Make a fancy candelabra centerpiece for under a fiver

Guestpost by Ange on Jan 19th

I made this centrepiece with a beachy theme for less than $5 NZ (approximately 3.90 US). I used some old candle holders bought from our local recycling center for a couple dollars, an old can of white car spray paint, some random beads from my stash, seashells from a trip to the beach, and a few old candles bought for $1 on TradeMe (Kiwi version of eBay).

If you're not having a beach wedding, think about this centerpiece in all black or a dark red for a goth wedding, or creating a steampunk version? The themed candelabra options are endless…

What you will need:

  • Some old metal candle holders
  • Spray paint
  • Sandpaper
  • Candles to fit your holders — It doesn't matter if you buy/have pre-used candles because once you light them nobody will know they've been lit before!
  • Seashells (wash in a bucket of warm water with a teaspoon of bleach to clean and dry well)
  • Beads, shiney things and bits
  • Hot glue gun/blu tack

Step 1
Clean and, if needed, sand the candle holders

Step 2
In a well-ventilated area spray the candle holders with white spray paint and leave to dry (check instructions on the can). I did about six coats all up to get into every nook and cranny.

Step 3a

Arrange the beading over the candlestick holders using dots of hot glue to hold the beads in place; let them drape over the candle stick holders. You can also use a temporary adhesive like blu tack but it wont hold as well especially in hot or humid weather.

Step 3b
I also experiemented with gold glitter hot glue to add some sparkle to the holders. It's great fun to play with but it takes forever for all that glitter to work it's way out of the gun (I've used half a dozen sticks of plain glue since and it's still coming out).

Step 4

Hook your shells onto the candle stick holders either by hooking over the scrolls on the holders, gluing them into place or by gluing on a wire and hanging the shells from the holders (which makes them easier to reuse as Christmas decorations).

Step 5
Place your largest candlestick holder in the centre of the table (or wherever) and arrange the small ones around it. Fill in the gaps at the bottom with shells.

Step 6
Place your candles on the holders and double check that none of your decorations is going to get in the way of the candle flame and cause a fire.

Step 7
Give two lighters to a trusted non-pyromaniac friend and get them to sneak out and light your masterpieces before everyone walks into the room.