What Is the Difference Between a Candle Holder and a Candelabra

Get the facts about a candle holder and candelabra centerpiece. Discover which style will suit your home décor, and how to choose the best one.

Candles are still popular home decor today, just like it was back in the day. They are loved for providing a warm and inviting ambiance to a space or event. You may use them to set up a romantic mood or even a relaxing bath if you are talking about scented candles. So, you can see why having a candle holder or candelabra centerpiece is important.

You will come across a candle holder centerpiece and a candelabra when looking for ways to hold the candles or even improve how candles decorate a room. Understanding the difference can help determine the best one to buy. We will give you more details below.

What Is A Candle Holder?

crystal candle holder centerpiece

A candle holder centerpiece can be defined as a device designed to hold one candle. The main function of the candle holder is to provide more stability to a candle and further protection of the candle flame. Some candles, such as taper candles, cannot stand well alone. The result is that they can easily tip over, starting a fire. You can prevent that with a candle holder.

A candle holder centerpiece can be available in many forms, shapes, and materials. Of course, the designs differ, so you can have something that suits your needs well.

The most common candle holder types include:

  • Tealight candle holders
  • Votive candle holders
  • Taper candle holders
  • Pillar candle holders
  • Hurricane candle holders

The material used to make the candle holder can be a deciding factor for most people. The glass candle holder centerpiece can offer elegance and a modern look to the room. However, you can opt for metal candle holders if you want a rustic charm and also better durability.

What Is A Candelabra?

black metal candelabra centerpiece

A candelabra centerpiece is a candle holder designed to hold multiple candles at once. Unlike a simple candle holder centerpiece, a candelabra will have multiple branches to hold more candles simultaneously.

Expect them to be good for scenarios you need more light or simply to display more candles at any time. You will get them in different styles and designs. The most common include traditional models, ornate, and minimalist versions.

The candelabra centerpieces are also available in many options so that you can have the right pick based on your design needs. Below are the common types you will come across in the market.

Like the candle holder centerpieces, the candelabras are made from multiple materials, including crystal, glass, and metal. The most common choice would be metal as it is good for durability. You may opt for the crystal candelabras, which offer elegance and a sparkling appearance.

Differences Between A Candle Holder Centerpiece And A Candelabra

candle holder centerpiece for taper candles

As much as a candle holder centerpiece and a candelabra are both essential for holding candles, there are multiple differences between them that you should know. We check them out below.

Number Of Candles They Can Hold

Candle holders will simply hold a single candle, but the candelabras are designed to hold several candles. For this reason, a candle holder is ideal for a personal or intimate setting. As for the candelabra, it is suitable for events or special occasions.

Design And Structure

Candle holders are built with simplicity in mind. Their primary function is to provide stability and protection for the candle’s flame. Candelabras are often used as decorative pieces in the room. They are supposed to provide more elegance and sophistication. Multiple arms, intricate designs, and large structures often make them more imposing than candle holders.

Occasions Where Each Is Used

A candle holder centerpiece would be ideal for most everyday applications. This includes providing a warm ambiance in a room, such as when taking a bath or having dinner with your family. Candelabras are all about showing off; thus, they are best reserved for weddings, religious ceremonies, and formal dinners.


The candle holders are vital for holding a candle in place and preventing fire outbreaks due to tipping candles. As for candelabras, they will be good for providing similar functions while at the same time serving as decorative items. Since the candelabras can hold several candles simultaneously, they will be better for creating a statement piece in the room.


As expected, you would also come across the size difference. The candle holder centerpiece would largely be compact compared to candelabras. Since candelabras are all about imposing their existence in the room, they would be large. Also, candelabras are huge because they are supposed to hold more candles.

Which One To Choose

stone candle holder centerpiece for wall decor

Choosing between the two can sometimes be hard if you are new to using them. Below, we examine how you decide when to use candle holders or candelabras.

  • Consider the occasion. If you are planning a special occasion with many people, go for the candelabras. They are designed to hold several candles and create an elegant atmosphere.
  • Look at the overall layout of the space. Sometimes you can choose the candle holder or candelabra based on the layout. Let us say it is a small table; then using a candle holder centerpiece is better.
  • Consider the aesthetics too. A candle holder can easily blend with most home decor without being an eyesore. The candelabra centerpiece can be good for a sophisticated look but might seem off in some existing decor.
  • What is your budget? A budget can often guide you about which to choose. Candle holders are mostly cheaper than candelabra centerpieces. So, only buy candelabras if they are necessary.


Both a candelabra centerpiece and a candle holder are vital for holding candles. However, they are different in design, functionality, and the occasions when you can use them. Expect the candle holders to be smaller, more versatile, and practical for daily use. As for candelabras, they are best suited for occasional use. So, keep that in mind the next time you want to buy either of the two.


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