11/13/2011 01:00 pm ET Updated Oct 11, 2012

Elegant DIY Votive Holders (VIDEO)

The ultimate mood enhancer at any dinner party or gathering is undoubtedly candlelight. Placing numerous votive candles in a room is an easy way to create elegant lighting as well as make the space feel instantly more intimate. However, keep in mind that the votive holders should be just as elegant as the soft glow coming from the candles. There are a variety of votive holders and hurricanes out there, but if you're looking to do something a little more unique and also cut some spending, try repurposing your glassware into candleholders.

Entertaining expert Elaine Griffin suggests using glassware, from ordinary drinking glasses to champagne flutes, to hold votives. It's a clever way to create instantly pretty holders since glass drinking pieces like wine glasses and flutes already come in shapely silhouettes and colors. Another clever votive holder idea is to place them in teacups, which has a perfect look since teacups usually already have beautiful intricate patterns on them. Try putting votives in a few different glasses in varying shapes and heights and grouping those together for an eclectic look. Or for a more cohesive and polished look, you can use small tumbler glasses and line them up in a row on a mantel or the table. The key is to use what you already have in the cupboards and play with the arrangement.

Of course, the idea of placing votives inside a drinking glass and having to deal with the wax afterwards may seem more work than it's worth. However, cleaning up the wax in the glassware is easier than you might think. Here are three ideas to consider:

Float the votives. Before you place the votives inside the drinking, wine, or champagne glasses, pour a little bit of water in them so that the candles float inside the glass. This ensures that the melting wax will keep from sticking to the glass.

Hot Dish Soap Water. When the wax sticks to the bottom of a glass, try soaking the glass in hot dish soap water for a few minutes to let the wax soften. Then gently scrape the wax off.

Freeze The Wax. Put the glassware/holder into the freezer with the stuck wax. Leave it in there for about 20-30 minutes until the wax is hardened. Remove the glassware and tap it gently and the wax should pop right off.

For more entertaining ideas, also check out these stories:
Elegant Serving Platters And Tabletop Decor
Dinner Party Seating Strategies
Creative Ideas For Place Cards