Winter Glow: Homemade Orange Candles
Did you know you can make your own candles right now? Out of two ingredients you already have at home?
This is a strikingly impressive project and just as easy.
If you’ve got oranges and olive oil, you’re in business.
If you want to get fancy, you can cut some shapes out of the tops, or stick in some cloves.
But that’s totally optional. I only added those steps so my kids would have something to do.
The rest of it pretty much just involves cutting an orange out of its peel. You know, Big Person Work.
Cut the oranges across the middle. They don’t need to be exactly in half. They should sit flat after they’re cut. Put them on the table first to get an idea of where to cut so they will sit straight.
Then, scoop out the flesh with a spoon. Make sure the pith in the center of the orange stays attached to the bottom. That will be your wick.
It’s really not that hard. If you get tired, you can eat some of the oranges you scoop out. Carry on.
And the top of the orange (the one without the “wick”) would make a nice little cup for something. I’m thinking chocolate pudding. Or vanilla pudding. Or orange pudding! With chocolate shavings on top!
Where was I?
Fill them with olive oil and let them sit for as long as you can wait. The wick needs time to soak up enough oil to burn. Even after sitting an hour, it may take up to five minutes for them to light (one of my oranges took that long and the other took only a few seconds. Just be prepared and do not do this right before a party. On the other hand, if you have a shy guest coming who does better with an assignment, this would be great for them. Well, isn’t that thoughtful of you!).
After you get the oranges lit the first time, you can blow them out and light them again easily.
It should be noted that the cloves poking through the inside of the “lid” did start to smoke and it was probably only a matter of time before the whole house went up in flames. DO NOT PUT THE LIDS BACK ON THE LIT ORANGES. Save them for when they are not lit, or set them off to the side. Thank you, and you’re welcome for conducting that little experiment for you. I like to save people from having to haul out their fire extinguishers whenever possible.
WithOUT their lids, these little oranges glow like sunny little orbs. They warm up even the coldest, darkest winter room.
You can place interesting items around your candles like seed pods, shells, or other seasonal decorations. If you’re like me, you will do this the day after you take all the pictures. You will wonder how you ever got to have a blog with sharp thinking like that.
Lucky for you, even by themselves, they are beautiful.
Homeschool note: This project can incorporate the color orange, and the letter “o” (the first letter of the fruit, as well as the shape!).
It’s also a great assignment for Candlemas which happens to coincide with the growing season for citrus. This project can provide a little bit of sun in the deep of winter.