DIY: Cement Candleholders

October 28, 2013

DIY Cement Candleholders   |   Design Mom

Text and images by Amy Christie for Design Mom.

As the daylight time decreases, I find myself wanting more light, and since I can’t harness the sun, candlelight is a comfy and cozy alternative. I was very inspired by this image and thought them perfect for fall. Cement candle holders are both architectural and soft, an assemblage of lines and curved bands, cold stone with a warm glow.

DIY Cement Candleholders   |   Design Mom

Don’t be put off by cement. A bag of it is really (really!) heavy and it is dusty and a little dirty, however, it’s sculptural properties are too alluring to pass up. Nothing can achieve what concrete can.

DIY Cement Candleholders   |   Design Mom

Spray paint is the perfect medium to add a colorful or metallic touch. Doesn’t the gold just shimmer? If you were making these for an event, you could use any color palette you like. Navy and royal with silver for a dinner party? Yellows for a summer wedding? Or you could stick with metallics and use them through the holidays and into January.

DIY Cement Candleholders   |   Design Mom

Hopefully these images have intrigued you, so let’s get right to how it’s done.

DIY Cement Candleholders   |   Design Mom

Supplies:
-cement mix
-water
-molds
-small plastic/paper cups
-tape
-plastic bags
-spray paint

First, a note on containers. Just about anything will do. Raid that recyclable bin! Narrow mouths or bottle necks should be removed for this project and the size is up to you. If you can make enough room for a votive to sit, then it will work. Cardboard or paper-based containers work just as good as plastic ones. Paper based ones might put up more of a fight when trying to remove the dried concrete while plastic containers leave a shiny sheen on the surface. Unless the container is very, very firm, the concrete will alter the form just a bit. Straight edges might be more curved, perfect forms might be irregular. If uniformity is what you are going for, think about using other supportive materials.

DIY Cement Candleholders   |   Design Mom

Mix the concrete with water according to the package direction and scoop into the molds. Do tap the mold to encourage the air bubbles out and settle the mix.

Once its filled, add in a cup to make place for the candle. Plastic cups will pop out of the dried concrete more easily, but paper cups work too. If you are worried about them sticking, try coating them with a cooking spray. Also, they might need to be weighted down to keep them in place.

Allow the cement to fully dry.

DIY Cement Candleholders   |   Design Mom

When they are dry, remove the containers.

DIY Cement Candleholders   |   Design Mom

Next, add tape and plastic to mark off the area for paint. Make sure the tape is securely attached so the paint lines are clean.

DIY Cement Candleholders   |   Design Mom

Coat the concrete in your desired color and allow to completely dry.

DIY Cement Candleholders   |   Design Mom

Peel off the tape and plastic and drop in a candle. Voila!

This project is so satisfying. The containers you can use are endless, and it would be fun to add to your collection as you find interesting shapes. I hope you give it a try!

P.S. — Like to make things? More of our projects here.

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{ 6 trackbacks }

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{ 10 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Willa October 28, 2013 at 12:23 pm

Having not worked with cement before, I am vaguely aware that you need to mix it with sand and/or gravel. Did you do this for this project? Can you purchase sand/gravel at a hardware store as well or is there a better option for acquiring it?

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2 Nina Leung October 28, 2013 at 12:49 pm

I LOVE this idea! The addition of metallic spray paint makes them less industrial looking. I’ve worked with plaster a lot in the past, and this is very similar, just making molds, really. Only cement is a lot more long lasting than plaster! Great idea! Thanks!

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3 Michelle October 28, 2013 at 1:00 pm

This project looks gorgeous! Where do recommend picking up the cement? Also, was this a messy project/should you try to do it outside if possible? Thanks for sharing. -M

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4 Lori October 28, 2013 at 8:34 pm

Love this. We always seem to have extra cement left over after projects. This is the perfect use for it!

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5 Jacqueline October 28, 2013 at 8:52 pm

Pinterest recently had DIY concrete planters that I thought were pretty neat too. Thanks for the great idea.

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6 Dale Coykendall October 29, 2013 at 5:15 am

Looks really easy, I think I want to make them for outdoors.
I know I’ve seen a link somewhere for how to tint the cement might add a little “softness”.
Thanks

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7 Sabina October 29, 2013 at 7:28 am

Actually, those are *concrete* candle holders, which were made with cement. cement is a component of concrete.

Sorry for nerd-ing up the comments. :-)

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8 Audrey - This Little Street November 1, 2013 at 4:27 pm

Love it – also think it would look great with a pop of neon! Yes, bright colors….I really can’t help it :)

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9 Monsterscircus November 14, 2013 at 3:52 pm

Looks so neat and fancy! Thank you so much for the credit Amy Christie and your tutorial:-) so lovely

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10 yogaolga January 11, 2014 at 1:37 pm

I have been trying to figure out a good way to replace a broken chalice candle holder and I think this idea will work very well. I particularly like the taller ones shown and the ones with lines in them so would like to combine that look. Any suggestions what can be used for a mold to get this look?

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