Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Candlemakers

Willow and I have a new hobby to tell you about:
Candlemaking! Even though we'd never tried it before, I was confident enough that the girls would enjoy making rolled beeswax candles to buy some supplies in bulk from Knorr Beeswax. I figured that Sydney, my hands-on craft kid, would be the one to sit at the table for four hours in one day rolling beeswax candles, but I was surprised:
Syd hasn't touched the candlemaking supplies, but Willow apparently finds it a meditative, contemplative break from her immersive mental world (Matt and I call this "the Willowverse"), because she spent pratically an entire afternoon, and much of the evening, rolling out a huge variety of candles.

Well, of course someone had to sit with her and help out when she needed it (ahem), and so I ended up making quite a variety, myself:
I have a rolled beeswax candle tutorial up at Crafting a Green World, but they're really quite simple to make, even for little children. Willow found her niche in creating one particular size of two-toned candles so well that I encouraged her to consider making some to sell at our summer craft fairs:
"How much should I charge? One dollar?" she asked.
"Well," I said, "For every candle that you sell, I think that you should pay me $1 for the cost of the supplies, so you'll want to charge more than that, or you won't make a profit."
"Two dollars?"
"I think that people would pay more."
"Three dollars?"
"How about six dollars? Then, after you give me one dollar, you'd have..."
"Wow, five dollars!"
"And how about if you sold six candles?"
"Five...ten...fifteen...........thirty dollars! I'll buy some BeyBlades!"
"I'll drive you straight to the store."

There's still plenty of room for experimentation, however, as she then went on to make "the longest candle in the world":
And then the shortest:
I had thought that these beeswax sheets would be sort of a novelty craft supply, but I already need to order more! I'm thinking that we'll be doing more math with spiral forms this week.

5 comments:

Tina said...

I am so excited to try this out. I ordered some beeswax sheets, so now I just have to wait for them to be delivered!

Heather@Cultivated Lives said...

How much fun. We studied light back in January and I thought about making candles but figured my boys were too young. Your post is making me rethink that... hmmm Maybe we'll make some during our 'stuck indoors' time around August so we'll be ready for fall!

Tina said...

I have a quick question. Do you ever run out of wick before beeswax sheets? If so, where do you get your wick from?

julie said...

I ALWAYS run of of wicking before I run out of beeswax sheets, especially because the candles that I make are usually so thin--you can make a lot of birthday candles out of one sheet of beeswax!

I buy more wicking at my local Hobby Lobby. They have an 18-foot length of the narrowest wicking (good for those birthday candles) for a couple of bucks, not including the 40%-off coupon I always use, but next time I stock up again I think I'm going to buy the wider wicking, which they sell on a big spool that will last me longer between trips.

Tina said...

I knew I should have stopped at my local Hobby Lobby tonight when I went into town! I thought about it, but didn't. Well, now I can go print a coupon to take with me next time.

Thanks for the info!

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