Friday, June 14, 2013

bird.i.y.: spa day host(ess) gift

nora threw me an amazing bachelorette party last weekend. like, amazing. i had so much fun that the next day was pretty bad. but man, was it worth it. it was a mixture of my closest friends, manicures, drinks, good food, drinks, karaoke, drinks...well, you get the picture. needless to say, it was such a fun night, and i honestly don't feel like i can thank nora enough for planning it. i made her a little gift to show my appreciation, and thought i'd share it with you here.

i had never made any of these items before, so i was a little concerned that i would mess them up. but let me tell you, they are basically fool megan-proof. this was a really fun one for me, and i think the finished product would make a perfect hostess gift for anyone!

lotion bars
sugar scrub
wine (i did not make the wine...but i might need to learn how!)

for the candle, you need:

1. wax – i used soy wax that was already shaved. you can use beeswax, but you will want it to either be shaved or chopped for ease of heating it.
2. wicks
3. a container for your candle – i used an old thrifted low ball glass (nora's home decor is more mid-century, so i wanted to match that)
4. a wick bar (see below how brilliant i am) (sarcasm noted, i hope)
5. scent – i used an essential oil that i use as my own perfume

ok, i will be honest, i didn't measure here. i grabbed about half of the one-pound bag of wax and threw it in. i have always been pretty good at judging measurements for food, and i did the same thing for this project. for sake of the diy, i will say i used a half a pound of wax for a six-ounce container.

all you need to do is melt the wax in a double broiler, or in my case, a very old frying pan over a very old pot of boiling water. i now call that frying pan my candle pan. i will never use it for food, but i will say it cleaned up very easily, so it could be used for food. (we just happened to get new pots and pans as a shower gift, so i had old ones to spare.) (if you're not the daddy warbucks of pots and pans, an everyday pan will do.)

all the directions say to heat the wax to 185 degrees, but i'm telling you, mine got to 155 and stopped heating any more. so i called it a day, and let it cool to about 115 before i added two teaspoons of fragrance.

i used a little bit of the melted wax to place the wick in the glass, and then used this very fancy tinfoil concoction to hold the wick in place. who needs wick bars? not this girl!!

i then poured the melted wax into the glass using a funnel, adjust the wick as needed, and let cool overnight. when i woke up, voila, new candle!!

next up, lotion bars. what you will need:

(equal parts of 1, 2, 3)
1. wax – i used the rest of the soy wax. again, beeswax would be a good alternative, but the soy worked beautifully.
2. cocoa butter – shea butter would also work, but i had cocoa butter, so that is what i used.
3. olive oil
4. fragrance (same as candle)
5. silicone forms

just like the candle directions, i heated the wax, cocoa butter, and olive oil in a double broiler. in this case, i used about 1/3 cup of each item. (just make sure it is equal parts, other than that, you can wing it.)

once the concoction was fully melted, i added fragrance (again, i used about two teaspoons, but you may want more to cover the cocoa butter smell), and poured it into the silicone forms using a funnel. i let them cool overnight, and when i woke up, voila, lotion bars!!

for the sugar scrub, you will need:

1. sugar – i used white, but brown would work, too
2. coconut oil
3. a container
4. fragrance (same as candle and lotion...see a theme here?)

i filled the container almost full with sugar. then, i melted about two tablespoons of coconut oil in the microwave (how much you need depends on the size of the container). i added about one teaspoon of fragrance to the coconut oil, and poured it with a funnel over the sugar into the jar. *make sure you don't use too much, or like me, you will end up with a table top full of great smelling coconut oil.* oh well, after i cleaned up, my hands were super soft! you don't even have to wait overnight...immediately, voila, sugar scrub!

all the hard work is now done!! i just prettied everything up with cute containers and labels, threw in the flowers and wine, wrote a little "thank you" and tied it to the box. done and done!

megan bird


  1. Super cute and heartfelt homemade gift.


  2. What a lovely gift! Sounds like you had a fab time at the bachelorette party! All the best, T.

  3. Very cute, handmade gift. How thoughtful! And handmade candles also look darling in teacups - you should use your leftover wax to make one for yourself ;)

  4. Aww, what a nice gift for Nora! I bet she loved it too! I will have to keep this in mind when my friends throw me a baby shower later - I think this is the best kind of thank you gift!

  5. Aww what a sweet and creative gift! Handmade gifts are always more special, I think :)

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  6. megan, you're so crafty! i am continually amazed and admire the things you create and do. nora, is definitely an awesome sister, throwing you such a fabulous party. you know we're all dying to see pics, but we always want to honor and respect your privacy.

  7. Wow! I am inspired! Good job :)

  8. What a great gift to say thank you, and it sounds like your bachelorette party was perfect. The way it should be!

  9. This is so adorable! What a great gift you put together :)

  10. That's a great gift! I've made candles and scrubs before, but never tried lotion. That might have to be next on the list for me. And if you learn to make wine, sign me up for a bottle.:)

  11. such a cute idea. years ago i bought a soap & lip balm making kit from martha stewart...really fun, i love the lotion bars!
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  12. i never knew how to do this! hahaha that is so awesome!

  13. That is so sweet, crafty, and thrifty! A perfect combo!

  14. Oh wow, you are fab! What awesome pressies!!!
    SIlly question but what do you do with the lotion bars? How and where do you use them!x

  15. What a cute little gift that you have here. I am sure that Nora loved it. I like the scrub, and your canister is soo cute!

  16. your so good trying all these things.. I think I need to get more crafty!!