The cast of characters:
- Soap (we use goat milk soap from a nearby organic farm)
- Dyes (you can use food coloring or home-made)
To the left: jars of blueberry dye. To the right: paprika and tumeric powder dyes.
1. Grate the soap. All of it. As though it were cheese.
2. Melt the beeswax. Keep an eye on it. When the wax is too hot, it froths and spills and hardens everywhere. This may cause excessive swearing. Not that I would know anything about that. I use a saucier over low heat on the stovetop. The saucier is great, but be ye warned: it’s a pain in the ass to pour out. It dribbles and drops and hardens everywhere. This may cause excessive swearing. Not that I would know anything about that either.
3. Mix in the desired amount of melted soap, not exceeding a 1:1 ratio. The more soap you add, the harder your crayons will be which is good because soft crayons leave big globs of wax everywhere. But the more soap you add, the stickier your crayons too. Then crayons of different colors stick together in your cabinet and your fingers are sticky after coloring.
4. Stir in your dyes until the beeswax is the color you would like. Be quick like a cobra, though, because the wax will begin to harden as you stir.
5. Shape the beeswax. If your beeswax is still very liquid, you can easily pour it into silicone ice cube trays or a muffin tin. Then when it is thoroughly dry, you can pop the crayons out. A few days of letting your crayons sit will help them harden. If you would like more familiar crayon shapes, allow the wax to slightly harden. During the hardening, beeswax goes through a stage during which it is playdough-like. When it reaches this shape, you can roll chunks of it into long crayons and let them harden in that shape.
Note: Beeswax crayons easily rub into clothing. If you want to avoid stains, a little bit of isopropyl alcohol will go a long way.
Warning: Attempting to make crayons with a toddler underfoot is nearly impossible. Whenever you have downtime, the toddler will be completely preoccupied. Whenever you are handling boiling liquid, the toddler will naturally cling to your legs. This is the nature of toddlers. This may also cause excessive swearing. But I don’t know anything about that.