OK, so I’ve seen these around and decided to make my own. They are actually easy, cheap, pretty and a great way to use up all of those half-burnt candles you have kicking around. Recycling! Rock on!
First you have to find your teacups. Local thrift shops, garage sales or flea markets are GREAT places to find cheap teacups. If you can find a cup and saucer, awesome. If not, just make sure the teacup has a nice sturdy base so it won’t tip over and set the house on fire. Again, this may just be the insurance agent in my talking…
Next, gather up your old burnt candles. You’ll have to trim off as much of the burnt wick as you can. Also try to pick off any visible pieces of dirt and ash that may be on the candle. This isn’t very pretty. Using a double boiler, slowly melt down the candles. Don’t use a good pot for this. I usually use a coffee can that has been cleaned and dried. I place it inside of an old pot and simmer some water. You only need a little bit of water and make sure you use a low heat. As the wax melts, pick out the remaining wicks with a pair of tweezers. If it’s really dirty, you’ll want to strain it, but it usually isn’t a big problem. Make sure you use oven mitts as that can gets hot! That’s a hot can! *insert cat call whistle here.
The only thing you need to buy for this project are new wicks. You can get these from craft stores. Take the wick and tie the string end around a pencil. Put it into the bottom of the tea cup and the twist the pencil so the wick coils around. You want the wick long enough to touch the bottom of the cup but short enough that you can lay the pencil across the top of the cup and have the wick touch the bottom without bending. That sounds more complicated than it really is.
Pour in the melted wax slowly so you don’t burn your fingers, and set aside to harden. After it dries, cut the wick so that it’s about 1/4 inch or so from the top of the candle. It’s that easy. Just make sure you don’t pour any remaining wax down the sink. Unless you want a hopelessly clogged sink, that is. If you do want a clogged sink, go mad. I let it harden in the can and either throw it out or keep it for the next time I want to make candles. The coffee can even has a lid so you can add other scrap candles to it! Look how organized you are!
These would be awesome for a tea-party wedding reception or party. They’re so pretty and a great way to showcase a beautiful but chipped or orphaned cup. Poor little orphan Cuppy. Now you can adopt him as a beautiful candle holder!