All my childhood, I remember having an advent candle that we burned every night at dinner.  This tradition was started by my aunt Carol.  Even when I had grown and left the nest, my aunt Carol sent me a candle so that I could start this tradition with my own family.

Creating My Own Advent Candles

As I thought about gifts for friends and family this year, I wanted to share something meaningful to me and remembered the candle.  I checked online to see how much advent candles were and was stunned to find them as much as $7 a stick!  I was planning on giving these out to a lot of folks this year and knew that wouldn't fly with my budget.  So of course I set out to Pinterest.

I found this pin and decided to try it with oil based Sharpies instead of regular ones.  The theory being that they would stay juicy on the candle.  This pin  from Rainbow Stitch didn't go into detail about how far apart the numbers needed to be or how to keep your numbers straight.  My math addict side kicked in and I knew that I would need a specific measurement!

The Math!

The candles I selected from the dollar store were 10 inches long.  I can't use the entire length of the candle for the numbers, so I chose to work with 9 inches of space.  I also knew that working with a ruler I had fourths, eighths, and sixteenths to work with for measurement.  Through my reasoning, I knew that fourths would be too big of a measurement and eights might be as well.   I wondered how many sixteenths were in 9 inches.

9 x 16 = 144

There are 24 nights before Christmas, so I knew that I needed to divide 144 by 24 to figure out my measurement for the numbers.

144 ÷ 24 =  6

so….I needed a number every 6/16 on the candle.

Ah ha!  I could use this measurement above or I could reduce this fraction by dividing it by a 2/2 (a copycat one).

6/16 ÷ 2/2 = 3/8

I like this one much better!

Here are the directions for making your own advent candle:



  • Ruler
  • Masking tape
  • Taper candles
  • Oil-based Sharpies


Cut a piece of making tape about 9 inches long and place on your ruler.  Mark every 3/8 inches on the tape until you've reached 9 inches.


Pull the tape off of the ruler and place onto the length of the candle.  Be sure to keep your tape straight.  Open your oil-based Sharpies and press down the tip on a scrap piece of paper to get the flow of the paint going.  Start at the top of the candle and write the number one proceeding down the candle until you reach 24.


When you are finished writing the numbers, draw a star at the bottom to signify that Christmas Day has come.  I decided to decorate the back of my candles a little more by adding swirls, candy canes, and lights.

I found at Michael's craft store the little mini mugs that you see in the very top picture to hold the candle.  I didn't want just a regular holder, so I was thrilled when I found these.  I did have to add some clay to the inside to retro fit them to my candles.  Press clay or play dough inside.  Fit candle by pressing down on the clay.  Remove candle and let dry.  Finally,  glue the candle in place with a hot glue gun.  They turned out super cute!  What do you think?


I love creating gifts to give to my friends and family.  Be sure to check out my I Spy Christmas Ornament.

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