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How to Make Soy Candles

Many people who enjoy exercising their creativity by making candles, are discovering the joys of making them from soy wax instead of the traditional paraffin. The key attraction is that soy wax can be cleaned up with plain soap and water, with no scraping off the upper half of your double boiler. In fact, all your utensils can be safely run through a cycle in the dishwasher when you're done.

Soy candles can be made in the same metal molds or milk cartons as paraffin candles, but because they do clean up so easily, they are often made in Mason jars, which can be covered to intensify any scent you've added, or to keep the dust off the top. To add to the candle's country air, you can cover the top with a gingham circle cut with pinking shears, and tuck some dried flowers into the ribbon or wool you tied the cloth "cap" onto the jar with.

Melt your soy block after cutting it in chunks, or using the flakes, which are easier to handle. If you choose to scent the candle, a good rule of thumb is to add .5-1.0 ounces of essential oils for every pound of wax. Make sure to anchor your wick in the mold or jar first, by putting a dab of melted way on the tab, and sticking it in the center of the bottom. It should be cut 2" longer than the depth of the mold, to allow for trimming after.

Soy wax is just as easy to decorate as paraffin, so when it is starting to cool, feel free to insert sea shells, dried flowers, colored crystals or whatever takes your fancy.