Sidebar Sidebar Sidebar
 6 Meaningful Ways to Use Oil Lamps

6 Meaningful Ways to Use Oil Lamps

Mar 23rd 2023

You may know that oil lamps make gorgeous home decor. They provide warm yet bright lighting on your mantlepiece or coffee table, and even when they're not lit, their graceful lines make for a pretty, reflective piece of art.

But did you know that they're so much more than that?

Here are six creative ways an oil lamp can enrich your life, adding meaning and joy in unexpected ways.

1. Illuminate life's most special moments.

Danforth engravable Lodge family of oil lamps pictured on a shelf against a brick wall

"We used [the Lodge Oil Lamp] at our wedding to replace the traditional unity candle. It worked out great and now we can light it on every anniversary! Highly recommend!" —Maylene

Oil lamps make for beautiful additions to rituals, from weddings to anniversaries to retirements. With their symbolism of light, warmth, and longevity, it's easy to find creative ways to use an oil lamp to light up life's most momentous occasions.

(P.S. If your globe breaks, or when you run out oil or wick, fear not! You can find all lighting accessories and replacements right here at Danforth.)

2. Create backyard lighting that will dazzle your guests.

You might be surprised at how much light our oil lamps give! Even large patios and porches can be illuminated by our lamps, which make an eye-catching alternative to globe lights or candles, yet rival those for creating am elegant and even whimsical ambience. 

Oil lamps also make lovely centerpieces at tables both indoor and out. Level-up your next backyard BBQ with oil lamps at each table.

In that vein, some people even take their oil lamps camping to glam up their set-up!

Danforth Leaf Medallion oil lamp sitting on a wooden outdoor table

3. Start a tradition that will last generations.

Route 100 Oil Lamp by Danforth Pewter

"The workmanship on this lamp is a true example of the artisans at Danforth. This lamp is the fourth one that I have purchased. All of them are not only beautiful but totally functional in the event of an emergency. All of these lamps will be passed down to my daughters at some point. Danforth, thank you for keeping the tradition alive." —Robert

Danforth designs are created to last for generations, making them lovely choices for starting or carrying on traditions. Many of our lamps hold special meaning, which allows them to mark occasions such as moving, graduating, or anniversaries. One example of that is the Route 100 Oil Lamp, which makes a meaningful welcome gift for someone who's moving to the Green Mountain State. 

4. Make the everyday feel special.

Many people love to create daily or nightly rituals using oil lamps. Fortunately, oil lamps are extremely versatile, so these rituals can be as original as you are.

Here are some ideas...

  • Light an oil lamp to accompany you as you journal or meditate before bed.
  • Use them at family gatherings to commemorate a loved one who has passed.
  • Light one before a meal to offer a prayer or meditation of thanks
Danforth large Cape oil lamp with a hammered rim sitting on an end table

"This is the first oil lamp I've ever owned. I've researched many lamps to use for inevitable emergency situations and loved the design of the Cape Oil Lamp. I gathered the entire family around for a lighting ceremony and the lamp did not disappoint. Last night I had a great conversation with my older teenage son, and this lamp really helped create a calm ambience for a serious conversation. One of my top ten all-time favorite purchases to date! Thank you for making such a fine lamp, both functional and elegant. The Cape Oil lamp will definitely outlive me." —Adam on the Cape Oil Lamp

5. Give a gift with meaning.

Danforth Chamber oil lamp on a white end table next to flowers

In today's world, it can be hard to find gifts that really stand out from the rest. Oil lamps, especially handspun pewter ones, are utterly unique, and are well received as gifts for any occasion.

"This lamp was a gift from my son. I light it every morning while I enjoy my Bible-reading quiet time and coffee. The craftsmanship is just beautiful! It will be a treasured heirloom in my family for generations. This is like a gateway piece...makes me want more lamps and pewter things in my life!" —Wendy on the Chamber Oil Lamp

Some of our lamps are themed, such as the Coastal Oil Lamp (available in blue and classic pewter). This nautically themed design makes a fantastic gift for anyone who loves to escape to the beach, especially someone with coastal decor and/or to welcome them into their new beach home.

One customer, Brianna, wrote about the Coastal / Waters Oil Lamp, "My family got this for me as a housewarming gift and I absolutely love it! The design is lovely and intricate. We live on the coast, so the design is even better. I can't believe these are made by hand! The size is perfect- not too big, not too small. It works great too. Very easy to use. The lamp is pretty sturdy and seems to be well built, so it should last a long time. It's an all around great product!"

6. Provide light and comfort during a power outage.

"We have two Bay Oil Lamps for our dining room table. They make a nice change from the usual candles when we have guests. And during a Florida hurricane they double as emergency lighting...During a hurricane power outage you need all the light sources you can get.

"We also have the matching Cape lamp for our coffee table, likewise a novel alternative to candles that our friends enjoy. Additionally, the lamp oil you market is odorless & smokeless, unlike the kerosene oil we used when I was a kid in the 1950s for our older "hurricane" lamps as we called them, because that's the only time we'd use them.

"Pewter is very elegant, their style goes well with our other tableware, and the size is perfect for the purpose, they don't overpower the table.

"We have already recommended them to others." —Jim

We hope you find peace and meaning not just our oil lamps but all our products. Every lamp we sell is made individually, by hand, on our century-old-lathe in our Middlebury, Vermont studio—and so each one is as special as the home it goes to.

See how our oil lamps are made!.