Candle Making in Chicago: An Afternoon of Serenity & Orgasmic Pizza
I recently had the pleasure of spending a rainy afternoon candle making in Chicago, an incredibly fun and relaxing adventure. My friend and Brazilian influencer Stefanny Luz invited me along to a complimentary experience at Candle Castle & Co. in the neighborhood of Bucktown. With spring in full swing and many more stormy days to come, I highly recommend taking a class here before heading next door to taste some of the most amazing pizza in the Windy City.
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Step into A slice of Heaven
Candle Castle & Co. is an incredibly gorgeous candle spot for the best experience of candle making in Chicago. The interior is all white and feels like a bridal shop — and by the way, brides, this is a super fun activity to take your bridesmaids! The tables are neatly set with gold and white trays and accessories, and the chairs are plush white to match.
Each table lines the front windows, which added to a soothing ambiance as we could watch the rain come down outside. The back walls are lined with a colorful array of candle holders, decorations, and essential oils.
Sunshine on a rainy day
Contrary to the wet day we were having, our instructor was a literal ray of sunshine. Not only was her personality uplifting and warm, but her name was actually Sunshine! She was so helpful the entire candle making class, incredibly funny, and also gave space to enjoy the experience.
The Experience of Candle Making in Chicago
We first chose from either white or black aprons to wear over our clothes from a rack on the wall. These aprons, first off, are SO cute. I highly recommend choosing a white one, which really makes you feel like a bride-to-be (if that’s not your thing, then you do you!)
From the back walls, we were able to choose a candle holder from over twenty options and colors. Of course, I chose hot pink because that’s my favorite! (My nails are literally ALWAYS hot pink).
Scents for Days
My favorite part about candle making is choosing a combination of scents from the essential oils wall. We were able to smell 36 different scents in categories of floral, fruity & citrusy, woody & spicy, clean & fresh, sweet & savory, and seasonal.
Don’t worry about your nose getting overwhelmed with scents. To cleanse the nose palate between sniffs, they have a cup of coffee beans on hand that you’re supposed to inhale!
I ended up choosing two scents from the woody & spicy category, including Egyptian Musk and Brazilian Coffee & Pure Cane. Together, this scent was absolute heaven for me with an overwhelming smell of a freshly brewed pot of coffee. Since I no longer drink coffee due to my sensitive digestive system, it was nice to take in that scent after so long.
My Top Scent Picks From Each category
- Floral — Fresh cut rose, lavender, and lilac
- Fruity & Citrusy — Cucumber melon, grapefruit, and mango papaya
- Woody & Spicy — Brazilian coffee & pure cane, Egyptian musk, and sandalwood
- Fresh & Clean — Driftwood & sea salt, ocean mist, and sage
- Sweet & Savory — Baked apple pie, chocolate chip cookie, and maple pancakes
- Seasonal — Christmas cookie, fresh cut Christmas tree, and spiced gingerbread
Pouring, Mixing, and Measuring
Unlike a messy cooking class, making a candle is fairly simple and enjoyable! First we measured out enough melted wax into our golden pitchers. Then we measured our perfected ratios of essential oils in our beakers; I opted for 1/3 Egyptian Musk and 2/3 Brazilian Coffee & Pure Cane. We then poured the oils into the wax and mixed it for a few minutes.
Once the wax was ready, we placed the candle wicks using a wooden wick holder into our candle holders. The top part of the wax dries fairly quickly, which then made it time for decorating!
Decorating your Candle to Target Healing
We were able to choose from different gemstones and botanicals to adorn our gorgeous candles. Sticking with my theme of hot pink and love, I sprinkled mine with rose quartz, rose petals, and peonies.
There are 14 botanicals to choose from and 7 stones, all in various colors and achieving different goals. While many argue there is a placebo effect to the powers of crystal healing, it is actually supported by science as well as a rich cultural history and significance in Chinese medicine. I grew up both very spiritual and into crystal healing because of my mom’s study of it, and I can definitely vouch that it might be placebo but it works if you believe it does. Botanicals I know less about but are well-researched.
Candle making might not be scientifically proven to treat headaches, but it certainly brings inner peace. Read my blog, “Migraine Attack: Symptoms, Stages & Books to Help Heal.”
- Amethyst — For cleansing, protection, and inspiration
- Citrine — For abundance, joy, and clarity
- Lapis Lazuli — For enlightenment, truth, and empowerment
- Obsidian — For protection, energy, and cleansing
- Peridot — For joy, growth, and renewal
- Rose Quartz — For compassion, divinity, and love
- Turquoise — For communication, balance, and calmness
- Calendula — For patience & healing
- Chamomile — For peace and relaxation
- Chrysanthemum — To de-stress & energize
- Cornflower — For wealth & prosperity
- Forget Me Not — For emotional balance & comfort
- Lily — For stability & clarity
- Gomphrena — For detox & healing
- Peony — For honor & romance
- Rose Petals — For grace & happiness
- Jasmine — For purity & modesty
- Plum Buds — For perseverance & hope
- Safflower — For attractiveness & beauty
- Lavender — For relaxation & devotion
- Rose Buds — For passion & love
Decorating is finished up with a choice of different color glitters — so fun!!!
Ta-Da, you’ve made a candle! Now we wait…
Once decorated, you’re all done! The store keeps the candle for about an hour to “flame it” in the back, which apparently helps it set properly before removing the wood wick stand. During this time, instead of going home and coming back, Sunshine highly recommended we go for lunch next door, which did not disappoint.
Dine Next Door at The StopAlong
While there are several options for candle making in Chicago, only Candle Castle & Co. is right next door to The StopAlong. Unlike traditional Chicago-style pizza, this 80s and 90s pop-culture pizza stop makes some of the best New York-style thin crust in the city! I’m talking orgasmic.
I’m a classic pizza girl, so I opted for a pepperoni pizza, and my God was that thing delicious! Steffany being a little more daring than myself ordered the Wild Honey Pie pizza with ricotta, red onion, truffle oil, hot honey, and herbs.
A Pizza Place known for its…Burgers?
What’s most interesting about The StopAlong is that it’s actually known for its Stop-In Burger, modeled after California’s In-and-Out burger. We noticed that most people in the restaurant ordered burgers, so experiencing FOMO we had to order one too just to taste!
I didn’t dare try the cheese fries, already being over my dairy limit, but they looked amazing. And having devoured my entire pizza (and rightfully regretting it hours later), I decided I couldn’t touch the burger either once it came out. But Steffany tried it and said it was a damn good burger.
Our cocktails were also so refreshing! And one of the sweet patrons who was leaving and wanted to be able to tip the bartender for his incredible service ended up paying for our drinks too.
It was a friendly and delicious experience overall, and even boasted a small arcade in the back with vintage games! The StopAlong was an unexpected hidden gem to top off candle making in Chicago.
Using Your Candle at Home
We picked up our candles from the shop, which were presented in gorgeous black and gold gift bags before heading home. When using your candle at home, be sure to read the little card in the gift bag that has instructions for waiting 24 hours to let it fully harden before use.
Additionally, be aware that botanicals on the candle will burn quickly, so don’t expect your flowers to stick around after the first use! I presented mine to my boyfriend as a gift, who really loves candles in our apartment and he loved it. So whether you’re in need of a gift or want something special for yourself, candle making in Chicago is done right at Candle Castle & Co.