Back at the beginning of the month, we had a period of time where it was either snowy, rainy, or way too cold to have much fun outside. The kids and I came down with bad cases of cabin fever, and I got desperate and started showing Maggie my Pins and letting her pick what we'd made next. One morning, she picked these citrus candles.
It seemed a little adventurous, but I was game for anything that would keep us busy and interested and decided to expand on the idea with a clementine, a grapefruit, a lemon, and a lime.
The tutorial at the link above is clear and easy to follow, but here's what I'd add:
1. If your piece of fruit isn't going to sit flat, slice off a bit of the end to make it stable.
2. Go ahead and slice the fruit entirely across, just above the halfway mark. Once you dig the first piece of fruit out, the rest come much easier. But the clementines were the easiest by far. I suspect the author above knew this. Also, it's rough going if your hands are riddled with excema. Seriously rough going.
3. I finally used a good sharp paring knife to cut out the fruit of the lemon and lime.
|See the cut lines around the center wick and outside rind?|
4. The thinner center wick you leave, the easier it is to light. Lighting the wick is actually the hardest part, and I highly recommend using a long-handled lighter because it would take A LOT of matches and probably burnt fingers to get these things lit. It probably took 3-4 minutes of direct flame to get the thicker wicks lit. However, once they're lit once, it's much easier to re-light.
|The center wick has to turn completely black before the candles will light.|
6. Finally, do watch them carefully. As you can see in the top picture, even if you cut the tops quite wide, they will scorch as the candle burns.
Upshot? Not the easiest project, but a great result. Cheery and sweet-smelling, these would be great party decor. And stick to clementines--they're the easiest.