Take the lift up to the tenth floor of the Dymocks building, (sandwiched between the book and stationery outlets). It's only 5 minutes walk from Town Hall Station so I advise arriving by train, it's easier to negotiate the Tram work diversions by foot until the roadworks on George Street are complete.
The classroom is bright and pretty with a gorgeous chandelier and wooden shelving displaying various candle making kits, soaps and fragranced body care products to purchase.
Vanessa gives a twenty minute briefing on fragrances and the different waxes available to use for candle making. Paraffin, soy or beeswax for example.
There are approximately 17 different fragrances to choose from (ranging from Lemon Grass to Musk and approximately ten different colours from natural, to black, with shades of red, yellow, green and blue in between.
You're asked to smell all of the fragrances and write down your favourites and then the fun starts!
The wax is heated to a specific temperature by Vanessa, class participants then either chop their chosen colour into tiny pieces and pour the hot wax over the colour to dissolve it, (there's a lot of stirring involved). Or, if you've chosen grey, as I did, you drop (using a pipette) the liquid colour into the hot wax.
The wick is glued into place inside your glass candle pot and once the colour and fragrance are well mixed together the mixture is poured into the glass jar. Simple as that, but much more fun! We were laughing and wondering about the amount of colour we'd added, nothing seemed to look as we thought it should?
Then the wax started to dry and the colours settled and hey presto…beautiful, classy candles with delicious aromas materialised before our eyes!
Suki, the lady sitting to my right, had chosen pale pink for her candle, and she added quite a lot and it came out a rich deep pinky red colour, her's was quite popular amongst the group.
Next we were asked to pair up with candle partners to make our wax melts, deciding together which colour and fragrance to blend. Suki and I chose Bayberry Green for our melts and Lemon Grass for the fragrance. These were mixed together and poured into sturdy plastic ice-cube like holders and put in to the fridge to cool. (The melts are used in a burner and therefore don't contain a wick).
Lastly we made beeswax candles by rolling beeswax sheets between our fingers and thumbs, choosing from a range of colours: butterscotch to blue, purple to red, yellow to green. Laying the wick lengthways along the edge of the sheet and carefully rolling the whole sheet up until we'd produced a long rod shaped candle, (the tighter the roll, the longer the candle will take to burn). Gorgeous!
Vanessa advised us all to wait 3 weeks before lighting any of our glass jar candles, or burning our melts for optimum scent production.
Everyone loved this class. It's easy, enjoyable and Vanessa is a great teacher. We all produced three, fantastic high quality candles and most, if not all of us, bought a candle making kit (enough to produce 6 candles) containing jars, wicks, colours and fragrances).
Take this course. Go on, do something different on a Saturday afternoon. It's so easy which makes it really enjoyable, no stress, gorgeous aromas and everyone's really happy with the end product. Plus you'll enjoy the candles for hours after the workshop has finished and the happiness will just go on and on!
The class would make a great gift for someone's birthday or Christmas present. (Gift Vouchers available online). Or take the class yourself and give the candles you make away as gifts.
It's fantastic, fun and a flaming good way to spend a couple of hours on a Saturday and only costs $99 for the candle making class and you get to keep what you make or $175 for the 3 hour introduction to Cold Process soap making class.
Sydney Candle Making Classes
Vanessa Leong Candle and Soap making classes: Suite 11, Level 10, 428 George Street Sydney 2000. (Turn right out of the lift and enter the classroom via the Tenth Floor Espresso café).
Phone: (02) 9222 2199 to book or visit: vanessaleong.com.au