Beyond “Never Leave a Burning Candle Unattended”…
By Ruth Wilkerson / January 06, 2021
La Petite Abeille knows how much our clients love burning their candles as much as they enjoy looking at them. Certainly, you should never leave a burning candle unattended, but here are a few more safety tips to consider:
- Be sure your candles are placed in/on suitable holders that are fire safe.
- Toppling tapers are terrifying! Be sure they fit snugly in their holders. Our tapers are easily squeezed at bottom to fit most holders. When the holder is a little too big, consider using our Candle Snugs, which are pure beeswax scraps that can be wrapped around the base of your candles or pieces may be used to secure in the holder. (I have seen all sorts of things used for this purpose, including aluminum foil - yikes!)
- Pillar candles also require a fire safe, level surface to burn properly and safely. Resist the urge to place these directly on your table top, mantle, etc. A pretty plate may suffice.
- If your candles do not fit your holder well, consider ordering them bespoke - yes, we make custom sizes!
- Place your candles or candle holders on a level surface. Make sure the candles themselves are straight in the holders for efficient burn and to help prevent drips.
- Good maintenance is imperative. Trim and maintain all wicks at 1/4” - this is very short, but very important and often overlooked. This will keep the flame short and conserve your burn time. When the flame gets too big, the candle physics gets out of whack, and it will begin to smoke and burn faster than it should. You should also check your candles to be sure wicks stay centered, and trim them if curled.
- Keep the wax well (the area where melted wax accumulates) free from debris. Pieces of wick or dust may catch fire.
- Remember a flame can ignite something it is close to even if it is not touching it, so keep centerpieces, lampshades, and other tabletop items at safe distance. I usually light my candles, wait a minute for the flame to grow, then place my hands here and there around it to check heat levels, then scoot lamps/flowers/greenery to a safe distance. The flame, however, will grow if the candles have burned several hours making them hotter, so a periodic check is wise.
- Replace your candles when no less than1” of wax remains. Time to reorder!
- Protect your tables, cloths, and upholstery from possible drips. LPA offers 2 styles of bobeche to help guard against possible drips. (more on drips later)
- Check to be sure all are completely extinguished before getting too sleepy.
- Keep away from children, pets, or anyone, such as an elderly person, that may have difficulty if an accident occurs.