I’ve been wanting to try out plaster of Paris in a DIY project for aaages …the time has finally arrived! I’m an absolute sucker for new craft techniques, so I’m pretty giddy about sharing this project. Yep, I’m getting giddy about plaster of Paris. But when you see how easy it is to whip up a few of these, you’ll understand why! So let’s get right to it, shall we? Here’s how you can make your very own plaster of Paris DIY geometric candle holders…
DIY Geometric Candle Holder
What you’ll need
- Plaster of Paris powder
- A mixing jug
- A stirrer
- Medium weight scrap cardboard
- A marker pen
- A ruler
- Parcel tape
- PVA or Mod Podge
- Acrylic paint
- A paintbrush
- A candle
What to do
- Using a ruler and a marker pen, draw the base shape of your candle holder onto a scrap of cardboard. It’s best to use a simple shape with straight lines, such as a triangle or square. Make sure that the base of the triangle will leave enough excess space around the candle.
- Onto each side of this base shape, draw the sides of the candle holder – this will form the net template for your mould. Make sure that the sides are at least 3-4cm tall, or larger depending on the side of your candle.
- Cut the template out, then fold the sides up to form the mould. Use some wide parcel tape to hold this in place, ensuring that the tape covers any potential gaps where the plaster of Paris mix could leak out of.
- Cut out a small rectangle of card, then wrap this around the base of your candle. Tape this in place to form a cylinder, then slide the candle out.
- Follow the instructions on your plaster of Paris to make up a slurry (mine called for a 4:3 mix of powder and water). Give it a really good mix with a stirrer, then leave it to stand for 30 seconds.
- Place the cylinder of card upright in the centre of your mould, then carefully pour the slurry into the mould, ensuring that you firmly hold the cylinder in place.
- Hold the cylinder in place while the slurry settles, then continue to hold it for 5 minutes, or until the plaster of Paris has just about begun to set.
- Carefully let go of the cylinder (but make sure it stays in place, in the centre of the mould), then leave the plaster of Paris to dry completely. It’s best to leave it overnight in a cool place.
- When it’s completely dried, carefully cut and peel the cardboard mould away from the candle holder.
- Apply a thin layer of PVA glue or Mod Podge to seal the plaster of Paris, then decorate with acrylic paint.
These DIY candle holders would be the perfect centrepiece for a special meal, or a great last minute gift – they literally take about 20 minutes of prep time, but they look so robust and professional! Or, if nothing else, they’re just a great excuse to mess about with plaster of Paris, which is fast becoming of my favourite craft materials. Have fun! – Mike.