Wednesday, May 16, 2012

DIY hand-painted ceramic tealight holders

DIY hand-painted ceramic tealight holders
For years I've been interested in testing out those Pebeo ceramic paint pens that I often see in art stores. I could never figure out what project to use them for, so for once, I resisted spending the money on unnecessary art supplies until I had a plan. Drawing on my dinner plates? That could only end in disaster!

I'd also recently been interested in making my own little candleholders. I often see dozens of candles grouped on tables in magazine photos, but the cost of purchasing that many candleholders is often prohibitive. (I've used a collection of mason jars and salsa jars as a cheap solution in the past, but was looking for something new to spruce up my dining table.) I tried making my own tealight holders out of clay and that was a big fat flop.

The solution: Combine the two ideas and use the ceramic pens to draw patterns on ceramic dipping bowls. The store-bought bowls look much more professional than my attempts at DIY pinch pots, but the decorations would still be hand drawn. And the square mini bowls work perfectly as tealight holders! (They'd also be great for holding jewelry or for serving dips, sauces, nuts, candy, etc.)
DIY hand-painted ceramic tealight holders
DIY hand-painted ceramic tealight holders
My loose inspiration for the designs came from the Blue Willow china that my grandmother had all over her house when I was a kid. (You know what I'm talking about right? Do all grandmothers have these blue and white plates and teacups?) Anyway, I love the blue and white color scheme of this china (plus it always makes me think of my Nana!), however, the china pattern is very traditional and my tastes are really modern. I wanted to come up with a contemporary interpretation to better suit the modern furnishings and decorations in our house.

I've been obsessed with patterns lately (I think that is evident from a lot of the gouache illustrations in my shop), and I find myself doodling patterns and geometric shapes over and over again. Mosaics, triangles, concentric circles - I love them all these days! The inexpensive little ceramic dipping bowls were a great medium to test the ceramic pens on while exploring my recent love of patterns. I painted the insides of the bowls because I wanted the patterns to be illuminated when the candles are lit. 
DIY hand-painted ceramic tealight holders
DIY hand-painted ceramic tealight holders
I'm so happy to finally be sharing this project. I made these back in March, but didn't get the chance to photograph them until yesterday. The process was really simple: Draw the patterns on the ceramic dishes with a Pebeo Porcelaine 150 Paint Pen (the color I used was Lapis), allow them to dry for 24 hours, then bake them in the oven to set the ink. Super easy and I love the results:
DIY hand-painted ceramic tealight holders
DIY hand-painted ceramic tealight holders
DIY hand-painted ceramic tealight holders
DIY hand-painted ceramic tealight holders
DIY hand-painted ceramic tealight holders
DIY hand-painted ceramic tealight holders
DIY hand-painted ceramic tealight holders
I'm looking forward to eating many candlelit dinners this summer with these homemade candleholders adorning my table. Romantic, right?

23 comments:

Jane @ The Borrowed Abode said...

Seriously gorgeous and fabulous. Um. . . new product for Funnelcloud Studios?

Brandi {not your average ordinary} said...

Rachel, these are beautiful. What a simple, smart way to fancy up a table.

I think about you every time I attempt an art project. Usually, I'm muttering something like "Rachel could have done this so much better." Most recently, I tried to print a quote on a poster. I just don't have enough control over my handwriting to make it all the same size and line up neatly. I'm turning future projects like that over to you. I'll stick with baking and cooking meals instead.

Jennifer said...

Are you serious?!?! These look WAY better than anything I've seen in the store! Any chance you would sell a set? If I tried this, it would look like a 2nd grader did it…

Mike D. / Coffee in Bed said...

Fabulous! I love them.

Marypat said...

Gorgeous! I'm not steady enough (or creative enough) to do something like this, but I sure do admire you for being both!

Amanda said...

WOW I SOOO want to do this. Although I think mine might look like something from Canterbury Woods' Mr. Hurt's class!

Michele H. said...

oh my wow! these are gorgeous rachel! dinner on the patio by candlelight sounds amazing:)

smstokesbury said...

These are BEAUTIFUL! You could so easily sell them! I might have to commission you to make me a few for my mom, who is obsessed with blue and white anything for her kitchen. Can't wait to see these in person in 13 days (not that I'm counting) :)

Jillian said...

LOVE IT!! Looks great. I would love to make this for a gift for someone!

Sarah said...

Rachel, these are stunning! My grandma also had the blue & white china, it was her favorite.

I join in the chorus of people saying "Can we buy some from you??" :)

kb said...

rachel these are awesome! going on my summer to-do list asap. along with pretty much everything else you've ever made :)

Funnelcloud Rachel said...

Thanks for all the great compliments, friends! :)

Serena said...

Gorgeous!

Brandi said...

Simply put...Gorgeous!!! You are amazingly creative my friend.

Sweet Capture said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Sweet Capture said...

What a fabulous idea! And what fantastic photos! Thank you!

Anonymous said...

Do you think this would work with clear glasses or should I stick with stone or porcelain?

Krill Belly said...

These are beautiful :-)

giantv said...

These are beautiful! Where do you buy these ceramic pieces?

Sara Welsh said...

My friend is getting married in a few months, and we haven't been able to find any candle holders with her colors. After looking at your post, I think that we should make our own! It would be so much fun to do a DIY project together! I can't wait to show her your ideas, and different patterns!

Sara Welsh | http://www.hewnovelties.com/default.asp?dept_id=45010

Nicole Patterson said...

Wondering where you find the ceramic dishes to paint? thanks love your patterns!!!

Funnelcloud Rachel said...

Hi Nicole - I got the ceramic dipping bowls at Target. :)

♥ Katie said...

Hi! I am wanting to paint my dinner plates as well (which may end in disaster, but... oh well.) Do you know how to make them dishwasher safe?