Instructables
Picture of Halloween
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I wanted to start on my shelf-top Halloween display today, even though it's still September :)  Part of this display is a collection of strait candles, which I got last year at Ikea.  (Cheap candles! Pretty good selection, kinda weird smells).  The candles I have are cream-colored, which is a great base to start with, but they needed a little something to make the display perfect.  

With a just a few things you have around the house (probably), you too can make your candles appear to have bled in a different, spooky, color.     

**NOTE:  I have no intention of actually burning these candles, as they are supposed to look cool on the shelf long-term.  To get candles that are actively "bleeding" while lit, I suggest this instructable for ideas: http://www.instructables.com/id/Blood-gushing-Candle/

Step 1: Materials Needed

MATERIALS YOU NEED:
 Candles: strait or tapered will work best
Crayons or spare candles in the color you want the drips to be.  Thrift stores have cheap colored candles for melting!
Plastic (disposable) spoon
Small sauce pan (if you have one that is only for crafts, that's best to use)
Aluminium foil
Paper cups
Paper towels

TOOLS YOU NEED:
Stove or hotplate than can be carefully adjusted
Fire extinguisher (just in case)

SAFETY NOTES:
This is probably not a project to do with small kids.  Melted wax is hot and can burn skin, and no one likes a burn.  Also wax can be flammable, and I know of at least one person who set a table on fire when making candles.  Use common sense and have an extinguisher on had.  

COST AND TIME:
I had everything on hand, so my cost was nothing.  If you had to buy everything I used, the cost would still be less than 10 dollars.  
This project took me less than one hour for 6 candles.  The longest part is waiting for the wax to melt.  
 
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ironsmiter3 years ago
open flame and no double boiler = DO NOT DO THIS
Other than that, nicely done ;-)
On an electric hotplate, you're ok, but direct flame heating of waxes can/will produce invisible gases, highly flammable, that burn invisibly.
You want FAKE burns for Halloween, not REAL 3rd degree stuff.

To avoid contaminated pan...
I'd suggest going to the local goodwill, paying 50 cents to a dollar, and buy a junker pan. Aluminum works just fine. Don't bother with non-stick.

When you finish your project, either hang on to the pot for further wax melting instructables, re-donate to good will, or toss it into the aluminum melting furnace. The wax will burn off no problem, long before the pot melts, and gets turned into another ingot for future casting.
friedpope (author)  ironsmiter3 years ago
Hrm. My immediate response to this comment was "Crap! Have I been melting wax wrong all these years?!" And then, "Crap! Do I need to delete this instructable? Did I promote unsafe crafting?"

Here's the back story: my family raises bees, meaning we always have a lot of extra wax. I grew up making candles, soaps, salves et cetera, and we always melted the wax this way (very slowly over direct, but very low heat). Not once has anyone in my family ever had a problem in any way, but we have always kept a fire extinguisher on hand, as well as been very aware of the risks associated with melting wax. Because of this familiarity, I didn't really think that this method might be more dangerous than I realized.

In conclusion, I don't really know if I should take this instructable down: I am personally willing to melt wax this way, but I would never, ever want someone to get hurt because I said it could be done this way. I am happy to re-write it if the community thinks that this method is too dangerous to be promoted. I would love your feedback on this issue.

(PS: I may need to make it more obvious, but in the last page, the photo note says that I got my green pan at a thriftstore, and it is only used for waxcraft.)
Another way of melting wax is to use a clean tin can and a pot of water to make a double boiler. Clean out the tin can and peel off the lable. I would bend the top of the can to make a spout. Fill the pan of water about half way up the side of the can, and bring it up to a low simmer. Place the can with the wax in the water and let it melt. Proceed using your directions to drip the wax onto the candles. No risk of fire with this method. You can let the wax cool in the can or pour it off into a paper cup.
Nonono, by all means, leave this ible UP.
I just wanted to add that note of caution(or maybe a quick "proceed with caution here" added to the melting step)

I dunno about natural bees wax, and it's flash point. I have only ever had access to the manufactured variety. It has a flashpoint of around 300F. If the wax never gets hotter than that, then no fire risk, but MOST people following your instructions will likely be using the man-made stuff, and not have the knowledge to do this even remotely safely.

That's where the double boiler comes in.
By melting with hot water, the wax can never exceed 220F as long as there is still water in the pot(without modifying the water, say by adding salt). Being well below the flash point of wax, this makes the set-up inherently much safer.

To other ible members, and crafters, feel free to visit here for a basic rundown of the double boiler setup. http://www.candletech.com/candle-making-basics/wax-melting-instructions/ And here's a youtube video about why NOT to use straight flame heating. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ANP26dBDjFM&feature=related At right around the 2:20 marks, the wax fumes roll over the edge of the container, onto the torch flame, and WHOOPFF! The kid was very lucky there was only a small amount of vapor.
I would love to see some instructables on your other wax creations! This is such a clever and simple idea.