If you're looking for a quick craft fix, don't pick candle dipping! It is most definitely a long and slow process that needs lots of time and patience.
Last week I was feeling a bit out of sorts, the girls were cranky and I needed something to bring us all out of our funk. I'd been flicking through past issues of the wonderful magazine, Taproot and had come across a tutorial on dipping candles with kids. The girls and I have hand rolled candles from sheets of beeswax every autumn for the last few years but they don't always burn well. I'm not sure if it’s the wick we're using or the hand rolling not being tight enough.
It was a lovely day and I thought that I would quickly make some candles and then head out to the park for a play before their grandparents visited and I had to cook dinner. Ha! I had completely forgotten how long it takes to melt beeswax over a double boiler on the stove. If you're wondering how long - the answer is forever. Especially if you have a big, wide jar.
The girls really got into the process of dipping the candles in turn, topping up the jar with more beeswax and wiping down the walls of the kitchen. Six hours of boiling water meant that the walls and ceiling were dripping even with the window wide open and the fan going. This is definitely a craft for warmer weather.
If you want to have a go I'd recommend waiting for warm weather (but not too hot or the house will become an oven) or going outside over an open fire. Set a timer so that you remember to top up the water in the saucepan and don't burn the bottom (we almost did but luckily the smoke alarm went off and warned us in time). Use a tall thin jar so you don't have to wait so long for the wax to melt. Pick a home day and allow lots of time. It's a good idea to have other things to do while waiting for the beeswax to melt.
There’s nothing better than burning beeswax candles to light a room. The candle brightens the room with it’s soft, cosy glow and the incredible scent lifts the spirits and warms the heart. I just adore the smell of beeswax drifting through the house on gloomy winter days. The good news is we now have sixteen lovely hand dipped beeswax candles to use this winter. The only problem is, they're too precious to burn!