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Fall project : Create a gnome home mushroom candle

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Fall project : Create a gnome home mushroom candle

When autumn arrives, mushrooms are all over the place! They come in every shape and color you can think of and are a real source of inspiration for all your candlemaking projects.

The mushroom we will create today is your typical gnome home: white and red and utterly decorative!

This mushroom candle is one of those I would not recommend you ever burn, it is for decorative purpose only.

If you light it up, it won't take long for the hat to come loose and fall down, together with the still burning taper candle.

About this project

  • difficulty level : relatively easy
  • time needed : about an hour
  • suitable for children : partially; they can shape the mushroom hat

What you need

  • 300 grams of a paraffin / stearic acid mix (or a pillar candle formula),
  • about twenty wax pellets,
  • 1 white taper candle, homemade or store-bought, about 20 cm long,
  • 1 dessert plate,
  • some dishwashing detergent,
  • red candle dye,
  • any item with a round top,
  • 1 small terracotta flower pot,
  • mold sealer,
  • some potting soil.

You will need some red-colored paraffin wax for the mushroom hat and uncolored paraffin to fasten the hat to the stem and the stem inside the flower pot.

If you have two melting pots, as showed on the picture, divide the paraffin into two parts and melt it in your double boiler (the picture is taken from another project so please ignore the inconsistency in wax colors).<:p>

When the paraffin wax has melted, give half of it a nice red color and keep both lots at pouring temperature for the next steps.


Before we start making the mushroom hat, we'll take care of the stem.

Dip the taper candle in hot water for about thirty seconds. Don't be tempted to dip it in the water of your double boiler: because of the water temperature, the taper candle will release some of the paraffin it is made of. If you dip it in your double boiler, this paraffin will end up covering your melting pots, which is really not a good thing.
Instead, use a small plastic or aluminum container (like the ones ice cream comes in) that you will fill with hot (but not boiling) water. When the taper candle has been submerged for about thirty seconds, it should be soft enough to be pliable. As showed on the picture, give it a more natural shape, slightly bent.
But don't overdo it: the mushroom hat will be relatively heavy and if you bend the stem too much, your candle may be unstable when finished.


Now that the stem is ready, let's get started with the hat.

Put a few drops of dishwashing liquid in the dessert plate and use your fingers to spread it over the whole surface of the plate. This will make your life easier when you remove the soft paraffin sheet.

Spread some wax pellets at random locations on the plate (paraffin wax usually comes in pellets form so this shouldn't be a problem).

Now, pour the red-colored paraffin inside the plate. Pour enough paraffin to get a wax sheet about 3 millimeters thick. Let the paraffin cool down but don't wait too long: if you can press your finger into the wax without making a hole or leaving fingerprints, it is an indication that the paraffin is cool enough to handle.


Now comes a rather delicate operation: remove the red paraffin disc from the plate. Start by cautiously raising a corner with the tip of a knife. The fact that you've covered the plate with dishwashing liquid should make this operation much easier. Once you've lifted a part of the wax sheet, still using caution (and your fingers), separate the rest of the wax disc from the dessert plate.

At this stage, the wax should still be warm and very soft. Find any item with a rounded top. In this project, I used a glass bell that was a part of an old set of Container candles but you could very well use a soup ladle or a pool ball. if you don't find anything to do the job, just use your hands to give the mushroom hat its shape.

Place the round wax sheet on top of the item of your choice. Because the wax is still soft, il will almost immediately take a hat shape. When you like the shape, dip the hat into a bucket of cold water to accelerate the cooling process and "lock" the shape of the hat.


Putting the hat on top of your finger, try and locate the center of gravity of the hat (it may not be where you expect it to be). Then, using a nail or a wicking needle, drill a hole through the hat. This will allow passage for the wick of the candle taper. Once the wick has gone through the hat, use some mold sealer to seal the wick hole on the outside of the hat.


Before you go any further (you WILL be in trouble if you skip this step), work out a way to keep the taper candle steadily in place while the paraffin you are about to pour hardens. I'm pretty sure you don't want to hold a taper candle without moving during fifteen minutes...

Now flip the hat upside down (in this picture, you'll notice that I placed it on a small flower pot to keep it from moving) and install the system you've devised to keep the taper candle in place.

Once the candle is immobilized, pour some uncolored paraffin wax inside the hat (do not fill it up entirely: it would not look right and would make the hat far too heavy).

When this paraffin has hardened (give it plenty of time), hat and stem should now be inseparable.


Seal the hole at the bottom of the small terracotta flower pot with some mold sealer (from the outside). You will probably need the same device you just used to keep the taper candle from moving in the previous step. Make sure you immobilize the whole mushroom in the flower pot.

A word of warning: because of the weight of the mushroom, you might have to reinforce that system...

Before you pour the remainder of paraffin wax in the flower pot to hold the mushroom in place, try and find the best position to give the mushroom an optimal balance. Once the paraffin is poured and has settled, it will be impossible to adjust the mushroom's position.

When you are sure that you've found the best position possible, pour the paraffin wax inside the terracotta flower pot. Be sure to leave enough room (about 10 millimeters) to add some potting soil in the next and last step.


When the wax has cooled off in the flower pot, remove the mold sealer from the base of the pot and the top of the mushroom's hat.

Add some potting soil on top of the paraffin in the flower pot to hide it and give your candle a more natural look and voilà ! Your fall project is done.

This mushroom candle is one of those I would not recommend you ever burn, it is for decorative purpose only.

If you light it up, it won't take long for the hat to come loose and fall down, together with the still burning taper candle.

Do you like this content? Help me write more by offering me a coffee Thanks a bunch!
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