Bayberry Candle Tradition Plus Gift Tag Printable

December 24, 2023

Burning a bayberry candle from tip to socket during the holidays is a tradition that's been around for many years. 

free bayberry candle gift tag printable

Today I'm sharing not only the folklore behind it -- the how and why of burning it -- but I'm also sharing a free Christmas gift tag printable. That way, you can share some bayberry candles and the tradition behind it with your family and friends on Christmas Eve or New Year's Eve! (A perfect hostess gift!)

I'll also share my solution for how to wrap candles as Christmas gifts. So let's get started.

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A holiday tradition my husband and I have shared as a couple, and later as a family for over 20 years, is the burning of a bayberry taper candle down to the socket on New Year's Eve. It's something his family used to do on New Year's Eve, and now we carry on that tradition in our own family.  

HISTORY BEHIND THE TRADITION OF BURNING BAYBERRY CANDLES ON NEW YEAR'S EVE

The tradition of burning a bayberry candle on Christmas Eve or New Year's Eve dates back to colonial times, most likely from somewhere in New England.  

The Best Candles put it this way:

Bayberry-type fruit is crusted with a greenish-white wax [and] settlers found that boiling the fruit created a wax residue on the surface of the water [which was then used to make bayberry candles] . . . . these candles burned longer, cleaner and brighter than did the traditional candles of the time. Therefore, bayberry candles were saved and burned on special occasions only! Over the years, the burning of bayberry candles on New Year's Eve became a tradition.  

As the saying goes: A bayberry candle burned to the socket brings joy to the home and wealth to the pocket.

Another rendition of the tradition notes that it was probably Native Americans who shared this bayberry "wax" discovery with the early English settlers.

-- Other renditions mention burning it on Christmas Eve rather than New Year's Eve (some say both) instead. 

-- And some theories say that it should be received as a gift from a friend or family member, along with the poem. 

-- And finally, according to most of the renditions, the candle must still be lit after midnight.

Regardless of the differences in some of the details, at its core, the tradition and the results it seeks to obtain remains the same -- it's about good luck/health/joy and good fortune in the coming year.

I think we'd all like to see those things in abundance each and every year. And what better way to wish our friends and family the best than by gifting them some bayberry candles along with the traditional poem this Yuletide season?   

pressed tin candlestick on Christmas mantel

NOTE: Some people put the burning candle (in a fireproof holder) in the sink or bathtub and go to bed, letting it burn out over night. We've been known to put it in both the tub and a stainless steel sink. To be safe, we always use a candle holder (not glass) that we know can handle it. Ironically, the one I've come to use, year after year, is a little tin taper candle holder made to mirror those from colonial times. 

Whatever you use, know that it will be covered in wax after all is said and done!

bayberry candle in gold candleholder bottle brush trees

One way to get around this problem is to light it early enough on New Year's Eve so that it burns out just after midnight. However, timing that perfectly can be a little tricky. In the alternative, just be sure to use a taper or votive-sized candle -- obviously they will burn faster than a pillar candle. I list resources for all different types of bayberry candles and metal candle holders at the end of this post.


elegant Christmas mantel with bayberry candle and gold candleholder

I've lit our 2023 bayberry candle for purposes of this post, but rest assured I quickly blew it out so that we can burn it, "tip to socket" on New Year's Eve.

brass bobeche candlestick with berry wreath

One way to rein in the wax drippings is by using a bobeche (a.k.a. "drip guard"). I learned about bobeches many years ago and have used them religiously ever since when burning taper candles.

gold glitter candle with brass bobeche

They can be glass or metal (mine are brass). For purposes of burning the bayberry candle down to the socket I would recommend a metal bobeche.  

brass bobeche flower-like

candle safety warning sign

To be super safe, no matter the size of the candles, keep an eye on them at all times, and be sure to keep them away from flammable items, children and pets -- and follow all warmings and burning instructions listed on the candle. 


BAYBERRY CANDLE AND HOLDER RESOURCE GUIDE


WILLIAMSBURG BAYBERRY CANDLE TAPERS WITH LEGEND - BAYBERRY SCENTED

YANKEE CANDLE BAYBERRY SCENTED 22 OZ. LARGE JAR SINGLE WICK CANDLE 

BAYBERRY SOY VOTIVE CANDLES

BAYBERRY FIR PREMIUM TEALIGHT CANDLES 

ROOT PREMIUM 3-WICK BAYBERRY SCENTED HANDCRAFTED BEESWAX CANDLES

COLONIAL VINTAGE TAPER CANDLE HOLDER

SMALL IRON FARMHOUSE CANDLE HOLDERS SET OF 3





HOW TO WRAP A BAYBERRY CHRISTMAS CANDLE 

Candles are never easy to wrap, no matter their size. But you can wrap your bayberry taper candle(s) in a presentation-worthy way.  

1. Find some Christmas wrapping paper you like.

2. Cut out a rectangle of it, making sure that it's at least double the length of the candle plus 2 inches long and approximately 11 inches wide (if you're gifting two candles and some Stik-Um).

3. Fold over the edges along the long sides of the paper.

4. Fold the entire thing in half.

5. Hot glue the sides closed.

6. Insert a piece of cardboard into the package for stability, followed by the candle(s) and anything else you'd like to include.*

7. Fold over the top of your "package" like you would with a paper bag.

8. Place your gift tag at the top and in the center of your package  Using a hole punch, create a hole through the package and the tag at the same time.   

9. Using curling ribbon, attach the tag to the package, then use it to make a bow, curling the ends for effect. 

green spiral taper candle and Stick-Um candle adhesive

*Another thing I've found to be invaluable when it comes to taper candles, in addition to the bobeches, is Stik-Um candle adhesive. Many times the taper is too narrow to stand upright in the candleholder. That's when Stik-Um comes in really handy. Just a dollop of the stuff inside the candleholder and it keeps the candle affixed and sturdy -- no worries of it toppling out of the holder!

It's a perfect addition to the bayberry candle gift. I like to include it in my gift package as a little something extra!   

bayberry candle printable gift tag


My bayberry candle tradition gift tag printable is free for all subscribers* in the printables library (along with all the other free printables!). 

1. Check your weekly newsletter for the password.

2. Click on "Printables Library" at the top of my blog's home page.

3. Enter the password when prompted and then just click the download link provided to be taken to my Dropbox. Then just click on the download icon in the top right to download it directly onto your computer after which you can print it.         

*If you're not a member of the OHH community yet, it's easy to do! Click the link below, enter your email address and hit subscribe. That will trigger a Welcome email which contains the printable library password! Then just follow steps 2-3 above and enjoy your free printable! 

Click HERE to subscribe

and get your free printable! 


 


Well, that's it until next time, friends! 

 I hope you enjoyed reading about the
Bayberry Candle Tradition, 
How To Wrap A Candle,
Plus My Free Gift Tag Printable
 and that I've inspired you in some way. 
 
Don't Forget To Pin It!
free bayberry candle gift tag printable

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Leave a Comment!

Junkchiccottage said...

What great information on the Bayberry candle tradition. What a great New Years gift to give too. Thanks for sharing the beautiful poem tag too. Hope this last week of the year is good and you had a great Christmas. Happy New Year. Hugs. Kris

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