How to Design and Decorate With Candles

A Striking candle design

Knowing how to design and decorate with candles offers endless possibilities of creating beautiful candlescapes throughout your home.

The Magic of Candlelight

The flickering glow of candlelight often seems magical adding a sense of peace and relaxation to any setting. Using candles to decorate a room, or an outdoor area, generates a feeling of warmth as they cast their soft golden light. Candles set a mood, create an ambiance and stir the imagination.

Lit candles displayed in an entryway send an inviting message to guests as they come inside making them feel welcome. Elegant tapers placed on a dinner table suggest an intimate setting with quiet conversation. Scented votives set near a tub suggest a tranquil relaxing bath.

Arranging candles into beautiful candlescapes enhances their impact adding style and elegance to your home.

Tips on How to Design and Decorate With Candles

Candles make a wonderful addition to almost any area of your home. The following candle decorating techniques are ways to incorporate these lovely home accents into your life.

Candle Groupings on the Fireplace

Your fireplace becomes a dramatic focal point when it is too warm for a log fire by filling it with candles of varying heights. It is simple to create a tiered effect by using candle holders of varying sizes and an assortment of different types of candles. Place a mirror on the floor of the fireplace to reflect the flickering flames for a beautiful look. Be creative, turn glass candle holders and small vases upside down and set your candles on top of them inside another holder for a look that is unique. There are also fireplace candelabras made specifically for holding candles inside a fireplace.

Cluster candles on the fireplace mantle, putting them all on one side or several on each side, for a beautiful effect. Place the candles in candle holders of different styles but of the same material, such as bronze or pewter for a look that is stylish and beautiful.

The fireplace hearth is another area where a candlescape looks magnificent. Large pillar candles surrounded by fresh or silk flowers of the season transform the hearth into a scene of beauty.

Table Groupings

To achieve a look that is simple and striking place an assortment of pillar and tapered candles in complementary colors or in varying shades of one color on a table. Another beautiful way to group a candle assortment is using candle holders of various styles and choosing candles of same color.

A peaceful and serene effect is accomplished by placing three large pillar candles of different heights on a pillar plate and surrounding the base of the candles with elegant sleek flat black or gray stones for an Asian inspired look. Candles that are deep rich colors or in neutral hues combined with pillar plates made of pottery or metal are the best choices for this design.

Floating Candles

A display of floating candles makes a gorgeous table centerpiece. The combinations of candles and containers are endless. Place floating flower candles in a favorite cut glass bowl for a romantic look or use apples and tea lights for a festive fall theme. Add elegance and beauty to your floating candles by surrounding the bowl with fresh or silk flowers. Enhance the feeling of romance by placing small flowers, flower petals or fruit slices in the water with the floating candles. For a table that is large and rectangular floating candle arrangements placed in a row down the center of the table make a lovely centerpiece. The candles give a shimmering effect to the entire length of the table creating a look that is striking and dramatic.

Another way to use floating candles to create a beautiful centerpiece is achieved by filling three cylindrical vases of varying heights 2/3 full of water. Submerge fruits, greenery or flowers and place a large floating candle on top.

Candle Decorating Tips

  • Use round and square pillar candles with interesting patterns and textures for an added touch of all art.
  • Place cream or white colored candles in votive holders or hurricanes on your patio table or in a garden for an enchanting look.
  • Achieve a dramatic bold look by putting a pair of large pillar candles inside glass lanterns and displaying them on the end of the mantle or as a table centerpiece. Another variation of this look is surrounding the large pillar candles with glass hurricanes.

A Few Words of Caution

When using candles always remember that safety comes first. It is important to use caution and common sense when burning candles. Never leave candles unattended in a room or near small children or pets. Accidents happen quickly and a lit candle can easily be touched or knocked over.

Before lighting a candle make sure the candle is on a surface that is heat resistant and placed away from flammable material such as curtains or drapes. Finally, always extinguish the flame before going to sleep or leaving the house.


Whether it is for a special occasion or for everyday enjoyment, knowing how to design and decorate with candles adds beauty, warmth and style to your home.

How to Design and Decorate With Candles