I took these candles from holiday blah to Halloween huzzah! These candles are big every December in windowsills in every neighborhood. I thought what if they could get a makeover to make them more eerie and October minded. This project is similar to ones you may have seen using PVC pipe, but cheaper and easier to upgrade.

So I lucked out and found a huge bag of these holiday candles at a thrift store for $2. If thrift stores don’t have any I suggest waiting till after Christmas when they are on mega sale. You might even be able to find them at the Dollar Store. I avoided the the plug in models because power cords and outlets are already har to come by during Halloween and this gave me more opportunities to place.

These guys are getting a makeover!

First disassemble the candles. We’ll start at the top with the bulb. Wrap the bulb screw base in painters tape to avoid getting any paint on the base. Then take your orange spray paint and lightly mist the bulb. We’re not looking to cover the bulb in a thick layer of paint. Just give it more of an orange glow. With these being battery operated candles, I can’t just use the flickering bulbs like I would prefer, so this will give us more of an aged and muted look. I let them dry on an old over rack. Remember these bulbs are specific to battery operated candles so you can’t use regular bulbs. If you can buy extras, do so!

With the bulbs drying, let’s take the brass candle basses and get them painted. I used a hammered black spray paint that adheres to plastic and metal. I like the hammered look because it give its unique glossy finish. People won’t probably notice but I’m a details person. Spray them down and let them dry.

Next up, plug in your hot glue gun in and let it come up to temperature. I suggest using a glue gun that fits the thicker glue sticks. This allows for optimal “candle wax” drippings. If you use the smaller skinnier sticks, you may need to over multiple times to get the best wax drip. There is no wrong way to drip the glue but the more you have the better and the more they will show up later in the process when we stain.

Use the base while they set since you can set them down.

They won’t take long to set. Next I used the Heirloom White to coat them. I used this color because it’s an off white and when we apply the stain, the color will add into giving it the aged look were going for. Make sure you get full coverage and TWO coats are best. You’ll see why later. Let them fully dry. About 2 hours.

Once they have had a chance to fully dry, it’s time to add the stain! Get a paint brush and dip into the stain. Cover the entire candle in the stain. Immediately use a paper towel and wipe DOWN the candle removing most of the stain. The stain will attach to the nooks and crannies of the “wax”making it stand out. You want to wipe the direction of the dripping for uniformity. The reason for the two coats of paint, is the stain will remove some of the paint. Having an extra coat insures the paint still remains intact. Let the candles fully dry with the stain. At least 3-4 hours.

What you are left with is grungy and haunting candles that are ready to be reassembled!

Put some batteries in these upgraded candles and put all the pieces back together for an easy and incredible addition to your home! Questions? Let me know!

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