A Comprehensive Guide on Making Votive Candles

strawberry candles

Flickering votive candles fill spaces with cozy ambiance and beautiful, dancing flames. Their petite size suits them perfectly for accent lighting, spiritual ceremonies, special gifts, and outdoor decor when floating in water. This guide uncovers everything needed for creating homemade votive candles to personalize scents, colors, and shapes. Welcome extra glow into your life through the magical art of candle-making!

Introduction to Votive Candles

Votive candles feature small, compact designs that allow the fitting of many onto candle trays and arrangements. Their short height and simple cylindrical shape give them the versatile decorative potential for scattering through rooms during intimate dinners or placing upon memorial displays honoring passed loved ones. Despite their diminutive size, votives shine brightly, making an impact with steady, radiant illumination perfect for encouraging relaxation.

Exploring the Uses of Votive Candles

Beyond standard decor, votive candles bring their cozy charm to a diverse range of settings: 

Backyard Gatherings – Float multiple votives in bowls of water at dusk to define seating areas with a magical glow.

 Table Centerpieces – Cluster colorful votives in glass vases for an effortless ambiance.

Religious Ceremonies – Adorn altars and places of worship with the heavenly glow of votives.

 Memorials – Honor those passed with votives encircling framed photos.

 Gifts – Make custom-packaged votive sets for housewarmings and other celebrations.

Votive candles beautifully elevate any occasion, big or small.

Distinguishing Votive vs. Tealight Candles

While they share a petite silhouette, key differences exist between votive and tealight candles:

 Wax Fill – Tealights feature a partial wax pool inside a metal casing; votives have wax filling their glass container.

 Reusability – Votives have thicker walls and bottoms allowing re-melting and re-pouring of fresh wax; tealight casings get discarded after one use.

 Burn Time – Multi-wick tealights offer 60-90 minutes of burn time, while most single-wick votives burn for 8-10 hours.

 Ambiance – Tealights emit a brighter, more concentrated flame; votives give off a softer, more dispersed glow.

Factors Affecting Votive Burn Time

While approximately 8 hours is average, precise votive candle burn times fluctuate based on:

 Wax Type – Natural soy wax produces slower, cooler burns vs. paraffin.

 Wick Size – Quicker wax pool melt comes from larger wick diameters.

 Fill Level – Filling votive containers to the brim sustains burning longer.

 Drafts – Direct air currents shorten burn life.

Test different wick and wax combinations to find your ideal votive glow longevity!

Essential Materials for Crafting Votive Candles

Making votive candles requires just a few key supplies easily sourced online or locally:

 Wax – Paraffin, soy, or beeswax. Paraffin melts easily for beginners.

 Wicks – Pre-tabbed or primed wicks sized to fit votive width.

 Candle Dyes + Scents – Use blocks, liquid, or essential oils.

 Containers – Glas votive holders allow customized designs.

 Double Boiler + Thermometer – Even, safe wax melting.

Step-by-Step Guide to DIY Votive Candles

Follow these instructions for votive candle-crafting success:

  1. Set up double boiler + thermometer. Pour wax chunks in to melt.
  2. Anchor wicks centered in glass containers with glue/tape.
  3. Add scents/dyes once wax reaches 175-185F and stir thoroughly.
  4. Carefully pour the wax into each container just below the rim.
  5. Allow candles to fully cure 24-48 hours before burning.

Customize colors and scents batch-by-batch or combine layers for swirling marbled effects. Get creative embedding flowers or glitter too!

Creative Uses for Votive Candles

Votive Candles

Votive holder shape and size invite unique arrangements: 

Mini Candle-lit Lanterns – Suspend votives inside painted terracotta pots with cutout shapes.

 Mosaics – Arrange colors and scents in geometric patterns on trays.

 Ice Luminaries – Freeze votives inside water balloons, then display glowing through the ice.

 Gilded Edges – Coat rim edges in metallic luster for glamour.

Dream up your creative ways to showcase beautiful, hand-crafted votives!

Where to Buy Votive Candle Supplies Locally

Check craft stores, candle-making specialty boutiques, or soap supply shops for votive containers, wicks, dyes, scents, and waxes to fuel your creations. Many locations even offer beginner candle wax melting kits perfect for getting started. Support small businesses while sourcing materials to purpose your votive candle artistry!

Online Marketplaces for Customizable Votive Candles

Peruse extensive inventories of votive supplies available 24/7 via these eCommerce sites:

CandleScience.com – Everything needed from wax to wicks, dyes, scents, and jar varieties for votives and other candle types too.

CandlesAndSupplies.com – Massive selection of waxes, vessels, and accessories sold in bulk or smaller quantities.

Etsy.com – Handmade customizable votive candles, reusable containers, plus decorative embellishments from independent artisans.

eBay.com – New and used votive lots available at discounted prices.

Wholesale pricing means greater savings for high-output votive makers. Happy candle hunting!

Welcome Votive Candles Into Your Life

The simple brilliance of votive candles lies in their versatility – suitable for dispelling darkness from cozy meal nooks when hosting friends, lending ethereal beauty sprinkled through outdoor venues, and gracing ceremonies bidding farewell to matriarchs now passed but not forgotten.

Craft batches sharing sweet summer harvest scents that recall languid childhood days chasing fireflies. Offer others the gift of self-care by filling receptive homes with warmth when life’s crushing blows come calling.

Through studying essential methods and then putting your imprint on homemade votives, embrace the power they hold. Let’s practice imparting mastery until these petite lighthouses become conduits channeling your creative spirit outward. Soon voyagers will seek out your candles to anchor them against life’s storms, channeling their gentle, undulating glow toward safe harbors.

Frequently Asked Questions

Are votive candles safe to leave burning overnight?

No, it’s not recommended to leave any candles burning unattended for long periods. Always extinguish votive candles before going to sleep or leaving your home. The longer burn time makes it more likely wax will overflow or wicks grow too large if left continually lit.

How should I clean the glass containers of my votive candles?

Allow votive wax to fully harden after it finishes burning, then simply peel away to remove. Any wax remnants can be gently scraped off using a plastic card or the dull side of a kitchen knife. Avoid harsh scrubbing that may scratch or etch the glass. Wash occasionally with mild dish soap and water.

What’s the best way to remove stuck-on wax from a votive glass container?

Place the holder in the freezer for 1-2 hours so the wax shrinks and detaches from the sides. Gently scrape residue away after freezing using a plastic utensil. Avoid immersing in boiling water which may crack the glass.

How can I reuse votive candles to save money?

Carefully melt and strain leftover votive wax through cheesecloth, then combine filtered wax with new wax. Replace wicks and repour into thoroughly cleaned containers. Limit reusing wax 3-4 times before discarding.

What should I do if my votive candle isn’t burning properly?

Check that the wick is centered and trim any mushrooming or blackened tips for optimum performance. Remove any debris like leftover wick pieces or dirt in melted wax affecting burn consistency then re-light.

Why are my votive candles tunneling or creating uneven wax pools?

Likely causes are wicks too small for wax type, candle too cold slowing melt rate, or drafts constricting melting on certain sides. Cotton wicks matched for 2-3 hour burn times suit most votive applications.


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