How to make an olive oil candle

Candles have been a fixture in our homes since ancient times. Whether they are simply there to give light or to create an intimate, romantic atmosphere, candles are an ever-present that will never go out of fashion.

Learning to make a homemade candle using olive oil is the kind of fun hobby that anybody can try – but it’s also a quick way of providing light in an unexpected power cut or creating a pleasant atmosphere in a hurry.

An olive oil candle is a great alternative to conventional paraffin wax candles, but how exactly do you go about making one? It’s actually super simple: all you need is a suitable container, water, olive oil, a wick and a bit of creativity.

1. Choose your container

Before we go through each of the stages involved in making an olive oil candle, it’s really important that you get the right kind of container. There’s plenty to choose from, and the right container could vary based on the intended use for the candle – providing light, decoration, creating a special night etc.

First and foremost, your container needs to be big enough to hold the liquid.

Oil candle – Fratelli Carli

The most common containers used are glass jars. They’re easy to find at home, come in all shapes and sizes and are easy to decorate. Alternatively, you can use glass cups, which are even easier to get your hands on, or old unused mugs or earthenware flower pots, for an even more rustic look. Empty beer bottles, cans cut in half or tuna tins also work well, if you’re looking to inject a bit of color and creativity into your home.

One of the simplest yet most creative options is to make an olive oil candle in a hollowed-out orange. By simply cutting an orange in half and scooping out the flesh, you can make two candles capable of emitting light for several hours, all the while giving off a pleasant, delicate scent of citrus.

2. Prepare the mixture

Making an olive oil candle is really easy. You can use 100% oil or mix three parts water with one part oil, which means the oil floats to the surface.

The use of a small quantity of oil means that this type of candle is much cheaper and longer-lasting than a wax candle, because you can top it up with more oil.

Another thing to keep in mind is the fact that unlike wax, oil burns but does not give off smoke, meaning no unpleasant odors are released.

3. Personalize your olive oil candles

Once you’ve chosen your container and prepared your mixture, it’s time to think about how you’re going to personalize your candles. If you want to add a scent, you could add essential oils of lavender, rosemary, rose, mint or any other fragrance you like.

Floating oil candles – Fratelli Carli
If your candles are going to be purely decorative, there are plenty of ways for you to add extra color and creativity:
  • add liquid coloring to the mixture to create stunning candles that will light up your house or garden with gorgeous phosphorescent color;
  • use felt tips to add a design to your old mugs or use acrylic spray to decorate tins or oil cans;
  • add other decorative elements, such as flowers or pebbles, which will float to the bottom.

4. Making the candle itself

The crucial final step to creating an olive oil candle is to put it all together. And just like the rest of the process, all it takes is just a few simple steps.
Candle with olive oil – Fratelli Carli

Fill the container: pour your oil, or your mixture of oil and water, into the container until you get to around two-thirds of the way up.

Make the wick: you can make one from an old bit of cloth or fabric or a piece of chunky cotton thread, which you can cut to the required length. In order to make the wick float, you need to pass it through a small, round piece of plastic, which you’ll need to have made a hole in. You can get this online or use something you already have around the house.

Insert the wick: use your index finger and middle finger to hold the wick by the piece of plastic, then lay it carefully on top of the mixture, to create your floating oil candle.

How to make a candle from olive oil – Fratelli Carli

All you have to do now is strike a match and light your olive oil candle. That’s all there is to it!