May 7, 2009

Handmade Tea-Light Candle Holders

My 3-year-old made this candle holder. All the kids enjoy making these to give away as gifts. They make great gifts for grandparents, aunts, and uncles, etc. Great project idea to offer up to Dad for making mother's day gifts as well.

You'll need a small GLASS jar with an opening large enough to accommodate a tea-light candle. Dijon mustard jars, maraschino cherry jars, and babyfood jars are perfect.

If you've been saving the gift tissue from gifts, you are all set. If not, you can buy some if you need to. The more colors and patterns, the better. My child chose to stick with one pattern, and for his age of 3, I chose to keep the pieces more square for ease. Cut up your chosen tissue papers into irregular shapes, and store extra in a baggie for the next time. Each time makes for a unique gift. Multiple colors gives a special stained glass effect once the candle is inserted and lit.

You will also need glue. I have not investigated flammability of craft glues of any sort, but I know you can use what we do--regular ol' white school glue. You can thin it out a bit with water if you like as well. We don't. To apply the glue, you'll need a child-style paintbrush or foam craft brush. It's probably best to ensure minimal glue gets on the inside portion of your jar.

Paint one side of the jar and apply your tissue paper, and repeat all the way around. Overlapping is great. It's okay to go over the tissue paper with the glue to help flatten out any wrinkles. Imperfection for toddlers is sweet in my opinion.

It's obviously best to keep any tissue paper from overlapping into the mouth of the jar as well due to flammability. If your jar is tall enough, then you really won't need to worry about this due to the height of a tea-light candle. Do NOT use votive candles in your handmade candle holders. You may also embellish your handmade candle holder externally with a variety of items, foam shapes, sticky letters, glitter, etc. To add glitter, paint a layer of glue over the paper and sprinkle it on. Glitter should only be used for children who are able to handle their creation minimally, as the glitter will get on their hands. You don't want glitter to get into a youngster's eyes, so use with caution.

Allow to dry, and you're all set.


  1. I think this would be a good grandparents day gift from a little one.

  2. They do seem to enjoy it. We just saved some large pickle jars for the older kids the next time around. We can put larger candles in them and embellish them more. We'll post pictures of those one day. Welcome!