Give a personal and thoughtful present to a friend or loved one by assembling a candle gift basket. Candles add a warm, comforting glow to a room and emit pleasing fragrances, so they make good gifts. Think of a theme, such as a holiday, color or purpose, to unite all the elements in your gift basket. Add homemade touches, such as custom scents, floral embellishments or holiday accents to make your gift even more special.
Show your generous friend how much you appreciate everything she does by putting together a spa gift basket. Lavender essential oil often reduces stress and induces relaxation, so make this scent the central theme of your basket. Include lavender-scented spa items that she can use to pamper herself, and make lavender-scented candles.
Things You'll Need:
- Large wicker basket
- Terry-cloth bathrobe
- Spa items for bathing and pampering
- 2 candle tumbler jars, 8-ounce
- 1 pound soy wax
- 1 purple candle dye chip
- 1 ounce lavender essential oil
- 2 pre-tabbed wicks, 6 inch
- Small wooden skewers
Choose a wick based on the type of wax you use and the diameter of the finished candle.
Melt the wax according to the manufacturer's instructions. One pound of wax should yield about 20 ounces, so you will have more than enough for two 8-ounce candles.
Add one wax color chip. Stir to blend the color.
One candle dye chip should be enough to dye 1 pound of wax to a medium shade of purple. If you want a deeper shade, add more chips.
Add about 35 drops of lavender essential oil to the wax. Stir to blend.
Put a drop of melted wax on the tab of each wick, and place the tab on the bottom of the candle glass. Hold it in place until the glue hardens.
Rest a wooden skewer on top of each glass. Tie the wicks to the skewers so that they stay taut and straight.
Pour the colored, scented wax into the candle glasses using the funnel.
Allow the wax to thoroughly dry and harden. If the surface of the wax dips during the drying process, add more wax to fill it in.
When the wax has fully hardened, remove the skewer and trim the wick to 1/4 inch.
Fold the terry-cloth bath robe and place it in the bottom of the basket.
Put the candles in the basket and add other lavender-scented spa items.
- Include bath products such as bath bombs, bath salts, gourmet soaps and bubble bath.
- Add skin-care items, such as moisturizers and facial masks.
- Don't forget a loofah, bath mitts and a body brush.
A Traditional Housewarming Gift
Welcome a neighbor, friend or loved one to her new home with a basket of traditional housewarming gifts. Fill the basket with items that symbolize good wishes for the new home and for those who will inhabit it. Candles wish the homeowners light during the darkest of times, so include candles that you have personalized with the recipients' name or initials.
Things You'll Need:
- White pillar candles
- White card stock, 8 1/2-by-11-inches
- Cellophane tape
- White tissue paper
- Wax paper
- Embossing heat gun
On your computer, create a monogram with your gift recipients' initials, or type their last name in a decorative font.
Size the image so that it will fit neatly on the candle.
Cut a piece of tissue paper the same size as your card stock. Tape it to the card stock. Place the card stock with the tissue paper in your printer and print the image onto the tissue paper.
Cut out the image on the tissue paper, leaving about an inch all the way around.
Choose the spot on the candle where you want to place the image and lay the tissue paper there with the image facing out.
Wrap a piece of wax paper around the candle and the image with the waxy side facing the candle.
Hold the heat gun about 2 inches away from the candle and heat the image. When you see the image brighten in color, it has successfully transferred to the candle. Continue heating until the entire image transfers. Carefully pull off the wax paper.
Place the candles and the other symbolic items into a large wicker basket. Write a card explaining the meaning of each of the items.
- Include a loaf of bread and a bottle of wine, so those in the home may never know hunger or thirst.
- Add a jar of honey, so they always enjoy the sweetness of life.
- A bottle of olive oil signifies health and well-being.
- Place a cutting board in the basket because wood signifies stability, harmony and peace.
Based in Philadelphia, Marybeth Kufen has been teaching since 2007, and has been writing education-related articles since 2013. She holds a master's degree in elementary education and is a certified Reading Specialist. Kufen was named Teacher of the Year for her district in 2014.