Floating Candles

Floating candles add a touch of elegance and style to any dinner table or special occasion.  This technique involves modeling warm wax by hand. The candles are kept afloat by giving the wax a saucer-like shape, which also helps to keep the candles upright. This technique lends itself to flower shapes which do not have to be symmetrical, but you can try any shape you fancy!


If wax catches fire, smother it with the double boiler lid or sprinkle it with baking powder.


Scissors or craft knife

Double boiler

Paraffin or dip-and-carve wax

Dye of your choice

Wicks, cut into 5cm/2in lengths

Smooth edged pastry cutter or sharp knife

Wax glue

Greaseproof paper


It's a great idea to have everything you need ready and to work on an uncluttered surface to avoid messes and accidents!

Like when making other candles, the wick needs to be primed: dip it into melted wax and pull the two ends to straighten it.

Melt the wax and dye in the top of a double boiler, then prime the wicks. Lay out some greaseproof paper on a flat surface or in a cake tin. Pour some of the wax onto the paper, to make a layer that's about 3mm/1/8in thick. Allow the wax to cool slightly, then cut rounds with a knife or pastry cutter.

While the wax is still warm and rubbery, model it to form a petal. You'll have to work fast to finish the petals before the wax sets. Mold your petal around the primed wick and keep adding more petals to form a rose shape. If the wax sets before you're done, you can use a hairdryer to soften it, taking care not to overheat it.

Reheat the wax and pour more layers as needed to complete the rose. As your progress, shape the petals to make an open flower. If necessary, you can use wax glue to keep the petals in place. Make sure you squeeze the petals firmly together since you need a solid, rounded base to keep the candles uprights.



You can offset your elegant candles by placing them in a bowl of water which has been tinted with food coloring. Choose complementary colors for a really striking effect!