Candles are a great addition to any room, on any occasion. With careful choice and arrangement, candles can be used to add a unique feel to any space.
Make sure that candles are kept away from drafts, as this will shorten their burning time. Burning time varies greatly depending on your choice of candle.
The longest burners are 3-wick pillar candles; this type of candle can burn for up to 700 hours.
Candles come in almost limitless shapes and sizes; however, most candles fall into seven broad categories.
7 Types of Candles
1. Pillar candles: commonly used as part of a display and have a long burning time. These types of candles can be several feet tall.
2. Votive candles: are smaller versions of the pillar candles with a shorter burning time. However, they are considerably cheaper and generally more suitable for everyday use.
3. Tea light candles: enable you to use your imagination with pretty holders.
These candles are often used as floating candles or as part of a table display, where space is at a premium.
4. Ball candles: a display all by themselves and a superb central piece for a display; available in a huge variety of sizes and burning times.
5. Floating candles: specifically designed to be used in water. As these types of candles are often used in the bathroom, they are generally available in a wider range of scents. Burning time is short and the essence is on ambiance and relaxation.
6. Taper candles: are the types of candles that we commonly think of when candles are mentioned. Taper candles are mainly seen arranged in groups of three, in a fork like shape; a great center-piece for any dining table.
7. Emergency candles: let’s not forget the emergency candle, reserved for those unplanned blackouts!
42 Candle Burning Tips that Will Invigorate Your Home’s Décor
Candles can add an extra dimension to any room. Mixing and matching different candles can mean that a unique and magical display can be created for every occasion. Of course, certain rooms lend themselves to different types of displays.
Admittedly, one doesn’t automatically think of candles in the kitchen. However, carefully located candles can really add an extra dimension to your kitchen.
• Place candles in a dark corner to brighten up an otherwise dull area.
• Pillar candles, on tall candleholders, are a great addition to a medieval style kitchen.
Dining room ambiance
Candles in the dining room create a feeling of grandeur and intimacy; simple, yet effective!
• Use taper candles in a 3-pronged holder as a centerpiece for your dining table. If you have a particularly long table, consider placing 2 or more candle clusters, to create several points of focus.
• A translucent bowl with floating candles can add a great feeling of calm, at the center of a circular dining room table.
• Place groups of pillar candles (ideally of at least three different heights) in the corners of the room to draw the focus away from the dining table, thus creating a greater feeling of intimacy.
Depending on the style of your living room, candles can add light, opulence, serenity or ambiance.
• Place candles around a fireplace to create a warm cozy feeling, without the hassle of lighting or cleaning the fire.
• Use a pair of candles to decorate a fireplace surround to maintain symmetry.
• A set of candles arranged on a decorative tray can be an attractive addition to any living room. This tray can be moved around to maximize use of natural light.
• Fixed wall candleholders can be used instead of traditional electric lights to add extra ambiance. Be aware, however, that maintaining these candles can be time-consuming. It is wise to keep at least one electric light in the room, for emergencies.
Candles are traditionally considered as a way of restoring calm and serenity. Floating candles are particularly useful for this purpose:
• During a party, place candles and petals in a full bath to give your guests a pleasant surprise. Do not do this if there are children at the party.
• Tea lights placed in empty shells are a great addition to a bathtub surround.
• In a large bathroom, place a pillar candle at the corner of the bath. Use instead of a main electric light to add a feeling of calmness.
Candles in the bedroom are extremely sexy! Create the perfect ambiance for romance, with a selection of small, scented candles.
• Candle arrangement, within the bedroom, is very personal. Keep illumination to a minimum; so consider using smaller tea lights or round candles in several locations, rather than one large arrangement.
• Be very careful that candles are kept away from linen as this presents a fire hazard.
• Using wall-mounted candleholders will help to ensure safety whilst maintaining a sexy ambiance.
Candles are not limited to the home. Illumination in your garden can add a magical feeling for your guests when they arrive at your doorstep.
• Place lights alongside the footpath to guide your guests.
• If you have an outdoor pool, large floating candles can be a beautiful and captivating addition.
• An outdoor gathering area can benefit from strong candle illumination, so use larger, pillar style candles.
• Place candles in your windows to lend continuity and a feeling that the outside is an extension of your home.
• Keep candles away from leaves and foliage and make sure that all candles are extinguished, after use.
Use of colors and smell
One of the main advantages of using candles as a decorative accessory is that they come in a wide variety of colors and scents. Combine various scents and colors to make your arrangement special to you and your home.
Various colors can give off certain messages and create a different ambiance.
• White suggests soothing and security. Often linked with purity, white is a very clean color and great for use in bathrooms, or outdoors.
• Silver is said to encourage education and change. As this color is linked with the moon, silver is great in any room, but particularly outside.
• Orange is a very lively and vibrant color and can add an excellent party- feel in any room.
• Blue is a calming color and is often used in the bedroom or bathroom.
• Purple is also a peaceful color that encourages thought and reflection, a popular candle color for bedrooms or areas of meditation.
• Green is considered to be harmonizing and offers refuge and comfort; a useful color for use as part of a display, alongside cinnamon.
• Red is used for multiple purposes. As a lively color, red is a great addition to a living or dining room. However, in the bedroom, red can be a sign of passion.
• Yellow, particularly when combined with red, can help create a lively atmosphere and is a great addition to social rooms, such as living or dining rooms, especially during a party.
By selecting a scented candle, a room can be transformed. Scented candles offer a cheap and effective way of altering the balance, in any room, as well as adding freshness and light to a dull or dank room.
• Romance is associated with scents such as sandalwood, gardenia and rose. Use these candles in any room, but of course the bedroom is an obvious choice!
• Energy can be created with the use of citrus scents, so consider these candles, particularly when combined with lively colors such as yellow.
They are also a great addition to kitchens and living rooms, during parties.
• Similarly, citrus and mint candles can be used to enhance freshness in a room. Placing these candles in a hallway or living room will help make guests feel very welcome.
• Lavender is a great scent for bathrooms and bedrooms, as it creates an aura of calm and serenity, a great relaxant.
• Different scents are more appropriate, during certain seasons. For example, melon is great during spring, citrus during summer and cinnamon, during the winter.
Making your own display
A great advantage of candles is that they are rarely considered as permanent fixtures. By changing the shape, color or scent of a candle, a room can be given an instant makeover.
• Group candles of different sizes together to add impact.
• Select appropriate candles to suit the available space. Remember less is often more; a small well-placed tea light can really add to the atmosphere, in an enclosed space.
• Candleholders can be bought in a variety of different styles to complement any room. Similarly, you can make your own. Look out for decorative holders such as large shells or small jars that can add a personal touch.
• If you’re feeling really adventurous, you can create your own candles with the help of different molds.
Candle burning tips
• With larger, pillar style candles, make sure that you burn the candle for at least one hour for every inch of its diameter, whenever you light the candle. This ensures that the candle burns evenly.
• Place your candles in the fridge before use, as this enables them to burn for longer.
• If wax spills, wait until it has solidified, before placing a paper bag over the wax. Use an iron to melt the wax back onto the paper, instead of the damaged item.
• Keep wicks to a length of no more than ¼ of an inch, to ensure long burning.
• Keep colored candles out of direct sunlight, as this may cause them to fade.
Above all, enjoy your candles and be as creative as you like!