Techniques
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Candles Create Mood, Ambiance & Decor

   

Light and fragrance are the most effective and easiest way to improve your home's mood and ambiance.  Candles allow you to provide both.  They create elegant subtle lighting, beautifully decorate your home with texture and color, and their fragrances can be tailored to fit any mood or environment.

                                                
             

Remember, burning candles correctly and safely will ensure you get the most value and enjoyment from every candle you burn.

Storage

  • Keep candles in a dark, cool, and dry place and lay them flat to prevent warping.  Contrary to what many people may think, candles do NOT perform better if you store them in the freezer or refrigerator where they are likely to crack.

Candle Safety

  • Keep candles out of reach of children and away from pets.
  • Never leave a burning candle unattended.
  • Always burn a candle in a proper container/holder to protect furniture from staining.
  • Keep all flammable materials away from open flame.
  • Most candles are meant to only be burned 4-6 hours at a time.  Allow candles to cool completely before relighting.  A general rule of thumb for burn time is that a candle should ideally burn only for the number of hours that it has inches in diameter.  (For a multi-wick candle, measure the distance from the wick to the outer diameter and multiply by two for the ideal burn time.)
  • Candles should be discarded when they are within ½-inch of the very bottom.  This will ensure that furniture and candleholders are not scorched harmed.


Candle Care

  • Always trim wicks to 3/8" before lighting.
  • Remove all wick trimmings from the wax pool.
  • Keep candles away from drafts.  Draft can come from vents, fans, and even high traffic areas in your home.  Drafts are the major cause of candle leaks and guttering.
  • Turn candle by 90 degrees each time you light your candles to ensure an even burn.  This rotation allows any drafts to affect all sides equally.
  • Votive candles are designed to liquefy when lit which allows for a faster and stronger fragrance throw.  Always make sure your votives are in a receptacle that can accommodate the melting wax.
  • Direct sunlight will often cause candles to fade.  Try not to display candles in windows or areas that receive direct sun.  The sun can even cause candles to melt and become misshapen or warped.
  • Pillar candle consumption can be improved by pushing the soft, warm sides slightly towards the center after blowing it out so that they can melt along with the candle's inner core as it burns.  Be careful not to push the sides in too far or they may melt so fast that the flame is extinguished.
  • Polish dusty candles or remove minor scratches/flaws by using the legs cut from your old panty hose.  The slightly abrasive texture of the nylons removes dust and scratches.

Other Candle Tips

  • Layering candle fragrances is a great way to make unique scents and create your own ambiance.  Burn a vanilla candle near a strawberry candle to create a, "Strawberry Shortcake aroma."  Or burn a cinnamon candle near an apple candle to create a scrumptious, "Apple Pie" Remember to light your candles ½-hour before your guests arrive to allow the fragrances time to diffuse in your rooms.  
  • Before a wedding, or any candle lighting ceremony, it is recommended that you pre-light your wicks.  Charring the wicks will allow quick and easy lighting during special (and sometimes nerve-racking) ceremonies.
  • Removing wax from your holders is best achieved by putting them in your freezer.  Wax shrinks dramatically as it cools which means it will usually lift away immediately after the container is removed from the freezer.
  • Ensure a tight fit (and prevent tipping) in candleholders by using a wax adhesive.  Wax adhesives can also be used under a pillar to make them sit flat on uneven surfaces or to ensure they do not slip.
  • Bobeches are a wax catcher for taper candles.  They look like a flat doughnut that sits on top of taper holders at the base of the candle.  Use bobeches to protect wax from dripping on fine crystal, furniture or an antique tablecloth.
  • There is no such thing as a dripless candle.  Any candle can drip in the right (or in this case, wrong) conditions.  Always make sure candles are kept out of drafts which are the major cause of dripping.
  • Always remove the metal wick clips from the bottom of votive candleholders before inserting another candle to be burned.  The metal clips transfer much heat which can cause the container to unnecessarily crack or break.