Chess sets have evolved over the centuries. We have been through really nice, modern sets, some backed with AI and others made from various sorts of materials, but one thing they all have in common is that they become mundane over time. Not that they lose shape and horses become pawns; the time makes them bland, such that the eyes stop wanting and the hands don’t desire to make the next move on them.
FAUM is a Sydney-based candle manufacturer that thrives on the innovative use of beeswax to create natural candles with minimal effect on the ecosystem. The sculptural candle-making for the Aussie manufacturer has reached a point where the ancient war-board game has been realized from beeswax and it leaves a lasting impression until you play to leave the opponent’s army burned in defeat.
Fancy as it may sound, and as dramatic the gameplay may seem; there is always an element of caution to go with this chess set. If you manage to speed past the burning wicks of your infantry, you can win the game on the usually fashioned 64 square board. Each square has to be assembled at home and together they give you a board measuring roughly 16- x 16 inches.
The set itself comprises the regular 32 pieces, each measuring 2- to 3-inches in height. The board and the pieces are all hand-poured with beeswax sourced from independent beekeepers in Northern New South Wales. The beeswax used (FAUM notes) is obtained without disturbing the beehives and the honey production. Since there is no use of additives, the chess set and piece made from beeswax arrive in the natural pigmentation of beeswax: light Ivory and dark yellow. The former is obtained from bees feeding on farm flowers, while the latter comes from bees that feed on eucalyptus.
Since this game of chess will include little bloodbaths and more fire, the chess pieces are bound to fade out. The company provides refills of beeswax to go into your pieces so the game can go on even after the burns of defeat. Each add-on costs AUD 20, while the chess set itself is priced at AUD 880. If you are in a dilemma of burning your hands at the war on board, you can gift it to yourself; for it is bound to look safe and equally pleasing – just sitting there – in the room.