Teacup candles

by Katie Treggiden6th March 2011

 

Inspired by Kirstie Allsop's Handmade Home and an increasing cynicism about wasteful commercialism, I decided to get crafty and make my own teacup candles, rather than buy new ones.

The first step was a lovely afternoon spent trawling charity shops for teacups, which left me with quite a selection.

Next I ordered a candle-making kit from www.makingyourowncandles.co.uk which included everything I needed and detailed instructions, the first of which was to fill a saucepan to a third of its volume with water. Then I cut the wicks a couple of centimetres longer than each container was deep. I threaded each wick through a wick tab, leaving about a millimetre showing underneath, and then pinched the collar of the wick tab with a pair of pliers to hold the wick in place.

Next I cut the wax into small blocks and put them into a small saucepan floating in the larger saucepan, which was simmering gently. Once melted the colour and fragrance were added.

I poured a tiny amount of the melted wax into each cup, which I allowed to cool, holding the wick tab and wick in place at the centre of the bottom of the cup.

I then poured the rest of the wax into the cup, taking care to keep the wick straight up through the centre of the candle, to ensure it will burn properly.

The next bit is quite fiddly, but it’s important to keep the wick in that position while the candle sets. I used cocktail sticks for the small cups and pencils for the larger cups and a little bit of Blu-Tack to attach the wick to the cocktail stick / pencil and the cocktail stick / pencil to the teacup.

Then I just left the wax to set for 12 hours and trimmed the wick to about 1cm above the level of the wax.

Et Voila! A wonderful gift made largely from things that might have ended up as landfill, turned into a present that (hopefully!) will not. Kirstie would be so proud!

Further reading for the especially geeky:

  • http://www.channel4.com/4homes/design-style/how-to-guides/how-to-make-candles-gallery-09-04-21_p_1.html (Kirstie’s Homemade Homes)
  • http://www.themakelounge.com/workshops/detail/62 (Teacup candle making workshops at the Make Lounge)
  • http://www.teacupcandles.co.uk/ (teacup candles)

 

 

 

  

About the Author

Katie Treggiden has been writing her blog, "Confessions of a design geek", since April 2010. Just six weeks after she started writing it, it was nominated for the mydeco Design Democracy Blog Awards and in September 2010 won Best Interior Design Blog in the UK. In September 2011, Katie published Interviews, a collection of eighteen conversations with designers. Katie's new book "Interviews" was launched on September 17th to coincide with the London Design Festival. It features a collection of eighteen conversations with designers and is available to buy from http://confessionsofadesigngeek.com/buy-interviews-volume-1/ Her Blog can be found at: www.confessionsofadesigngeek.wordpress.com and you can follow Katie on twitter @coadg

 
 
msmarmitelover

msmarmitelover - 29th May 2011 11:05 am

I have a craft workshop in this and other craft projects this Saturday at The Underground Restaurant: includes brunch and tea:
http://www.wegottickets.com/event/112535

Teacup candle - using green and white vintage porcelain tea cups.

Teacup candle - using green and white vintage porcelain tea cups.

Tea cup hoard from the charity shop.

Tea cup hoard from the charity shop.

Here the wicks are being cut 3 cm longer than the depth of the teacup.

Here the wicks are being cut 3 cm longer than the depth of the teacup.

Melting the wax in a saucepan.

Melting the wax in a saucepan.

Placing the wick in place, centrally

Placing the wick in place, centrally

Pouring in the rest of the wax.

Pouring in the rest of the wax.

Keeping the wick straight while the wax sets.

Keeping the wick straight while the wax sets.

The finished teacup candle.

The finished teacup candle.