Hi, my name is Gemma and I am a candle addict. I’ve long been a Diptyque devotee and have a strong dependency on Neom when I need a scent that’s going to either perk me up, make me smile or send me to sleep – seriously, I’m convinced their potent aromas have magic powers.
Recently though, I’ve become obsessed with a different type of candle. Candles that are more like a work of art than a candle. Candles in the shape of curvaceous female figures, beautiful twists and scalloped shells. Candles that are probably never – at least not in my house – going to be lit.
It all started with Lex Pott’s signature Twist candle. In pastels, neons or chic neutrals, the sculptural beauties filled my Instagram feed for weeks but seemed to be constantly out of stock. Then, all my Christmases came at once – quite literally – when I unwrapped not one but two Lex Pott lovelies on December 25th (pink and orange neon FYI). My next fix came during that dreamy break in lockdown when you were allowed to have people over to your house and a very stylish pal came for brunch bearing a belated birthday present – a box of British Colour Standard striped tapered candles. Because I am nothing if not original, said candles have now become my new home/job/just because gift of choice. IMO, candles that are too pretty to light make the perfect present – while it can feel a little indulgent to buy one for yourself, receiving one is the ultimate treat.
Maisie Penn, founder of Insta-fave candle brand Maza agrees. “Ornamental candles should bring you joy! They aren’t serious, nor a necessity, but they are loads of fun,” says Penn. “Yes they’re probably too pretty to burn initially but you can keep your candle on your shelf until you fancy a change, then burn it! Enjoy watching the wax melt, dripping and swirling down itself into a colourful puddle. That’s my favourite part!”
So, whether you actually burn yours or just stare at it adoringly, an ornamental candle offers an instant, on-trend interiors update – something we could all use after a year staring at the same four walls. Here are our faves…
Light Blue Twist Candle, £28, Lex Pott at Liberty
Pink Snail Scented Candle, £26, Orla Kiely at John Lewis