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LUMINOUS | Make Your Own Beeswax Candles

LUMINOUS | Make Your Own Beeswax Candles

How-to directions and photographs by Carey London of Harlem Hill

Winter has arrived. As a girl who much prefers sunshine, swimming, and summer nights, it can be tough for me to thrive in the long dark days of the season. A few years ago, I decided to try my best to embrace this time of year by making our home as cozy as possible. I began using candles at the dinner table every night, instead of saving them only for special occasions. Our young son looked forward to the ritual of lighting them nightly and the warm glow cast on those chilly nights seemed to slow down our evenings in the best possible way.

We use only natural beeswax, as many other candle waxes contain chemicals. In contrast, beeswax actually helps to clean the air as it burns -- besides having the most amazing smell. 

Materials (all easily available online):

Beeswax Sheets

Cotton Wick

Colored Beeswax Strips


Cut your Beeswax Sheet in half either vertically or horizontally depending on whether you want a taper or pillar size candle. Measure and cut the wick to about half an inch longer than the sheet.

Line the wick up with the edge of the sheet and tightly roll over the sting and press firmly so the wick is secure. Pressing lightly, continue rolling sheet until you reach the end and then press the edge together to form the seam.

Break off small pieces of the colored wax and begin to make shapes that can be adhered to the outside of your rolled candle. We made a loose mock up of what we wanted our design to look like on tissue paper before placing on our candles. This is where you can get creative! We kept it simple with a few shapes -- round, heart, and teardrop (which my son describes as “lentil” shaped) -- and then made a very loose pattern by gently pressing into the sides of the candles.

There is a lot of forgiveness in decorating a cylinder as you can’t see all sides at once!

We hope this inspires you to add a little glow to your winter nights and maybe also illuminate the life of someone you love.

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