How to throw a gorgeous candle-lit dinner

Our guide to hosting a sustainable gathering that feels good for your guests and the planet

a sustainable, natural candle-lit dinner party

Table of Contents

February can be so beautiful.

It can also still be cold, and dark, and difficult. As we melt into spring, light the way through the last few patches of winter by holding your own candle-lit dinner. This could be for just you, your partner, friends, family, neighbours – whoever you’d like to share your table with and toast the first awakenings of Spring.

Feasting and celebrating don’t need to cost the earth; there are so many ways to work with nature, not against her, to create a gorgeous event. Here are some slow, sustainable ways to make your own candle-lit dinner as cosy and joyful as possible (maybe even for a Valentines Day festivity or two…)

WHAT TO EAT

Eating produce that is in season is so much better for a smorgasbord of reasons. These include (but are not limited to!) seasonal food being:

a market stall of fruit and vegetables, showcasing eating seasonally in the uk
  • less expensive (shorter to travel, they grow more abundantly when in season so price reduces)
  • supportive of your local community
  • more delicious!
  • better for your health (the food won’t have been stuck in transit for huge amounts of time, reducing its freshness. Food grown in season tends to be more nutrient-dense too)
  • better for the environment – it won’t have had to travel hundreds of miles from far-off lands to reach your kitchen
  • good at tickling your tastebuds – it can encourage you to be open with foods you’ve never tried before.

Wonderfully, eating seasonally helps us to reconnect with nature and sync into her rhythms. Mama Nature is pretty clever; the foods that are abundant in certain seasons tend to contain helpful nutrients to help us through that time. For example: stodgy and bulky veg are abundant in winter; helping us brace against the bitterness. Juicy fruits such as strawberries and raspberries flourish in the warmer weather, helping us to hydrate.

Incorporating some scrumptious seasonal fare onto your table can help elevate your candle-lit dinner. For some delish seasonal recipe inspiration, click here.

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A couple of sustainable food shops include:

Durslade Farm Shop 

With sustainability stitched into its’ fabric, this farm shop supports local makers & growers, whilst helping to nourish small brands’ exciting projects. Their in-house forager Kenny hunts hedgerows for inspiration – resulting in farm-made goodies such as their delicious kombucha! (how magical)

To stock up on fun alcoholic drinks for your candle-lit dinner, check out their quirky selection of sustainable booze here

Hackney Essentials

A specialist grocery-shop with a store in Hackney & shipping nationwide. You can choose everything from unctuous Aubergine mezze dip, London-made jams and marmalades, jazzy canned cocktails & salted caramel truffles.

To browse their selection of goodies, click here

Local Gem

East Street Deli

Hugging the streets of beautiful Wimborne in Dorset is East Street Deli: an independent delicatessen  overflowing with local fare. For a romantic touch for a Valentines candle-lit dinner, how about scattering their gorgeous iced heart biscuits across the table, or stocking up on some of their handpicked wines. (They also stock our lovely natural candles… !) 

Take a look here

Veg Box Subscriptions

Oddbox

Aiming to fight food waste by rescuing the wonky veg that doesn’t make the cut for the supermarket shelf, Oddbox is a great way to cut your carbon footprint by ensuring no food ends up in landfill. Take a look here.

Pikt Fresh

This fruit & veg box company believe that eating healthily should be accessible and available for EVERYONE. There is a range of options, from build your own boxes to ready-to-go, plus a fab seasonal box. Take a look here.

And of course Riverford Organic Boxes are a great way to go too

You could also try finding a local greengrocer who can advise you on what they have in store that is local & seasonal. Attending a farmers market is also a great way to stock up on fruit & veg that is grown a little closer to home. 

HOW TO DECORATE

candle-lit dinner using sustainable materials and natural handmade candles

We just love a good tablescape. Candles, foraged nature from hedgerows (or the side of the road outside Tesco), beautiful fabrics made from sustainable materials & handmade ceramics oozing with delicious food. Here are our favourite ways to dress up your table for that candle-lit dinner: (because if you’re getting dressed up, your table might like to too)

Create that Candle-lit Glow

made in the UK natural candle

Tealights

Like little fireflies lighting the darkness, our sustainable tealights help create that whimsical glow. Scatter across your tabletop for a touch of magick

sustainable tea light holders

Tealight holders

Give your tealights a home with our handmade tea light cups, crafted from repurposed olive-green glass.

handmade natural candles in the uk

Small candles

Smaller versions of our large candles are perfect to fill a smaller room or join your dinner-party table. Available in our range of essential-oil blends to echo the beauty of nature, in our iconic repurposed glass containers

flower pressed candles

Large candles

One of our large candles would make a gorgeous centre-piece for your table, perhaps with a little foliage for a paired back look – or couple with smaller candles and or/tealights for a ‘more is more’ aesthetic! One of our beautiful flower-pressed candles made with Beth of Wilder & Wren would also make a gorgeous gift – take a look here and here

Gorgeous glassware for the dinner-table

handmade repurposed glassware

Our green-goddess, the perfect accompaniment to your beverage of choice! Crafted from repurposed glass in our cosy Dorset studio.

These may be glorious Amber – but don’t wait! Treat yourself to our beautiful sun-tinged glasses: perfect as water glasses

Ready to hold your foraged finds, our repurposed green glass vases are beautiful on a dinner-table when filled with foliage & flowers

our favourite candle-lit dinner accessories

sustainable linen napkins

Linen napkins

100% natural stonewashed linen napkins, individually sewn in the UK. These are perfect for sticky fingers, and get better with every wash! Ideal for that classy, rustic candle-lit dinner atmosphere

Handmade tea-light domes

These are so magical! Handmade domes made from repurposed glass in a range of colours, where your tealight of choice can sit snugly inside. These can be paired with our handmade macrame hangers, or stand alone on your dinner-table. Like little lanterns from Narnia, lighting the way.

Soulful Ceramics

handmade uk ceramics

 ‘Soft, round, functional forms for using everyday’. Sarah’s ceramics celebrate the everyday rituals that bring us so much joy. Her philosophy echoes our own: that curating handmade, soulful pieces into our homes enables us to have long lasting relationships with these pieces – enhancing our wellbeing. Sarah makes each piece from her Dorset studio, using gorgeous, gentle, earthy colours: perfect for that cosy dinnertime.

Browse her collections here

handmade uk ceramics

Habulous (a blend of happy + fabulous!) is the home of crafting queen Nicky and her team, on a mission to boost traditional crafts and turn away from mass-produced and throwaway. In this way, we learn to celebrate the unique & LOVE the items that we hold: cherishing longevity. Inspired by nature, collections from Stone to Shoreline reflect the wonderful colours of our landscapes (our favourite is the Moorland series!) and bring that little bit of magic from the outside into our daily practices

Browse their ceramics here

Incorporate Nature
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We love to forage & find wonderful offerings from nature to adorn our tables (and windowsills, and bookshelves, and studio ceiling!). Head out to your local hedgerows, woodland, coastline and collect flowers, pinecones, shells, (very mindfully – only ever taking a few). Things like shells or seaglass can be displayed in old glass jars; foraged wildflowers can poke their noses out of jugs & vases; branches and ferns can line the table, peering between your cutlery. Alternatively, you could find a local sustainable flower-farm to source some lovely flowers from. 

We hope you have a wonderful, loved-filled candle-lit dinner

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