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You need to tame threads if you hand sew, quilt, embroider, tailor, bead weave and so on. Beeswax has been used as a thread conditioner for a long time to make sewing easier. 

Ready made thread conditioner can be bought but you can easily make your own at home!  Perhaps make extra as gifts for your crafty friends and relatives.

You'll need beeswax and some molds - these can be from your resin jewelry or soap making supplies. Candy makers and bakers will also have the kind of molds that will work well. 


You can easily purchased naturally colored beeswax in block form. I used whatever wax I had at home.  I had cosmetic grade triple filtered white beeswax leftover from an attempt to make small hand cream blocks. Turned out to be a Pinterest fail. But a win for crafting purposes!

Candles and tea lights are also great - a good upcycling tip if they are near or at the end of their useful life.  


The wicks have to be removed from the candles and tea lights. The quickest way is to give these a quick 1 minute blast in the microwave. Not long enough to melt the beeswax but to soften it so a knife can be used to cut the wax block out.  

There is a tiny bit of metal in tea lights which is okay in the microwave. But if you prefer to be on the safe side, warm the tea light in some hot water.  

If the tea light is almost all used up,  light the tea light and watch until the small amount of wax is completely liquified. At that stage, you can just pour out the molten wax onto waxed paper and fish out the wick before the wax solidifies again. 






The pellets I had meant I did not have to cut up a block of beeswax.


You can use a double boiler on the stove but I just did 1 minute bursts on high in my microwave until everything melted. I used a wooden craft stick for stirring.


My first try were Wilton silicone molds similar to this one, which are actually mean for fondant cake decorations.

The mug is very hot! And so is the wax.


I overfilled and was forced to level out the rose mold by pushing the excess molten wax to the side. Filled up the leaf mold too!


I also have a deeper Wilton silicone candy gemstone mold below which I like.   There are tons of silicone molds on the market these days.


Some people might prefer a larger thread conditioner. So I used Little Windows' largest heart mold below which I happen to have.  (Use BG1516 for a 15% reader discount). There are also smaller hearts, 


I put the molds in the freezer for about 30 minutes to 1 hour to solidify the wax faster. Or you can just leave them to cool down on their own.

The unwanted bits can be snapped or cut off. 


I used a tool to smooth down the edges. 


The silicone molds are easy to clean up as you can just pick the solidified wax. But the container I used needed some hot water in it to warm it up. Then the jug was emptied and quickly wiped with a paper towel while still warm. Repeat as necessary. 

The fondant molds were very pretty. 


However, the rose and round flower ones are just too thin to work as thread conditioner. It won't take long before they wear down and break off. 


The most successful ones are gemstone shaped ones and the large heart. They are both for sale on my Etsy in the handmade category. 





Photography 
I used  my iPhone 8+ for both tutorial and final product photography in natural light against a white and  grey background. IMy online class Easy Guide to Smartphone Jewelry Photography is now available. Read more about it here.  

Before You Go:

Disclosure 

This blog may contain affiliate links. I do receive a small fee for any products purchased through affiliate links. This goes towards the support of this blog and to provide resource information to readers. The opinions expressed are solely my own. They would be the same whether or not I receive any compensation.
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Original Post by THE BEADING GEM 

5 comments:

  1. I am stuck with SO MUCH Nymo bought in the 1990s and I do find beeswax to be helpful with using that (mostly for samples) as I get so many tangles otherwise. However, most of the time I prefer Fireline which seems to need no wax at all. A little goes a long way, though...I am using the same cake of beeswax that I've had for years. It's not a cute shape like shown here, though.

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  2. Pearl, I have never heard of using beeswax for your threads. I embroidered and cross stitched for years. Thanks for the tip.

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    1. I'm with Sneaky Burrito - I do not use wax if I bead with Fireline. You can sew etc without the wax but the conditioning will make the threads smoother and move through the fabric easier. Threads which tangle easily are the best candidates for conditioning.

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  3. I wax my Nymo (I,too, have way too much!) if I HAVE to use it! ha! I prefer Fireline for beading. the wax will also clog the eye of the needle, so when I add thread I warm it between my lips and poke out any accumulation. The beeswax is good for my lips too. ;)

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    Replies
    1. My mother, who is fantastic with needle and thread, will only condition her thread after she has threaded through the needle. When she does something like sew on a hook and eye clasp, they look like beautiful couture work. Mine would look most untidy!

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