I never realize how much I love fall until it’s over. The glorious patchwork of red, orange, and yellow leaves against the impossibly turquoise blue of Lake Michigan. The bright and breezy days that turn into crisp, chilly nights. This is what I miss when winter sneaks in and freezes everything over.
But the season is often as busy as it is beautiful. With the start of school comes a laundry list of activities, and before I know it my calendar is jam-packed through mid-November. It is easy to forget to press pause and enjoy autumn before it’s over.
This year, I refused to let my busy schedule get in the way of making the most of my fall. I’ve indulged in everything “fall” from pumpkin spice pancakes, coffee, and oatmeal to hearty squash soups to soul-warming apple cider cocktails to afternoons spent soaking up the October sun. It’s been a wonderful way to be present in the moment, and prepare myself for the fact that winter is (always) coming. In all of my efforts, I discovered a way to bring fall into my home by means of a very adorable, very easy to make decoration: Homemade Pumpkin Candles.
As a short side note, Sara and I began our friendship making candles. We attempted to create cute and inexpensive Christmas gifts from candle wax, tea cups, and coffee beans with our friend Justine. The results were less than desirable (turns out coffee beans burn when they catch fire), but we had a good laugh and luckily our friendship survived. She was willing to give candlemaking another shot using these sweet mini pumpkins and scent oil specifically designed for candlemaking.
The pumpkins came from the Andersonville farmer’s market, one final gift before it shuts down for the season this week. We chose a variety of shapes, sizes, and colors, and paired them with seasonal pumpkin spice and cinnamon oils from Waxman Candles. The result was much better than last time. These adorable candles make the perfect centerpiece for a party, an ideal gift for an October birthday or even just a sweetly-scented coffee table topper. Anyway you want to use them, they’ll serve as a subtle reminder for you to enjoy this beautiful season each and every day.
Homemade Pumpkin Candles
- 4-6 small pumpkins, choose a variety of sizes, shapes, and colors
- Candle wicks, we bought ours at Michael’s and cut them down to size for each pumpkin
- Candle wax, approximately five cups, this also came from Michael’s, except we were able to find a 4lb box at the store, which yielded approximately 15 small candles.
- Candle Scents, Waxman Candles has an amazing selection and lots of helpful tips for firsttime candle makers
- Slice the top off of the pumpkin and clear out the insides. Once you’ve removed all of the pumpkin gunk, give it a quick rinse to remove any remaining residue. Dry with a paper towel.
- Heat three cups of the wax flakes in an old pan. I like to do this in small batches since it is hard to tell how much you’ll need for each pumpkin.
- When it has completely melted, add about 3 teaspoons of the scent oil. Stir to combine then remove from heat.
- Place the wick at the bottom of the pumpkin. If possible, dig the sides in a bit so it will stay put.
- Carefully pour (we used a funnel for good measure) the candle wax into the pumpkin until it is full.
- Take the wick and gently wrap it around a pencil until it the desired height and resting straight up.
- Repeat for the rest of your pumpkins.
- Let sit for at least 3 hours before lighting. The wax should be solid to the touch.
Remember, we are working with nature here, so these measurements are approximations. If you would like a stronger scent, use closer to 5 teaspoons / every 3 cups.