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Do-It-Yourself Printed Candles

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Today’s project was creating candles with custom printed designs. The information I had researched made the technique look easy enough – unfortunately there were two things I failed to realize. First – you must use a white candle – and the second problem was I did not have white tissue paper. Since we have lots of snow here and the roads are still not the best, I did not want to go out if I could avoid it. I decided to try it with pink tissue paper. I must say, I was less than impressed although other people seem to like the candle. I posted a photo on Facebook to ask before I went ahead with this tutorial. Some people liked the candle – no one said they didn’t – so I now offer you two ways to make your own printed candles.

Update: I could not stand the way my candles turned out – so I went out. I used Method #1 on both of the new candles. I am happy with how they turned out. I think you will be happier too. The only thing I did differently was use white tissue paper and white candles.

 

Method #1

Choose a photo you want to print onto your candle. Gather white tissue paper, scotch tape, cardstock, a heat or embossing gun and a white candle.

If your cardstock is not the proper size for your printer, cut it down to size.

 

Tape the tissue paper to the cardstock. I was not able to get mine smooth. I also chose to tape my tissue paper to the back of the cardstock instead of to the front. The choice is yours.

 

Place the paper in your printer feed. Mine needed to be placed so the tissue paper was facing down – but the orientation of the tissue depends on your printer.

I opened the file my picture was in, right clicked and let my computer (affiliate link) choose the program. Then I told it to print the correct size for the candle. This candle needed wallet size prints.

 

Once the printing was done, I cut the printed area down to size, then removed the tissue paper from the cardstock by cutting it away. This prevented jagged edges.

 

Next, I wrapped the tissue paper around the candle.

 

I started at the back seams with the embossing gun. The heat from the gun melts the wax so it covers the tissue paper. Ideally when you are done the entire tissue paper is enclosed in a thin layer of candle wax. Since I had a purple candle this didn’t quite work out for me. I opted for a vintage look instead leaving most of the printed area unattached. I did secure the edges in all directions.

 

The wax dried almost as quickly as it melted so once I was done securing the tissue paper all I had left to do was let the candle sit for five to ten minutes just to be on the safe side. This also gave me a chance to look closely to see if there were any imperfections such as the wrinkles you see above. These are easy to fix by simply using the embossing gun again.

The candle was now ready to burn. Keep a few safety precautions in mind however. Never leave a burning candle unattended and always use a container meant for candles to be burnt in. Glass that gets too hot can explode and this is why it is always best to choose proper containers.

 

Method #2

Choose a photo you want to print onto your candle. Gather vellum, parchment paper (affiliate link), scotch tape, a heat or embossing gun, Mod Podge and a white candle.

Place the vellum in your printer feed.

I opened the file my picture was in, right clicked and let my computer (affiliate link) choose the program. Then I told it to print the correct size for the candle. This candle needed 5″ x 7″ prints.

 

Next, I wrapped the vellum around the candle and secured it with scotch tape at the back.

Cover the vellum with parchment paper (affiliate link). You can hold this in place or secure it with tape.

 

I started at the back seams with the embossing gun. The heat from the gun semi-melted the wax so it secured some of the vellum. Ideally when you are done the vellum is secured with a thin layer of candle wax. I had a really hard time getting the wax to melt.

I tested using the heat gun directly on the vellum and it quickly burned. I was having a really hard time with this step so I did what I could to get enough wax to melt to secure the vellum. Then I stopped.

I trimmed off the excess vellum that I had left in the beginning. I was hoping it would melt and bond to the candle but that did not happen.

Once the vellum was trimmed – and again be careful that it does not tear on you, I put my first layer of Mod Podge on and let it dry for 20 minutes.

Once the first layer was done, I spread a second layer on and again let it dry for 20 minutes.

I could add a third layer or even seal it with a sealer of some type – but the sealer would make it so I could not burn the candle. The sealer is something I will not use.

The candle was now ready to burn – and to my knowledge it is safe to burn as long as you only used the Mod Podge. Keep a few safety precautions in mind however. Never leave a burning candle unattended, burn this candle a little at a time until you know how the Mod Podge is going to react to the candle flame and always use a container meant for candles to be burnt in. Glass that gets too hot can explode and this is why it is always best to choose proper containers.

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