The clocks have gone back and Lanzarote faces months of darkness and early nights. Well, not really. There’ll still be sunshine and warmth galore, but it’s definitely a time of year when some of those old home comforts are welcome – and chief among them is the welcoming, comforting glow of candlelight.
Artificial lighting technology has still not come up with anything as perfect as candles, which have brought light indoors for thousands of years. Candles comfort, reassure and satisfy our senses.
First there’s the light itself – a warm, lambent glow that is synonymous with romance and magic. It’s bright enough to see what’s around you, and can even give you enough light to read by, but it’s never so bright that it highlights blemishes and faults – candlelight is a natural concealer. Candlelight also gives a golden glow to everything it lands on, causing an opulent, burnished effect.
Many candles don’t smell of anything, but scented candles have become increasingly popular in recent years. It’s one of simplest ways to fill a room with scent, as the heat of the candle warms and releases volatile compounds into the air. Scented candles can be useful to mask less pleasant smells in bathrooms or kitchens, but can also add an entirely new sensual dimension to a room. The range of scented candles is immense, so when you find one you like, be sure to stock up.
Then there’s the movement – the one huge difference that candles have over artificial light. Movements of air make candles flicker and sway, gently shifting shadows in the room. Even in the stillest of rooms, a candle is never quite still – that flame is a chemical reaction producing heat and light, and it never ceases. Perhaps it’s that blend of stillness and eternal motion that makes candles so important to religious rituals or meditation.
A candle for every room
Candles can be used throughout the home in various ways. In the bedroom, for example, they create an intimate atmosphere. If you work with “blue light” on screens all day, then a little candlelight before you go to sleep can be a great way to turn off and calm down.
In the bathroom, candles can have a stunning effect, turning a normal bath into a luxurious experience. Try clusters of candles to provide light where it’s most needed, and don’t forget how wonderful scent can be in this room.
In the living room, candles are an instant way to let guests know they are expected and welcome. There’s a sense of occasion every time we light a candle, and it’s a social signal that’s understood across all cultures. Candlelit social events allow you to focus on your guests entirely, and provide a relaxing, welcoming atmosphere. A scented candle can also set the scene perfectly.
Candles are gorgeous, but they’re also risky, with flames and hot wax posing threats to your home and personal safety that need to be addressed by everyone.
If you’re going to use candles, you’ll need to invest in candle holders. Fortunately, there are all sorts of different types available, but it’s a good idea to always value safety over beauty.
Most candle fires are a result of candles being left unattended, so make sure you extinguish them before you leave them, and be absolutely sure not to leave pets or small children alone in rooms with lit candles.
The next cause of fires is candles being placed too close to flammable items such as furniture or paper. Make sure there are none of these materials near your candles, and nothing directly above, either. If you use candles a lot. A candlesnuffer is a wise investment, as it puts candles out without the risk of spattering hot wax.
For regular updates, pictures and videos of Lanzarote be sure to like and follow our Facebook page “Gazette Life Lanzarote”.