Recycling scrap furniture into unique candleholders

Making candle holders out of old bed posts

Our Jill of all Trades shows us how to take old bed posts and turn them into candle holders.

This week, Jill Washburn, our Jill of All Trades, shows us how she took some junk furniture from another Jill of All Trades project and made a set of really cool candle holders.

Jill had done a project where she was redesigning a queen-size headboard. She got the headboard for free on the Facebook marketplace. But it had very tall towers on the bedpost. They were loose and falling off, and Jill didn’t like the look. She removed them and placed smaller end pieces on the bed posts. That made the headboard more to her liking, but she saved the towers in her workshop. She didn’t even know why then. She just thought they would come in handy at some point. Then inspiration hit.

Jill found that she could cut them into pieces and make candlesticks out of them. She started by taking measurements and figuring out what sizes her candle holders should be. She also had to figure out what to use as the base and top for each candle holder. She settled on some RouterEd wooden circles that she found at a craft store. She used a wider one for the bases (5 inches) and a smaller one for the tops (3.5 inches).

The pine circles were affordable and only cost a dollar a piece. They only had to be sanded lightly, so minimal preparation work was required.

With the bases and tops figured out, it was time to cut the towers. As the towers were tapered, Jill knew it would be difficult to make a straight cut through them with her miter saw. She knew she couldn’t just lay it down, because then the cut would end at a slight angle.

Jill tried several ways to figure out how to keep the towers straight while she cut. In the end, it was all about shimming, patterning, and inspiring them. It helped that Jill measured the circumference at the bottom of the tower and where she cut. That gave her an idea of ​​how much she would need for each one.

Because of the taper, it also had to underlay the back of the tower that leaned against the fence of the saw. If she didn’t, she would still get an angled cut.

Jill’s cuts turned out pretty good. Not 100% square, but close enough. Her concern was that the candles would burn unevenly if they were too far away. Jill’s cuts were so close that it wasn’t a problem.

Once the cuts were made the rest was easy. Jill just figured out which part of each section she wanted to be below and which part she wanted to be above. Then she glued the parts of the towers to the bases. She waited for these to dry and made sure that everything stayed centered during the drying process. Then she flipped them over and glued the bases on top, again being careful to keep everything centered while the glue dried.

Once the glue was dry Jill was ready to paint. Jill says you can get creative and paint her any way you want. She opted for a black undercoat with a simple black craft paint. Once that was dry, she painted white chalk paint over it. When the chalk paint was dry, it went back with a green scotch-brite scrub pad and sanded back the finish a little. This made the candleholders smoother and also revealed a small piece of the black undercoat to highlight some of the twists on the candleholders.

This is a quick and easy project that can be done in an hour or two. Jill had a total of five candleholders that now have pride of place on her kitchen island.

PROJECT EVALUATION: Pretty easy (as long as you have a saw)

To see Jill walk you through the process, just click on the video player above.

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