dinner by candlelight

It’s That Sparkly Season: 10 Ways to Decorate Your Home With Candles

To me, there is nothing like candlelight during the wintry seasons. I love the low flicker of candles as they play in the dark. This may sound crazy because I’m a busy mom, and we’re an active family, but we sit down almost every night to a candle-lit family meal. I’m not kidding. It has just become part of our routine. If the candle isn’t lit at the table, something just feels off. And while some people find the idea of burning candles somewhat antiquated in our modern world of electricity, many of us are still drawn to the hypnotic appeal of the flickering of candlelight.

Although living in the snowy mountains, we must have a few long-burning candles for when the power goes out during a blizzard, I love to light candles and turn the lights down low even when we have the convenience of electricity.

If you’re just beginning to dip your toes into the waxy world of candles or want some new creative ways to decorate your house with their cozy twinkling light, read on!

Tea Lights

Let’s start with the little guys. Tea lights are the tiny candles that we put into our pumpkins or fit into little glass votives and place around the house. They look lovely lined up on a dinner table but don’t stop there! These little workhorses look cute on bookshelves, tucked next to a plant on a table, and add their sparkliness to a drinks tray too. Try to purchase the votives that have clear bottoms if you can. The tin-bottomed ones tend to look a bit messy as they burn. Be mindful that tea lights burn out quickly. I usually buy huge packages of them (like 300 at a time), so I can promptly replace them as they burn out.

Poured, Scented

I’m a total sucker for scented candles found at little homeware boutiques. They’re ridiculously pricy at times but splurging on a charming scented candle is one of my favorite things to do!

Burning scented candles is an easy way to add a specific atmosphere to a room. Although we talk about decor as if it only encompasses our visual sense, all of our senses, including our sense of smell, can and should play a part in how we decorate our homes. And while I do love a few scented candles displayed around the house, be careful with the scents! I like subtle woodsy scented candles, but sometimes the smell of a scented candle can knock your socks off after it’s been burning for a while. I made the mistake of buying a discounted scented candle a few months ago (not the first time, I’m afraid). While it had smelled quite nicely of dried chamomile at the store, by the time it had burned for a few minutes on our coffee table, our entire home smelled sickeningly of what I can only describe as a bad bathroom deodorizer. Yikes!

So, be careful with the scented candles. You cannot go wrong with P.F. Candle Company candles – I don’t think I’ve ever been disappointed with their scented candles (and don’t miss their online Black Friday sale!!) – and Paddywax Candles.


I used to think taper candles were too elegant for my house. Nowadays, they’re my go-to. I pick up little brass candlestick holders at the thrift store regularly. And if you look, you’ll see off-kilter candlesticks on my dining room table for dinner, at the kitchen counter while having a glass of wine with a friend, or on a snowy morning as a centerpiece while we eat breakfast. I love the way the wax melts all over the candle holders. Now and then, I’ll clean the wax off, but overall I love the look of wax dripping from a candle.

Although I pick up most of my taper candles at the thrift store (our local thrift store always has a big bin filled with taper candles), you can purchase new ones almost anywhere – even in the housewares section of the grocery store!


Hurricanes are like giant versions of votive candles. They have a strong, sculptural shape that commands attention and provides more light (sometimes as much as an actual electric lamp!) than their tiny counterparts. In our small house, we don’t use hurricanes that often. But if you have the space, they do add a whole other element of candlelight. Some areas where they look lovely? On the mantle, on a sideboard, a front hall table, and even on the dining table when it’s not being used as a dining table.

How do you like to decorate with candles? Share in the comments below!

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