DIY "Margarita Glass" Decorative Candles

It looks like you could use a margarita — a margarita candle, to be exact. No, you can't drink these delightfully realistic-looking candles, but they can sure get you in the south of the border spirit. Made from clear gel wax poured into actual margarita glasses, these candles even come on the rocks with salt, with the ice cubes and salt also made of wax. "Bartender, I mean candlemaker — I'll have one of those."

Image Credit: Jonathan Fong

Things You'll Need

  • White candle

  • Red or green crayons

  • Fruit silicone mold

  • Gel candle wax

  • Square silicone mold

  • Margarita glass

  • Candle wick

  • Hot glue

  • Candle dyes

  • Chopsticks

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Making the Fruit Garnishes

Whether you're making a lime margarita candle or a strawberry margarita candle, a fruit garnish gives it that extra zest. We'll make these garnishes with wax so they can be part of the rest of the candles.

Step 1: Shave White Wax

Start by taking an ordinary white candle and shaving the sides with a knife.

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Step 2: Cut Up a Crayon

Cut about an inch of a crayon into smaller pieces — green for a lime slice or red for a strawberry. These will be used to dye the white candle wax.

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Step 3: Melt the Wax

Place some shaved candle wax in a clean tin can along with the crayon bits. Be sure to save some of the wax shavings for a later step.

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Melt the wax by creating a double boiler, heating the tin cans in a pot of shallow water.

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Step 4: Pour Wax Into Mold

Pour the melted wax in a silicone mold of fruit slice shapes. For the best value, look for molds that have multiple fruits in them. Pour the green wax in the lime molds and the red wax in the strawberry molds.

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Let them harden, and pop the wax fruit garnishes out of the molds.

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Making the Ice Cubes

Step 1: Melt Gel Wax

Cut up some chunks of gel wax and place in a small pot. Heat over low heat to melt the wax.

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Step 2: Pour Into Square Molds

Pour the melted wax into square silicone molds.

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The gel wax sets in the molds in less than an hour. Remove the squares from the mold and place on a work surface.

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Step 3: Cut Into Cubes

With a knife, cut the square into smaller cubes. The tiny bubbles in the wax make these look even more like real ice cubes.

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Preparing the Margarita Glass

Step 1: Crumble the White Wax

Remember the wax shavings you saved when making the fruit garnishes? Crumble them even more with your fingers until they look like course salt.

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Step 2: Dip the Rim

Melt a small amount of gel wax in the same pot. There may already be some left over from making the faux ice cubes. (The great thing about the wax is even though the extra wax in the pot will solidify, you can just remelt it.) Then dip the rim of the margarita glass in the melted wax. Make sure you don't miss any spots.

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Step 3: Dip In "Salt"

Dip the rim, which has a layer of melted gel wax, in the crumbled white wax. Move the rim around the white wax to make sure the entire rim is covered.

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Let the gel wax dry to lock in the crumbled white wax. It looks just like a salted rim of a margarita glass.

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Step 4: Add a Wick

Attach a candle wick to the bottom of the margarita glass with a dab of hot glue. You can purchase candle wicks that already have a metal base attached at crafts stores and online candle supply retailers. Look for wicks with a metal zinc core. These wicks are more rigid and stand up better as the wax melts.

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Position the wick between two skewers or chopsticks to keep it upright as you're pouring in the wax.

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Forming the Margarita Candle

Step 1: Dye the Gel Wax

After melting more gel wax in the pot, squeeze a few drops of candle dye into the wax. If you are making a lime margarita candle, start with some yellow dye and then add blue until you get a light green color. If you are making a strawberry margarita candle, use red dye. At this point, you can add a few drops of a scent, if you wish. And yes, they sell margarita fragrance for candles.

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Tip

Look for dyes specifically formulated for candles, as some other dyes might clog the wick and cause the candle to not burn correctly.

You can get a better idea of the color you are creating by tilting the pot to see more of the melted wax.

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Step 2: Pour the Wax

Let the melted wax cool for about five minutes. Then pour the dyed gel wax into the prepared margarita glass. Leave about a half-inch at the top to make room for the ice cubes.

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Step 3: Add the Wax Cubes

Drop the wax ice cubes into the glass. Some will sink lower into the gel wax, allowing you to place more cubes on top of them. Position them around the wick to help hold it up as you remove the chopsticks supporting it.

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Step 4: Finish With the Garnish

Place the fruit garnish in the glass, leaning it against the rim.

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Trim the wick, and this candle is ready for Margaritaville.

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You may not be able to drink these candles, but they sure will put you in a good mood.

Image Credit: Jonathan Fong