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The up side of my being *slightly* hord-ish is that great stuff is on hand when need and inspiration come crashing together. That means many partially used/broken things collect in bags, baskets and boxes, at home and in the Studio awaiting their chance to be transformed into treasure. Broken crayon pieces are one such item. In the Studio we routinely recycle them into new crayon disks which work great at our toddler drawing table.
Once we’ve amassed enough pieces to make a rainbow of crayon disks we peel all the papers off and sort them by color into a muffin or cupcake tin that’s been sprayed with a little veggie oil, filling each well about half to two thirds full. The oil helps them to pop out later. We picked up a tin expressly for this use after my first attempt with metallic crayons stained my cupcake tin.
The the tin goes into the oven on low heat- around 250 degrees. When the crayons have melted (about 15 mins.) I take the tin out (using a mit!) and gently stir each section with a toothpick. That first time when I used mostly metallic crayons I didn’t stir and the wax ended up separated from the pigment.
When the pan cools, I turn it over to pop the disks out. They’re ready to use or gift. In the Studio, we cut the muffin size disks in half so they’re easy for small hands to hold and offer a variety of mark-making edges.
I’ve found many ideas across the internet for variations on shapes and method. Family Fun suggests making Crayon Heart Valentines, others use a variety of candy or soap-making molds to create different shapes.
Please note that since this process involves the oven and hot wax, I usually complete it by myself. If you want children to join in, you could have them peel off the papers and sort them in the tins. My favorite ways to sort are by temperature (warm colors/cool colors) and color families (reds, blues, oranges, etc.). In my next experiment I’m going to try melting the black and white pieces together.