Antique Candle Snuffers

I’ve been lighting my candles daily now that it’s dark really early outside.  I’ve been really appreciative of my candle snuffer.  It had me thinking… maybe I should collect candle snuffers as my next “thing” to collect?

Antique Candle Snuffers

As you all know, candle light was very important prior to modern times.  Having a properly working candle was very important.  The wicks weren’t that great and the wax was old animal fat.

Candle snuffers were not only used to extinguish the candle, but also for cutting off excess thread.

Antique Candle Snuffer, from wikipedia, bronze

The sharp pointy edge was used to dig out parts of the burnt wick that fell into the hot wax.

The little box on the snuffer was used to catch “the snuffs” aka trimmings.

A snuff pan or dish was than used to lay the greasy snuffers on (remember, the candles were made from animal fat!)

sterling silver, 1820s, photo from
1880s, from

 Another fancy candle snuffer with the tray!

silver plate candle snuffer with tray, 1850s, photo from

Nowadays, when we think candle snuffer, we think of the actual “cap” that was attached to the candle stick.  This cap is pictured below attached to the side of this antique chamberstick.

Antique chamberstick, sterling silver, 1788, photo from

The candle scissors snuffer tray combo was made from about 1680-1850s.

The paraffin candle was invented around 1825… which meant the wicks didn’t smoke and self-consumed.  So the scissor snuffer tray combo was abandoned.

However, the “caps” remained.  Not only were they made from various metals, but also from porcelain!

French porcelain candle snuffer, formed like a tulip, 1850. photo from
Meissen candle snuffer, 1820s. from

Notice how none of the candle snuffers look like the modern ones we see today? I had a hard time finding when long-handled candle snuffers were produced.  They started gaining popularity in the 1940s.

You can pick them up at any home store now.

My favorite new candle snuffer is by Michael Aram, isn’t it pretty?

“Black Orchid” snuffer by Michael Aram

Using a candle snuffer is very nice…

…you don’t blow wax everywhere…
… and the candle doesn’t smoke nearly as much…
… so there’s more candle aroma left when the candle is out!

Do you have an antique candle snuffer that you use?  What about a new one? Please share!

I’ve linked up with The Scoop! Visit Confessions of a Plate Addict blog,Tablescape Thursday at ‘Between Naps on the Porch’, Wow us Wednesdays! at Savvy Southern Style, Open House Party at no minimalist here,Feathered Nest Friday at French Country Cottage, Seasonal Sundays & Oh the places I have been at The Tablescaper, and a stroll through life inspire me tuesday’s. 


  1. November 13, 2013 / 6:25 pm

    Oh my what fabulous snuffers. I havn't ever seen any like them. Amazing. Thanks tons for linking to Inspire Me. Hugs, marty