Instagram Told Me To: Candle-Making

It was a cool January day, and my best friend had made the hour-long drive down to my place to spend the day together at a tattoo parlor. I sat down in her car and pulled up my phone for the address, only to find the entire day’s events canceled, and us planless. Hating the idea of sending her all the way back home for nothing, I racked my brain for anything we could do to fill up our now-empty time. Just when all hope felt lost for our day together, an ad popped up on Instagram right beneath the cancellation post from the tattoo parlor. It was for Lumiere Candle Studio, an ad I had passed many times before that day. I clicked on it, and it just seemed to be fate that there were only two spots left for the next candle-making class. Immediately, we were off to Baltimore.

Lumiere Candle Studio in Baltimore is one of four various franchised candle studios on the East Coast. While you can shop in the little store underneath the building, the real place to be is upstairs in the studio itself, where the wax is melted, the smells mixed, and the wicks are stuck into their little glass homes. And that is just where my friend and I found ourselves only 45 minutes later.

The large windows lining the building brought the soft winter light of January into the studio. A rack of various oil bottles made rainbows across the long black tables that made their way through the space, dotted with stools and wooden boards. We found our seats toward the front and were given a piece of paper to write our names on. Once everyone made their way inside, it was time to pick our scents.

The room supported various bookshelves around itself, all covered in pale candles. Our candle-making teacher asked us to get up and smell the candles to our heart’s content to best find the smells we would want to have for ourselves. We were allowed to pick up to three smells, though, one or two were just fine choices as well. And once we were done with this, we would pick our candle color and our jar, and then take our seats to begin the real fun; making the candle ourselves.

Our teacher grabbed our papers and made her way to the rack of oils that painted the room in oranges, yellows, and reds. Slowly, she grabbed scent after scent off the rack, placing them in front of each student. With a dowl in hand, she showed us how to mix our scents, smell our scents, and fill our little oil cups to best maximize the smell. We all laughed as the smells of flowers and summer and soda and crisp leaves filled the small studio space. I felt like an alchemist, mixing my potions just right.

As we mixed, our teacher made her way around and poured hot wax into our glasses. Once filled, she showed us how to pour the scents in and how to mix them without disturbing the wick at our melty candle center. We did the same with our color, and mixed to our heart’s content, watching the colors swirl around our little glass containers.

After fashioning a label to the side, we were told that two hours were then needed for cooling, so my friend and I made our way back out into Baltimore to catch some lunch while we waited. On our return, our candles were wrapped in tissue and placed delicately into small paper bags for their rides home. For an in-impromptu adventure, our candle-making experience is one I would not trade for anything.

I would definitely recommend Lumiere Candle Studio for those who need a last-minute craft, or just anyone looking for an easy hour that makes you feel like you have accomplished something you never thought you could do.

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