Thursday, December 14, 2017

Two Hours Off. Time Spent Wisely

I gave myself two hours off from packing orders. Time for a walk across the fields. Out into the magic of a frozen morning. I love that sound of frozen leaves under foot. Crispy and brittle, almost good enough to eat. Their appearance taking on the form of edible sugared, wafer thin biscuits? I stop and look down and my imagination begins to paint a picture...
The delicate woodland wafers are being gathered for a woodland feast. The rooks carry the frosted treats high up and over the upper most branches, to a woodland clearing where a fallen tree lays like a long banqueting table. They place the leaves beside heaps of acorns, hazelnuts, beech nuts, chestnuts, toadstools and lichen, for wild boars, red squirrels and the king of the forest the old stag who stands at the end of the tree and roars for the shortest night. His antlers are decorated for the season with frosted icy webs, for you see a small spider has made it's home there...
Was that the animal in me, feeling that these leaves looked good enough to eat, or maybe it was because I hadn't had any breakfast as I was too eager to get out and lose myself in this winter? 
Back home in the garden, I top up the birds food and find beauty in the frosted patterns on the doors of my studio. And here lies the beginnings of another story woven in this intricate frosted lace.
Beginnings that will have to wait until another time though, because after eating some late breakfast, my second hour off was spent making candles.

You probably like myself find that with candles there is often a lot of wax that gets wasted, especially when the candle burns just in the centre (often with thicker candles) or if the wick gives up the ghost and decides it wants to just melt into the wax and not light anymore. I don't like waste, so decided a few years back to recycle the wax into new candles. By the end of a year there is usually enough wax collected to make a good batch. These glass GU pudding jars which I also don't like to throw away, make perfect pots. 
Also any pretty little minature cups that you may have lying around.
First you need old wax. Cut into smallish pieces and try to remove any wick that is caught inside or little burnt black bits.
Have some essential oil at hand if you want to add a few drops to make your candles smell nice, and I have some eco glitter to sprinkle on for decoration.
Melt the wax in a pot or pan over a saucepan of boiling/simmering water. A small old saucepan is best to put inside a bigger one, but I couldn't find my old one in the (extremely messy) shed so used this small metal dish that worked. 
Dip the new wick into a little melted wax to attach to the bottom of the jar easily. Wicks can be bought online, I got mine from Ebay.
Once the wax has all melted carefully pour it into the jars or cups and use a fork to support and keep the wick in place until the wax sets. If you want to add essential oil/scent, then now is the time to add a few drops.
Once your candles have set, cut the wicks shorter and sprinkle some glitter. Easy peasy lots of new candles to use on these dark winter nights. Tie some ribbon around and they are even good enough as little extra gifts. :-)
My two hours off had come to an end and it was back to packing up orders and other bits and pieces. I think I used my time wisely? 
And maybe I will get around to painting that picture in my head?

8 comments:

  1. Those candles are fabulous and I like your use of old jars and tea cups. Years ago I made candles called sand candles, where I made a mold in damp sand and poured the hot wax into it.

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    1. That sounds an interesting candle making technique Terra.
      Tin cans were another holder I was going to try and maybe punch some holes around the edge to let the glow come through? Have ran out of wax for now though. :)

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  2. Oh my gosh, look at the frost on the glass! I've never seen anything like that before. Not ever. That's so pretty. I'm glad you took a photo of that.

    Kristin

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  3. Oh that looked fun, I want to do some! The frosting on your glass was like some on my car windscreen the other day, I just sat in my car looking at it for ages! seemed a shame to heat it up and away.

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    1. They are fun to make, especially when you can decide on the colours, pots and smells to add and as an added bonus, the satisfaction of knowing that you've made something from something that would otherwise be thrown away. :)

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  4. Love your candles! I hate waste too, what a great way of recycling old wax and using those little Gu pots!xx🌟

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    1. Thanks Jess! It all helps doesn't it. Recycling and reducing waste and is enjoyable too x

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