Tin Man

I have been saving these tea tins for years (more than a dozen years) with no idea how to use them.

Teas tins stored in the shed

Then I saw these candles on good old Pinterest (the link is now gone but I’m sure there are others).

And Charlie had brought home these old candles (which should have gone into the dumpster) when he was cleaning out a house for an elderly woman’s estate.

Old candles

Here’s where inspiration meets know-how.  Apparently when Charlie was a boy he made candles first with his father and then on his own. His candles were so nice that he sold them.

I was just going to pour melted wax around a candle and call ‘er done.  It didn’t work. But Charlie cut the tall candles to fit the tins leaving a long piece of wick extended to tie onto short pieces of wire (which he clipped from a clothes hanger).

Wick tied around wire to steady it

We melted the bits of wax that were left over from cutting the candles to size in an old coffee can in a pot of boiling water.

Adding wax to the melting pot

Let the pot simmer until the wax is totally melted.

Melting wax

Once the wax is melted pour it into the tins being careful not to get burnt.

Carefully pour the melted wax into the tins

And let the whole project cool.

Let everything cool overnight

And the next morning you’ll have tea tin candles. Oh, no, wait a minute. What happened?  The wax shrank in the tin.

When the wax cooled it left hollows in the center

So we heated up a little more wax and topped off the candles.

Totally functional candles in a can

And so that’s why I’m calling Charlie the  Tin Man. I think that’s nicer than the moniker for the third man in the rub-a-dub-dub tub.*

Are you working on a totally frugal project? Do you save things waiting for inspiration?  Are these candles nice enough to give as token gifts? I like to give candles as a gift because if it’s not the recipient’s “cup of tea” he/she can just burn it.

* Candlestick maker

I’m linked to

and Primp


Author: Jo

Welcome to The Glade, where the second generation of renovations has just begun and the mania about our home, music and other passions fill our days and nights. We’re Charlie and Jo in the music world; Mary Jo and Charles to family; and JoJo and Charlie to each other. We are renovating a midcentury house in a Victorian historic district where we want to live there the rest of our lives. It's a 1946 house located in Maryland. We were married in this house. Thus far (pre-blog) we refinished cabinets, added a window seat (still working on the cushion), rearranged a wall in the guest house due to sink/vanity replacement, planted a vegetable garden, and other quick and not-so-quick fixes. So this latest zeal for construction is the result of my having lived here since 1997 and feeling a need to ready the house for the next chapter and beyond.

4 thoughts on “Tin Man”

  1. Wow what a way to recycle those candles. Now i am going to look for tin cans most especially if they are old that brings the old classic look and more candles to hunt too ^_^ Happy Thanksgiving to your family and yours.

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