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My Dog Kayla Redrottie

My Dog Kayla Redrottie

Hi and welcome to my blog!

Hi Im Karen (aka Redrottie) Thanks for dropping in to see me !! Have a good browse round while your here, feel free to be inspired and please leave a comment if you see something you like xx

Decorating candles tutorial

Hello there everybobs...
recently I have been making a few decorated candles... and after posting them up on the Docrafts site I saw many comments about how people would love to try but didnt know how...or that they have tried and failed to get a good result. So ive decided to do a tutorial on how I do them.  Now this might be different to how others do it but this is my way and how i get the best results xx

first of all a list of ingredients.. you will need

  • candles. You can buy church candles in most supermarkets these days or in shops such as poundstretchers, Lidls, wilkinsons, Dunelm etc etc.  Candle that have been dipped in a colour are not suitable for this and look out for candles that look cream BUT are actually white with a cream dip covering (they can be used but only if you have got the hang of things and can melt quickly or you get holes in the coating and can see the white underneath. so look for candles that are just cream wax if you can get them (I know for instance that wilkinsons candles are cream coated ! )
  • greaseproof paper. this is the bog standard stuff you use in cakebaking to line cake tins, it is brown in colour and doesnt have a waxy coating - you dont need wax paper
  • a heat gun !! or at the very best a hot hairdryer (although ive not tried it with a hairdryer !)
  • white tissue paper. the sort you wrap gifts in - I buy mine in packs from the Range but the stuff you can buy in gift shops in the wrapping paper dept is the same if you can get it in white!! also ask your local florist as they might have some.
  • cellotape - for sticking down the tissue and holding down the greasepaper (not wholly necessary but helps stops burnt fingers)
  • a piece of card - bog standard A4 thin card that will go through a printer
  • printer OR stamps and a colouring medium
  • soft cloth - for buffing up candle afterwards
Right lets get started. First of all you will need to take a piece of the white tissue that is a little larger than the sheet of A4 card. The tissue should have a dull side and a shiny side. it needs to be taped onto the card dull side up.



Wrap the tissue over the card and tape down onto the back making sure the tissue is taught and that there are no bits of tissue sticking up on the corners as this might snag in the printer and tear the tissue - thats if you are printing an image.
Now find your desired image - if its a stamp then stamp onto the tissue and colour with your prefered medium. bear in mind that ink pens may run in the tissue so colour carefully. pencils wont run but the colour may not be bright enough to stand out once set in wax.
If using a printer you can get fantastic result with vibrantly coloured images - even photographs or family or pets - the worlds your oyster there!... make sure you place your tissued card into the printer the correct way up so that the tissue is on the printed side (easy mistake I know from experience here !) Before printing bear in mind how big your image needs to be... it needs to be slightly smaller than the hight of the flat surface of the candle and not too wide that it overlaps round the candle. I measure the candles hight and use word to shrink the image down to the correct measurement to make sure using the ruler guide on the side of the page.



When you have succesfully printed your image leave for a second to dry. dont be worried if the tissue looks slighty puckered to start with - its just because the ink is still wet and it wont effect the result. carefully so as not to tear the tissue cut around the image leaving a slight overlap of tissue round the edge of your image.


Now carefully lay the tissue in the required place on your candle making sure it is on straight ! you dont want the image to be right at the bottom or the top of your candle so if it is too big trim it down.

Now its time to wrap the candle in greaseproof paper. Now some people just grab the paper at the back and hold on tight BUT if not careful you can end up with crinkles in the paper as shown above... this is not good because when the wax melts it fills the crinkles and you end up with a crinkly candle ! eeek ! also it ties up one of your hands as you need to keep the pressure on and sometimes you can heat up your fingers ouch.


What i do is hold the paper tight then cut off the excess leaving a small overlap



then i pull the paper as tight as I can (important) and use tape to secure it

Then i carefully mould the paper round the bottom and tape securely and also twist the top careful not to make wrinkles in the paper because the wax will fill these remember !


Now for the tricky bit.... the heating. make sure you have good light so you can see what your doing.  First of all heat your gun up so its running on full blast. then bring the gun to the first edge of your tissue about an inch away from the surface. watch your image under the greaseproof... when the wax starts to melt you should see the image go darker - as soon as this happens slowly move across your image from one side to the other till you see all of the image go dark.  DO NOT hover too long over one point because you will get a dent in your candle as the wax will melt too much from that point. Remember to go slightly over the edge of your image so you catch all of the tissue. Also be carefull not to squeeze your candle too tight with your fingers as you might dent it while the wax is still moulten.  the Greaseproof is what keep the wax in shape thats why it is important the paper is tight and completely flat.  it is normal at times for some of the wax to sweat through the greaseproof so if you see that happen dont worry.


when all of your image is dark turn off your heat gun and leave the candle to cool for a minute or two. this allows the wax to re-harden.  Now you can remove the greaseproof paper.  If at this point you see some of the tissue still on the surface then re-wrap the candle and very carefully reheat making sure you dont hover too long over the area so you dont overmelt the wax


To start with your image will look dull and you may have some tags of wax at the top and bottom of the candle like in the image above.... this is easily dealt with.

Take a soft cloth and gently rub the wax tabs and they will simply fall off... then polish the edges with the cloth and any slight bumps will just reform into the candle and dissapear.

when your candle has been buffed with the cloth the image will go nice and shiny and be as waxy as the rest of the candle.  I find it useful to 'Huff' on the candle with your breath as the slight moisture helps bring up the shine.

If wanted you can now add some extra touches to your candle such as some stickles glitter or maybe the odd gem or two 


So here is my finished candle which i have made for my mantlepiece candle sticks.  I have done another for the one on the other end of the mantlepiece and I reversed the image so that I have a matching pair facing inwards

You can also wrap your candles in celephane especially if they are to be used as a gift. I use card bags which i cut the top / botton and one side off.. then i tightly wrap the candle in it and secure the bottom with tape and the top i spin round the wick and tie off with a bit of wire to secure.  A lovely bow tied around the wick finishes it off beautifully and you can even add dangling charms or a gift tag...
Here are some others i have done which have been wrapped in just this way


Thank you for looking at my tutorial xx if you find this useful please leave me a coment as I love to read them and I would love to know if you make anything following my instructions xx


25 comments:

angie babe said...

lovely tut karen, of couse i knew how to do it, was just checking i was doing it right! lol i stamp onto tissue, and colour in, using pro-markers! the darker the colour, the better, as the wax dulls the colour a bit! but now i`v got my printer up and running again, i might have a go at printing a pic!
love angie xx

craftybirdlisa said...

Gorgeous candles and fab tutorial hun. Love it. I am off to get some tissue paper and candles in the week to give it a go. Gorgeous. Thanks for this. Have also checked out your other fab tutorials, they are brilliant. Hugs Lisa x

DI said...

Brilliant you have made it so clear. I have done them before but the greaseproof tip it great. Must find my heat gun and have a go now.

sandy's crafty bits said...

wow thank you for that fab tut great to see how "the experts" do it lol ... as previously said I have done it a couple of times but not tried it by sticking down the image that sounds much better will have to have another go ... I am full of ideas of what I am going to do for christmas if I could only get off the computer lol ... happy crafting have a great weekend and love sandy

christopher said...

Aw Thanks Rottie,i know you did that tute just for me!!!lol.
I have tried a couple of times to do this but all were a washout, so now i will follow your instructions, and see how that goes.Watch this space! .hope today is a good one for you,hugs Rosie.xx

Maureen said...

Great tut Karen, I have tried this before but have a lovely photo I want to try as a chritmas gift so will let you know when I have done it.
Maureen...x

Lorraine said...

Been looking for instructions to have a go at this. Thank you for sharing and making it so straightforward. Its gonna make a great gift to go with my homemade chutney this year.
thanks again

Anonymous said...

Thanks. Great tut! It's put me in the mood to try it.
Miggly x

Rebekah said...

Wow Karen this is a fabulous Tutorial thanks so much for this. I'm def gonna have ago! Hugs Rebekah xx

Wendy said...

Great tutorial Karen, as said before have had a go at these before but could'nt really remember how its done but now after watching this it reminds me of how its done, thanks.
Wendy xx
ps have only made them before using printed images from cd roms, must have a go using a coloured image x

CraftyLoops said...

Fantastic tutorial my friend. Great to see you posting again. I love your beautiful candles and you explained everything perfectly. Lee x

clare brown said...

thankyou for the tutorial.I've never made one of these but you simple instructions might convince me to have a go lol

Anonymous said...

Thanks Karen - I will have a go now using the printer. Lea aka tonyswife x

Anonymous said...

wow, how easy do you make this sound and look. your instructions are clear and concise - thank you. i have tried these before but with limited success, now, housework (aargh!) permitting - blow the housework, i'm off to buy some new candles. take care, margaret nx

Katy_Szwarc said...

Can I ask where you buy your candles? x

jean said...

thanks i loved it always wanted to try it, now am gonna have a go xx going to look for the essentials tom xx

Izzwizz said...

Wayhay, thank you so much. Followed your brilliant instructions and have made my very first decorated candles. How great is that? Thanks again Karen and I hope you and yours have a fab Christmas. Love Maddy x

Anonymous said...

Brilliant tutorial and so easy to follow. Itching to have a go now. thank you for taking the time to do the tutorial for us all. Poppy X

Laura said...

Now I know where I went wrong...my candle was the one with just a covering of cream over a White candle....and next time I am going to try wrapping it to avoid getting channels of wax and burnt fingers!!!

Nicole P said...

Thanks for the tutorial, I think I will have to give this a go this week! hopefully I will manage not to burn myself!

Nicole x

June said...

Thank you Karen for showing this detailed tutorial. I have been doing this method for a while but not taping the wax paper - just holding in place - and you are correct it can be hot!!!!

Crazy Bird said...

Thank you for the wonderful tutorial. I keep buying candles, meaning to do this project then when I've bought the candles I forget what I was going to do with them :(

Will definitely try this though!

Crazy Bird said...

Thank you for the wonderful tutorial. I keep buying candles, meaning to do this project then when I've bought the candles I forget what I was going to do with them :(

Will definitely try this though!

Roma said...

Fab tutorial ,i have been thinking about trying this for but was scared of messing it up but your instructions are great so am going to have a go now ,many thanks Roma x

Spa Offer Lover said...

Wonderful! A perfect way to make the home look prettier.

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