Traditional Candle Making Spanish Mission

Introduction to Spanish Mission Candle Making

The traditional candle making in Spanish Mission culture has been a long-standing art form that is holds deep spiritual and religious significance. Throughout the years, candles have been used in influential places of worship, like churches and synagogues, to signify important life events or holidays. They also hold very practical uses, like providing light in areas such as homes or businesses where electricity was not available until recently.

Candles are essential to Spanish Mission spiritual practices, particularly those focusing on calming or divinizing the spirit. Common rituals that involve candles include: lighting a candle before entering a space during prayer, honoring the deceased by placing a lit candle near their photo, using them for vigils and gatherings within the Santeria religion, and burning & pouring wax which is believed to contain transformative properties. For indigenous cultures without access to electricity, candles provide necessary light for everyday tasks such as cooking and evening reading; one candle placed inside an empty tin can could fill an entire room with enough light for people to take part in activities normally done during daylight hours.

The Spanish Mission style of candle making consists of beeswax stained by wrapping it upon itself with ribbon or dip dyeing it in natural dyes. Each color was then meant to represent various symbols depending on the context they were being used within. Also popular among these communities were scented beeswax candles made with oil extracts from flowers like jasmine or roses along with wood essences such as cedarwood and sandalwood. In addition to bringing forth effective aromatherapy practices into households due to their ability to block bad energy from entering specific spaces through scent and ritualistic maneuvering when lit, many of these homemade scented candles still use special recipes today as favored items provided by local artisanal shops throughout Latin America.

Methods and Materials Used

Traditional candle making is a centuries-old skill that can evoke images of Spanish missions and vintage villages. The mission candles were generally made from beeswax, although other ingredients such as tallow or vegetable oils like soybean oil may also have been used. While beeswax is still one of the preferred formulations for making quality handmade candles, a variety of materials are available to give you lots of options when modernizing or creating your own unique contemporary versions.

In the past, most candle makers sourced their material from a local beekeeper or small hobby farm. Today, this isn’t always practical”beeswax can now be bought online or in craft stores in convenient block shapes or sheets ready for melting down and using right away. For those who prefer not to use animal by-products, alternatives like soy wax, vegetable waxes (stearin) and palm wax are readily available too.

When it comes to wicks you’ll need something that matches your wax formulation: cotton braided wicks work best with natural wax formulations, while flat paper core wicking is more suited to synthetic waxes and paraffin varieties. Finally, there are all manner of molds and tools on the market ranging from low cost plastic varieties to professional quality metal items crafted by experts in the trade.

Coconut Wax Candle Making Kit

Step-by-Step Candle Making Process

1. Prepare the molds for candle making: This process begins by constructing wooden molds to give the candle structure and shape. Using a few simple tools, such as a hand saw or metal cutter, woodblock, drill, hammer and nails, construct square-shaped wooden molds. It’s recommended to line the inside of the mold with oil-soaked cloth to create better surface adhesion for wax later on.

2. Prepare the wax: Plan ahead by purchasing the right type of wax to match your desired aesthetic outcome. Typically-used waxes for Spanish mission candles include beeswax, paraffin and tallow; honeycomb-textured candles are best done in beeswax since it has higher melting points than paraffin or tallow. Once obtained, heat up and melt the wax in an appropriate heat source like an electric stovetop or bain marie . If desired scent is integral to the overall experience of owning a Spanish mission candle, then incorporate high-essential oil content into the recipe during melting process.

3. The Pouring Process: With careful attention between ladle and mold movements, slowly pour melted wax into each prepped wooden mold cavity until it reaches top edge”this should be done in one even motion if possible so that air bubbles don’t occur within product upon drying. Afterward allow product to cool down before carefully removing wick string from within hardened cavity”done by gently pulling it out slowly while object is still warm but not boiling hot

4. Finishing Touches: Polish off with finishing touches like coloring schemes; you can use food coloring dyes or dyes formulated specifically for candles which usually come as powders and pelleted form in marketplaces today! In addition add extra embellishments such as ornamental ribbon which serves as special unique touches when gifted or sold!

Troubleshooting Tips


Q: What materials are needed for traditional candle making?

A: Traditional candle-making typically requires a wax such as paraffin, soy, or beeswax as well as fragrance, wicking, container and/or mold, thermometer, and a pan or pot to use in the melting process.

Q: Is it necessary to use a thermometer when candle making?
A: A thermometer is not strictly necessary; however, setting the proper temperature is key to producing the desired consistency in the melted wax. It is often recommended that a thermometer is used in order to get an accurate reading.
Q: How do I set up my Spanish Mission style of candle making?
A: To set up your Spanish Mission style of candle making you will need an area with adequate ventilation and space for your wick blocks with pre-punched holes for attaching wicks and a holder for holding your pouring pot at an angle. Additionally it is helpful to have tools such as ladles or spoons for stirring your wax during the melting and pouring process and basic ingredients such as wax, molds and wicks.

Styles of Spanish Mission Candles

Tutorial for Making a “Beehive” Candles:

Begin by gathering some beeswax and paraffin wax and melting them in equal parts over a double boiler. Once they have melted, stir the mixture to get rid of any small pieces that may still be floating.

Pour the molten wax mixture into molds or containers shaped like caves, canals and grottoes, which is what Spanish missionaries used during their candle-making process. Place a wick into the center of each mold, ensuring it stands straight. The beehive shaped containers should be filled allowing enough room at the top for air to circulate while burning.

Buy Bulk Candle Making Supplies

Allow the wax to cool completely before attempting to remove from the molds. To help get them out more easily you may want to rub oil around the inner walls first.

Trim away any excess wick once you’ve carefully removed your candles from their molds. When you’re finished your candles should look like those found in Spanish mission environments all those years ago!

Unique Decorative Elements

1. Sequins: Add sequins of different colors and sizes to the outside of the candle for a sparkling decoration.

2. Beads: Attach assorted beads to the wax surface with glue or string them through holes in the wax for an eye-catching display.

3. Ribbon: Weave patterned ribbons around the candle for an interesting texture and color contrast against the wax exterior.

4. Feathers: Wrap feathers in matching ribbon and attach them around the candles for a bohemian chic look.

5. Dried Flowers: Press dried roses, lavender, and other flowers into wax for a beautiful scent and vintage inspired aesthetic.

6. Glitter: Sprinkle glitter onto dampened wax or melted wax onto glitter coated parchment paper for a dramatic glittery finish on your candles.

7. Layered Wax Colors: Try layering various colors of soy, beeswax, or paraffin along pre-existing carvings to add visual depth to your creation.


Candle making is an important part of Spanish Mission culture and has a long history. From the earliest Christian churches in Spain to modern-day religious communities, candles were used for ritual purposes as part of numerous religious ceremonies. Candlelight plays an important role in everything from Christmas carols to Masses and baptisms. Candles also had an important cultural role, providing light after dark and signifying hospitality and safety within the home.

Today, candle-making is still present in many Spanish Mission communities due to the significance that it holds within their culture. In addition to its traditional use in rituals and its symbolism of hospitality, candle-making continues to be utilized as a way of celebrating special occasions such as weddings or anniversaries. Many classically trained artisans are keeping this important part of Spanish Mission heritage alive by carefully crafting unique hand-made candles that not only help recall traditional methods but provide insight into their traditional philosophies surrounding light and spirituality.

Candle making has long been used as a means to bring joy, comfort, peace and remembrance among the people of a particular culture, so it is no surprise that this practice is still very much alive today in Spanish Mission culture. Not only does it’s usage preserve classic techniques but it reinvigorates these practices with relevance for today’s celebration’s and veneration rituals both inside churches and within the home setting. With its spiritual connection to faith, heritage and identity candle making provides an important reminder that even together apart we can all still find solace in shared traditions of love and respect.

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