pool of coloured liquid. Let us know how you get on or of any variations you’ve come up with.