Photo-roll: Watercolour Week One

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So… I started painting this week. This is what I’ve come up with so far – they might not be works of art, but watercolour painting is definitely a great stress reliever and creativity outlet.

Enjoy! And happy Friday!

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Water Colour Inspiration

Water colour painting has been on my mind all week. My inspiration comes from a variety of sources, which lead me to pick up a set of paints this afternoon and give it a try.

My grandmother took up watercolour painting a number of years ago, and despite rheumatoid arthritis, she was able to paint nature scenes. I keep one of her paintings of a yellow bird in our livingroom as a reminder of her creativity and ability to do the seemingly impossible.

Painting from Grammie
 

More recently, my best friend posted a card that she’d painted for her mother on her blog. I love creating my own cards and couldn’t get the idea of hand-painted keepsake cards out of my mind.

So today I decided to start researching watercolour painting and was thrilled to come across a fantastic tutorial by Yao Cheng offered free of charge on creativebug.com. I couldn’t wait to try it out for myself.

Water colour paint

I can’t wait to try out the blending techniques and see where I can take this new interest.

Recycled Containers for DIY Candles

To finish my DIY recycled candles series, I thought I would share this gallery of containers I recycled during my latest candle-making spree. I create all of my candles using soy wax. I use dye blocks like these available from Canwax to create vibrate colours like the ones pictured below.

For more information on removing soy wax from containers, check out my very simple tutorial.

Check back tomorrow for more burger adventures :)

DIY Recycled Three-Wick Soy Wax Candle

Re-purposed Bath and Body Works Candle Jar

Continuing with yesterday’s post on how to re-purpose candle jars and soy wax, I wanted to share my DIY three-wick candle pour.

I started with a large Bath and Body Works candle jar (10 cm in diameter). Next, I glued in three wicks – these are HPT 105 wicks which are self-trimming and create a pool with a diameter of 5.24 cm. Combined, they should provide enough heat to melt the full surface of the wax.

the pour

To stabilize the wicks, I used sets of two skewers that I taped together for a previous candle making event.  I had good luck with two sets as photographed; however, I also tried three sets of stabilizing skewers arranged in a triangle (each over two of the wicks) with great success.

soy wax poureerie candle wicks

The wicks remained very straight during the cool. After a few hours I did experience some wax cracking – this could have been fixed with a second pour.

recycled 3-wick soy candles crack

 

And there you have it – a recycled candle made in a re-purposed jar with a little bit of recycled soy wax.

 

 

How to Remove Soy Wax from Jars

You’ve seen all of those adorable reused candle jar crafts on Pinterest, but how can you get that extra wax out of the bottom of you jar without risking broken glass?

Easy! Well – at least when you’re talking about soft, soy-based waxes.

This little tutorial will be perfect for those of you who want to move from spending too much money on candles to recycling your purchases for another use.

Before we get started, the best way to make use of this tutorial is after burning your candle correctly – if you need advice on how to get your candles to look like mine in the photos below, please check out my tutorial on how to burn a candle. I know – it sounds silly – but once you start burning candles properly, you won’t go back!

Set candles in hot tap water

Set candles in hot tap water

Start by setting your burnt candles in a sink of hot tap water. You’ll only need to use enough water to cover the wax line.

After a few minutes, push on the corner of the wax to see if it's melted - it will pop up easily when ready

After a few minutes, push on the corner of the wax to see if it’s melted – it will pop up easily when ready

After a few minutes, test your wax. It should be soft around the edges – but the real test will come when you are able to push down on one edge and pop the whole piece of wax out. It’s surprisingly easy.Then you’ll just need to wipe the excess wax out and wash with soap and water – your candle dish will now be ready to re-purpose!

Push used wicks out of the wax

Push used wicks out of the wax

To reuse the wax, push the wicks out of the candle.

Add used wax to your next batch

Add used wax to your next batch

Pop your extra wax into your next batch if you so desire.

But what if you’re wax didn’t pool perfectly on the bottom of your jar? Don’t resort to a knife – try the same technique with just a little more water to cover the edges!

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The wax might not pop out in one neat piece, but after a few minutes in warm water it will be loose enough for you to remove piece by piece.

How to Burn a Three-Wick Candle

I’m working on a post about removing left-over soy wax from jars, but it’s dawned on me that there is one critical step which comes before this – burning the candle.

Believe it or not, there is a correct and an incorrect way to burn a candle. And once you’ve mastered the correct method, I promise you’ll become a stickler for the rules.

How-to burn your three-wick candle

How-to burn your three-wick candle

Step One: trim wicks to less than a cm (1/4 inch) in length

Step One: trim wicks to less than a cm (1/4 inch) in length

Step Two: light your candle

Step Two: light your candle

Step Three: Burn candle until melted wax reaches edges before extinguishing

Step Three: Burn candle until melted wax reaches edges before extinguishing


Trimming the wicks prevents build up of particulates in your candles and reduces the blackening of the jar’s rim, while burning the candle to the edge will prevent wax from staying behind, ensuring an even burn each time.

The result? Perfectly burned candles that will leave just enough wax for another project… Stay tuned!

 

 

DIY Mason Jar Sewing Kit

Here’s a quick DIY that would make the perfect gift.

I threw this little DIY sewing kit together a while back – it contains all the necessities that I need on the fly. Most of these were picked up either in a cheap Dollarama sewing kit or individually.

My kit contains thread, double sided tape, chalk, needles, pins, a lint brush, measuring tape, mini screwdriver, mini scissors, extra buttons, and a thimble

My DIY sewing kit contains thread, double sided tape, seam ripper, chalk, needles, pins, a lint brush, measuring tape, mini screwdriver, mini scissors, extra buttons, and a thimble

Thread Rainbow DIY Sewing kit

My kit contains:

  • multi-coloured thread
  • double sided tape
  • seam ripper
  • chalk
  • needles
  • pins and safety pins
  • a lint brush
  • measuring tape
  • mini screwdriver
  • mini scissors
  • extra buttons
  • a thimble

I assembled my tools into a fun mason jar with a chalkboard decal – I bought these last year but since they don’t wash well, I’ve been trying to reuse them around my home.

mason jar

DIY mason jar sewing kit

DIY mason jar sewing kit

I had purchased a cheap Dollarama sewing kit which contained a circular needle holder – unfortunately, glue made it impossible to actually access these needles. Once I removed the needle holder, I noticed that it fit inside the ring of the mason jar… the perfect cover!