I love candles. I mean who doesn’t, really? And I love spending time with my hubbie. So he instantly became SuperHubbie when he gladly accepted my request to help me make a few candle holders out of a tree branch! Come see how we made them… so you can too!
My husband chose this one because it’s pretty straight and has a nice size diameter. It needs to be at least wide enough to drill a hole to fit the width of a standard tapered candle or a tea light. He then cut the branch into various lengths using his chop saw.
The candles being different heights looks really nice if you want to group them together.
Some of the bark on the Madrone branches was starting to peel away so, he gently rubbed off the bark that was loose. This is not a necessary step. You could just leave it as is!
Next we took each piece to the sander to smooth out the bark that was still attached to the branch. I would not recommend doing this on your lap. Plus he wears Deluth’s Fire Hose Pants, so apparently neither an electric sander nor kryptonite can penetrate pants made from fire hose.
See how nice it looks all sanded up! Guess maybe I should have some more respect for those pants!
Once all the pieces where sanded, it’s time to drill a hole in one end. Too keep the candle still and steady while drilling, my husband advises using a vice-grip. He first started to drill and was simply holding the candle with his bare hands, but as I was taking pictures it dawned on him the pictures were for my blog. He quickly made the vice-grip disclaimer and grabbed a vice-grip for himself so I’m passing it along.
For a tea light use a 1 1/2 inch drill bit. He also kinda rocked it back and forth a bit, while drilling so the hole would be slightly bigger. This is so the metal casing around the tea light can be easily removed and replaced.
The next step is actually my favorite: staining. The reason being is the stain brings out the beauty in this wood. We used Minwax Polyshades Satin Wood Stain in Classic Oak (you can find this on Amazon).
Just brush it on and let it dry. All we used for our candles was one coat, but different woods and different stains might require more than one.
From cut to stain, you can make a set of three candles in 15 minutes. It’s an easy project to add a decorative element to your home or make for gifts. Christmas is coming way to soon you know.
If you prefer tapered candles over tea lights use a 3/4 inch drill bit. The two tallest candles here were cut from a large Manzanita bush, a cousin of the Madrone tree.
Be creative! Try a bigger branch and drill several holes to use more than one candle. Or cut a large branch or small trunk of a tree and drill lots of holes for an amazing centerpiece!
I used this same method when experimenting in decorating with succulents.
PLEASE NOTE: Don’t ever leave a candle unattended. Especially one burning in a wooden base. I know we’re all SuperMoms and might even have SuperHubbies that run around in fire hose pants, but don’t risk it. Be safe!