Holiday gift idea: make a cake stand for your foodie friend

Here’s an idea for your holiday gift giving — unique cake stands made from thrift store finds using glass candlestick holders and attractive plates.  All you need is one pretty plate, a glass candlestick holder and a tube of epoxy. And the urge to go thrift store shopping, a favorite past-time of mine when I am in the U.S. (My Mexican readers may not find materials for this project so easily, unless Walmart has glass candlestick holders.) I read about this while cruising the net one night. Wandering Chopsticks, a Vietnamese food blog, had all the instructions.

I look for special plates with a bit of flair, something that sets them apart from the ordinary. The plate on the left is by Dansk and made in Japan, the center plate has a leaf motif and may be hand-painted, and a Spode bone china plate from England is on the right. None of the plates cost more than $2, and the candlesticks were around $1 each. (Chiles from my sister’s garden in Santa Fe, New Mexico, are on the Dansk plate,  in case you are wondering.) Wandering Chopsticks also used glass goblets, but I prefer the look of candlestick holders. You may like the glasses, so check out her site to see what she made.

To make a cake stand, clean both plate and candlestick holder with very hot, soapy water. If  the candlestick holder is second-hand, check for any wax residue and remove completely. Wipe the areas where the epoxy will be applied with rubbing alcohol to insure super cleanliness.

Measure across the bottom of the plate to determine the exact center. Apply epoxy to the candlestick holder rim, and place on the upturned plate. Work on newspaper in case there are any drips of epoxy that escape you.

If any movement happens when you place the candlestick holder on the plate, you have a few minutes to make adjustments and reposition the candlestick holder. Don’t try to turn the plate right side up — the epoxy is too fluid and the plate may slide around. Leave the plate upside down and place a plate on top of the candlestick holder, with a weight on it. Leave the plate undisturbed overnight, until the epoxy is completely set.

After I made the round of thrift stores in Santa Fe, I set out my purchases and played around with different combinations of candlestick holders and plates, with an eye for matching height of candlestick holder to size of plate, and design of candlestick holder to the pattern on the plate. I particularly liked the square candlestick holder on the right (above).

For long-life for your recycled cake stand, carefully wash by hand, not in the dishwasher. And, of course, you will now have to bake something to display your new plate. Maybe Coconut Macaroons. Or Eggnog Cream Cake or Fruitcake Bars for the holidays.

16 thoughts on “Holiday gift idea: make a cake stand for your foodie friend

  1. Vicki in GA

    I read your post again and took an internet tour of Rose’s website, amazing recipes, fun food blogs mentioned at Rose’s site, viewed The Pioneer Woman giving Al Roker a buttery handshake on the TODAY show, now back to Mexico and you! I love the web.

    The fruitcake bars are a winner – I’m one of those odd balls who LOVES fruitcake.

    1. I love the web, also. Living here in Mexico, without reading material in English that is available or affordable (a copy of Bon Appetit in Mexico is almost $8), I appreciate being able to have a library at my finger tips.
      Fruitcake is a favorite of ours, too, as long as it is made with dried fruit, instead of candied fruit, less sugar, and some or all whole wheat flour. I even make fruitcakes in June when Russ asks for one for his birthday cake!

  2. Lorin Johnson

    Kathleen, what a cleaver idea and so simple to do. Too bad I don’t have a spare moment as I can see our local Goodwill from here at my computer desk.

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