Monday, August 8, 2011

melting crayons into new shapes~tutorial

i thought i would share my way of melting crayons down and making them into new shapes, i know there are lots of tutes out there but i have done them different ways and i found the best method to get them melted and into the new shapes you want.  this is not your ordinary, melt them down in a muffin pan method which is probably easier, this is the super cool, fun shapes edition.  :)

old pan
~ old pan, one you will not probably ever use again
~ mason jars
~ peeled crayons* broken or new
~ something to stir, i used wooden skewers, you need to have one stir for each color you will be doing
~ 2 old hand towels, again ones you will never use again
~ molds for your shapes, candy molds are good but if you can find ice cube silicone molds these are way better because they are deeper than the candy molds, i used soap molds for the vehicle ones but they use lots and lots of colors so your best bet is the ice cube molds

peeled crayons, skewers & towel

*the easiest method to peel your crayons is to soak them in ice cold water for about 30-45 seconds.  tap them on the counter or table and the paper comes right off.  i found this method on another site (after 80% of our crayons had been peeled the old fashioned way, this is very tedious and i even think i peeled my nail back a little bit, it hurts for at least a day after doing them that way (we used all brand new crayons for this one, they are better if you want to give them as gifts)

mason jars for melting
now to melt them down:
add some water to your pan, i only put about 1/4 of the way up with water, if you put too much in the jars will kind of float around and they may turn over and your crayons will not turn out as good.  i have used metal cans that veggies and soup come in but they rust really bad & they float way too easily plus they tend to be super messy.  i'm telling you,  mason jars are the way to go.  they are heavier so you can use a little more water in your pan if you desire plus they are used for canning anyways and therefore stand up to all that boiling water.  fill your jar with as many peeled colors as you like.  you will need one jar for each color just like the skewers unless you don't care what the color turns out to be.  i also noticed that as we separated the colors there were several versions of the main colors.  we put all the light green with the dark green and i guess i didn't mix them all that well because they swirled, i liked it but if you want one color shapes separate the dark from the light.
another tip is to use the crayola brand crayons, they melt super fast.  i have bought the cheap ones from michaels and they work but they take longer to melt.  anything to cut the time down on something is worth the little extra money.  actually right now that school is about to start is the time to stock up on your crayola, i got mine for .24/pk at kmart!!!  :)  oh i also noticed that the cheaper crayons tended to bubble when you poured them.  i had no problem with the crayola brand.  :)

now to pour them:
your glasses or cans will be extremely hot!!!  you will need one hand towel to pick your glass/can up and one to wipe the bottom dry so on water drips into your melted crayons.  carefully hold the glass with your towel and pour the melted wax into each mold. 

pour in your mold carefully, see i did pretty good, one little drop was all the mess i made.  this was from a soap mold
now to set them:
your best bet is to put them in the fridge especially if you need them soon.  the deeper the molds the longer it takes to cool off (you people are smart so i really didn't have to tell you that did i?).  my ice cube molds just took probably about 20 minutes.  the soap molds took an hour or more.  you really want to make sure they are cool enough that when you plop them out they don't change shape if you touch them.  they will be soft if you don't allow enough cooling time.

plopping them out:
if they are done you can just turn over your molds (soap ones) and they just fall out!  it's that easy!  if you have the silicone molds all you have to do is gently push the middle of the mold and they fall out too!  easy-peasy, it's so simple!  then admire your stuff and give to your special kiddo to start being a color book artist.  :)  mine turned out so good i don't want anyone to use them.  :) 

when you have two different shades of a color this is what happens.  it's a nice little special touch too.  the red did this and the orange too.  the darker colors like the blues and purples didn't have this much of an effect. 

tiki heads from a silicone mold.  the white one is just a left over of the extra wax i had left, it's white/grey/black and a tiny bit of purple.  the underside is neat, i should have taken a pic of that too.  oops :)

my first batch, i loved them so much, they turned out GREAT!!!

full batch: blue and white boats, yellow and peach cars, grey and orange planes, red and black rockets, green and purple trains.  see why i don't want to give them away?!?  this is what i'm giving the 2yr complete with a color book and a night light :)
 i just found a rubber ducky ice cube mold and used them for ice for the baby shower (a different post later) and they were so super cute!  i will definitely be making rubber ducky crayons soon!  :o)


Claudia said...

Why would I melt crayons down? I mean your shapes came out pretty, why the heck would I give them to my kiddos to use? That's a lot of hard work for my kiddos to use them up ... see, maybe it's my inherent lack of craftiness that destroys most projects for me before I even begin them!

By the way, good looking crayons.

crystal said...

i saw this tutorial on pinterest. i immediately thouht of the skull shaped molds hiding somewhere in my kitchen. are you surprised? probably not.

crystal said...

ps i CAN spell. i think my keyboard is ill.

stephanni :] said...

crystal i had to read your comment 3x before i saw the misspelling. :)

thx claudia :)