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Ramr last won the day on January 17 2019

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  1. I dabbled in candles about a year ago then took a long break and now am jubilant to have ordered some new FOs, from the States. I tell everyone who will listen that I have new FOs coming. They don't care. What's wrong with people?!
  2. I drilled a hole through a candle with one of Hub's wood drills and it worked okay. Then I saw a Youtube video of a guy drilling a hole with a wooden skewer. Like the kind you use for shish kabobs. He just clamped the skewer into the drill like it was a drill bit and went at it. I tried and it worked. Not super fast but I was going slow and trying to stay straight. I tend to drill off at an angle and no one wants a wonky wick. I was surprised the skewer worked but it did.
  3. Oddly enough, until I started making candles, I would have had no idea those craters were a flaw. I probably would have looked at those and thought, hey, neat, dimple candles. But now that I know and thought, ack! Also, those are some teeny little wicks. What are they using, dental floss?
  4. I am a beginner and dabbler and have a strong inclination towards instant gratification so as soon as a candle can be popped out of the mold (votives) I light it to see what happens. No cure time, no cooled wax. I do spend a lot of time standing next to candles shouting "Burn, you stupid thing!" My testing is very low and my failure right is extremely high. I'm sensing a connection here. I also don't like to do things the sensible way, like purchase premade, tested wicks. Instead I like to hunt around the house for things that should burn (in my opinion) and jam them into candles. This leads to various mostly catastrophic results. I had some success, much to my surprise, using cotton crochet thread (waxed in bees wax) as wick in my paraffin candles. But it made a pretty big flame and some pretty deep melt pools. I got a ball of thinner cotton crochet thread, dipped in hot beeswax and wicked with that. Lovely little flame! Steady, bright, well behaved, until the melt pool gets too deep and the wobbly little thread wick plops over and snuffs out. Every single time. I admire the self control of all this testing, but oh lord, I don't wanna!
  5. Update. I did indeed keep my candles in the mothball suitcase. The candles are wrapped in plastic bags closed with clips. Must be cheap plastic as the smell of the candles blows right through the plastic. When you open that suitcase, and I warn people before I do, I say step back, avert your eyes, the smell that comes out smells like someone threw up bubblegum. The cacophony of smells that hits your nose at once fries your brain's ability to distinguish any of them so it just smells like barfed up bubblegum. With a slight after waft of mothball. Interestingly, the candles have not absorbed the smell of each other. When you hold a candle to your nose the distinct smell of IT is still distinct. I'm thinking wax is a pretty inert substance that will take a smell when added to the liquid wax, but not absorb it much when exposed to a scent while the wax is solid. I am burning a candle now, it does not smell like bubblegum barf.
  6. A timely topic. This summer, while in the thick of candle making, I developed a cough. A chronic, intermittent, dry, non-productive cough. I blamed it on the smoke in the air due to forest fires (it was very bad!). Smoke finally cleared, but the cough didn't. It got a bit better, but never went away. Then I started making soap, more with the fragrance oil, more with the coughing to the point of losing my voice and wheezing and I thought, gee whiz, this is sort of sucking. So in a desperate attempt to see if this is related to months of candle making them soap making, I packed away everything into the basement and have been scent free in the house for a few days. Still coughing. Might have to give it more time. I do not have a range hood not a respirator. But FINALLY getting smart (too little too late) on my last two candle pours, I took the hot wax and the FO outside onto the porch and mixed the two there. Outside. Stirred it in good, outside. Had much less throat and lung irritation. This sad tale is to verify that these oils are no joke and use of the proper equipment (respirators) is a solid idea. But as others have said, a 'natural' oil is in no way guaranteed to be less irritating! The assumption that they are 'better' is often wrong.
  7. I don't recall who suggested that vanilla with a smidge of patchouli might be nice, but I think they are on to something. Full disclosure, I don't like patchouli. I think it smells like boring hippies. Unlike exciting hippies who smell like...? Anyhoo, I'm futzing around with scent blends, decided to give this a try. Melt a little coconut oil in the microwave, add a drop and I literally mean using an eyedropper, like ONE drop of patchouli to three drops of vanilla in these several tablespoons (guessing) of liquid coconut oil. Smear on back of hand and up arm. Hmm. Worthy of a second sniff. Again, hmmm. Interesting. Sniff. Yeah. This might have merit. Sniff. This is alluring. Slightly annoying and yet you can't leave it alone. My arm is burning and turning red because these are CANDLE fragrance oils and it says right on the bottle 'may cause skin irritation'. No kidding. But, you know, for the sake of science sacrifices must be made. I think this would make a lovely candle. I might have to toss the scented coconut oil though as it seems to be peeling my hide off. But thank you to whoever suggested this, good call!
  8. I did contact the place that sells the FO. They said if I ask for info on a specific FO they will find out for me. Good grief, I have a box full of FOs. Why wouldn't they make this information public on their website? Ridiculous. Tonight I made my 2nd M&P ever. Scented it with a FO that I was so excited about. Wow, did it ever turn out overpoweringly strong. Now, several hours later it is overwhelming the entire house and I am starting to seriously hate it. It makes me ill to think I will end up tossing this soap in the trash, but unless it settles down, WAAYYYY down, that's where it's going! Even now my eyes are watering. I made a 2 pound batch using 1 tsp (5 ml) per pound. That worked fine with the rootbeer FO I used last time. This time the Tobacco FO is ripping my face off! But I do know for certain that this FO is safe to use in soap. Soap that I have to throw away. (weeping)
  9. Talltayl, I would suppose anaphylactic shock would definitely be a downer at bath time! I ask this question because MOST of the FOs I've been looking at are used in both candles and MP soap. However, many of the FOs I 'inherited' come from a seller that does NOT list any of the technical data about each FO. They have one list of FOs for soap, and another for candles. The soap list is very, very limited. I have a hard time believing that other sites have fragrances that are useful in both applications, but this site has FOs that are strictly good for candles. I suspect it was a whole lot quicker to make a website without adding all the extra information / typing / downloading nd easier for them to just say, nope, no good, don't do it, candles only. I will do a bit more digging because I do want to dabble a bit in M&P soap, but don't want to invest too much in new scents. It would be great to be able to use the FOs I already have.
  10. Can you use candle FO in soap? I know the politically correct answer is no and perhaps even the LEGAL answer, when selling to the public, is also no. However, there is that gray area where someone might say, " if these soaps are for your own use, and you know the risk you might be taking, then go ahead and give it a whirl. Worst case scenario, you throw your soap out because it makes your skin peel off in great, bleeding slabs or it corrodes the plumbing. " I know there is the party line that says oh no, we shall never do anything unless blessed by the testers who work to prevent every bad thing from ever happening to us. Except taxes. They can't prevent taxes. Well, I want to hear from the people who have tried it and either it worked for them, or it didn't. I know the technical answer is no candle FO in soap - but I want to hear practical, real world usage stories. And in the same vein, what, exactly, is the difference between candle FO and soap FO? Is there one specific ingredient that will peel the hide off a person? I mean, people put essential oils in soap and some of those things are pretty darn aggressive! While I wait I'm going to lather up with my soap that I scented with CANDLE vanilla. So far no peeling skin.
  11. Forgive the dreadful photo. This is my business card (not for candles). It has pretty much no information, only direction to my Facebook page, which is where most customers contact me. I do not want to give out my personal email or cell number. If I get a website someday I might get that printed on the next batch of cards but for now, this is working okay. I left the back of the card blank to write on but what REALLY bugs me is the paper finish makes it very difficult to write on them and the ink smears all over unless you blow on it for 2 minutes or wave it around in the air. I ordered a no-gloss finish, but that doesn't seem to be what they delivered. If you want to be able to jot notes on your card, paper that happily takes and holds ink is a must. With the back of the card blank I often punch a hole in the corner , pin them to the welding cap and use them as size and care instruction tags. I also jot a customer's cap size on the back of a card and tell him / her to keep it if they ever want to order more. This is a valuable piece of information, cap size, and it keeps my card in their wallet as future reference.
  12. Franu, I don't know whether to thank you for the link or not. Like I need another 'thing' to do! I already have a suitcase, literally a suitcase, full of candles from the last couple months of experimentation. Now soap? This could get so out of hand but I have to say it was so much fun! And if my experiments go wrong, I am in no risk of burning the house down with bad soap! (unlike my bad candles which now and then just go poof!). I have asked to join that group. Now I wait to see if I am acceptable. As for the swirls, they were not really part of the plan. But I was jabbing away at a few of the little white blocks that I wanted further in the soap and I managed a few pretty swirls. Happy accident. Lucky for me it costs too much money to get the base shipped to me otherwise this would get out of hand!
  13. Used SFIC clear base and SFIC cocoa butter base. I'm not sure how I feel about the results. 1) it's pretty gummy. Very soft. Sliced like butter and you can stick your fingernail into it with ease. Will this harden up if I leave it sitting out in the air? 2) the white cocoa butter still has the smell it came with despite adding a little vanilla scent to it. However, I realized later that the vanilla I used was for candles and I'm not sure it can be used in soap!!! Are soap and candle scents all interchangeable? 3) despite spraying the surface of the black soap with alcohol, the white soap is not stuck on very well. You can peel it off with no effort. Maybe I didn't spray on enough alcohol? Maybe it's because my rubbing alcohol is only 70% instead of 99%? I am happy with the black coloured glycerin, used two capsules of charcoal for that. Mixed it with literally one drop of glycerin and two drops of water to make a paste. I think it looks cool! Scented with rootbeer, smells amazing! I was hoping for the frothy look of rootbeer with foam on the top, didn't quite make it and the curls keep dropping off. Also, the most expensive soap I have ever owned! The supplies cost $35 and shipping it was $16. For 8 bars of soap. Yikes! But this is WAY easier than making candles!
  14. Hello and thank you everyone. Why do I fool around with things that are not approved wick material? Because it's more funner. (yeah, bad grammar, I know. But funner grammar). I like to invent things, or at least challenge ideas. Sometimes I fail (mostly) but sometimes I win! I have the luxury of fooling around because I make these ghastly candles for myself and a few people who will love me even if I burn their houses down with my crappy candles. Although I endeavour not to do this and advise them if any of my candles start acting really weird, please throw it out. I did make some wicks out of crochet cotton. Primed them in beeswax. Set them in the wick holders. They worked great. Until they didn't. I think the QUALITY of crochet cotton might be lacking and while it is 'pure' enough for garment making, it is not pure enough for wicking. In some cases it will be burning along with a lovely little flame then OH MY GOD IT'S 10 INCHES HIGH SMOKIN LIKE AN OLD DIESEL ENGINE!!!!!!! I believe this is due to a tiny piece of dynamite that was accidentally in the cotton field where the cotton grew and got woven into the cotton when it was produced. Kitchen inferno. As for flopping, the beeswax primed wicks did not flop in the last bit of molten wax. But this had more to do with the wick tab, I believe, than the beeswax priming. Prior to this I did not have wick tabs and just used crochet string that worked okay-ish, but the last bit, splat, over it went and pffft, out it burned. That did not happen with the wick tabs. However, I do believe the beeswax added a slight amount of rigidity, more than priming with paraffin did. I could tell when I trimmed the cold wick. They were stiffer to work with than the paraffin dipped. As for securing the wick tab to stop it sliding, I was just reading some posts on how to deal with that. So far I have been relying on good luck, which is highly unpredictable and I do get wicks skidding around. But if I glue my wicks into my votive burners, then I have a glued wick in a burner I want to re-use! Who knew candles could be so difficult. BREAKING NEWS!!! As I was about to submit this I had a thought. I went to the kitchen, took a fridge magnet off the fridge and stuck a wick tab to it. MAGNETIC! If you stuck a little piece of magnetic tape to the outside bottom of your holder / container, would this not keep the wick from scooching around? I dropped the wick in the glass votive burner, I slid the magnet around the bottom of the holder, the wick tab bounced around following the magnet. I might have to change the bottom of the holder to sit up a bit to accommodate the magnetic tape, but this might work! Thoughts?
  15. Been away for a while doing Other Stuff that got in the way of candle making. Even got in the way of candle burning ! Tore the house apart for renos that ended up taking WAAAY longer than expected! And went wrong to boot. Anyhow... was reading somewhere where someone was making wicks out of basic old kitchen string and finding that it burned okay but towards end of candle it got all wobbly and flopped over and the last 1/2 inch of candle was wasted because the wick dropped over. My crochet thread wicks do this same thing! Get floppy, plop over. Someone else suggested that dipping the wicks in beeswax would make them stand up better and not do the flop and drop. Is this true? Is that all it takes? All I have to do is pre-dip my wicks in beeswax and they will work okay in my paraffin candles (IGI 1245)? Wouldn't it be wonderful to think this would work? Oh please, let this work! In that same vein, I have some little jars, SO CUTE but they are humped up on the bottom. Setting a wick holder on there is like balancing a dinner plate on your elbow, it wants to slide off to one side. I have had them do this while burning! Would pouring the bottom 1/4 inch in beeswax to secure the wick holder keep it in place without slithering off the high point? Beeswax bottom, paraffin candle? Can this work? I base this on the different melt temps of beeswax and paraffin.
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