Making New Candles From Your Old Ones

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Candlemaking: Making use of those little candle stubs
Written by: Laura Williams
Web Site: 

Making "new" candles from those little candle stubs is an easy way to use them up and get new life or light from them.

Whenever I go to a yard sale or thrift store, I look for old candle stubs (yes, there's people who will actually sell those little candle stubs). I buy them and often times are the I am given the stubs because no one wants to fool with them.

How to Make Candles from stubs:

1. I take an old Juicy Juice can (the 48oz cans) or big coffee can and cut the top off of it. Rinse it out and dry it out. This becomes my melting pot.

2. I then gather up all the candles of the same color and put them in the "pot" on a stove (wood, gas or electric works fine). If you use an gas or electric stove, be sure to keep the stove eye (element) turned on low to prevent bubbling and splattering of the hot wax.

3. Once they candle stubs are melted, I pour them into their new molds. The molds may be anything from little glass jars I've picked up at yard sales or thrift stores; old candle holders (those little glass ones that look like bowls in Walmart etc), or even plastic jello or pudding cups or what have ya. I don't have one of the candle taper molds (yet but I would like to get one).

4. If I am using glass, I make sure the glass is hot by putting the hottest water I can in a sink and putting the glass into that to warm up. Then I will pour the melted wax into it. I use an old chopstick to tie a piece of wick around and stick down into the wax. Sometimes I can salvage a piece of wax out of the melted candles to use in the new candle. You can make your own wicks too.......more on that in a bit.

5. I then allow it to sit in the water to cool a bit before removing it and placing it on a towel on the counter to finish cooling and hardening. I have added drops of scents before as well. Things like peppermint (like you use to make candles with) to white candles or red candles, etc.

6. You can make layered candles too. Just pour about half the mold with one color of wax, let cool and not completely harden, then pour the other color wax on top of that, let cool and harden completely. You can make it just two layers like this or you can make more layers depending on how many layers you want, just by pouring a little wax, letting cool and then adding the next layer, and so on.

7. I've used decorative candle holders that all the wax has melted out of and made new candles for them. I've found neat candle holders at thrift stores and yard sales and put a "new" candle in it and given them as gifts to family and friend.

8. I have even floated small items in the cooling wax.

Make your own wicks:

Now about making your own wicks, I like picking up old cotton (white) t-shirts out of the freebie boxes at the thrift store for this. I only use the white ones so you don't have to boil them alot to get out the dyes. Take an cut the t-shirts into strips about 1" wide and however long you want the wick to be, depending on whether or not you are making tapers or small candles. You then dip the strips, one at a time, into hot wax. Let cool enough where you can handle it and twist it until it is a thin, tight strip and clings to itself. If your wick is too thick it will smoke. Dip in the wax again. Let cool and dip again. You need to do this about 3 times as far as dipping and cooling. Then you have your wick. You can also do this with a string. You can even use pipe cleaners, I don't like using them though because of the wire in the center of them.


This Article Written by
Laura Williams
stay-at-home mom and home schooler
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