Monday, June 24, 2013

Project Corner - candle wrap

Wow, it feels like it's been forever since I've done a tutorial! All of those theme weeks I did really kicked my tushie!! I just wish Mother's Day, Graduations, Weddings, Father's Day & Independence Day were a little further apart from each other!! ;) It's been a whirl wind for me behind the scenes, but ya'll are worth it!

A few years ago there was a crafty show on HGTV that I loved. A gal went around the US visiting crafters like you and I and filmed them doing what they do. One gal they showed used a medium called Paper Clay. This really intrigued me and I made a little mental note of it. Well, like most of my mental notes...I lost it, lol. I recently caught a re-run of the show and there it was...paper clay!! After a little research I found out that it is what it says it it. It's clay with paper fibers added. Now the strange part is, is that air dried paper clay is strong and if you fire it like traditional clay, it weakens. Weird hunh?? I also found out that paper clay is readily available at the big box craft stores and is fairly inexpensive. That's a win-win isn't it?? It cost me more for a little plastic rolling pin than it did for a package of clay....sigh.
While the paper clay can be made into just about anything you can imagine, I decided on a little fancy dressing for some dollar store candles....
Needed items:
  1. paper clay
  2. roller
  3. copy paper (1 sheet)
  4. waxed paper
  5. knife
  6. paper cutter
  7. straw
  8. ink pads
  9. q-tips
  10. ruler
  11. rubber stamps (leaf accent set, elegant floral set, single pansy, pansy border, pansy sprig
Measure your candle and cut a piece of copy paper to the desired size making sure it's at least one inch shorter than your candles circumference (you don't want it meeting end to end). Stamping out your design on this template will give you a good idea as to how it will look on the candle.
Roll out some paper clay to your desired thickness and then using your template & knife, cut out the candle wrap
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Using your template as your pattern, stamp your design into the paper clay. I found a medium pressure gave me the perfect impression depth. (The clay is very forgiving and can be re-rolled out if you make a mistake)

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Using the straw, "punch" a hole in each end of the candle wrap for adding ribbon later. Using the q-tips and your ink pads, dab color on your pattern as desired.

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Carefully pick up your finished clay and wrap around the candle for drying. (I learned by trial and error that as the clay dries it will slide down the candle, so it's safer to just place it at the bottom)

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After drying for approximately 3 days you can remove it from the candle and add your ribbon.

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By dabbing the ink on with the q-tips I achieved a soft / shadowed look that I was going for.

I've also made a little candle wrap using 2 alternate ways of coloring it...

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For this one, after stamping my design I simply sponged on Tim Holts distressed Tea Dye ink (stamp: Solid Decorative Crest)

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I just love how vibrant this one turned out!! After I stamped it I left it uncolored to dry. After it was fully dry (3 days) I simply colored it in using my normal markers. This cutie is totally my fave by far!! (Stamps: Small Daisy, Elegant Floral set, Garden Accent set, Mini Butterfly)

I hope you give this a try, it was fun and would make an awesome personalized gift....can't you picture a little frame with a monogram in it?? I can see the frame colored gold with black lettering or maybe just done in a classic black & white motif...Cute, cute cute!! And don't forget about your dry embossing folders...they could be easily pressed into the clay for some yummy teatures...ADORABLE! Hmmm, thinking I'm going to try these ideas out right away! Like I said, the possibilities are endless :)

Well that's it for me today. What a long post, thanks so much for sticking with me through all of that!! ;)


  1. I have never heard of paper clay before. What a unique project! I really liked the pink candle wrap with the decorative crest; it has a great artisanal quality.

  2. WOW what a fantastic tutorial! I have never heard of this before and I must say, it makes me want to try it out! I am a candle person and love my candles, and this just makes me love them more!!

    ♥ Jo's Scrap Shack ♥