Time to Make
1 hour + drying time for wax pens
How to Make
- To make the fish, press 12 wax squares into an egg-shaped body, about 6cm in length. Pinch off a small piece for the fins, and put it to one side. Press the body at one end to lengthen it by 1cm or so for the tail. Keep pressing the wax between your thumb and forefinger until the tail is thin and curved.
- To make the white stripes, knead 3 wax squares, one at a time, to make 3 thin strips. Press the strips onto some greaseproof paper to about 2mm in depth, then cut with a modelling tool if they need to be smaller or thinner. Press the strips around the body, pressing them down so the surface is as flat as possible.
- Roll 2 small balls for the eyes and press onto the front of the body. Shape 2 small, curved fins then press on the top of the body. Shape the 2 side fins; it’s easier to keep these separate attach them when the rest of the fish is finished.
- To make painting the black stripes easier, carefully push a thin knitting needle or thin skewer about 1cm up into the base of the fish then place it into a jar or tall container. Fill the jar with newspaper to hold the fish still. Use a candle pen to draw thin lines around the body, fins, tail, draw the eyes and mouth. Leave to dry.
- To make the base, shape 6 wax squares into a 6cm circle with a domed top. To make the seaweed, shape 12 wax squares into thick strands, using 1 or 2 squares per piece. Press the seaweed pieces onto the base. If there is a gap in the middle of the seaweed, fill it with with a small ball of wax to make the base into a solid shape.
- Press the fish onto the seaweed. Press the 2 small side fins onto the body then use a wax pen to add thin black lines around the edges. Leave to dry.
- Cut a piece of wick 10-12cm in length. Use a knitting needle or wooden skewer to make a new hole through the top of the fish and through to the base. Straighten the piece of wick, push it inside the hole then carefully press the wax around the top to close the hole. Trim the wick if it looks too long.
To make the wax easier to knead and shape, leave it in a warm place for 10-15 minutes to soften, or gently warm the wax on both sides for 15-20 seconds with a hairdryer. To apply more pressure when kneading, hold the wax between your thumb and forefinger with the other hand over the top so the thumbs and fingers are crossing each other. Squeeze the thumb and fingers on top so they press the fingers underneath holding the wax. Roll wax on a piece of greaseproof paper to stop it sticking to your work surface.