Pouring a Simple Gel Candle

Some of the prettiest gel candles I've
seen have been some of the simplest ...
just a pretty glass with pastel-colored gel.
This is the type of candle I like to pour
whenever I have been busy doing other things
(and not making gel candles), as it's the
hardest to mess up! Once you add the
element of adding decorations, embeds, etc.,
you also add to the risk ... not a big deal
if you're in good practice, but if you're
new to making gel candles, or you've put
the hobby down for awhile and are getting
back into it, then a "simple pour," for
me anyway, is the best.

Just start with a clean glass, preferably
one that is not too tall ... shallow glasses
are easier to handle when you're first starting
out, as the wick stays straighter without as
much worry due to the shorter length, you're
not dealing with as much gel as with a larger
glass, and, for burning, shorter, wider glasses
are a bit easier to manage, as you can clip
the wicks without much trouble. Your glassware
should be of good quality.

Then, of course, you'll need some wicking ...
I personally use unwaxed wicking and then
I prime my wicks in gel after crimping them
to the metal wick tab, but you may have
purchased special wicks for gel candles.
You just should not use the "pre-waxed"
wicks which have wax on them, as this
wax can foam up around the wick or
slightly cloud your candle.

It's all a matter of preference regarding
how you purchase your wicks, i.e., if on a
spool, with the tabs purchased separately, or
pre-tabbed and primed. If not pre-tabbed,
you'll need to cut the wicking to an inch
or so longer (higher) than the rim of your
glass ... this gives you enough extra wicking
so you can gently tug on it while your candle
is cooling to keep it straight. I have found
that nail clippers are great for clipping or
trimming wicks. Then, feed the wick into
the hole in the wick tab and firmly crimp
the neck on the wick tab. Believe it or
not, I have purchased pre-tabbed wicks in
the past, only to have them pull out of the
wick tab when tugged upon ... another good
reason why I like to do this myself!

While you are preparing your glassware
and your wick, you may have some gel
melting in your melting pot, which should
be either a double-boiler, crock pot,
"Presto Pot," or a clear coffee carafe
(my melting pot of choice for candle
gel) that is stove top-safe ... over an
extremely low flame or setting, if electric
stove top. (Note: Flame or setting can be
set higher if using double-boiler.)

As mentioned before, I have read that
some people prefer to melt their gel
in the oven. I suppose this is sort of
a seasonal choice ... if it's cold out
and you prefer to use an oven, for
instance, a Pyrex brand (tempered glass)
container is good for this. Since I
usually do not use my oven for melting
candle gel, I am not sure of the setting,
but I am thinking that 200 degrees F.
may be used, checking the gel often ...
I would think that for the most part,
melting gel in the oven would be good
if that's your preferred method, but
then, perhaps near the end of the
melting period, I think that in order
to work with the melting pot (adding
colorant and scent), then switching
over to the stove top may be beneficial.
Actually, I have been known to melt
my gel down in the sun on hot days ...
just until the end, then bringing
into the stove top for the remainder
of the melting ... whatever works
for you the best!

When some of the gel has melted,
you can prime your wick by placing
it in the melted gel just enough for it
get covered in gel ... then, take it out
and set it down on a clean surface
(tile, piece of waxed paper, plate)
to cool, making sure it is straight,
with no bends.

I like to use a metal poultry lacer
for securing my wick in the container ...
I simply dip the wick tab into some
hot gel (holding it by the wick), then
quickly "land" it in the bottom of the
glass, centered, pressing down on the
wick tab in alternate "four corners"
of the round tab to make sure it is
evenly placed and secured.

For beginners, this can take a little
practice ... if it comes undone, simply
take it out, pull the gel off of the tab
and do it again. When done correctly,
after a few minutes, you can gently tug
on the wick and it will remain in place.

Note: the amount of gel you are melting
should be just over the amount required
for the size of your glass ... this will
account for some of the gel which will most
likely remain in the melting pot after you
have poured your candle ... it's always
better to melt a little extra and have some
left over than to not melt enough if you
want your candle to be free of any layers.
For instance, if you have a 3 ounce glass,
melt about 4 ounces or so of gel.

Once your gel has melted and is almost
ready for pouring, colorant can be added.
Liquid colorant is the best to use for
clarity ... wax colorants can be used,
but can upset the "crystal clearness" of
your gel since they are made from wax.
It's important to add colorant a little bit
at a time, and, it's also very important to
take into consideration that the color of
gel in the melting pot often looks lighter
than when it's in a glass! (When the gel
is in the melting pot, it is spread out,
so you are not looking through the same
density as when looking at it in a glass.)
Take a little sample in a spoon and wad
it up to see the real color. I often apply
liquid color by first taking a small piece
of gel and placing a drop or two of color
on it, then adding that piece of gel to my
melting pot. Another method you may
wish to use is to make some small
batches of intensely colored gel ahead
of time, then, when coloring your candle,
simply use little pieces of gel from
the over-colored gel piece ... in this
way, you don't mess with the liquid
colorant at all when making your candle.

If you don't want many bubbles in your
candle, it helps if your glass is warm
when you pour. In this case, warm your
glass and secure your wick closer to the
time when you will pour your candle, as
warming the glass after the wick is secure
can sometimes dislodge the wick, so it's
best if the glassware is already warm and
kept warm for a short period of time before
pouring. Also, you will want your candle
gel to be hot when pouring ... about
200-220 degrees F.

Scent is usually added as the final step ...
just before pouring your candle.
When purchasing your scent, make sure
you are buying "non-polar" scented oil,
which is also marketing as "gel candle
scent." Polar scents are used in wax
candles and may cloud your gel and
are not as safe to use. If you are using a
medium density candle gel, you will use
approx. one teaspoon of scent for a 3 oz.
candle, as this type of gel can hold 3/4 oz.
of scent per pound of gel. (Light density
candle gel can hold 1/2 oz. per pound,
and heavy density, 1 oz. per pound.)

When adding your scent, measure it
based on the proper amount suggested
for the amount of gel you are using ...
you may have to do a little math here,
but once you get used to it, it's easy.
Scent needs to be mixed very well ...
stirring with a metal spoon in a
"figure eight" motion from the bottom
of the melting pot upward, keeping the
spoon below the surface of the gel as to
not create any unwanted bubbles.

Before pouring your candle, make sure
your glassware is on a level surface.
Then, carefully pour your candle.
I don't pour my candles to the rim ...
a matter of personal preference in a
way ... for instance, if I'm pouring into
a small glass, I'll leave about 1/4" to
3/8" at the top, and if a taller glass,
about 1/2" ... if you fill it to the top
of the glass, and there are any surface
bubbles that have created a problem
of any sort, you can pour a little gel
over the blemished area if there is
still room ... if you pour all the way
to the rim, beyond trying to mend
the surface using a heat gun, there's
not as many options for "mending."
Also, plastic wrap can be used to
protect the candle after it has been
made (completely cooled) ... if the
level of the candle is below the rim,
then the plastic wrap will not touch
the gel when stretched across the glass.

Now that the candle is poured:
"Do Not Disturb" ... whatever you do,
don't move your candle, as the slightest
movement will push some gel up onto
the glass, which is very difficult
to remedy. If you see some surface
bubbles arise, you may carefully hold
a lit match near the bubble which will
cause it to pop. A heat gun can be
used, however, this can take some
practice, and if you are new to this,
it may cause a wave of gel to blow
up onto your glass, so do this
with caution.

For few bubbles, cooling on a warm
surface or windowsill can be beneficial ...
as long as it's a level surface.
I personally do not like putting
candles in a warm oven, as moving
them often can destroy them and
sometimes too many big bubbles can
arise and it's harder to reach the
candle to work with it if it's in
the oven. The use of a heat gun
lightly applied to the glass itself
can also help minimize bubbles ...
you just need to watch it closely,
as bubbles will rise to the top
and they will need some heat to
pop and smooth over.

Make sure your wick is straight by
gently tugging on it in an upward
motion ... this may need to be done
again as the candle cools.

When your candle is completely cool,
you can clip the wick to 1/4" and
carefully remove any excess gel
that has accumulated on it.

For finishing touches, a bit of
glass cleaner to remove any smears
on the glass ... perhaps some ribbon
around the glass, etc. Wrapping
can be plastic wrap, tissue paper,
candle topper or other creative ideas
that is an entirely different topic!

Have fun!



Sorting it all out - Part II

I have a few more jewels I would like to share
on the "misinformation topic" ... the first one
being that I recently read that one way to
minimize bubbles in your candle gel is to
either place your melting pot in the oven or
your microwave. This article neglected to
add any information in regard to temperature,
or time. I would just like to say that if your gel
is already in your melting pot ... simply keep it
there and pour your candle at a temperature of
approx. 200-210 degrees and allow it to cool
in a warm place ... a sunny window can often
be a good place if the weather is on the warm
side, or on top of a warm oven ... just make sure
these places are level. As far as "in the oven" ...
I will offer some more on this later ... but, in

regard to "in the microwave" ... do not ever use
the microwave in any way, shape, or form when
melting candle gel.

There is some awful "information" out there
and in some cases, I seriously doubt that the writers
have any hands-on experience with making gel
candles ... in some cases, they may likely be
suppliers of other candle supplies, writing articles
simply to widen their reach out into the Internet in
attracting customers. Of course, there is nothing
wrong with doing that, but, in my opinion, the
information should be checked out, or even better,
personally experimented with and tested so that the
vast majority of information that is shared is good
and safe advice / information.

Some of these instructions are not hazardous
to candle making, they just may not be methods
which provide positive, or the most positive
results, but, some of the advice can be dangerous.
For instance, I discovered the following:
Gel doesn't need a wick tab, so just tie the wick
to a stick and set it on top of the container.

I have NEVER seen any instruction that states that
gel candles do not require a wick tab ... to the
contrary ... all information I have ever read says
that it must have a wick tab. And, in my own
experience, I would say that in order to make a
safe candle, that all gel candles should not only
have a wick tab, but should also have a wick tab
with a longer stem (or neck / collar) than typically
used with wax candles, which is crimped at the top
portion of the stem (neck) to prevent the candle
from burning to the very bottom of the glass.

With the use of non-polar scents, which are a
type of scented candle oil used in gel candles
that do not sink to the bottom of the gel ... polar

scents can concentrate at the very bottom of the
candle and ignite when the flame reaches the bottom.
With non-polar scents, the longer stems are not quite
as necessary, but they are still safer to use, especially
if you have used glitter in your candle, as some of the
glitter may sink to the bottom and if the candle burns
down to the very bottom, the glitter could then begin

to burn. Speaking of glitter ... here is another comment
I found, "Make a glitter candle ... use extra fine glitter
and add it to the wax before pouring." ... As I mentioned
previously, best to manage where the glitter goes,
and, extra fine glitter is most likely to clog the wick,
depending on the type of glitter. I was happy to see
this same article state (in regard to glitter):
"A little goes a long way."

Some of this advice is harmless, but I'm not quite
sure why it is stated and some of it doesn't exactly
make any sense to me ... for instance ...

"Use some of the melted gel to prime wicks and

to coat any embeds you want to use ... leave the
embeds in the gel until the bubbles stop, and throw
away that gel ... use tweezers to remove the
embeds ... place the coated embeds into the
container and place the wick."

Gee ... that's quite a paragraph there! First of all,

let's define "embeds" so we know what we are
talking about. I think this article is referring to
such things as shells, glass decorations, etc.,
and not shaped wax embeds, but I can't be sure,
but perhaps that's why it says to "leave the embeds
in the gel until the bubbles stop" ...
I am guessing that was this is referring to are

shells with an inner chamber ... in essense, it
is telling you to fill the air gap in the inner chamber
of the shell. As far as throwing away any excess gel,
I don't know why you would do that. I also don't
know why you have to handle the embeds with
tweezers after the gel has cooled ... and, when
decorating a container with shells such as this,
your wick gets mounted into the container
first and then your gravel, sand, embeds,

etc. are added.

Here's a dandy ... "Let your gel candle cool completely
and trim the wick to 1/16 of an inch before burning."
... I'm personally not so sure this candle is going to

burn with a one-sixteenth of an inch wick ...
ever clip a candle too close? Then you know
what I'm talking about.

Perhaps some folks have success in using strings for

positioning embeds, but I'm not sure that this is the
method: "Make floating embeds ... tie objects to
string and tape the string to the outside of the container
or tie to sticks over the container ... cut strings and remove
when the candle is cool." First of all ... in my experience
anything that you put into the gel before cooling is going
to be there after cooling and anything you do to try to
change that is going to put marks, creases, etc. into
the gel ... so how does this work anyway? There are a
few methods I like to use for floating embeds, but this
is not one of them. One that is the an easy way for
beginners is to use a "chunk candle" type of method,
allowing some candle gel to be built up in the bottom
of the candle and positioning shells, marbles, etc. on
top of the chunks, then pouring gel over the entire
design ... the gel chunks will hold up the embeds.
This method may have a lot of bubbles, as the chunks
have a way of creating bubbles since the candle is
not as hot due to their presence, but for a beginner,
it is a pretty easy method to work with.

Okay, here's another nice example of being led

down a wrong direction, ... "Make a jelly or drink
candle ... use a mason jar or drink glass and use
paraffin wax fruit pieces or paraffin cut into
chunks as ice cubes ... color the gel and
pour it over the wax embeds at a low temperature."

First of all, in order to successfully use wax

embeds, they need to be created with a high
meltpoint wax ... I prefer using hurricane wax
for this with a 165 degrees F. meltpoint ...
they can take the hot gel a little better and your

chances of them bleeding or melting is a bit more
minimal ... however, you still need to consider them,
as if they get too warm, they too can melt.
So, the meltpoint of the wax is very important.
An additional note regarding the "ice cubes" ...

I have found that these come out looking more
realistic if you make small squares ... not
full-sized cubes ... and dip them into clear gel
so they get a nice thick coating on them, allowing

them to cool, then using them as your ice cubes.
This creates ice cubes that look as though they
are melting and also creates space between
them within the glass.

Finally, I will end with this bit of information I read:
"Make a layer gel candle ... pour clear gel and let

it cool completely ... pour colored gel on top of
that and stab the lower layer with a knife ...
the hot color gel will seep into the clear gel making
streaks of color ... you can also use a turkey
baster or syringe to inject hot gel into a cool layer."

From my experience, this is not how to make a

professional layered gel candle that is "seamless" ...
I am going to offer more information about this in a
future post, but I will say that the cooled gel layer
could end up creating so many bubbles that it could
actually ruin the effect, esp. after having been
"stabbed" ... and, as for trying to suck up hot gel
into a turkey baster and insert it into the candle ...
I believe this to be a rather dangerous thing to try ...

I've never attempted this, as I don't wish hot gel to
come flying out of a turkey baster onto my arm or
all over the counter ... not sure about the syringe,
perhaps some people have had luck with this,
but also, it is not a method I've ever attempted.
A layered candle is not a "streaked" candle, so
I think this article was a bit confusing that way ...
usually, a layered candle is thought of as a
candle with different colored layers.
As for creating streaks within a candle, this can
be done in a similar way as swirls, with liquid
colorant and a metal pick, by rolling the pick
into some dye and then into the gel ... if you
want lots of fluid movement, do it when the
candle is still very hot ... if you want more of a

solid, "frozen" look ... wait until the candle is
somewhat cooled down. With the latter method,
your candles surface is most likely going to need
a few moments under a heat gun to level it
out a little.

This brings me to one last point here ...

that being the use of a heat gun ... even if mine is
on the low setting, it's best used at a safe enough
distance from the candle so it doesn't splash the gel
around ... they can take a little practice using,
as you really don't want to cause a wave of gel
to get onto the glass above where the surface
of your candle is going to be ... this looks very

messy and it's very hard to rectify this if this
happens, beyond adding more gel to your
candle to bring the level of the candle up a bit
to try to cover it up, although also, you don't
want to do this to such a point as to fill your
glassware too much, as you most likely would
like to seal your finished candle in plastic wrap
and this is best done if the candle is filled
so that there is at least 1/4"-1/2" of space

between the rim of the glass and the contents.

All of these "little" finer points in gel candle

making are what make the difference between
a well-made, polished candle and a sloppy candle.
I like my candles to look nice. If you think about
your design a bit before trying to create it, you'll
find that you will stop to consider these finer points.
It may take a few tries to know what to look for,

but that's why, in my experience, with any design
I've ever come up with, that it takes making about
two to three candles for myself (as well as
test-burning, which you should always do with
any new design) before making one to sell or
give as a gift ... that way, you know for a fact

that your design works well ... it's not just the
design idea and concept that creates the candle ...
it's also the experiment and the experience ...
in other words, the fun!

Sorting it all out - Part 1 ...

From my personal experience, I know very
well the confusing information that is available
for beginners and I fell into some traps myself
when I was first starting off. So, I'd like to
take a little side road here and explore some of
the information that I have recently found that
certainly could be considered confusing to
a new gel candlemaker.

First ... a little history ...

Years ago, I realized that there was a lot
of misinformation at the time roaming around
about making gel candles ... such as (for
instance), in order to achieve bubbles,
use a straw and blow into the gel and other
such stories ... this is not really a favored
method, by the way! In order to try to
"get the message through" to others that
some of the "advice" I read was actually
misinformation, I hosted a forum about
gel candles for awhile at Delphi forums.
With moving to another state, I had to give
up my forum, but it was fun while it lasted
and I met some friends there.

So, now, years later, I venture out into the
Internet to see what type of information I can
find in the form of website resouces, with my
hope, of course, that by now I will only find
good information. In doing some reading,
I have found much more good information than
what used to be available, but, unfortunately,
I have again discovered some missing information
from articles or "how to's" that appear to represent
themselves as "complete," or I have discovered
some bad advice or confusing information.

How is a beginner supposed to sort all of this out?
This is being written, not so much to be crictical
of the work of others, so I'm not going to post
references to this material ... but I am going to
offer some other ideas or thoughts, which may differ
from the material I have read.

Gel candles aren't that difficult to make ...
but there are some things to look out for.
The "basics" include knowing about
glassware so you purchase a safe container,
learning about the gel itself and how to
work with it, understanding the basics of
how a container candle is made, realizing
that all wicks do not perform the same way,
and having a basic understanding about
colorants and fragrance oils. Once you
understand about these components, then
when you read a "step-by-step" how-to,
you know how to fill in the gaps.

Unfortunately, there is a lot of material
available that offers the beginning "geller"
a step-by-step guide, but leaves out much
of the "real stuff" you need to know.

So, what I am going to explore here for a bit
is a combination of some of the "real stuff"
I feel that you should know before getting
started, and I'm going to take a look at some
of the step-by-step guides I have read and
share some of my thoughts regarding those
guides here.

Then, I'll offer you some steps of my own ...
but, for starters, I would like to educate you
about some of the issues you will most likely
come across and I would also like to address
some of the material I've read since you may
have read it too!

Since the first part of your candle design is
usually choice of container, I'm going to start
with the topic of glassware. This is something
that you should not skimp on ... you need your
candle to be in a proper container ... one that
will not crack or catch fire and one in which
your candle can burn nicely (for instance,
some glassware with narrow openings may
suffocate your candle, make it difficult to trim
the wick, etc.)

One article I read said you can select "ceramic
containers like mugs or any fancy-shaped
figurine that could hold the candle wax when
melted and cooled ... glasses are also great."

Truly, some "fancy-shaped" figurines may not
work for a candle, depending on the shape,
and secondly, although some ceramics can be
used for candles, you need to make sure that
they are "tempered" ... in other words, that the
ceramic has been "fired," making them heat
resistant. I don't know why it stated that
"glasses are also great" since you can see through
gel candles and part of the delight is the clarity
and transparency of the glass. "Any shape
that could hold the candle wax when melted"
is not a good method for selecting your
glassware, however.

Again, containers with narrow openings or
passages are not candle containers ... not
only can you not reach the wick to trim it,
if the candle will burn (narrow passage will
not permit sufficient oxygen for the candle
to burn), and it if does, as the candle burns
through the narrow passage, it could make
the wick too close to the glass, which is
dangerous.

Also, the size of the glassware and diameter
of the opening in relation to the size of the
wick (and type of wick) was not mentioned.

This particular article goes on to mention
supplies required, and it lists ... gel wax,
candle wicks, pencils, pot (for melting wax),
candle scent and color, sharp scissors.

It describes some type of method for securing
the wick, (one that is sometimes used for wax
candles), leaving out a vast amount of information
about wicking and gel candle information.
In this article, we are told to "twine the wick"
around a pencil, leaving some of the wicking
free so it can reach the bottom of the container."
It describes that the wick "must be straight down
the center of the container" ... but, with these
instructions, that is about all I could find that
was useful. It continues to instruct us to insert
the pencil with the twined wick on it into the
container, allowing the wick to "hang down
the center of the container" (i.e., before pouring) ...
this simply is not the proper procedure for
gel candles. Candle gel, when burning in a
candle, becomes very fluid and when not
burning, it is not as stable as paraffin wax,
so if the wick is not a) wire cored, and
b) secured at the bottom of the container,
it will most likely "float" or drift off from
the center or even worse, simply float around!
Wicks need to be centered properly for safety
reasons ... a one-sided wick can heat the glass
up too much on one side and become dangerous
in that the glass can crack, etc. ... not to mention
that the candle will not burn evenly.

Alright, back to the article ... the next step
went on to say that you should melt the
gel by cutting it into cubes (pieces are fine)
first so it melts faster, and then went on to
say to "add color and scent, but make sure
that they will not make the wax cloudy."

I don't know how a beginner is supposed to
know how not to do that (make the gel cloudy) ...
there are many things that can make your gel
cloudy and I'll go over this later ... for now, just
make a note that there are things that can make
your gel cloudy, and two of those things can
be colorants and scented oils.

The article sums up the process rather quickly
toward the end with some confusing notes about
pouring your candle, such as, "Fill the container,
but set a limit ... before getting to the next step,
make sure that the wax turned gel fully cools
down ... check out the wick if it really takes the
focal point of the container ... trim the wick to
¼ of its total length."

The wick should be trimmed to approx.
one-quarter of an inch ... not a quarter of its
total length. Also, after your candle has cooled
is surely not the time to try to make any
adjustments to your wick.

If you wait until your candle has set to try to
play with the wick, you have certainly waited
too long! Also, I think most gellers will tell you
that you should not attempt to clip your wick
until your candle has completely set ... not only
cools down ... but has fully set so it remains
straight in your container ... trimming too soon
can possibly make a bend in your wick that will
be hard to un-do.

~~~

Well, that was the first article I read!

~~~

Shall I continue with some others? I think so!
I want to share these so that others know
what is right and what is not right.
Of course, I do not have all the answers,
and I can also be wrong about some things,
but, I am writing from experience ... this
may be something that some of the writers
are not doing. To me, this is really a shame
and a sham in a sense ... why guide people
when you don't know what you are doing?
It's not right, in my opinion.

Moving right along ... here are some
exerpts from the next article I read:

Here were some wicking notes ... this article
recommended a "pre-tabbed wick" made
specifically for gel candles ... but, it did
not mention why these are best to use,
or that there are other types of wicks you
can also use. It also stated to "secure your
wick to the bottom of your glass container
using a hot glue gun" ... it mentioned not to
use too much, but it did not mention that
there are other ways to secure a wick in a
gel candle. So, in other words, there was
selected information in this article ... good
information, but just not the entire story.

Here is another good example of this ...
"There are two methods of melting the gel ...
you can use either a presto pot or a glass
measuring cup in the oven."

I don't know where or when this all got started,
but it is not the first time I've read this ...
that there are only two ways to melt candle gel,
which is not a true statement. There are certainly
more than two ways to melt candle gel ... two of
them are mentioned in this article.

Other methods will be described more later, but
for now, please know that there are more than these
two methods exist (certainly!) for melting gel.
Also, I would like to mention at this point that
the oven method may be preferred by some during
the winter, but I have never chosen oven over
stovetop for working with candle gel.

Another article said to "spoon your desired amount
of gel into the measuring cup ... heat the gel in
the oven to 225 degrees ... use a candy thermometer
to get the most accurate temperature ... this process
could take up to one hour ..."

I really prefer to be more actively involved when I'm
making candles, I guess, plus I always try to only use
the amount of resources and energy that is necessary ...
if my house doesn't require my oven to be on for me
to make a candle, then certainly, this would not be my
choice. Another thing about this is the fact that your
oven is usually used for cooking food, which can
splatter, so if you ever use your oven for melting gel
or putting poured candles in the oven, which is one
method for minimizing too many tiny bubbles, then
you need to be certain that your oven is clean.

Okay, back to article ... it says that you can use
either liquid dye or a color dye block, but it does
not tell you that sometimes, certain dye blocks can
cloud your gel. It is safest to use liquid dye
for clarity. Adding colorant can sometimes take
practice, but there are methods that can be used
to help you to reduce over-coloring, which will be
shared here on anothe post.

In regard to embedded decorations, I have read that
"as a general guideline, you should push your embeds
into the candle with a skewer after you have poured
the gel" and to "simply push your embedded objects
into the gel with a metal skewer after you have
poured the gel" ...

If embedding marbles, shells and such, you can
try to move them, if desired, right after inserting
them, but it needs to be done very quickly, if it
is possible to move them about at all without either
disturbing your design too much, or causing bubbles
to form. It's best if certain embeds simply "fall"
into place if at all possible.

Since all embeds are not equal, they need to be
considered on an individual basis. For instance,
marbles are heavy and should not be dropped in
until the gel becomes very thick and heavy
(when it starts to form a skin on the surface,
such as with pudding). There are several
different techniques that can be used with
wax embeds, which I will not go into right
now, as I will describe various methods of
adding embeds a bit later, but you should
not use the pressure and pointers of skewers
with wax embeds, or you can break them or go
right through them. So wax embeds can usually
only be slightly "budged" very carefully and
right after they have entered the warm gel ...
the wax gets a bit soft and can be fragile.
Personally, I have never used a skewer to move
things about ... I prefer a metal poultry lacer.

On to another article ... this one states that ...
"Versagel is the recommended brand, as it
contains fragrances and colors, so you don't
need to mix any additives to your gel to
create scented gel candles."

Although there may be some pre-colored or
pre-scented products available (although I'm
not exactly sure how well a pre-scented product
would hold up scent wise, since it's always been
recommended to add your scent last, after your
wax or gel has melted so you don't lose potency ...
in other words, so the scent doesn't burn off before
pouring the candle) ... I have been a Versagel
customer for years, at one time, purchasing drums
of it directly from the company that makes it
(Penreco) and it is purely candle gel that you
color and scent to your liking.

In another "how-to" article or so, I saw the following ...
"You need to add a ½ ounce of the oil to your
heated gel. Test the smell of the fragrance to see
if you need to add more. Be sure to complete
this step before adding coloring to your gel.
Add color to your gel quickly, before it cools down.
You can use liquid dye or a color block.
Stir the color in slowly with a metal skewer."

Okay, now some of these statements almost made
me laugh out loud ... for more than one reason!

Where do I begin?

Poor beginners ... how are you to know what to
do when there is this type of stuff out there??

It really makes me feel bad ... I guess, this type
of stuff is what made me want to start this blog
in the first place.

Okay, I'll break it down into workable parts ...
and, experienced candle makers, you may agree
with me here ... what are these folks thinking?

First, any measure of scent cannot be suggested
if you do not know how much wax or gel you are
adding to. To have a measure, such as a half-ounce
without stating how much gel it is intended for is
totally irresponsible. "Test the smell of the
fragrance to see if you need to add more" is even
beyond that! There are percentages of scent to
use, based on the density of gel you are using ...
light, medium, or high, and how much. Further,
I would not advise to breathe in scented oil from
directly over your melting pot ... this is not
a good practice at all for a variety of safety
or health reasons. (I will post later with the

amount of scent to use with candle gel.)

"Be sure to complete this step before adding
coloring to your gel." ... Just a note to say
that I have never seen candle instructions that
say to add colorant last ... it has always been
to add scent as the final step.

"Stir the color in slowly with a metal skewer" ...
if you want to dispurse your color, you need to
use a spoon, not a stick.

Here are some other notes I read ... "If using liquid
dye, it is a good idea to dip a toothpick into the dye
and then swirl the toothpick with color into your gel."

Just as you should stay away from wooden spoons
when stirring gel (the wood is porous and foamy
bubbles can spring forth from it ... the same with
wooden toothpicks, just not as badly) ... I have
always used a metal pick, but when stirring in color,
again, if I want it to distribute evenly, I use a
spoon (not a stick or a pick).

It went on to say ... "If your gel is cooling down
during this step, you can heat it back up."

Although this is true, it's best to arrive at or
near your pouring temperature, add your additives
and pour. Your colorant can be added while your
gel is still heating up, but your scent should be
added last and gently mixed well, just before pouring.
Use a spoon to mix it ... inserting the spoon into
your pot and keeping it there while making a
"figure eight" motion until the scent is mixed
well, then gently remove the spoon. Do your best
to not create any needless bubbles by submerging
the spoon over and over again ... just try to
keep it in the pot and stir until you are
done stirring.

Here was another thing that didn't seem to make
much sense ... "If bubbles do start to form on the
surface of the gel, use a heat gun to eliminate them."

I am assuming that this is not referring to the melting
pot, but bubbles on the surface of the candle as it is
cooling. A heat gun can be used to help eliminate
this, but you have to be careful when using it ...
hold the heat gun at a distance from the candle
until you get a feel for it ... if it blows too hard,
you can really make a mess of your candle, as it will
flow up onto the glass, beyond the level of the candle
and leave a ring of gel on the glass above the level
of the candle, which does not look good.

Finally, this comment is the last one I will cover
for now ... "Once the gel candle is completely cooled,
trim the wick to about one inch in length" ... I wonder
where these people get this information from and why
they choose to share it?

I came across some other material I'd like to cover
also ... here is something that I found interesting ...




A couple of notes about this ... on the video, it shows
an amber bottle as one of the selections of glassware,
which is not an option for a candle. It says that high
density gel is the only one for embeds, which is not
truly the case ... it shows an oven for melting ... it says
"how can you tell" in regard to polarity of scent, but
does not advise adequately of how to test for it, and
on the topic of embeds, it seems to show some items
that could look as though they are flammable, but
I'm not sure.

Truly, there is some information out there that is

not really helpful ... I found a couple of other things
I would like to mention, but I will have to save them
for another post ... at least, in the meantime, this
covers some of the material I found that is often
incomplete or actually leads you in the wrong direction.
I will try to sort through more of this to share here
so we can sift through the misleading advice and
save ourselves some frustration!

I believe in experimenting and being

creative, but it's so much more fun if you
can find good advice first so you know you're
headed in the right direction!



Gel Candle Designs

Gel Candle Designs

There are several different types of design
ideas available when making gel candles ...
part of what makes these candles so much fun.
The possibilities are seemingly endless.

Here are some of the design scenarios
for gel container candles that can be explored ...

Simple

Jeweled

Artistic

Layered

Swirled

Mosaic

Floral

Holiday

Themes

Drink or cocktail

Water habitats

Sand Art

Desserts


For me, this is the first step to creating
a candle ... What is it going to be?

Then, the glassware sets the stage ...
much of the more interesting glassware
is usually a cocktail glass of some sort.
Wine glasses are also good choices.
Small "rocks" glasses or wide "tumblers"
or short juice glasses work well for many
designs also.

Beyond a simple pour, you can embellish
the design with embedded decorations,
such as marbles, polished stones or glass,
glass beads or beaded wire, colored gravel,
wax shapes, and more. You just have to
remember that anything that is embedded
into the candle either must be wax that can
safely burn along with the candle, or a substance
that cannot burn at all ... coins, blown glass
decors, marbles, stones, etc. For drink candles
you can add pieces of wax fruit or wax ice cubes.
A note about stones ... if using these, you need
to be careful with your selection and design,
as some rocks can become too hot and are not
safe choices for candles. When in doubt ...
do not use.

For dessert candles, you can use gel as an icing,
such as a strawberry or butterscotch sundae
sauce over ice cream, or a "sticky-sweet" drizzle
of flavor to a piece of pie or cake, and gel lends
itself wonderfully as a "pie filling" with wax fruit
shapes, as you have probably seen in preserve
or fruit pie or tart candles.

Seascape or freshwater designs make very
pretty candles with the use of shells or
pebbles with gravel. Note that sand dollars
and coral fragments are not safe to use.

Here are a few tips for when you're first
learning ... start simple. Once you get accustomed
to working with candle gel, you'll be more
confident to try new designs. After you decide
to try something more complicated, it's best not
to overdo it ... again, keep it on the "simple"
side for elegant candles ... if the candle is too
"busy" it will loose some of its effect.
Also, too much of some ingredients can
actually ruin not only the look of your candle,
but the candle itself ... for instance, if you add
too much glitter, your wick can become clogged
or make your candle unsafe for burning.
Or, if you add too much color, you'll end up
with a dark candle that you can't see into ...
too much scent will destroy your candle,
making it oily and dangerous. Be sure to
follow all safety guidelines.

So, if you're a beginner, first start to think about
the glassware you would like to use ... your
first color selections and scents you'd like to try.
These are the basic design concepts ... shape,
color and aroma. You may wish to start with
a dash of specialty glitter just around the rim
of the glass, or some simple embedded objects,
although there are some tricks to using any type
of embedded object or embellishment, so, again,
my advice for beginners is to start very simple ...
you won't regret it!

Glitter can be a pretty accent for candles, reflecting
light and color, but there are some considerations to
be taken before using glitter.

First, know that too much glitter, or too fine a
glitter can clog your wick and your candle will
not burn after the wick has clogged. Also, too
much glitter can cluster around the wick and
become a fire hazard. So, glitter should be
used at a minimum ... just enough to create
a little accent.

I only use glitter around the edge of gel
container candles on the surface (right
up against the rim of the glass), or against
the glass inside the candle ... far away from
the wick. Although some glitter particles may
become suspended in the gel, I feel it's too risky
to simply sprinkle glitter all over the top of a
gel candle, allowing it to fall into the candle
without restriction, or to actually mix glitter
in with the gel. Too much glitter in a candle
is not safe ... I will post a link at the bottom of
this article for reference showing an example
of a pillar candle design with glitter that did
not work out well and was recalled.

If you are burning a candle and glitter
accumulates around the wick, one thing you
can do is to use a metal pick to move the
glitter away from the wick, or run a metal
pick (poultry lacer) up and down the wick
a few times to loosen any glitter particles
that may be clogging it.

Specialty glitters work well ... although I have
found that the ultra-fine may clog wicks most
readily. A fine grade or metallic glitter has
always worked the best for me.

Here's a tip for having sprinkles of glitter up
against the glass on the inside of your candle ...

I have found it easiest to first mount my
wick in the bottom of the container, then
pour about an inch of candle gel into the
bottom of the glass and immediately tilt
the glass all the way around so the gel goes
up the glass on the sides to within about an
inch from the top ... when it has covered all
sides I quickly turn the glass completely
upside down over a melting pot to dump
out any excess gel. This final step isn't completely
necessary if you don't mind the excess gel at
the bottom of your candle ... but, if you don't
want any sign of it (it will cause a clear layer
at the bottom of your candle), then you need
to "spill out" the excess gel.

Now, you can sprinkle glitter on the inside
walls of your glass or jar and it will stick to
the gel. This can take a little practice to
make sure that you have a smooth layer
of gel up on the sides of your container ...
if at first you end up with a lumpy mess,
simply wait for it to cool a bit and peel it
off and do it again.



Tip: If you are are not a beginning gel candle
maker, you may already use this method for
glitter ... or you may also already use this
method for "sticking" wax shapes up against
your container.

Glitter, when used correctly and with care,
can add just a hint of color and sparkle that
shimmers while your candle is burning for
a very pretty effect.

As time goes on, I hope to share some techniques
for creating some of the design ideas I've mentioned
here and I hope you will try some of them!

Happy crafting!




Here is the link in reference to safety issue ...

Recalled Glitter Pillar Candles



Gel Candle Basics











Making gel candles is a lot of fun,
and there's a lot of room for creativity ...
but, there is also a lot to it.
So, I'm going to start to cover
some of the basics here and then
continue to explore some of the
various designs that can be achieved,
as well as some tips to help you
create beautiful candles.

If you have made candles before, you will
find that candle gel is quite a bit different
to work with than wax ... so, there are some
things you'll need to get used to.
The easiest thing for me was the clean up! ...
much easier with candle gel! You may find
little pieces of gel here and there, but
overall, I think it's an easier wax to
clean up after. The other thing that is
amazing is that if something didn't go
the way you planned, that it's usually
very easy to simply remelt the gel and
begin again, something that isn't quite
as simple with regular wax.

As with wax, you want to make sure to
monitor the temperature and mix your
scent thoroughly. Your wick needs to
be centered in the container if you
are making a container gel candle.
There are three densities of candle
gel ... light, medium, and high ...
the light and medium are used in
container candles and the high density
can be used for free-standing candles.
For now, I will be writing about gel
container candles and hopefully do
my own exploring in the future in
regard to free-standing gel candles,
as I have only made container candles.
Also, the topic of wax embellishments
or embedded objects or wax shapes will
topics I plan to cover in another post.

Your glassware needs to be of good
quality (thin glassware can shatter),
and your wicking and scent need to
be gel-compatible. In regard to the
wick, this means that it should have
a wire core so it will stand on its
own. There are some special gel wicks
available, which I am personally not
familiar with, as I have always used
a zinc core wicking ... one which has
not been coated with any wax.
When I first began making gel candles,
there wasn't a lot of information
out about them and I tried using
pre-waxed zinc core wicks only to
find that the wax that the wick has
been dipped in could cloud the gel.

So, I soon switched to a non-coated
wick ... only to find that once the
gel was poured, the fibers in the wick
released foamy bubbles! So, now,
I use zinc core wicks which I dip in
gel prior to securing in the bottom
of the container. I simply dip the
wick in some melted gel and allow it
to cool for a few minutes.
This prevents the bubbling.

Wicking in gel candles needs to
be secured (mounted) to the bottom
of the glass with a wick tab.
You may use the common methods for
securing a wick as with wax container
candles, but, with candle gel, you
may use the gel as your "glue" by
dipping the wick tab into hot gel
(must be hot) and immediately
centering your wick and tab in the
bottom of your glass, pressing
lightly with a metal pick (poultry
lacer works well) ... first on one
side of the tab, then on the other
to give even pressure and then allow
it to sit until cooled ... it should
form a suction with the glass.
Check it by tugging (VERY gently)
on the wick to see if it is secure.

For a safety measure, there is
another note about wicks and tabs ...
a wick tab with a longer neck is often
preferred. A shorter neck will allow
a candle to burn to the bottom of a
container ... if you have a long
stem or neck on the wick tab, the
candle will cease to burn when it
reaches the metal. In some designs,
a longer stem is not needed as there
may be something else there that will
prevent the candle from burning to
the bottom, such as in seascape gel
candles where there is sand in the
bottom of the container, etc.

For a candle scent to be compatible
with gel, it should be a "non-polar"
scent ... the practical description
of this means that it will not sink
down through the gel and concentrate
at the bottom of your candle as a
"polar" scent will. Instead, it
blends with your gel and remains
suspended within it so it is evenly
dispersed throughout the life of
the candle. A concentration of
scented oil in the bottom of the
container can ignite when the
candle burns down to the bottom.
With a non-polar scent, the scent
burns evenly along with the candle
and there is no concentration of
oil at the bottom of the candle.
(Polar scents are fine for other
types of harder waxes.)
Also, most polar scents will
cloud the gel and non-polar
scents will not. Most suppliers
can tell you if a scent is
"gel safe" ... if they can't,
or if you have a scent and you
aren't sure if it is or not,
there is a way to test it,
which I will describe later.

As for colorants ... I have always
used liquid dyes in my gel candles
for optimum clarity. Some people
use powders, which I have not tried
in gel, although I have a feeling
that you have more control with
liquid dyes. As for color blocks ...
colored wax, I know that some folks
suggest using this and many may do
so with success, but it is my
experience that these blocks are
wax with liquid dye mixed in and
the wax can somewhat cloud the gel,
or at least make it not as crystal
clear. Since over-coloring can be
a real issue and too easy to do,
it's important to only add a little
at a time and do a "drop test" ...
pour a small amount of gel out
onto a plate, allow it to cool down
a bit and roll it into a ball or
a clump and see what the color
looks like ... often times, the
color may appear lighter in the
melting pot than in reality when
it's gets into the container.

These are primarily the basics of
what you will need to know before
getting started, besides the safety
precautions I have already posted.
Melting pots and some other issues
have not yet been covered ... but
we're getting there!

You may find that my "lesson plan"
here is one that starts in the
center and works its way outward ...
it's not a "step by step" ... if you
have a true interest in making gel
candles, then you will want to know
some of the dynamics ... and if you
are a creative person, it's my belief
that an understanding of what you are
working with will serve you better
than a step by step plan.

Speaking of "step by step" ...
there are plenty of them around and
I have recently read a few of them
to see what is available on the
Internet for beginners to read.
My advice, is probably to get a
good book, which I will start to
take a look at as time goes on,
as there are many websites which
offer a lot of half-knowledge, which,
when it comes to candle making, can
be dangerous. I'm going to explore
some of these next to share them ...
if you are a beginner, you will want
to know how to identify the bad
information. After reading some
good overall basics and having
an understanding of what you are
working with, then, some "steps"
are certainly in order, but it's
nice to have an understanding before
taking those steps.

It's almost ten years since I saw
my first bag of candle gel and when
I got it, it stayed in the bag with
me looking at it and touching it now
and then before I got up enough courage
to melt it and try to make a candle
with it! It seemed to strange to me!
Now, there is shared information to
read ahead of time, but back then,
there was little to nothing to go on.
Hopefully, for beginners reading some
of this material, they won't need to
poke at their gel for so long before
trying it out and making a candle!






Getting Prepared for Candlemaking

Okay ... you've got your melting pot, molds,

wax, wicks, additives, colorants, scents,
perhaps some containers or embellishments,
spoons and other assorted pieces of equipment ...
an idea of the type of candles you are going
to make, so you're all set!

Well, you're almost all set.
There are some other very important
things to consider before venturing over
to the stove. Whether you will be making
your candles in a workshop or your kitchen,
you'll need to prepare your work space
for your project before going any further.

So what's the big deal, you say? "Plenty!"
If I were to write a story about the area
where I work when I'm making candles,
I guess it would be entitled "Kitchen by Day,
Candle Workshop by Night" ... not that I only
make candles at night, but you get the idea!
A kitchen area can make a wonderful,
however temporary,transformation when
it's set up for candlemaking, as it becomes
a "mini-workshop" of sorts, complete with
stove, countertop, and sink!

Just as our kitchens take on a new persona
during candle making sessions, our attitude
and awareness must also be heightened when
we put on our"candle making caps" ... although
we are there to create, we've also got to think
of candle making safety. Preparation is the key here.
It would be much easier if this were merely an
option when making candles or soaps, but it
is an absolute MUST. A responsible crafter is
not only concerned about making things the
right way, but also about the safety of the process.

Now, I'm certainly not trying to take the fun
out of this ... to the contrary! But, this is
important information. Just as with most
other hobbies, there are those "things to
look out" for when actively involved in the
hobby. Candle and soap making are no exceptions.

Since knowledge of potential hazards can
eliminate them for the most part (you'll be
on the lookout, keeping a watchful eye),
this is what I am going to do my best to cover.
Of course, I won't be able to cover everything
and all possibilities here, but that's not exactly
the point anyway ... the point is simply to
make you aware. If reading this makes you
aware of potential situations that could arise,
then you will be well-equipped and ready for
safely making candles!

Here are some thoughts on safety
when making candles ...

Safety Thought #1:
Melting wax and pouring a candle can be
hazardous if not handled with care.

Safety Thought #2:
Wax and scented oils are substances that
can ignite, flare up, or splatter, causing
severe burns or fire.

These products all have a flashpoint,
which means that they will spontaneously
combust if the temperature reaches the
temp. of the flashpoint. I have read that
if you do not know what the flashpoint
of a wax is, do not heat above 212 degrees F.

Safety Thought #3:
When working at a stovetop ... beware!
(All sorts of things can happen here!)

Regarding equipment, here are some items
that will be very useful in making a safe
candle making area ...

Double boiler
(For use in melting wax)

Glass coffee caraffe that is safe for
stovetop, or "Presto Pot"or a "Pyrex"
tempered glass measuring cup
(for oven use) (For use in melting gel)

[Sidenote: I prefer using glass melting
pots on the stove with candle gel in
order to be able to see the color.]

Lids for pots
(For smothering fire, if needed)

Candy thermometer
(For checking wax or gel temperature)

Pot holders
(For handling pots, molds, etc.)

Fire extinguisher -
(Dry chemical ABC Type)
(In case of emergency)

Box of baking soda
(To smother a fire on stove)

Here are some pointers of safe handling
of wax and candle gel and what to do to
prevent a problem or what to do if one occurs.

Storing wax or candle gel ...
Always store in a cool, dry place, safely away
from any heat source or combustibles.

When melting wax ...
Leaving melting wax or candle gel
unattended should NEVER be considered ...
always stay within sight of your workspace,
or nearby, frequently checking and making
sure everything is going smoothly.

When wax or gel is almost completely melted,
do not leave your station! This is the time to
watch the temperature, prepare your additives,
molds, etc. Candle wax temperature should
not exceed 280 degrees F.

Do not use a microwave to melt wax or gel.

Make sure wax or gel does not spill onto
heating elements on stove.

Keep wax and scented oil containers
away from open flames.

Note the flashpoint of the wax you are melting.

When pouring wax or gel ...
Make sure your pouring containers are
adequate for use with high temperatures
and have a secure handle.

Always use a pot holder or have one
readily available.

Do not wear loose sleeves that can get in
your way or become a hazard.

Set your molds in a place where they will
not need to be moved until the wax or gel
hardens ... moving molds with hot wax in
them can easily spill hot wax.

Make sure you set your mold in a secure place,
away from children and pets or where they
cannot topple over.

If pouring directly from your melting pot
(i.e., glass caraffe with gel candles) ...
after pouring, wipe the side of your
melting pot under the spout, just in
case gel spilled out onto the outside ...
if dripped gel hardens on your melting
pot, it will burn off the next time your
place it on the stove.

General safety tips ...
Only purchase candle dyes and scented oils
that are specifically designed, or pre-tested,
for use in candles.

Kitchen rules apply to candlemaking ...
such as, keep all paper towels, etc. safely
away from stove, pay attention to your
attire and hair ... (no loose fabric or long
hair flowing onto stovetop)... no small
children or pets underfoot... keep distractions
(such as phone calls) to an absolute minimum
(best to focus entirely on your project and
not allow phone or other interuptions) ...
do not overcrowd your workspace ...
make sure you are standing on a secure
surface (throw rugs that will not trip you up,
wear stable shoes, etc.)

Ideally, nothing that is not supposed to
happen ever will ... if you're careful and
follow the above tips, this will be the case.

Here are a few tips, just in case
anything should occur:

If a fire ever starts on the stove ....
Smother top of double boiler with the lid ...
splashing water on wax causes it to splatter.

If some hot wax gets on your skin ...
Immediately run cold (not icy) water over
the burn area ... do not attempt to remove
the wax until it has hardened, and then
carefully lift it off.

If you overheat your wax or gel ...
Overheated wax, candle gel or scented oil
will smoke and the fumes are not safe to breath.
If smoking occurs, immediately remove
melting pot from heat source, open windows
or doors on both sides of house and use a
fan next to door or window, blowing fresh
air in or smoke out.

Always keep a fire extinguisher on hand.

Here are some tips for treating"minor"
(small area) burns ...
It's important to stop the burning process,
so you need to remove the source of heat
immediately ... seconds count!

To smother flames in case clothing should
catch fire, "STOP, DROP AND ROLL."

Never rip burned clothing from the skin ...
remove what you can, if clothing sticks to skin,
cool the material and cut away what you
can without harming skin tissue.

Cool water poured over burned area for
at least 3-5 minutes will bring the
temperature of your skin down and
prevent blistering in most cases ...
the sooner you are able to do this,
the better. Again, seconds count.

For larger burn areas, do not use ice
or cold water since it can lower body
temperature and make the burn worse.
Ointments, creams or salves may cause
infection. Since these are oil-based,
they can hold in heat and worsen the burn.
Use an antiseptic spray to relieve pain
and prevent infection before covering
with a clean dry dressing (soft,
clean, dry bandage).

~~~~

Hopefully, this information has been
of value to you and hopefully, you
will use all preventative measures so
you don't ever have to use the brief
advice just given in regard to burn treatment.

With proper care and attention,
your candle making experience should
be a safe and creative hobby!


Candle Burning Tips

Here are some tips for you when burning
candles. Gel candles sometimes require
additional attention, so I'll cover that
specifically at a later date when giving
a little more attention to gel candles.

These tips are not only for safety reasons,
but for pleasant burning of your candles!

~~~~~~~~~~

Trim candle wicks to 1/4" prior to each use.

Discontinue use of container, votive, and
gel candles when 1/2" of wax or gel remains.
For pillars and tapers, discontinue use when
candle reaches approx. 2" from its holder.
During burning, some scented oils can sink
and accumulate, depending on the wax and
the scent. In these cases, if a candle is
allowed to burn down too far, it can
become too hot.

Avoid placing candles in the way of drafts to
prevent rapid and uneven burning. This also will
prevent the wick from smoking.

If a candle is smoking, flickers repeatedly, or
if the flame becomes greater than approx. 1",
your candle isn't burning correctly ... snuff out
the candle and trim the wick ... this should
correct the problem. Make sure the candle is
not in the path of a draft.

If burning multiple candles, place them a few
inches apart from one another to keep them
from melting one another, which can cause
uneven burning or melt the sides of the candles.

When lighting a candle for the first time,
allow the candle to burn for about four
hours in order to create a maximum melt pool.
The size of the melt pool of a candle is determined
during its first burn session ... if you only
light the candle for an hour, it will not have
time to create a nice sized melt pool and your
candle will most likely "tunnel" during
subsequent burn sessions.

If you want your candles to "throw" their
scent nicely and melt the wax to the outer rim
(less wasted wax), just pay attention to the
amount of time given the first time you light them.

For better indoor air quality, snuff your
candles out rather than blowing them out.

This is one way to snuff out a candle so
it doesn't smoke ... you can use an old fork
if you don't have a smokeless snuffer ...
place fork or snuffer at the base of the wick
and move it upward against the wick until
the flame is out.



































(There are other ways to snuff out a candle ...
but this way works best for me.)


Never extinguish a candle with water, as
it will cause the wax to splatter.

Store your candles in a cool place.


~~~~~~~~~
Happy & Safe Candle Burning!
~~~~~~~~~


For more information, you may visit ...
The National Candle Association -

Candle Safety

Candle Tips

Candle Safety


I'm going to start with the important stuff
here first. Even if you do not make candles,
you might like burning candles ... and if you
do, it never hurts to read up on safety advice.

It's important to use good judgment when
burning candles and all necessary safety
precautions should always be taken.

PLEASE READ THIS if you plan to burn candles!

Although some of the safety tips may be

obvious, there could be some things you
haven't thought of ... and you can never
be too careful with fire.

Here are just a few of the many precautions

that should be taken whenever maintaining
a lit candle ...

NEVER leave a burning candle unattended

for any reason.

Keep lit candles out of reach from children.

Keep lit candles out of reach from pets ...
this includes areas where your pet may accidentally
tip a candle over (either with tail, paw, toys, etc.)

Always keep lit candles at least a foot and

a half away from any curtains, fabric, tie-backs,
or any fabric that could catch fire.

If placing a candle on a tablecloth, make sure that
it is ona fire-resistant plate and place the candle
near the center of the table so there is no chance
of a long, draping tablecloth being blown or tossed
up into the candle. Use extreme caution with paper
party tablecloths!

Keep burning candles on a heat-resistant surface
that is stable ... fold-out tables which can easily

be kicked or knocked over are not safe options.
If your surface is made of wood, place your candle
on a glass, ceramic, or metal plate or candle holder.

Do not use cloth doilies directly under a lit candle ...
place the candle on a glass or ceramic plate,
then you may place the plate on a doily.

When using tall candle holders for tapers,
place in a secluded area where they will not

be toppled over.

Select placement of your candles during gatherings
carefully. Be especially aware of placement where
guest activity is most abundant. Avoid placing candles
in entry ways or near coat rooms where frequent drafts
or heavy foot traffic are most likely. Also, avoid placing
candles on low end-tables or in places where flowing
garments of passers-by may come in contact with a
burning candle.

Be careful not to place a lit candle near anything

that is flammable or combustible. This includes
placing a lit candle on a bookshelf or end-table
where there may be a wooden shelf above the candle.
Also be cautious of hanging baskets, dried floral
decorations, etc.

Never walk with a burning candle, just in case you
should trip or fall.

After extinguishing a candle, stay to make sure it is
completely out and that the wick ember is no long
glowing before leaving the room.

Do not use a candle to check for natural gas leaks or
to look into a clothes closet for any reason.

Keep all ribbons, decorative toppers, and other
fabrics away from a burning candle.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Common sense when burning candles goes a long way!

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Stay Safe !!