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New candlemaker - soy candle questions

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  • New candlemaker - soy candle questions

    I have just started candle-making. Aside from being a good hobby, I would like to sell a small quantity of candles to support our woods project at Alvecote Wood (we do have a web site).

    Therefore I'd really only like to use natural waxes - soy and beeswax. At the moment I'm buying in beeswax, although we'd like to keep our own bees eventually. I am making rolled beeswax sheet candles, and the prototypes seem to be very easy to make, burn well and there hasn't been too much faffing around finding the right wick/candle width combination. The soy is for vegans (who won't buy beeswax) and also to produce candles with scents from our woods (oak, blackberry, bluebell, apple). Also to make container candles.

    I have had a great deal of help from this forum so far, although haven't posted yet. Thank you!

    What I've gleaned so far is that

    a) Making soy candles is harder than paraffin wax
    b) It is even harder for diameters under 75mm/3 inches
    c) You need to buy expensive dyes
    d) It is harder to fragrance them

    So, should I just go with beeswax and container soy for starters, or should I carry on with soya pillars of 3 inches or more? I have to say that the prototype soya candles have burned very well indeed, although they don't smell a lot. But I don't want to spend a huge amount of time and money making candles that are unreliable, difficult to make and won't sell. After all, they are meant to provide a little money for the woods project, not take over completely

    I am also making other things like key rings, coasters and clocks from slices of wood cut as part of our woodland management, so candle-making is only part of the project. We plan to sell only at open days and public fairs at present - possibly internet in due course (we run another internet business so know how this goes).

    Suggestions very welcome!


  • #2

    Is this your website? WOW, you bought a WOOD??

    It's a terrific website. I have an off-topic question - in many of the Midsomer Murders (sorry, I watch way too much BBC America ), when they're tramping through the various woods looking for clues, you hear this rattly metallic bird call - I cannot begin to describe it but perhaps you watch MM and have heard it - generally just about the time the murder you know what it is?

    Okay, back to soy candles - I too have been reading the soy candle questions and answers here and have learned a great deal! I vote for container soy, and def continue with the beeswax candles. The beeswax candles would seem to click better if you did indeed have some bee hives in your wood - reminds me of the To The Manor Born episode where Audrey gets a hive and a twitcher comes to Badger's Wood...SORRY! There I go again.


    • #3
      Yes, that is our woods. Thank you! I haven't done enough posts yet to be able to put the link on the forum.

      We do plan to get beehives, but because of severe shortage of supply, we can't get any this year. There are a lot of wild bees (bumblebees) and wasps (including hornets) in the wood.

      I'll have a listen next time I watch Midsomer Murders


      • #4
        I would agree and would probably stick to the soy for containers and the beeswax for your candles. Having said that if you are only going to choose a few woody/natural scents it wouldn't take too longto find the right wick/scent combination. Problems set in when you have lots of scents as you have no doubt read each oil has it's own unique properties and can (and will) affect the burn differently. If you have say 3 fragrances it shouldn't take too much to figure out the correct formula. Having said that soy wax is a natural product and sometimes batches vary and are not as good as before.



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        • #5
          Thank you for your advice.

          There are only three fragrances I want to use because of their association with the woodland. I am still making prototypes and hopefully will hit on one or two good combinations to use in a 3 inch pillar candle!