With the wedding around the corner (4 months to go! Eek!) I’ve been planning and hoarding like a madwoman. I have so many bottles (SO MANY) taking up all the cupboard space in our loft that Tim said the other day if someone walked in here and didn’t know what I was up to, it’d look like we’re building a meth lab! Walter White, you were a bad influence, but I still love you.
So in the spirit of attempting to DIY my entire wedding pretty much, I wanted some candle holders that were cheap and easy to make. I spotted these cute ones shaped like little proteas at my mother-in-law-to-be’s house and I decided I could totally make them myself, and add in some sparkly speckles, of course! So Claire and I spent the morning getting our hands dirty while our other halves got their hands dirty on the golf course.
GOLD FOIL CERAMIC CANDLE HOLDER
01. Print and cut out your template (don’t do what we did and draw your own estimate..). Warm up balls of clay in your hands until they’re nice and pliable and then roll out a little pancake about 0.5cm thick. Just make sure it’s bigger than your template.
02. Place your template on top of the clay and cut out the shape with your knife. Peel away the template and pull up the excess clay. Put this excess back into an airtight container or it’ll dry out before you can use it again. Carefully lift the shape up and place it down onto some wax paper.
03. Don’t worry if your shape isn’t perfect – you can always correct the edges and dab some water onto places if it’s drying out too fast. Gently press a light indentation into the tips of each petal with your finger. If your clay is too warm, it won’t hold shape when you start to fold the petals up, so try keep the clay a balance of cool yet mouldable. If it’s too warm, chill it in the fridge for a few minutes.
0.4 Now you’re ready to start folding! Carefully lift up each petal, bending at the base. If you can get them to fold over a bit at the top, you’ll get a nice scooped effect. Using a deep bowl, gently place each candle holder inside for support while they dry. It’s also easier to start bending the petals over once they’re propped up in the bowls. If you’re using air dry clay like me, you won’t have to bake it (yay!). If you’re using polymer clay then bake according to the package instructions.
0.5 After a few hours, I checked on them and realised they were still pretty wet and heavy so I brought up the sides of the wax paper and tied it with string like a present. The ball-shape of the paper inside the bowl helped keep the shape while they were drying.
0.6 Once your candle holders are nice and dry (mine took 2 days because it’s been unbelievably freezing cold in Cape Town), you can either leave them as is or you can add a bit of glam like I did, but I do recommend using 100 grit sandpaper to smooth over the edges. Painting also helps disguise some of the cracks and imperfections. First paint on about 3 coats of white craft paint and allow to dry.
07. Ok so if, unlike me, you don’t have a bazillion unused metallic tattoo transfers lying around (why do I have these things? Where did they come from? I have so many questions…) then use gold foil sheets which I also have tons of. I thought let’s make use of these nasty tattoos before I get onto the expensive stuff and I’m so glad I did – they’re amazing!! And waaay easier and less messy than gold foil application. Follow the instructions on the package to cut and transfer your foil as you like – usually this involves removing the film and then dabbing some water for a few seconds. I chose tiny geo patterns – LOTS of tiny cutting out and sticking to do (and a TON of tiny bits of paper literally errrwuur), but so worth it! Look at these pretties!! Love them!!
And you’re all done! Pop in a few tea light candles and your table is set! The beauty of these candle holders is that each one is entirely unique – some look like proteas, some look like… I have no idea! But that’s what makes them awesome! I can’t wait to pop these beauties on my bridal tables – getting so close now! Excited!!