Free Layered Candle Project

By Bob Sherman

This technique provides yet another means to vary the appearance of your basic candles. Although it is a fairly simple concept, the timing between pours will take a bit of practice to perfect. Those who wish to re melt the practice candles should stick with one color and white wax for ease of re melting until you master this technique.

Most of the items you may need can be ordered directly from this page for your convenience. The Materials list is at the bottom of the page.

PLEASE NOTE!! - Candle making can be dangerous if proper safety procedures are not followed. Please read these Safety Rules before attempting any candle making projects.

Wax Formula
This candle uses our basic pillar candle formula. Note that this formula makes a nice white wax without adding dye.


  1. Prepare a double boiler set up for each color you plan to use. I suggest starting with 2 colors only.
  2. While the wax is melting prepare the mold (wick, seal, etc...).
  3. Heat wax to approximately 185 degrees F.
  4. Add dye and test color.
  5. Add scent oil if desired and stir well.
  6. Allow to settle for one minute.
  7. Pour some wax into the mold to the desired depth of the top layer.
  8. Critical Step! - Allow the wax to cool until it is firm to the touch, yet the mold is still warm. This is the part that takes some practice. If you pour too soon the colors will run together. If you pour too late the wax will run between the previous pour and the mold.
  9. Pour a layer of the next color. This can be any thickness desired
  10. Repeat steps 8 and 9 until the wax is 1/4 inch from the top of the mold.
  11. Allow to cool fully.
  12. Remove from the mold.
  13. Level the base on a heated pan or griddle.
  14. Trim the wick.

Troubleshooting Layered Candles

Problem Cause / Cure
Tiny bubbles and lines on one or more layers This occurs when a layer is poured at too low a temperature.
Layers Separating This occurs when a layer is poured at too low a temperature or if the previous layer has cooled too much.
Candle stuck in mold This occurs when the previous layer has cooled to the point of separating from the mold allowing the next pour to run between the previous pour and the mold.
Unsightly blobs of wax on candle surface This occurs when the previous layer has cooled to the point of separating from the mold allowing the next pour to run between the previous pour and the mold.
These are the common problems specific to layered candles. For other problems please refer to my general Candle Troubleshooting Guide.


Candle Making Supplies And Materials

The following candle making supplies and other materials were used to make this candle. Clicking on the item name will bring you to that item's page with a full description.

Item Amount Used
Mold Any style of your choice, however I recommend something small until you master this technique - such as a metal or seamless 3 inch diameter round.
140 MP paraffin Wax Enough to make as many candles as desired.
Vybar 103 Used at 1 teaspoon per pound of wax.
Dye Blocks
Dye Flakes
In the desired colors.
Scent Oil Optional - used at 1 ounce per pound of wax.
Wick For a 3 inch candle I use a #1 square braid wick. If you are using a different size you may need a different wick.
Melting / Pouring Pot One for each color you plan to use.
Thermometer One
Old Pots For making double boilers. One per color. Find at garage sales or thrift shops.
Wooden Spoon, Measuring Spoons. Purchase at a house wares store or a dollar store.

Support Free Projects
You can help ensure the continued availability and production of free candle making projects and instructions by telling your friends about them. The more popular they are the more we can produce so tell your friends, mention them on message boards, link to them from your web site, etc... More information is available here.

Disclaimer: The information presented here is accurate to the best of my knowledge and common candle making practices as of the time of this writing Originally published in the 1990's and has been updated and modified in January 2006 and in June 2011. The author and the publisher accept no liability for the use or misuse of any of the information presented in this article. This article is presented for informational purposes and is used at your own risk.

Author: Bob Sherman

Publisher: Bobby's Craft Boutique Inc.

This article is provided free of charge for use. Candles may be made and sold using this design royalty free, however no portion of this article may be reproduced for publication elsewhere without express permission from Bobby's Craft Boutique Inc. with the following exceptions: