Sumac Wax Japanese Candles (Warōsoku)
Warōsoku are traditional Japanese candles made of 100% natural and plant-based materials. The wax derives from the nuts of sumac lacquer trees (haze) and the wicks are made of washi paper and the piths of rush plants. They burn without dripping or releasing soot and the tall flames sway gently on their own, creating a soothing and calming effect.
Warōsoku construction is unique and totally different from western candles. The wick materials are wrapped around long sticks and dipped in the melted wax repeatedly, thickening the candles one layer at a time. When the candles reach a desired thickness, the sticks are removed, leaving a hollow center. Japanese candleholders are designed with spikes to securely hold warōsoku. Watch the warōsoku-making process in the video below.
- Haze wax from trees grown in Japan, washi paper, rush plant
- Short Box: twelve 4 5/16” x 7/16” candles. Burn time is approximately 45 minutes
- Medium Box: four 6¼” x ⅝" candles. Burn time is approximately 110 minutes
- Large Box: two 7¼” x ¾” candles. Burn time is approximately 3 hours
- Individual candles are wrapped in washi paper
- Hand crafted in Japan
A Note about Wick Trimming and Candle Holders
When the flame becomes very tall and the burning wick grows over 1 inch, the wick needs to be trimmed. Cut the wick, leaving about half an inch. Do not over-trim, as the very short wick does not absorb enough wax and causes dripping.
We recommend placing warōsoku on candle holders that are designed specifically for them. Short candles can use any of the candle holders we offer. Medium and large candles should use our Cast Iron Candle Holder with Handle as it has a thicker spike.
Who Makes It
Isobe Rōsoku Shop has been making warōsoku in Okazaki for more than 300 years. Mr. Isobe, whose candle making skill is beautifully captured in the video below, is dedicated to preserving the tradition of warōsoku production and to making the candles more accessible and usable in a modern lifestyle.
Copyright: Japan Science and Technology Agency