Friday, January 23, 2015

Talking to an expert: Jackie Ashley of Ashley & Co on candle care



Anyone who knows me well will tell you that I have a veritable fetish for scented candles, and they are the perfect accompaniment to winter days and nights spent indoors. I have a “wardrobe” of candles that I like to choose from, dependant on mood and time of day, and am constantly on the hunt for new additions.
I am known to drop major coin on my candles at times (shhhhhh), and so take caring for them pretty seriously. I’ve invested in the likes of a candle snuffer and wick trimmer, and always follow instructions when burning a new brand.
No one likes soot blackened glass and uneven mounds of wax, and Jackie Ashley, founder and co-owner of Ashley & Co, has happily shared some of her tops tips for getting the most out of your candle every time. 
  1. First, equip yourself. Candle care isn’t rocket science, but you will need a few items to get the job done including a wick trimmer and long matches. 
  2. Trim your wick to the ideal length—6mm—ensuring none of the trimmings remain in the wax. 
  3. That pesky black soot on the inside edge of the glass is caused by the flame flickering too high, usually as a result of debris left in the glass.
  4. Starting right – The initial burn of a candle is crucial and often overlooked. Wax has a memory, so it’s important to let the wax pool to the edge on the initial burn, then it should burn evenly for the rest of its delicious smelling life. It also pays keep the waxed perfume away from airstreams like heap pumps, windows, or fans. 
  5. If it doesn’t burn to the edges on the first burn, it will begin to tunnel and won’t burn evenly each time. But never fear – if help didn't arrive in time and you’re already suffering from ‘tunnelling’, Jackie has a few suggestions to even out your beautiful waxed perfume.. If the tunnelling isn’t too bad, lay the candle on its side, use your lighter to melt the wax away from the wick and pour it into the trash. Next, chisel out the wax that is above level of the wick with a butter knife. Use a cotton ball or paper towel to remove the wax after its melted.
  6. In a perfect world, candles should be burned for four hours each time, and not more than once every 24 hours. This prolongs the life of the waxed perfume.  
  7. If you ever see smoke or soot burning off your candle, it’s likely happened because a small carbon deposit – like a mushroom on the tip of the wick – has formed from it being burnt for more than four hours.
  8. Old stockings work perfectly to give your candle a general clean as they catch all of the dust and leave no residue behind – who knew?
 For more about Ashley & Co head to www.ashleyandco.co.nz and go forth and burn, baby burn!

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