Recycling Crayons

Whenever we go out to a family-friendly restaurants, they always give the kids those 4-pack of crayons which is great, but they get broken-up pretty quickly. I decided that I would melt them down and turn them into chunky crayons that would be much harder to break, and less mess for me to clean up once the kidos are done with their drawing.

Make sure your crayons are paraffin based (such as Crayola and Rose Art), these melt really nicely. Other crayons don’t melt very well, they just get kinda mushy and when cooled down they are very waxy and dull-looking. I removed the papers from the crayons by slicing down the length with a sharp knife and then pealing it off.

I used an old candle votive to melt down the crayons. I wasn’t sure if it would hold up to the heat, but it did really well and it had a nice curved lip to pour with. I put the votive into a pan with simmering water on medium heat. Make sure that you keep the water in the pan at a good level so as to not ruin your pan. I kept my kettle boiled so that I could add water as I needed when the water level got too low, that  way I wouldn’t have to wait for the water so start simmering again to continue melting crayons.

Then I grouped the crayons by color and broke them up into little bits (they melt faster this way). Once the crayons were melted I poured them into molds. The votive was hot so I used a kitchen towel to hold it. I used two different molds. One is a flexible star ice cube tray and the other was a candy mold featuring spring flowers. Once one color was poured, I cleaned out the votive with a paper towel while it was still hot; it cleaned out really nicely.

You can use one color per mold or you can layer the colors which looks really cool and are fun to scribble with. These large crayons are flat on the bottom and perfect for texture rubbings.

One thing that I would do differently is to use more containers for melting more colors simultaneously to save time and to experiment with swirling colors together in the mold.

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