Wednesday, February 27, 2013

making candles pretty!



I love having lots of candles around.  
From votive to large multi-wick candles there's just nothing like candlelight that makes a room feel special at night.   I like my candles to be pretty even when not in use.




When I place a brand new candle they just always look too new because, well- they are!  I hated that, so I came up with a way to give them instant patina (see photo above) and wanted to share it with you.




I use a small propane torch and a striker to start.  
BUT, THIS IS DANGEROUS!!!  Use at your own risk.  If you're not checked out on how to use one I suggest you use...




this Kingsford flexible lighter  or a chef's torch- both which have an extra long (i.e. hot) flame.




I place a large piece of wax paper under the candle to catch any drips.  Then just slowly apply heat to the top outer edge to cause it to melt which creates drips and softens the look of the new candle.  You use the size of the flame and the distance of the flame from the candle to control the amount and size of the drips. You can see in this photo how important it is to use the wax paper!




Continue slowly heating and dripping until...




...you get to your happy place!  
Make sure the candle is cool before handling and then be careful when picking it up that you don't put your fingers on the drips as they can break off easily, so try to handle the candle from the bottom.  




And, there you have it- a pretty new candle with patina!

If you missed the story about the blue baluster you can read about it HERE.


49 comments:

  1. Oh wow, that's a great idea!! Maybe I'll try it with a lighter thought. ;)

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  2. I love this idea....but you are right....dangerous. When I was little we made crayon drip easter eggs in girl scouts with a lighter and a crayon....wonder if you could us a cheap candle and drip its was over the edge???/

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  3. Very pretty! I will need to try this. I love the light from candles, brings me comfort and relaxation. I burn then in the evening before I go to bed. :)

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  4. What a clever idea and one I am going to try right away. I love the way it looks and I have candles all over my house. Thanks for the tip Joan.

    Carolyn

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  5. Such a great idea! I'm going to go home and try this out!
    Which reminds me I also have to put blow torch on my christmas list this year :)

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  6. What a lovely touch! No wonder everything in your home is so beautiful! The amount of thought and simple touches is unbelievable.

    Tim

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  7. LOVE this idea!!! Thansk, and thanks for the warning:) XO, Pinky

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  8. Can't wait to try this!! In reference to your polishing silver post, oh my goodness, it is beautiful! May I ask a silly question? Where does one find/purchase hotel silver? Thanks so much.

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    Replies
    1. Bergdorf sells hotel silver which they refinish. I have a number of trays, bowls and coffee/tea pots from there and they are beautiful. Be prepared to pay more than at a typical antique shop, but the quality is so much better because of the restoration. The insignia of the hotel or ship is still evident so it's fun to collect.

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  9. What a great idea, definitely trying this. When I buy new pillar candles I light them as soon as I get home and I let them burn until the sides start to get that uneven look so they don't look "new".

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  10. Joan,
    You are a clever lady! Sara, Ohio

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  11. How cool and how sweet of you to share your tip.
    xo
    Terri

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  12. Thanks for the tip Joan! I dislike new-looking candles, too!

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  13. It looks great. Lately you have been showing us projects on your marble countertop. I have the same countertop not quite a year old and I hate to do anything on it even covered because I have soo many etchings already. As careful as I am accidents seem to happen. How is yours doing?

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    Replies
    1. Judi- unfortunately etching is a inherent property of marble, but mine holds up pretty well and I do not baby it. I am working on a post on marble so hopefully that might provide some answers/solutions??

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    2. Joan...I'm anxiously awaiting your post on marble and soapstone. We are renovating and have wavered over using the beautiful marble we want in favor of a more durable grey and white granite. Everyone cautions us about the etching and staining.

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  14. Joan,
    What a great idea, I wouldn't have thought of it and yet it makes the candles look so much more old world. I love that look.
    Thank.
    Karen

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  15. Looks like it's as much fun making your candle look used as actually using it!! Great idea!

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  16. Gorgeous..what a great idea. I also liked candles right out of the plastic. Clever Joan!

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  17. My, aren't you the clever one! I'm gonna give this a try! Thanks! ;)

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  18. Cleva!!! I really like it. Everything looks better used, even candles. Ok, maybe that's not true for towels, but you know what I mean.

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  19. That's a great idea Joan. Thanks for sharing your tip. Pamela

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  20. Such a great idea, Joan. You are brave to use the torch. I'll go for the lighter.
    Best...Victoria

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  21. Now that's clever Joan... :)
    Thank you... xv

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  22. You're a genius! The candles look great after you finish with them. I'm definltely trying this with the lighter, not the torch.

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  23. Love it!! Thank you Joan!!! Blessings~~Shine

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  24. Wow very cool I've never thought of doing that but I will now ! Hope your having a great week!!!!!

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  25. How do you avoid smokey marks forming from the heat??

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    1. hummm- good question. I think it is the heat of these types of flames that make for clean drips. The Kingsford lighter is like a little blow torch with a extra long flame and therefore I think has a higher BTU than a regular lighter. But, that's just a guess;)

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  26. I love this look, and I always light my brand new taper candles as soon as possible, but have not tried in on pillars, but I have a question, how do you manage to keep the candle from getting the burn black patches that sometimes happen with direct flame?

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    Replies
    1. hi Kristel- You and AC (directly above ^^) had the same question at almost the same time... great minds! You can see my answer above^

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  27. So much nicer Joan.........a great tip!

    Thank you and hope you have a lovely day.

    Sophia

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  28. You crack me up Joan! But I have to admit, I'm hooked too!

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  29. I love to do this, too! I believe the key to getting clean looking drips is directly related to the quality of the candle wax and the quality of the flame fuel. I had a wonderful lighter similar to yours that made beautiful drips, but it was somehow lost (or taken by my son or husband!). I've tried with an inexpensive lighter, but do not get the same clean results. Patience is also key to getting beautiful drips, don't you agree?!

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    1. hi Jenny- my guess it's in the BTUs that the lighter/torch puts out. You need a hot flame to get clean drips.

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  30. Wow, what a good idea. Of all the years I've used candles and hated the new look.....thanks. Throughmyporchwindow.blogspot.com

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  31. Joan, Dan, and Ella: As I was sitting in the family room reading this post, my eyes immediately went to the three white candles I have on the coffee table. I need to get the Kingsford lighter, tonight, and get to work on aging these candles. Thanks for the tip!

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  32. Clever idea with beautiful results.... I love the size of your white candle!
    Ann

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  33. Joan, I love this idea, I am going to try this on my pillar candles!! Thanks for the idea!
    xo Kathysue

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  34. This is a wonderful idea and it turned out looking so pretty!!

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  35. So happy you are back to blogging! I do this with the faux candle, they have little black wicks, but run on battery power and flicker...I take a white candle and very carefully melt wax onto the faux candle and it looks more real. I like to use these in spots where a real candle would cause a real problem! Keep on blogging, and once again, I LOVE you home!

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  36. You have my full attention! This is brilliant! It's making me wonder if it's possible to hollow out a pillar of that size to fit over or around actual lighting sleeves. I've seen sheets of beeswax used also which I'm sure would be easier. Just curious. Thank you so much for sharing this tip!
    Lisa

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  37. can you please do a post on how your marble counter is holding up??

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    Replies
    1. You have excellent timing Karen... I have literally been working on a marble post for the past several days! Will have it up soon.

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