How to Use Candles for Entertaining

Candles can be an excellent addition to the entertainment table. They brighten the scene and add their own touch of warmth and elegance, as well as making the dinner setting appear more intimate. Deciding on the types of candles to use and their placement is a very personal choice but it is helpful to have some ideas when planning this part of your table arrangement. This article provides a number of suggestions to spark your imagination.


  1. Image titled Use Candles for Entertaining Step 1
    Consider single taper candles. Single taper candles are very versatile and can enhance a dinner party color theme if wished. Single taper candles can be placed in candlesticks, in glasses, in other suitable containers, as befits the table setting. Consider dressing up candlesticks if this will enhance the overall look.
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    Consider a pillar candle. Using a single, thick pillar candle can be very effective on a smaller table. It can be dressed up with a wreath of floral elements or other encircling pieces.
  3. Image titled Use Candles for Entertaining Step 3
    Consider floating candles. A floating candle arrangement can provide glamour and style in the center of a table. Candles floating amid fresh petals is a particularly delightful arrangement.
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    Create a row of candles. An effective arrangement can be achieved by using a row of candles in one place. They can be pushed into sand in a long container and placed in the center of the table. Or, you can cover the containers in an interesting fashion, as shown by the image.
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    Use fun, themed candles. Candles that are shaped, or come in an interesting container can be ideal for birthday parties or special occasions, such as the opening of an event or place. Look for animal, building, people, plant, etc. shapes, or look for interesting containers.
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    Use decorative elements to good effect. Try a seasonal approach to your candles and dress them up with festive or seasonal array. Christmas candles can be matched to baubles and tinsel, Halloween candles can be matched to witches and pumpkins, birthday candles can be matched to favourite things of the birthday person.


  • It is a good idea to avoid using scented candles on a dinner table. The scent can overwhelm food flavors and can also affect people who have high sensitivity to scent.


  • Be careful when using candles. Ensure that someone responsible (sober, mature, etc.) is present at all times in case something goes wrong with the burning. Blow out candles when nobody responsible is present. Do not leave candles burning when only young children are present; the temptation to play with them can be enormous.
  • Do not dress candles up with flammable items and keep the flame burning area free of anything that can catch alight. Take into account the fact that candles burn down.

Things You'll Need

  • Candles
  • Candle holder or improvised holders
  • Decorative effects (if relevant)

Article Info

Categories: Parties | Candles Lamps and Fireplaces