Re-purpose your old broken crayons into these fun, colorful DIY Valentine’s Day gifts!
My daughter and I first saw this idea around Christmas on a post with ideas for stocking stuffers. We couldn’t wait to try them! We did our first batch with a skull mold I already had back in December when she was on break from school. We filled it too full and the crayons melted all over! Luckily I had placed it on a cookie tray, so I only had to clean that instead of the oven. Either way, I learned a very important lesson when dealing with melted crayons: grease the mold first! I had such a hard time getting the crayon off, I tried to put the mold back in the oven to melt it off and ended up forgetting about it, ruining my skull mold! At least we had made a good amount of crayons out of it first!
As soon as Christmas passed, I started looking in the Valentine section at the store for a heart shaped mold to make more. This week I found one finally, so we got to finish this part of my daughter’s Valentine’s treat bags (keep an eye out over the next few weeks for more crafts and treats that will be filling these bags!).
- Crayons. I like to use up the ones that have been broken, but if you don’t have many or need more color variation feel free to break up some brand new ones!
- Some sort of silicone mold. I’m not gonna say you CAN’T do it in metal, but I wouldn’t want to be the one trying to pop out the finished product. Silicone makes it nice and easy.
- An oven to bake them in.
- Multiple molds. We decided to give the boys skull crayons and the girls hearts. I’m sure most boys won’t mind getting all heart shaped crayons when it’s a Valentine, but since we had them made already why not?
- Cooking spray (easiest) or some sort of oil to grease the mold. If you use oil, the way I like to do it is get the oil (or shortening, or whatever cooking grease) on a paper towel and rub it on the mold. I greased the whole mold, inside and out, in case the crayon overflowed a bit.
- Glitter to make them extra sparkly! Just sprinkle some on before you put them in the oven and the glitter will mix in while they’re melting!
- Paper and glue to make a prettier finished product. Check out what Chef Messy did with some card stock (so cute!)
Honestly, there’s not really much you could substitute unless you wanted to buy your own wax to melt down and pour in the mold. In that case you could also color it however you like, just like you would a candle. But I think most of the fun in this comes from seeing how all the colors mix together!
So like I said, first we oiled down the mold. Because we had already done our skull crayons, we had our broken crayons prepared and sorted by color (yes, we’re very “organized” in that sense).
- Preheat oven to 250F.
- Remove the paper wrapper off of all the crayons you want to use. This could be a tedious process if you have some pretty old crayons in the bunch like we did. When we made our skull crayons, I think it took us at least 20-30 minutes just to take all the wrappers off (but we also had a lot of crayons).
- Optional: break or cut the crayons into smaller pieces. We simple broke them down more as we needed to when we were putting them in the molds, but we also left them in larger pieces. You might prefer to chop them up more finely like Chef Messy did if you want the colors to mix more. We kind of like to control the color variations. (I swear we’re not control freaks!)
- Now you’re ready to start putting the crayons into the molds! We sometimes filled ours randomly and sometimes planned it out. You do what works best for you. I like to think some of the prettier ones were because we matched colors that would contrast with each other more, but maybe that’s in my head.
4. Double check that your molds aren’t too full (so they don’t spill over when the crayons melt). Technically this could be part of step 3, but I know with my kids I always have to double check after we complete it to be sure they followed instructions. It’s easy to get overzealous when you’re a kid. 😉
5. Place them in the oven to melt. Some of the sites I’ve read with instructions say to do 10 minutes at 250, 15 minutes at 250, or even 10 minutes at 275. Since I live in high altitude, I usually have to go down in time or temperature. I elected to do 10 minutes at 250, but my crayons weren’t completely melted:
So in the end it was 15 minutes at 250.
6. Let the crayons completely cool before trying to pop them out. What I did was I waited until I thought they were done (poking them a little to check), then I waited another 30-60 minutes more just to be sure.
7. Pop them out by pushing on the bottom of the mold (like you’re turning it inside out). I popped them onto a paper towel so that I could wipe off any oil that stuck to them.
8. Either glue them to your paper cutouts or place in treat bags. We still might cut out those circles to put a cute crayon saying on them. But for now they’re going into our treat bags solo.
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