This oil candle was excitedly made after coming across an oil lamp DIY in ‘Making It: Radical Home Ec for a Post-Consumer World’ by Kelly Coyne and Knutzen Erik. Another DIY version can be found on the blog ‘Little House Living‘.
Method for this oil lamp:
- Jar or other heat-resistant glassware, preferably lidded and hard to knock over.
- Olive oil and water
- 100% cotton, unbleached twine. Consider food-safe, natural string used by cooks.
- Glass rocks
Cut a length of twine that can sit on the bottom of the glass and reach the rim. This will be your wick. Hold it center in the glass, and drop in just enough glass marbles to hold it upright. (You can use other things to hold the wick, but glass marbles silence personal anxiety about toxins leeching into the oil and burning into the air. Oh, Anxiety, you pesky little rascal.)
Fill the glass partway with water, but not too much. You want enough space to add the oil without drowning the wick. Now add some olive oil (or other oil of choice). This will float on the water and fuel your candle, though you’ll need to keep an eye on the oil level if it’s burning for hours. Leave enough of the wick above the oil to burn, and let the wick sit long enough to soak up the fuel.
Light with a lighter, match, or the power of lightning (if you’re Thor), and enjoy your lead- and paraffin-free candle!
- Easily extinguish by dipping the wick in the oil.
- If you’re using a canning jar, know that they are NOT leakproof! Keep level, even when lidded.
- Have the wick slightly shorter that the glassware’s rim, so the wick won’t touch the lid and get it oily. And if the candle’s flame remains beneath the rim, it’ll be harder to accidentally catch things on fire.
- Burn within sight, while conscious, and on a heat-resistant surface. Not on a pile of matches while you sleep one off in the other room.
Let’s play around with DIY projects and see what we can make at home.
Much Peace and Keep Roamin’