Britain's weather can be decidedly hit and miss in the summer time, with an annual debate taking place seemingly every year among weather forecasters about whether or not we'll get a barbecue summer.
However, when the sunshine does make an appearance, there's nothing more glorious than being able to get out in the garden, gather together friends and family and enjoy a garden party.
They're much more chic than a BBQ and you don't have to worry about packing food up like you would for a picnic, plus you can hold them at any time of the day - we particularly love them in the early evening, when dusk is approaching and the scents of the flowers help to create a magical, enchanted atmosphere.
This is also a great time to go to town with lighting. We've seen lots of garden parties made more beautiful by strings of fairy lights suspended from tree branches, but don't forget that candles can also create a dazzling display when used outdoors. They're not just for inside, after all.
In fact, creating a candlescape is a fantastic and surprisingly easy way to liven up your tables and ensure you have centrepieces that all your guests will be talking about.
All you need to do is begin with some candles of different sizes and something to place them on (or in), add some decorative items and arrange them prettily - et voila! Something unique, bespoke and charming as the sun goes down.
If you haven't much time, simply take a heat-proof mat or plate (we love grey slate for this) and set one of Heyland & Whittle's candles in a glass in the middle. Put two smaller candles in votives just in front of it and slightly apart, then light them.
You'll be amazed at the effect this very basic spacing of light has - and this arrangement is good to go on the table.
However, we'd highly recommend trying out some seasonal looks if you get the opportunity. For example, you could pick some large flowers such as Michaelmas daisies or gerberas and thread them into the type of wicker wreath you can pick up inexpensively at your local florist's.
Sit the wreath in the centre of the table and put a tall candle in the centre and you've instantly created something very bohemian.
Experiment with different looks and items once you've got the hang of it - LED fairly lights, mirror tiles, beads, Martini glasses and leaves will all complement your candles perfectly, so it's just a case of trying things out and seeing what works best.
It's also worth pointing out here that your centrepieces will be fragrant if you're using our high-quality soy candles too. This is ideal if you haven't got lots of perfectly maintained flower beds to cast their scent over the proceedings - let our rose, jasmine and citrus essential oils do the job instead!
Finally, just a quick word about safety. Remember to ensure your candles are on a heat-resistant surface rather than standing directly on the picnic table and keep lit wicks at least 10cm apart so they don't overheat (we know this is rather basic, but it's easy to overlook when you're busy deciding what sandwiches and cocktails to serve up!).
Also, use one of our candle snuffers when it's time to blow your candles out as they prevent sparks and hot wax from being blown around, which is important if you've got flowers or leaves beneath.
Recommended products for candlescape creation this summer:
• Jasmine & Lilac Candle in a Glass - perfect for sending out a sultry scent, even if you haven't got green fingers
• Neroli & Rose Candle in a Tin - you'll love the soothing rose in this, plus it's the perfect height for elevation on a stand or in a wide glass
• Mini Votive Candle Gift Set - a selection of miniature candles for placing around their larger counterparts
• Candle Snuffer - for putting everything out safely at the end of the evening
Why not give candlescapes a try? We'd love to see your results, so do send us pictures of your successful centrepieces too and let us know which fragrances you've enjoyed.