I have long been a fan of Craftparts.com, where you can explore a seemingly endless array of pre-formed wooden buttons, tiny wooden figurines, geometric shapes like spheres and split balls... The list goes on.
This fall, when I spied a dreamy candlestick at Anthropologie, I was immediately inspired to put the wooden bits that I love from Craftparts to use recreating it.
I thought the small scale sleekness of the split balls would translate well to candlesticks, and especially well to menorah or chanukiah candles—and they do. Due to the existing shapes of the wooden pieces and simple stacking nature of their construction, this DIY could not be simpler; it's even great to do with kids, as they can stack and create candlestick shapes until they tire. But since you'll need to harness the power of a hot glue gun, take caution with little ones, and be sure to work on a covered surface and keep in mind that the glue gets quite hot.
If you're lighting a chanukiah this season, or even if you're just setting the holiday table with more candles than usual, consider crafting one. It takes hardly any time and your design will be customized.
What you'll need:
For these designs, I ordered an array of the following pieces from Craftparts.com and mixed and matched them (this site is the go-to, best ever one-stop-shop for wooden bits and blocks). My favorite products are the small split balls and geometric cutouts, and I recommend you get them in a number of wood tones. Item numbers below—but just order the ones you like best!
- Wood Circle / Disc Cut Out: JC6218, a 3/16-inch thick by 1 1/2-inch in diameter disc I used for the base of many candles
- Split balls, Wooden: CPB125, 1 1/4-inch half spheres
- Maple Buttons: BB1000, a mushroom-shaped 1/4-inch thick button
- Poplar Stair Plugs: SPP100, 1-inch in diameter wooden plug
- Cherry Stair Plug: SPC100, same as above, in cherry
Not from Craftparts.com:
The beauty of this DIY is that there’s no real method to forming candlesticks or a whole chanukiah beyond beginning and ending with a flat piece (the "discs" listed above) for resting on the tabletop on one end and anchoring a candle at the other. As you glue, be sure to keep the candles relatively level so they result in evenly engineered (rather than wonky) pieces! Wonky is cute, but not as good for propping up candlesticks.
Just hold the pieces together for a few moments after adding a smear of hot glue between them. Start with a flat piece, alternate split balls and buttons, and end with a flat piece—then glue the candles directly on top of the sticks. Once that candle's run its course, just scrape away any wax or glue and affix another in its place. (Alternatively, glue a brass candle holder to the top of each candlestick so you can replace the candles easily.)
The chanukiah above is just 9 wooden candlesticks glued together at the bases (all of them propped up on an extra piece to give the whole thing a little more lift); for a menorah, you'd use a total of 7.
When creating candlesticks for a chanukiah, make 8 of them the same way, using small plugs and buttons that relate to the scale of a Hanukkah candle, with flat discs at the base for support.
At one end, attach a slightly larger candlestick (this is the "shamash," also known as the "helper" candle) and then secure a menorah candle base at the top to hold your candle since this one needs to be removable—it's the candle used to light the others.
If you don't have the menorah candle bases and are okay with your chanukiah being slightly less than traditional, glue all the candles right to the bases but keep the shamash detached from the group; then you can pick up the entire shamash—wooden base and all—to light the other candles.
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