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Candle Makers Book List

Inspiration and Ideas for the Candle Maker In You

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Need some inspiration added to your candle making? Are you stuck with the same old votives and pillars and jelly jars and looking for a way to rekindle (pun intended) your love for candles? Here are the books I go back to when I'm looking for candle inspiration. They're both "how-to" books, as well as "idea" books that show the amazing multitude of ways that candles can be used to decorate, enlighten (again, pun intended) and otherwise brighten our homes and our lives. You'll not only earn new ways to make votives, but you'll also learn new ways to use votives and incorporate them into your home.

1. The Complete Book of Candles and Candle Making by Gloria Nicol

Lorenz Books
O.k., there are a few actual "projects" in this book, but it's still one of my all-time favorite books on candles and candle making. A gorgeous coffee table size book, it's full of an intriguingly wide variety of candles and decorating/use ideas.

2. The Encyclopedia of Candlemaking Techniques by Sandi Lea

Running Press

Literally set up as an encyclopedia (organized A to Z) - this book has a lot of great "how-to" projects to make many different styles of candles - from cut-and-carve to water candles to votives and containers and more.

3. Candles: Elements of the Table by Slavin & Jones

Collins Publishers
This book asks "Is there a proper place for candles?" And answers, "Anywhere, everywhere."
I found this book at a used book store recently, and it's one of my new favorite books on candles. There is not one recipe or project or instruction in it, but rather an informational and inspiring wealth of innovative ideas. The really interesting thing about this book is that it's not really a "decorating" book either - the ideas and examples it shows are based on richly written and illustrated history, tradition, romance, magic, and an overal sense of warmth and opulence. From candles used in ceremonies and holidays, to birthday parties and picnics, this book deeply and warmly explores just what makes candles so elemental and satisfying to us all.
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4. The Candlelit Home: Decorating with Candles Year Round by John Terrell Fry

Harry N. Abrams Publisher
If you're like me, and love to make candles, then you're going to have them all over your house. This wonderful book has some really practical interior design ideas about how to use them as the centerpieces and as accents to your home decor inside and out. Divided into "seasons", the ideas in this book, from pumpkin coaches to candles around the tub, will help you transform your candles and your home into a warm and inviting space.
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5. Thw World of Aromatherapy

Jeanne Rose and Susan Earle

While not a book about candle making, what's the one thing (other than the flame) that ties all of our candles together? The scent. This is a book about the scents created in our world by natural essential oils - their history and their use. It is full of wonderful historical accounts, stories, legends and explanations of just how scent works, and how these essential oils work.

6. Candles by Jon Newman

Thunder Bay Press
If you ever feel the need to feel proud of being a candle maker, or want to feel a part of a thousands-of-years-old tradition, pick up this book. While it does have a chapter at the end about actually making your own candles, the true beauty of this book lies in the collection of photos, advertising images, and graphics illustrating the magnificent and fascinating history of candles and candle making. From engravings showing an arrangement of straw and wooden beehives, to 19th century photos of young boys making candles in a London factory...from advertisements for Ogleby's Night Lights ("Luminous & Cleanly Safe") to Price's Carriage Candles...you'll be amazed at this historical collection of candle history.
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7. Essentially Candles by Robert and Katherine McDaniel

KP Books

Robert McDaniel is primarily a soap maker and is the author of Essentially Soap. But his wife Katherine is a candle maker. So the two of them got together and put together Essentially Candles. It's a great beginners overview of candle making, with lots of great tidbits of information, history, trivia and more.

8. Illuminate by Amanda Hammond

Laurel Glen Publishing
This book concentrates more on the calming and healing qualities of candles and candle light...especially the light. Drawing on aspects of light, color, and even some aromatherapy, this book will help you use your candles to transform your home into a true sanctuary. If you're looking to hibernate, contemplate, or just create a calmer mood...this is a lovely book.
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9. The Everything Candlemaking Book by M.J. Abadie

Adams Media


A fun and very comprehensive book on candles and candle making. From the history of candles to different kinds of waxes to different kinds of candles to make, this book touches on just about everything a bit.

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