There’s nothing quite like the warm glow of candlelight to set the mood. As the days get shorter and the weather gets cooler, now is the perfect time to break out the candles and get cozy. And with Thanksgiving right around the corner, taper candles are just the thing to create some festive ambiance.
We’ll chat about why taper candles are a great choice for Thanksgiving and how to use them to create a warm, welcoming atmosphere for your holiday celebrations. Grab your favorite sweater and a mug of something delicious, and let’s dive in!
Why Tapers For Thanksgiving?
Taper candles get their name from their tall, slender, tapered shape. This elegant style helps cast beautiful, flickering light that feels celebratory yet classic. While votives and pillars have their place, tapers lend a certain sophistication that just feels right for Thanksgiving.
The traditional colors for Thanksgiving also make tapers a fitting choice. Hues like ivory, cream, burgundy, orange, gold, and brown complement common Thanksgiving color palettes perfectly. They evoke aromas and flavors like cinnamon, nutmeg, roasted nuts, and pumpkin pie spice.
Throughout history, candlelight has created cozy scenes of families gathering together in love. It represents hearth and home, comfort and community. For many, candlelit Thanksgiving dinners are part of cherished traditions carried on for generations. Tapers help set the mood for making new memories.
Create A Warm Glow
Here are some tips on using taper candles to infuse your Thanksgiving gathering with rustic elegance and warmth:
- Incorporate lots of natural textiles like cotton, linen, burlap, wool, rattan, and wood. These earthy materials complement the candles’ amber light beautifully.
- Display taper candles in hurricane vases, candlesticks, and candelabras on sideboards, tables, and windowsills. Vary heights for visual interest.
- Arrange small taper candle groupings down the center of your table, allowing guests to chat over the romantic glow.
- Alternate taper candles with mini pumpkins, gourds, pinecones, and fall foliage like oak leaves or acorns for seasonal flair.
- Add kitchen herbs like rosemary, thyme, and sage for scent.
- Scatter cranberry garlands or beads around candle arrangements in a bonus pop of color.
- Use an amber glass hurricane cover over your taper candle to soften and diffuse the light even more.
- Place tapers in the windows and on the mantel or shelves to cast an inviting glow indoors as guests arrive.
Make It A DIY Tradition
Want to add some hands-on fun to your holiday preparations? Make pouring your own taper candles a new family tradition!
You’ll need candle wax flakes, cotton wicks, essential oils (optional for scent), candle dye (optional for color), a double boiler, glass jars or a melting pot, and candle molds. Any taper shape from classic long tapers to pillars to vase-shaped work beautifully.
Here are some tips for foolproof homemade taper candles:
- Use wax flakes for a smooth, cohesive pour. Avoid paraffin wax, which is toxic when burned. Natural soy, bee’s wax, or a soy-paraffin blend are safer options.
- Braid cotton wicks for a stable burn. Width should fit the taper mold’s diameter. Secure wicks centered with glue or tape before pouring.
- Melt wax using indirect heat like a double boiler, stirring occasionally as it liquefies. Direct stovetop heat can scorch wax.
- Cool melted wax slightly before pouring into molds. Too hot and the wax can crack. Too cool and it will set up too quickly.
- Add scent or dye SPARINGLY. Use toothpicks for dipping colors and 1-2 drops of essential oil per pound of wax. Stir well before pouring.
- Pour carefully into each mold, leaving a little headspace for the final burn. Top molds off occasionally to allow wax to pool evenly.
- Cool tapers completely before removing from molds, at least 24 hours. Trim wicks to 1⁄4 inch before burning.
Make pouring candles together a pre-Thanksgiving tradition! Kids can take turns stirring wax or adding scents while you share fond memories over hot cider.
Infuse Your Space With Fall Tranquility
Candlelight sets a peaceful mood that tunes you into the present moment. As the holidays approach, take time to disconnect from the news, screens, and rushed pace of life. Instead make time for simple activities…reading by the fire, taking a bubble bath, journaling, listening to music, chatting over coffee, taking a walk, or doing yoga stretches.
Let the gentle flicker of taper candles soothe your senses and calm your mind. Their glow whispers, “shhhh… just relax.” Stress and anxiety melt away.
Give yourself the gift of candlelit self-care. Draw a warm bath sprinkled with Epsom salts and dot the tub edge with tea lights or floating candles. Brew a steaming cup of chamomile tea. Cozy up with a weighted blanket, some soft music, and a good book.
Give others the same gift by creating a simple candlelit oasis they can retreat to and recharge. Place a jar candle or two in their favorite reading nook or on their desk.
Carve Out Together Time
The warm glow of taper candles sets a nostalgic mood perfect for together time with loved ones. Take time to unplug from electronics and truly connect.
Ask your child or grandchild to teach you a new game, play chess or checkers by candlelight, make up stories together, flip through old photo albums, cook a special meal together, or work on a puzzle on the living room floor.
With your spouse or partner, give each other massages, ask thoughtful questions from a jar you’ve prepared, take turns reading aloud to each other, or slow dance in the candlelight.
Candlelit conversations soothe the soul. Discuss hopes, dreams, blessings or spiritual matters. Ask elderly relatives to share family history, lessons learned, or stories from the old days. Their flickering light has a timeless quality perfect for reminiscing.
Giving loved ones your calm, gentle, loving presence is the greatest gift of all. Candlelight creates a sacred space for truly savoring special moments together.
Set The Table With Style
Cast an inviting glow over your holiday table with gorgeous taper candle centerpieces. Here are creative touches to try:
- Create a forest vignette with brown taper candles amid faux birch logs and pine sprigs. Scatter acorns and woodland critters for whimsy.
- Float cream tapers in a clear glass bowl with dried leaves, pops of late autumn flowers like mums or asters, and sprigs of rosemary.
- Arrange taper candles in amber glass holders climbing from low to high down the table’s center interspersed with candlelit pumpkins.
- Alternate natural-finish wood risers holding ivory tapers with wheat grass in burlap-wrapped pots for an organic feel.
- Nestle turkeys, pheasants, or deer figurines among fall leaves, fruits, gourds, pinecones and ivory tapers for seasonal flair.
- Create a cornucopia overflowing with fruits, nuts, berries, leaves, Indian corn, and a few taper candles tucked within its horn of plenty.
- Scatter wood slices, acorn caps, chestnuts, bay leaves, dried oranges, and crystal chunks around a trio of amber tapers for natural texture.
Don’t forget those autumnal colors! Incorporate rich shades like burgundy, maroon, plum, wine, blaze orange, mustard, sienna, and warm metallics like antique brass, bronze, pewter, and copper.
Add pops of orange, gold, or yellow florals like marigolds, chrysanthemums, sunflowers, or roses. Crisp autumn foliage and textured gourds make perfect finishing touches.
Light The Way Outdoors
Extend your cozy candlelit ambiance outdoors to welcome arriving guests. Here are some fun ways to light up your porch, patio, or yard:
Lining steps and walkways with votive luminaries or tea lights in paper bags. Add sand at the bottom for stability.
Placing pillar candles or clusters of tealights in glass jars on railings, fences, or immune to wind.
Hanging candle lanterns from branches, eaves, or posts. Rustic metal or pierced tin designs work beautifully.
Grouping glass hurricane candles along the driveway or sidewalk at intervals.
Nestling tealights in hand-carved real or faux pumpkins. Fun patterns like polka dots, stripes, and faces let your personality shine through.
Setting an antique wash basin, wheelbarrow, or wagon with candle arrangements near your front door.
Mounting strings of warm mini lights along roof peaks, plants, or trees to cast a magical glow.
Outdoor candlelight welcomes guests before they even reach your front door. It guides the way with warmth and whimsy. Just be sure to place candles safely out of the path of little trick-or-treaters on Halloween!
Infuse Favorite Fall Treats
The comforting scents of cinnamon, clove, ginger, nutmeg, and allspice will soon permeate your kitchen. Why not bring those irresistible aromas into your living spaces too with spiced candles?
For an instant fall mood boost, melt down old taper stubs and add a few drops of pumpkin pie spice or gingerbread essential oils. Pour into cute jars or votives.
You can also find amazing ready-made candles that capture your favorite fall flavors:
- Spiced Apple or Mulled Cider – Tart and sweet, evokes Holiday nostalgia
- Pumpkin Pie or Caramel Pecan – Rich, decadent, and dessert-like
- Maple Brown Sugar or Hazelnut Praline – Warm, sugary breakfast notes
- Chai Tea or Vanilla Chai – Fragrant spice mixed with cream
- Cardamom or Gingerbread – Zesty, sharp, invigorating kick
- Petite Fours – Sugary mixed berries, citrus, and vanilla
- Frosted Cranberry – Crisp, clean, and berry tart
Place a spiced candle in your kitchen, living room, and bathroom. You’ll feel immersed in a delicious aroma cloud. Burn them while baking and guests will start drooling before they even taste your food!
Set A Soothing Scene
Candlelight casts a warm glow over faces, softens features, and sets a relaxed mood. Use it to create calming spaces for connection, coziness, and comfort.
Lavender, chamomile, ylang ylang, and other floral candles have tranquil properties. Place in bedrooms for restful sleep.
Try lighting candles during gentle yoga stretches, breathing exercises, or meditation. Their serene flicker helps still the mind.
Draw a relaxing bath by candlelight. Add Epsom salts or bubbles and put on soothing music.
Massage your loved ones’ hands, feet, neck or shoulders in the comforting candle glow. The heat relaxes muscles as you melt away tension.
Cuddle with kids or pets for a nurturing story time in the amber candlelight.
Sip tea or hot cocoa and indulge in long, rambling conversations with your partner, roommate, or close friend by firelight.
Create a safe space for someone going through a tough time. Candlelight brings empathy.
Even candlelight reflected in a window can calm passersby who catch its tranquil glow. A simple flicker shares comfort.
Cast Holiday Magic
Candlelight transforms an ordinary room into a magical place. Holiday decorating is the perfect excuse to bring in lots of merry candlelight.
Here are some fun ways to spread holiday magic through candlelight:
- Set tealights in paper bags to line walkways – instant luminaires!
- Cluster votives and tea lights along stair banisters and mantle edges.
- Place tall taper candles in beautiful candelabras on sideboards and tables.
- Nestle pillar candles among evergreen boughs, holly sprigs, pinecones, and berries.
- Set an advent wreath with candles on a side table to count down the days to Christmas.
- Use battery-operated candles in jack-o-lanterns to line your driveway on Halloween.
- Tuck votive candles inside paper luminaries or glass jars to outline patios and gardens.
- Hang glass orb candles from chandeliers, sconces, Christmas trees, and wreaths indoors and out.
- Line walkways to your door with white paper bag luminaries or hurricane lanterns.
- Display a glowing menorah in your window to celebrate Hanukkah.
Use candlelight to create a space that feels special, dazzling, and full of wonder. Let guests soak in the dreamy ambiance and build happy holiday memories.
The Many Moods Of Candles
Part of the magic of candles is their versatility. With creative placement, you can set any mood for any occasion:
- Romance – Place roses, chocolates, champagne glasses and candles in the bedroom
- Relaxation – Draw a bubble bath with floating candles and soft music
- Parties – Use rainbow layers of candles and coordinating decor for flair
- Intimacy – Scatter tealights around the tub or bed for ambiance
- Prayer – Arrange candles on the altar or in the windowsill to focus your heart
- Celebration – Adorn cakes and holiday tables with taper candles
- Holidays – Line walkways and driveway with luminaries or candles in bags
- Hospitality – Greet guests with glowing candles lighting porch and windows
Candles say “welcome” and invite others into whatever experience you create. Their warm, flickering light builds an atmosphere of togetherness that feels sacred. Any space filled with candlelight feels special.
Remember Safety First!
While candles lend such cozy, beautiful ambiance, we do need to take some basic precautions to keep our celebrations safe. Here are some candle safety tips:
- Never leave burning candles unattended or within reach of children or pets.
- Place candles in stable, heat-resistant containers on flat, uncluttered surfaces. Avoid varnishes and plastics.
- Position taper and pillar candles in sturdy holders that catch dripping wax.
- Allow candles adequate ventilation so they don’t overheat.
- Avoid moving candles once they’re lit. Breezes and drafts can cause rapid flare-ups.
- Take care with long hair and loose clothing when moving around candles.
- Extinguish candles before going to bed or leaving home. Consider battery-operated flameless candles for bedrooms.
- Check local fire codes on open flames, particularly on porches, near trees, etc.
- Have working smoke detectors throughout the house and accessible fire extinguishers on each floor.
- Keep matches and lighters safely locked away out of children’s reach.
With some basic safety practices, we can keep the cozy candlelit ambiance flowing all season long. Candles lend such welcoming warmth to holiday celebrations. Just use common sense, never leave them unattended, and enjoy their beauty safely.
Well, I hope you’re now inspired to embrace candles to infuse your Thanksgiving festivities with hygge and spark some meaningful traditions! Take time to savor simple joys – chat by candlelight, give thanks, and build special memories with loved ones.
Wishing you a warm and cozy holiday season! May your home shine bright with the welcoming glow of candlelight.
Q: What are the best taper candles for Thanksgiving centerpieces?
A: For Thanksgiving, look for tapers in warm hues like ivory, cream, gold, rust, burgundy, or brown. Natural beeswax candles also complement Thanksgiving décor nicely. Choose wider pillar tapers for stability in hurricane vases or candelabras.
Q: How long do taper candles usually burn?
A: An average taper candle burns for approximately 8 hours. Thicker pillar tapers last closer to 10 hours. Take candle diameter and height into account. Give taper candles about 1⁄2 – 1 inch to burn per hour.
Q: How do I add scent to my taper candles?
A: For homemade tapers, add 1-2 drops of essential oil per pound of melted wax before pouring. For store-bought tapers, you can place a few drops of oil along the top edge for aroma as the candle burns. Just avoid scented candles around food.
Q: Where should I display taper candles for maximum visibility?
A: Elevate tapers in candlesticks on mantlepieces, console tables, buffets and shelves for visibility. Also cluster them down the center of dining tables, on stair banisters, or lining walkways and driveways.
Q: Is it safe to burn candles all night long?
A: Avoid burning taper candles or any open flames while sleeping or away from home. Battery-operated flameless candles are safer for overnight or unattended use. Limit burn time to 4-6 hours, extinguishing before bed.
Taper candles create a warm, welcoming glow perfect for Thanksgiving entertaining. Their elegance complements fall decor, while their nostalgic flicker fosters an intimate mood. Display taper candles throughout your home and infuse scents like cinnamon or apple for sensory appeal. Transform your home into a festive haven with gold and white Christmas decor: elegant holiday accents, where the enchanting glow of candlelight not only sets a celebratory yet cozy tone but also creates an ambiance for crafting special Thanksgiving memories—just be sure to take basic precautions like keeping candles attended and avoiding combustibles.