Bushcraft Candle Making

Bushcraft candle making is a great activity for anyone interested in exploring the outdoors and discovering the joy of giving their craft as gifts to friends and family. One of the most popular activities centered around bushcraft is learning to make your own candles.

Crafting these candles can be an incredibly rewarding experience – whether it’s for relaxation, decorating your evenings with a warm and pleasant ambiance, or just experimenting with different types of waxes and scents. This guide will provide you with an introduction to understanding what bushcraft candle making involves as well as explain some of the strategies and materials needed to get started.

Choosing Your Materials When you decide to embark on the journey of creating a bushcraft candle, there are several notions to consider regarding which materials you should use. To begin, you will need to source containers in which you can pour your molten wax into so that it can solidify into a candle when cooled.

Options for this are limitless; many people opt for jars, mason jars, teacups or other vessels they may already have at home that could serve this purpose.

The second necessary item is paraffin wax; this type traps heat efficiently due to its semi-solid state which greatly helps the crafting process. Additionally, if you’d like added scent or aesthetic décor elements like colourant or flower petals, you may want to purchase those items too as they add extra flare during crafting time.

Making Your Candle Once all materials have been sufficiently acquired rigorously track instructions found on things like YouTube or other online courses provided by professional artisans experienced in various methods of working with paraffin wax and cloth wicks. It’s important that precautions are taken while boiling large amounts of wax so safety risks may be minimized; never let boiling temperatures exceed 240 degrees F (115 C) since higher temperatures lead quickly to split bowls beyond repair.

As long as temperatures are leveled properly, adding fragrance oils should be fairly simple – just ensure correct measurements according to directions given on product packaging then move on from there. Furthermore, it’s always wise attending workshops available nearby so that gaining further guidance in person proves possible versus solely relying exclusively upon online tutorials shown elsewhere in only video/image formats without actual insight direct from experienced professionals nearby.

Overview of Candle Making Fundamentals

Candle making is a craft that has been practiced by cultures around the world for thousands of years. It’s an essential bushcraft skill which involves transforming natural materials into useful sources of light. Candle making can be used to provide illumination during night hikes and camping trips, as well as to add ambience to any outdoor living space. Let’s explore the fundamentals of bushcraft candle making.

The first step in candle making requires gathering all the necessary supplies and materials. You will need wax, either beeswax or paraffin wax with a melting point suitable for the environment you’re in and the type of wick you wish to use. For most candles, beeswax is preferred because it’s less prone to burning at higher temperatures than paraffin waxes, and because some people find its aroma comforting.

Wicks are also key when making a candle-choosing one that’s the appropriate size will determine how your torch or lantern burns and could even improve burn time or cause smoke issues. Aside from wax and wicks, you will need moulds (if you don’t make them yourself), timer devices if needed, tools such as thermometers, mixing posts, containers for pouring melted wax in while cooling etc.

After gathering all your supplies together, it’s time to get started on your next project. First, prepare your wick by cutting it to size for your container or mould-making sure it’s long yet not too long that it is submerged in the liquid wax when melted down.

Secondly pre-melt and measure out your chunk/block of wax prior to adding any additional ingredients such as colouring or scent oils so that they are better distributed throughout the blended batch; usually this requires melting down your chunk/block of wax over medium heat until liquid state before measuring out what’s needed with calibrated thermometer device(s).

Next comes actually assembling the candle by pouring melted wax into container/mould after quickly tying off pre-prepared wick at centre of bottom before pouring begins; preferably this should also be done on flat surface so candles can evenly cool without unnatural curvy shapes forming (i.e., poured onto cooler marble countertop versus heated stove plate).

After poured correctly let candle cool accordingly before handling again or moving from spot; once completely cooled carefully de-mould & trim off any excess bits off wick connection area(s).

Lastly comes actually lighting up our now firm candles – best practice recommends using timers when opting for longer longer burn times than usual/optimal so not scorch away larger layer of precious illuminating material quicker than desired results.

Above are but just some key principles behind creating beautiful yet functional torchl or lanterns via Bushcraft Candle Making – more elements such as shape experimentation (characteristic looks) post assembly may turn fun activity into not only useful format but also brilliant artistic experience ready showcase skill level among friends & families alike. With little knowledge & few ingredients anybody can now enjoy ambient lightshow through creative crafting activities; happy exploring y’all.

Types of Bushcraft Candles You Can Make

Bushcraft candle making encompasses a variety of types of candles. These include:

  • Paraffin wax candles
  • Bee’s wax candles
  • Tallow candles

How to Make Paraffin Wax Candles?

Making paraffin wax candles is a relatively easy and inexpensive option for bushcraft that requires the following materials: paraffin wax, wicks, molds, thermometer. First heat the wax over low heat in a saucepan or double boiler until it reaches about 145°F (62°C). Then dip the wicks into the liquid wax and attach to each mold ensuring that they stand upright.

Once they dry, fill each mold with warm wax up to 3/4 of its capacity. Wait for the molded candles to cool completely before removing them from their molds.

How to Make Beeswax Candle?

Making beeswax candles requires a few more ingredients than paraffin ones such as beeswax, coconut oil, and essential oils to achieve natural scents. First you will need to melt beeswax slowly using a double boiler or your oven at low temperatures.

As it melts you can stir in essential oils and coconut oil for scent and shimmer finish respectively. Then you need to pour the mixture carefully into your candle molds, let them cool for 1-2 hours, remove from the molds after cooling before trimming away excess wick.

How To Make Tallow Candles?

TallowCandlesare perfect for bushcraft due to their portability. You will need tallow fat, long wicks made of jute or cotton twine and any additional decorations. Begin by cutting tallow fat into small cubes and melting it in a pot over low heat until melted all sitting throughout together with your fragrance essential oils if desired.

Pour melted tallowfat into molds or desired shapes and attach a long wick at each corner of either side of the container before leaving them undisturbed until tallow solidifies completely. Finally remove once hardened.

What Equipment Do You Need for Bushcraft Candle Making?

Bushcraft candle making is an enjoyable hobby for anyone with a passion for the outdoors and its many activities. By utilizing various natural materials found in nature such as wax, twine, and essential oils, you can craft beautiful handmade candles to light up your campsite or home.

In order to create beautiful bushcraft candles you must have all the right tools and materials necessary for the task. The required items for bushcraft candle making are listed below:

Making A Candle With A Mold


  • Candle wicks
  • Double boiler
  • Wire cutters
  • Fine grade sandpaper or steel wool


  • Wax:
  • Essential Oil:
  • Twine :
  • Moulds :

Caring for and Storing Your Candle Making Supplies

When learning the hobby of bushcraft candle making, one must be sure to properly care for and securely store their supplies. After all, these supplies are not only necessary for the actual candle-making process but often costly as well.

To maximize the “shelf life” of the supplies, it is essential to take certain steps before storing them away for future use. In this article, we will explore the importance of proper care and storage of bushcraft candle making tools and supplies.

First and foremost, it is important to properly clean your equipment after use. Residues from previous projects can be difficult to remove if they are allowed to dry and remelt multiple times on the same materials. To avoid this problem, try using warm soapy water with a small brush or cloth to scrub away any dirt or residue that might have built up throughout a project.

Once you have finished cleaning, let your items air dry in a cool ventilated area before storing them away in their designated spot. Doing so will ensure that no bacteria or other contaminants can build up while they are being stored away.

Organization is also key when maintaining your collection of items necessary for candle-making; this includes everything from raw materials such as waxes and wicks to specialized tools like double boilers or thermometers. Keeping everything organized by assigning designated spots in bins or hanging racks should make things simpler when it comes time for craft day.

It’s also never a bad idea to label your items either by attaching sticky notes or labeling lids/containers – whatever works best for you.

Finally, once you have cleaned and organized your bushcraft candle making tools and supplies, it’s time to safely store them away until they are needed again. Keeping expensive raw materials such as waxes in airtight containers is always advised as organic material such as beeswax tend able more susceptible moisture damage than synthetic type alternatives (such as paraffin).

In much the same way that unprotected wood exposed excess moisture can warp over time; wax exposed areas with naturally higher humidity levels could suffer similar consequences.

Alternatively, metal tins make great containers for general purpose materials like wicks, dyes powders etc., due to their durability. A good rule of thumb here would be: wherever possible buy quality containers with airtight lids. This step isn’t essential for every item you come across but could save headaches down the road if something happened during storage.

How to Gather Materials for Bushcraft Candle Making

For anyone who is keen to explore bushcraft candle making, there are plenty of resources and materials needed. A great starting point is foraging in your local area; gathering things such as fallen wood, leaves, seedpods, pine cones and grasses.

For the wick materials it is possible to find natural sources like cotton yarn or thin strips of bark from trees. To give your candles an extra flair you may like to try adding essential oils or fragrances into the melted wax.

Harvesting the Wax

In order to make candles, you will need wax as a base material. The most basic way to get hold of wax is by harvesting beeswax from nature.

If you have a bee hive nearby then carefully melting down some of thecomb can provide a soft and malleable substance that when mixed with other ingredients can help create your unique candles. Depending on where you live you may also be able to collect processed wax derived from plant sources such as soybeans or coconut oil.

Making Your Own Containers

When it comes to the container for the wick and wax, here too it is possible to utilize natural items in bushcraft candle making. Corks and pinecones are lightweight options that don’t require a lot of preparation before use, while if carving skills are available they can be used to sculpt wooden containers from fallen wood or branches that can have intricate patterns burned onto them after they have been sanded and treated properly.

It’s worth considering even plastic bottles cut in half if safety needs careful consideration too.

Preparing the Candle Wicks

One of the most important parts of bushcraft candle making is preparing the candle wicks. It is essential to use the right kind of wick for each type of wax, as this affects how well the candle burns and how much wax it consumes.

The most common type of wick used in bushcraft candles is a cotton core with zinc, beeswax or paraffin coating. This type of wick offers stability and allows for an even burning of the candle.

Depending on the size and shape of your container, it may be necessary to pre-soak the wicks for 30 minutes before inserting them into the container. Once prepared, measure out and cut a length that allows for at least 2 inches extra above your vessel’s height.

Assembling the Candle

Once you have chosen your desired wax type and prepared your wicks, you are ready to begin assembling your bushcraft candle. Here’s what you need:

  • Melting pot
  • Thermometer
  • Prewaxed wicks
  • Scissors
  • Candle containers
  • Wax chips/panels

First, melt 2 – 3 wax panels in a double boiler over low to medium heat on a stove until it reaches 150°F (65°C). Use a thermometer to ensure that you do not exceed this temperature as overheating the mixture can cause discolouration or prevent proper hardening. Next, dip one end each pre-soaked wick into the container several times until there is enough wax built up against it so it will stay upright while cooling.

Subsequently centre each one in their respective tins or jugs, tie them off securely at around 1 inch above surface level using wire or string – take care not to tighten it too much though. Finally insert a lit match or lighter near enough to light both ends if needed and top off with additional melted wax chips/panels ensuring all wicks are completely submerged – leave some space for expansion when burning later.

Making the Wax Base

One of the most important aspects of bushcraft candle making is making the wax base. Proper wax-making techniques can be used to create a pleasant smelling, long-lasting candle that burns evenly and slowly. The necessary ingredients for wax production are wax flakes, an aroma oil of your choice, and a double-boiler with water (for safety purposes). Start by melting the wax flakes in the double boiler.

After the flakes have completely melted you can add in your chosen aroma oil, stirring constantly (for about 5 minutes) to make sure everything is properly mixed together. Now begin pouring your mixture into your molds ensuring all air bubbles are removed. Wait until it has solidified before taking it out to create your candles.

The next crucial step in creating a high quality bushcraft candle is wick placement. You must first cut off two pieces of wick which will need to be around an inch or two longer than your desired finished product so they don’t get too narrow when pulled through the bottom of each mold.

This will ensure optimum burn performance and also prevent your candles from becoming lopsided over time as it burns down. Use a metal skewer or paperclip to feed the strands through tiny holes at the bottom while keeping equal tension on both sides for even distribution throughout.

Once you have placed the wicks securely you can move onto the most important part; decorating and finishing touches. Candle decorating is where creativity comes in, so feel free to experiment with different types of ribbons, fabric wraps or paint, unique stamps or shapes, etc., as this will give your candles a distinct look while adding to its aesthetic appeal and overall charm.

To complete your hard work, you can either use paraffin wax solids or beeswax melts instead of traditional liquid wax for a higher quality end result that looks like straight out of a store bought product. This provides superior hold on decorations and also helps produce more longevity in burning time.

Having completed these steps accurately you should now have beautiful homemade bushcraft candles ready to bring ambiance into any space with their fragrances and LED light flickering gentle shadows around its surroundings for added calmness and relaxation – just what any weary outdoorsman needs at day’s end.

How Long After Making a Candle Can I Burn It

How to Scent and Color Your Candle Wax

Bushcraft candle making can provide hours of fun and enjoyment for individuals or a group. Making your own candles allows you to customize the scent and color. Here is how you can create the perfect scented and colored bushcraft candle wax:

  • Gather all necessary materials – wax flakes, essential oils, scent additives, wicks, tins, colorant.
  • Melt the wax over a double boiler at medium-low heat until it is completely melted.
  • Before pouring in the container, add any desired scent oil.

Adding scent to your candle won’t just make it smell good; it will also give you an emotional connection with every light up of the candle. To create strong but pleasant smells, blend essential oils together with adding around ten drops in each 250 milliliters of wax.

You may use a ready-made combination or mix your very own with individual oils as part of fun experiment. Before finally pouring the mixture into tins, add some extra drops food coloring for more tones.

It’s important to remember that different types of essential oil and wax have different burning times so plan accordingly when selecting them. Hard wax such as soy wax provides longer hotter burns while beeswax makes softer warmer light that burns quickly. Both types are available to purchase online or at local shops alongside their special properties including fragrances – floral lavender for relaxation; unwinding grapefruit ßfor balance; woody eucalyptus for invigoration.

For those who prefer not to use essential oils/fragrances there are plenty of other choices like dried flowers & fruits which could be added along with herbal extracts for eye catching designs. Keep these additions small so they don’t overpower the candle’s central fragrance or clog the wick leading to weak flames.

Prepare core ingredients separately to combine them all up it’s time to choose your favorite tins/jars/containers etc Balance proportions and stir regularly during melting and cool down period before finally adding wick by using superglue on its base then cut excess off after cooling completely.

Pouring and Cooling the Candle

Once the ingredients are poured, the candles must be cooled. This is done by tipping the candle molds upside down and letting them sit until they are no longer hot to the touch. Make sure you give the candle molds enough time to cool down; if they aren’t cool enough when they are tipped over, there is a possibility that your candle will lose shape or become misshapen.

Depending on the size of your mold, this can take anywhere from 10 minutes (for something like votive candles) up to an hour for bigger tapers and pillars. Extra caution should be taken when cooling any wax/beeswax combination as beeswax melts at much higher temperatures than paraffin wax and thus takes much longer to cool completely.

Once cooled, generally it’s best not to attempt to remove your candles from their molds until they have been completely cooled – making sure that any leftover heat evaporates out before trying to unmold them. To further ensure a successful removal, thoroughly rinse each of your glowing creations with cold water first – this simple action helps keep them flexible and smooth when popped out.

The beauty of bushcraft candle making is that it offers a wonderful opportunity for experimentation and creativity. Making new shapes and sizes for different occasions throughout the seasons opens up endless possibilities and gives a real handmade charm every time. Each creation you make provides its own unique take on traditional craftsmanship; allowing you to show off your creative flare in all its handmade glory.

Adding dyes or scented oil can further enhance each creation; providing plenty of potential for specialty candles as gifts or just an extra special treat for your home décor pieces. With these simple techniques you’re almost guaranteed success in creating beautiful bushcraft candles – so get out there, get creative, enjoy the process, and most importantly – have some fun.

Common Candle Making Troubleshooting Tips

  • Check the core of the candle – wick too large, too small or missing?
  • Is the wax for candle making the right type and melting temperature?
  • Does the wick have the correct size for that diameter candle?
  • Are you using a suitable wax to wick combination?
  • Are you burning in an area where drafty air or gusts will impact it’s performance?

Making candles is an important skill every bushcrafter should know. When making candles in a wilderness environment, careful attention should be paid to several key aspects. First, selecting the proper wax is important when it comes to temperatures.

In cooler environments, harder waxes are usually recommended as they are better for holding shape when cooled down. Soft waxes can work, but may not be ideal in cold conditions. Once a proper wax has been selected, one of the biggest items all bushcrafters must keep in mind is the proper size and selection of their wicks.

Generally, thicker candles require larger wicks whereas thinner tapers can use smaller ones. If a bushcrafter uses a wick that is either too large or too small they may encounter trouble while trying to light their candles. A third issue arises with how much ventilation is present; if there are high winds around it could blow out the flames before they even take form on top of having potential fire hazards from improperly secured burning candles in windy conditions.

Finally, another important step is trimming the cotton ends off after each burn cycle and “tenting” them at least 1/4 inch so oxygen enters into play while burning these primitive flames. Without doing this step correctly air flow can be restricted and flame abilities reduced substantially.

Finishing Touches and Presentation Options

Once you have poured your candles, the process of bushcraft candle making continues on to the finishing touches and presentation options. It is important to emphasize that most of these steps and procedures are optional: some bushcrafters prefer their candles in a more rustic aesthetic, while others wish for a more finished look.

The first step is cooling the candles down. Some methods require the hot wax pool around the wick be cooled slightly so that it remains level when dispensed into a container or decorative mold.

To do this, fill a bowl with cold water and dip the exposed section of your wick into it until you get the desired effect. If needed, use warm water to bring out any air bubbles in your wax mixture; allow time for them to rise up before removing any of them from the surface of your candle.

Montgomery’s wax has a creamy finish which can easily be polished with oil, lotion or petroleum jelly once cooled down and hardened. If desired, this finishing touch helps make your candle shine nicely until it is put to use again.

If you want (or need) something special for presentation purposes? You may want to consider getting creative by incorporating different shapes or colors into your design. This could include anything from simply painting details onto standard-sized tapers all the way up to creating unique free form designs with geometric shapes and/or bright hues made using dyes.

The possibilities really are endless here – just remember to stick within safety guidelines by avoiding materials that could be potentially flammable when burned inside a confined space (such as paper products. ).

While many people enjoy pouring individual candles instead of mass production, what if you’re looking for something more elaborate? There are several ways to add an extra element of presentation value when crafting large batches of candles from scratch by using unique containers-mason jars with intricate cuts, antique vases in colors that match room decor themes or even hollowed-out apples filled with targeted scents. However crafted, these pieces will surely impress anyone who sees them.

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