Every christmas I try to make something myself and gift it. I do have the luck, that the mother of my SO likes self-made thinks, so I can use her as an exuse to induldge myself.
Last year I went for bath bombs (more tablets than big bombs) and Rumtopf. Both were a huge success.
As I always wanted to try candles I went for them this year. As the mother of my SO has a terrace to sit outside in the summer, I tried to go for a mosquito repellant ones. I’m not sure how good that will work out, as I can’t test that right now.
- citronella oil
- wooden skewer
- glass or cup or anything else you want to use as candle, I used old bottles and a bottle cutter, more about that below
- old candle
- old cooking pot
- another pot, where the wax can be melted in, like a tin can
First prepare the glass or cups you want to use. Make sure they are clean. Prepare the candlewigs. As I used wooden skewers for shashlik I just speared the candlewigs onto the wood. You can also tape or knot them. Just make sure they are not teared down by a bit of pressure. Also some adivce on the wig diameter. It depends on the diameter of your candle. Selling sites should state for what diameter the wig is suitable. This is important, otherwise the candle may not work properly.
Put the wood with the candlewig on the container you want to use as a candle. To make the wig straight, I used an old candle. I dropped some melted wax in the middle of the container and pressed the other end of the wig into it. The candle wig now made a straight line.
And now for the waiting part: the wax melting. The wax will be melted in a water bath. If you have a large chunk of wax, it’s best to break it off in smaller ones before starting, this will speed up the melting.
Start with putting water into the larger pot. Depending on size you choose for melting the wax, either put the second pot in the water or on top of the water pot. Be carefull that no water has the chance to come in contact with the wax. Put the stove on a middle setting. Keep an eye on it and stirr occaisenly. The wax will start to melt in a brown fluid (if beewax is used), the block will take one a whiter hue until all is melted.
When all is a brown liquid (and you added a few drops of the citronella), carefully take out the pot (caution, it’s very hot) and slowly pour the wax into the prepared containers. Work carefully to not dislodge the wig. Proceed and repeat the procedure until either the wax is used up (if not everything was melted on the first try), or until the candle has enough wax to your liking.
Attention, don’t pour the remaining wax down your drain! The wax will become solid as it cooles down and can clog the drain.
Making your own glasses:
If you are really crazy, you can also make your own glasses out of old bottles. I did that, but it takes some work.
- bottle cutter, I used this one
- old bottles
- sand paper for glass
I followed the instructions in this video. With some modifications. As I had no rubber bands, I left them out, also I did not pour the hot water over the cut, but submerged the bottle in a pot and then run cold water from the tap directly.
I alterned between the two until the bottle “broke”. It really worked best with the smaller cuts, meaning the cuts created when run only once over the blade. The others did not broke that neatly.
Sanding will take quite a while, but don’t give up, it will get better. In the video polishing powder is used, if you have access to some, use it. But you can also take sanding paper. Keep the paper in place with one hand, and run the bottle in repeating circle motions over the paper.
The bottle is ready when there is not shiny part anymore.