Lighting tips: using candles in your home

There’s nothing quite like the warm, inviting glow of candlelight for creating the mood. Find out about the different ways to use and display candles  to make your home a more relaxing, lovelier place, with our expert tips… 

The original home lighting system, candles have been used to illuminate dwelling places for centuries, and they remain popular in our homes today. Things may have moved on somewhat from the early rushlights of the ancient Egyptians, to the refined paraffin and soy waxes of today, and candles may no longer be the main source of light in our homes, but the fundamentals remain the same. 

Whether you’re creating a warm, intimate atmosphere for entertaining, hosting a romantic candlelit meal for two, or just relaxing and unwinding at the end of the day, some well-placed candles are perfect for adding ambience, atmosphere and decorative accents within a space, as well as inducing a sense of calm and well-being.
Camden apartment featuring fireplace candles, by the brilliant interior designer Sean Symington (image credit). Read our Q&A with Sean here.


How to use candlelight to create a warm and cosy atmosphere

With their soft, calming glow, candles offer the perfect backdrop for entertaining, or just relaxing. When using candlelight around your home, try placing your candle next to or in front of a mirror, a window, or against a light coloured wall to help reflect and amplify the light. 

Opting for glass or metal candle holders will also help to maximise the effect. larger gusto storm lantern basePooky's larger Gusto storm lantern base in natural whitewash with larger storm lantern glass cylinder

Storm lanterns are a lovely way of introducing light and warmth to a space, whether used singly or in a group.

Pooky's storm lanterns take their inspiration from traditional hurricane lamps, featuring a base with a cylindrical glass covering surrounding the candle to help protect against drafts. Contrary to their rather dramatic sounding name, our lanterns go down a storm both inside and outside, and will work equally well on a side table or mantelpiece, or a balcony or veranda. They come with a range of different bases, from antique brass to natural whitewash and cherry marble, and in a range of sizes, from small through to boastful.

 Burly tealight holder in amber glass

Meanwhile, a set of tealights placed strategically around the living room – on tables, shelves and in alcoves – can create a warm and cosy vibe. The great thing about tealights is they’re so versatile: use them in your bedroom to create a relaxing haven, or turn your bathtime into a soothing spa experience, with a row of tealights glowing softly around the tub.

Our Burly tealight holders are made from lovely smooth glass and are real little charmers. Available in rich Ruby and Aqua, they look stunning when teamed up with our sparkling ivory Twinkle tealights.    

Using wall mounted candles 

Wall mounted candle holders, or sconces, were one of the earliest forms of lighting fixture. A set of wall candle sconces looks fabulous spaced at even intervals along a hallway or corridor, in a lounge or dining room, or even in a bathroom – helping to light the way while also adding a sense of drama. They’re also great for illuminating those awkward corners where you can’t fit an electric light.

Wall candle sconces come in a range of different styles and materials, including glass, brass, metal and wood. They can be lovely decorative items in their own right, and look beautiful even when they’re not actually lit. 

Our Kite wall candle sconce in antiqued brass evokes a real sense of history and looks fabulous on either side of a fireplace, an archway or a doorway, while the integral mirror reflects the candlelight beautifully. It holds lovely big pillar candles.

Meanwhile, the Celeste wall mounted candle holder features a gorgeous concave moon of lightly hammered brass, lending it an elegant and celestial quality. 

Celeste wall mounted candle holder in antique brass

Or for a more old-fashioned, romantic feel, try the Tor wall mounted candle sconce, a solid little iron number with a verdigris finish, which looks equally beautiful placed around a dining room, in a bathroom or on an outside balcony. 

See our range of wall mounted candle holders. 

Using candlesticks to create an intimate feel

Meanwhile, when it comes to creating just the right atmosphere for dining, some strategically placed candlesticks will create a welcoming and intimate feel, whether it’s a supper with friends, a formal dinner or a romantic meal for two. A set of candlesticks offers a warm, ambient (and also flattering!) light, while adding height and providing an attractive focal point for the table. 

Our vibrant Mildred candlesticks (see image top) are finished in a lovely polished lacquer and come in a range of sizes and colours, from navy to zingy lime and hot chilli, so you can choose a colour theme that suits your decor (or even your dinner!) 

smaller mildred in tangerineSmaller mildred candlestick in tangerine

For even more impact, mix and match your chosen candlesticks with colourful dinner candles, which are available in everything from cool ivory to burnt oranges and reds, and French blues to cool emerald greens.


Browse Pooky's range of candle holders here and all our gorgeous candles here.