How to Make Homemade Candle

Learn how to make homemade candle that they'll remember! Photos and sentiments on a candle make an elegant and romantic gift to celebrate or remember a special event.

Items You'll Need

  • A white or cream short pillar candle (smaller candles are easier for beginners)
  • Paraffin wax
  • A container deep enough to hold enough wax to completely submerge the candle (a disposable tin works great)
  • A pot with water that is large enough to hold the wax container
  • Wax paper
  • A photocopy of the photo you wish to use, trimmed to fit on your candle (you can add sentiments, names or dates by writing them on white bond paper with permanent markers.)
  • A paint brush
  • A piece of nylon stocking


Preparation/How to Make Homemade Candle:

To find out how much wax you'll need to melt and to be sure your container is large enough (you don't want the wax to overflow!), do the following exercise:

1. Place the candle in the tin. Pour in water until the candle is covered. (You will need to hold down the candle as it will want to float to the top.)

2. Take out the candle and mark the water level on the outside of the tin with a permanent marker. Pour out the water and dry the candle and tin.

3. Place the tin inside a pot of water. Melt wax in the tin, adding wax until it reaches the mark. Keep the wax in the water bath so it stays melted.

4. If you wish to add sentiments, names or dates, write them on bond paper.

5. Cover a work surface large enough to hold the candle with wax paper.

Adhering and Dipping/How to Make Homemade Candle:

1. With a paint brush, paint a little wax on the candle where you wish to place the image. Position the print over the wax.

2. Brush on more wax to completely adhere the photocopy print to the candle. Make sure the print is flush against the surface of the candle. Add sentiments, dates, and names printed on the paper, adhering the paper to the candle the same way. Let set.

3. Dip the entire candle in the wax. Use a smooth motion when dipping and do not hesitate during the dip. Repeat once if you like - dipping more than twice will obscure the image.

4. Remove the candle and place on wax paper. Let the wax shell cool and harden over the print. It will look cloudy when it first comes out but will dry clear.

5. Buff the finished candle with a piece of a nylon stocking.

Useful Tips on How to Make Homemade Candle:

Here are a few things that I discovered when I did this project:

  • Use disposable tin or container for the's very hard to get the paraffin off of your good bowl!
  • If you have remaining wax on a bowl, utensils, or your paintbrush, run it under really hot water to melt it off, and quickly wipe away excess before it hardens again.
  • Add photos all the way around the candle, or overlap a bunch of photographs for a different look.
  • After I put the photo on the candle, I used craft glue to glue rhinestone accents on the corners of the photo.

I hope that you had fun learning how to make homemade candle! Keep this page in mind, and use this project for a variety of celebrations.

Source: Memory Gifts: Preserving Your Treasured Past in Special Ways by Marie Browning, Sterling Publishing Co. Inc., New York, 1999

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