What Are Wax Seals?
You’ve officially taken the first step towards making your own wax seals and we can’t WAIT to share our secrets with you today!
If this is your first time making your own wax seals, you're probably wondering:
- What do I need to make wax seals?
- How long does it take to make wax seals?
- How much do wax seals cost?
- How do I make wax seals?
Well friend, you're in luck because we're here to answer all of your questions (including the ones you haven't thought of yet) and show you how to make beautiful wax seals - even if you've never touched a wax seal in your life!
So, grab a cup of coffee and your design hat – because it’s time for your Artisaire crash course on all things wax seals!
What Are Wax Seals?
Wax seals are individually pressed pieces of wax that have been stamped with an impression and finished with an adhesive backing - often used to spruce up stationery, invitations, letters and packaging.
Now, depending on how much searching you've done - you may have seen everything from stamps to signet rings referred to as "wax seals". While these are the tools you can use to make them, when we talk about "wax seals" we're talking specifically about that finished piece of wax that's picture-perfect and ready to add to your stationery!
Wax seals have 4 main components:
- The Design (the impression your seals will have on them)
- The Sealing Wax (what your seals are made of and what color they are)
- The Style (how uniform or organic the edges of your seals will look)
- The Adhesive (what you will use to attach your wax seals to your finished surface)
To help you find the best options for your seals, we're breaking down each part in the next section - so let's dive in!
What Design Should I Use for My Wax Seal?
The best thing about wax seals is you can really choose any style of design for them, as long as you follow a few simple rules!
Depending on how you will be using your wax seals and how much design experience you have – you can choose:
- A Couples Monogram (most popular for weddings)
- A Personal Monogram (also known as a Single Initial)
- A Signature Design (pre-designed botanicals, sentiments, illustrations)
- A Custom Design (created with your custom artwork)
Don't have custom design skills but still want something special?
We've got you covered! Our step-by-step artwork guide will help you create the perfect artwork for your wax seals, even if you have zero design experience!
To learn more, click here: What Designs Can I Use for Wax Seals?
What Are Wax Seals Made Of?
Now that you’ve found the perfect design for your wax seal, it’s time to talk about Sealing Wax!
But, what is sealing wax anyways?
Sealing wax is a blend of wax and resin that melts smoothly and holds an impression once cooled – making it perfect for wax seals!
As you begin your search for the right sealing wax, you will see there are many kinds of wax out there.
Wax sticks, wax beads, flexible sealing wax, traditional wax. . . how do you know which one to choose?
The first thing you need to know is that the quality of wax you choose is most important!
Quality of wax is directly based on the kind of sealing wax you choose:
- Traditional Sealing Wax
- Flexible Sealing Wax
The second thing you need to know is that within those 2 kinds of wax, there are four different formats to choose from:
- Glue Gun Sealing Wax Sticks
- Sealing Wax Beads
- Premade Wax Seals
- Traditional Wax Sticks
As each type of wax behaves differently and makes such a big impact on how good your seals look, we've created a separate guide with all the info you need to find the perfect wax for your project!
Get the guide here: How to Use Sealing Wax.
How to Make the Perfect Wax Seal?
Now that you’ve found the perfect wax, it’s time to gather your tools and learn How to Make the Perfect Wax Seal!
- Step 1: Choose your wax seal method;
- Step 2: Gather your tools;
- Step 3: Practice and perfect your technique.
Step 1. What Type Of Wax Seal Is Right For Your Project?
The first step to making the perfect wax seal is deciding how you want to make them!
There are two methods:
- DIY Wax Seals (Make them yourself)
- Premade Wax Seals (Have them made for you)
DIY Wax Stamp + Sealing Wax Seals
When you think of wax seals, this is probably what came to mind!
Melting wax slowly over an open flame, pouring it carefully onto your envelope, then stamping it with a wax stamp - this traditional sealing method has been used since the 13th century.
Romantic, relaxing (when done right) and perfect for the inner artist-at-heart, this method is perfect if you are making a few wax seals at a time or adding them to crafts, special projects and gift wrapping.
Why People Choose This Method:
- It’s relaxing.
- This method is perfect if you have time to slow down and enjoy the process.
- You can get SO creative!
- This method is perfect if you want to add glitter, flowers or special elements to your wax seals.
- You can mail them*.
- They will take your wrapping to the next level!
- Working with pieces of silk ribbon, twine, or gift wrap? Trust us when we say this method will literally transform your Christmas wrapping this year!
*When used with our sealing wax and recommended mailing instructions. Other brands may vary.
Premade Wax Seals
We recommend premade seals 99% of the time because they are the easiest way to add wax seals to your project!
You can choose the size, shape, artwork, color, style and adhesive you would like and we will take care of the rest! With a few simple clicks of a button - you'll receive beautiful wax seals straight to your door... talk about easy!
- They will save you SO much time!
- This is THE fastest way to make wax seals and will cut your "per seal" time from over a minute per seal - to 15 seconds!
- Each one is personally pressed by our team.
- Your wax seals will be poured by-hand by our Wax Artisans using our signature technique so each one arrives as "perfectly imperfect" as you'd like!
- Signature Adhesive.
- Simply let us know how you will be using your seals (for mailing, for your seating chart, for packaging, etc.) and we will finish each seal with the perfect adhesive for your project!
- They are stress-free.
- As your seals arrive ready-to-use, there’s no need to spend hours perfecting your technique or money on practice product - we'll take care of all of that!.
Step 2. How to Build the Right Wax Seal Toolkit
Using the right tools is critical to making wax seals!
Without the right tools, even the best technician will struggle to make consistently beautiful wax seals - which is why you're here in the first place!
If you've chosen premade wax seals - you're all set! We'll send you everything you need to add seals to your project - but if you're making them yourself, here's what you'll need:
- Solid Brass Wax Stamp
- Flexible Sealing Wax
- Sealing Wax Gun (or Brass Spoon)
- Bowl of Ice
- Microfiber Cloth
- Adhesive Backings
- Silicone Mat
For a full checklist of everything you need - and what to look for in the right tools click here!
Step 3. Perfect Your Technique
Now that you have the right tools, it's time to work on that technique!
When you first get started, pay attention to how much wax you're using and how you're pressing your stamp into the hot wax. You need less wax than you think!
The most common issue you'll likely face is that your seals look uneven, at first. This is totally normal! Focus on pressing your stamp straight down into the hot wax - perfecting the "straight stamp" is key!
And remember, there is a real learning curve to mastering this technique, so if you feel like your seals aren't looking how you want - spend a little bit more time practicing before you begin!
Read our tips and tricks on How to Make The Perfect Wax Seal,!
In this guide we'll be sharing:
- How to choose the right stamp and sealing wax;
- Our step-by-step method for beautiful wax seals;
- The #1 secret to making beautiful wax seals, without ever touching a stamp!
Ready to get started? Click here to learn How to Make the Perfect Wax Seal.
P.S. If you'd rather spend time enjoying another glass of rosé on the patio instead of practicing your wax seal technique, we've got you covered! Our premade wax seals will save you time and arrive straight to your door beautiful and project-ready! Click here to learn more
How to Mail Wax Seals?
Now that you’ve gathered your toolkit, practiced your technique and are ready to start assembly – it’s time to talk about How to Mail Your Wax Seals!
Have you ever heard that wax seals can’t go through the mail?
Whether it’s because they crack or break; get torn off; or rejected by the post office – we’re here to put an end to that myth by bringing you another solution:
Mailable Wax Seals.
Yes, that’s right – you can safely send our wax seals through the mail!
To learn the top 2 secrets for safely mailing wax seals, click here.
How to Use Wax Seals for Your Wedding
Whether you’re at the beginning stages of planning your wedding (hooray!), getting close to the big day (oh my gosh!), or have a client interested in adding a wax seal to theirs, you've got lots of things on your to-do list!
To help simplify your planning and check one more thing off your list, we've created the Ultimate Wedding Wax Seal Guide with the top trending ways to add wax seals to your big day!
Ok, but how long will it take to make them?
Now that you know what you’ll need, how to make them and where you're going to put them - it's time to talk about time and budget!
When you first start making wax seals, it will take you at least a minute to make each seal – but don’t worry, there are lots of ways to make the process go faster!
From choosing a faster type of sealing wax (like Glue Gun Sealing Wax) or working with our Premade Wax Seals, here's a list (from fastest to slowest) that will help you pick the right method for your timeline:
- Premade Wax Seals (fastest)
- Glue Gun Sealing Wax + Sealing Wax Gun
- Wax Spoon + Sealing Wax Beads
- Melting Pot + Traditional Wax
- With Wick Wax Sticks + Lighter (slowest)
Remember, the more you practice, the faster you'll be able to go - so make sure to read our tips and tricks for how to make the perfect wax seal to make the most of your practice time!
How Much Do Wax Seals Cost?
How much to budget for will depend on your answers to these four questions:
- Are you making the seals yourself or having them made for you?
- Making wax seals yourself is the most popular option for beginners - especially if you need fewer than 50 seals. Just be sure to calculate all the tools and wax you need if you are making more than that – as this method can add up quickly!
- If you need more than 60 wax seals, premade wax seals will save you time and money.
- How many seals are you making?
- If you are making more than 60 seals, the best (fastest and most affordable) choice is premade wax seals.
- What size is your seal.
- Cost and size of wax seal are directly related – the larger the seal you choose, the more brass (and wax) will be needed to make it, therefore it will likely cost more.
- What type of wax you need and what brand you buy?
- You will find a wide range of price points for sealing wax - but remember, the quality of sealing wax you choose will directly affect how good your seals look. It is so worth it to invest in good quality wax - even if there are cheaper options out there!
The Wrap Up
With over 25 years of wax seal making under our belts, here are the top 3 things to keep in mind before getting started:
- Quality is everything
- Making beautiful wax seals is all about the quality of the product! If you are using a lower-quality wax or stamp, your seals will reflect that. Our advice? Choose product that you feel good about – not necessarily just the cheapest or most expensive option!
- Research the brand before buying:
- There are tons of options out there – many that look the same. Make sure to ask about the materials they use, whether their wax is mailable, and where their wax is made - this can make a BIG difference in how your wax seals look in the end.
- Practice, practice, practice!
- Like any new skill, practice is key! We've got lots of tips and tricks to help you get there - and will even take care of the work for you! Just remember to stay patient... it will all be worth it!
Now that you’ve learned the ins and outs of wax seals – you are ready to create yours!
We can’t wait to see how you create yours!
The Artisaire Team