Project Monday… er… Wednesday

(This was supposed to go up on Monday, but I have a 25 lb. sporadic computer problem in that my baby hates it when I sit down and start typing. Sigh.)

My latest completed (!) project was our advent wreath. I made candle markers this year for ordinary pillar candles instead of buying my favorite fancy candles. The greenery I pillaged from scraps trimmed off my parent’s Christmas tree and wound into a sloppy sort of wreath with 22 gauge floral wire. It turned out quite pretty!

Long ago and far away when we were not quite so poor, I used to buy advent candles from Marklin Candle. This is where I got the candle holder, although they don’t appear to sell it anymore. I dislike advent wreaths with tapers – we completely burned through a taper during the first week of Advent once – so when I looked for pillar candles I fell in love with this set. They are gorgeous. I could generally get two years out of a set of candles, but eventually the paraffin would get yellow and I’d get new ones.

These days we’re too poor to spend so much on candles. And you just can’t find unscented pink and purple pillars to save your life. So I got some unscented white pillars at Target and made ribbon markers for them. The general method is as follows:

Ribbon Advent Candle Markers for 3″ Pillar Candles

  • 12″ of 1.5″ wide ribbon (per candle, in desired color)
  • a spool of narrow (1/8″) gold wired ribbon for the borders
  • embroidery floss to match the gold ribbon and the wide ribbon
  • a very fine, sharp needle
  • paperclips or binder clips

Wrap your wired ribbon around a candle to get exactly the circumference needed. Make sure this bit of ribbon can slide easily up and down the candle, then trim it. Use this length as a measure to trim 7 more pieces of the same ribbon.

Position a piece of the wired ribbon 1″ – 1 1/2″ from the end of a piece of the wide ribbon. Position the wired ribbon along the edge of the wide ribbon, and backstitch it into place with the yellow embroidery floss.

Position another piece of wired ribbon along the other edge of the wide ribbon. Make sure the end is level with the first piece of ribbon. Backstitch this piece in place as before.

Now you will have a piece of colored ribbon, the middle segment of which will have gold borders. With the right sides together, match the ends of the gold ribbons so they make a circle end to end. Use the binder clips to secure everything in place. With embroidery floss matching the wide ribbon, run a seam down just past the ends of the wired ribbon. Trim this to about 1/2″.

Flip the circle inside out, and slide it over your pillar candle. Tada!

By the time I finished the 4th marker, they were just about perfect, snug enough to be positioned anywhere along the candle, loose enough to move up and down without too much effort. The wired ribbon really helps this. I will probably redo the seam on the pink marker so it’s as snug.

One more picture!



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