It was just last week while on a rather important overseas business call, mid sentence articulating an equally important thought, that my mobile carrier – the only one servicing the 700 islands of The Bahamas – dropped my call. Minutes later the power, or as us locals refer to it – the “current” – then cutting off, as it so often does during the high heat of summer. Of course you can imagine in the minutes following, my vocabulary became quite colorful. While fortunately enough our generator kicked in, allowing me to call my partners back this time from a landline of course, I got to thinking about the hard truths of island living. Along with monopolized industries and on-again-off-again electricity, summer is known to bring categorized hurricanes inland and with that a loss of power for long lengths of time. Naturally, in the weeks leading to the start of this season which began the first of June, preparations are made: towering coconut palms are trimmed, gutters are cleared and for those fortunate enough generator fuel tanks are filled, checked, and rechecked. Inside, in addition to having a cooler ready to be filled with the contents of the fridge I also have candles on hand in the event the generator doesn’t start and the eye of the storm is not yet over us. This year however, instead of buying new candles I paired my love for upcycling and texture by creating these sisal wrapped candle holders. Although, here’s to hoping that the only reason I have for lighting them is to add texture to a tablescape.
Start by removing the wick and any remaining wax in your candle holder. I’ve found the easiest way to do this is by placing the used candle in the freezer. After cooling for no more than a few hours I remove it and while the glass is still cold to the touch I often find the candle slips out on its own. However, depending on the type of wax, you may need to use a sharp object to scrape it out.
After cleaning and drying your candle holder use your thumb to secure your starting point, the shorter piece acting as your “secure line” which you will eventually knot with your “wrapping line.” The length of your “secure line” is dependent on how much of the glass you want to cover with the sisal twine.
Taking the longer length of twine, the wrapping line, guide it away from you and wrap it around the back of the holder, then pulling it tight towards you. Before repeating the motion lap it over your secure line and place it above the first line. The first line being the bottom line. Repeat the wrapping motion, continually overlapping the secure line and always placing the new line above the last until you have reached your desired width.
Once you’ve reach your desired width tie the secure line and wrapping line with a double knot, cut off the excess twine. If desired you can glue down the knot.
To create a pattern as I did repeat the steps, using the first knot as a reference point and as an indication where to start.
All knots eventually lining up.