Expand the use of tea lights and LED candles to craft easy holiday ornaments and table decor. This can be a most enjoyable time of year with all of the holiday crafting and baking, along with its celebrations, gatherings, and functions. But it can be a stressful time, too; especially when it comes to gifting and decorating creativity. Relax and review some of these craft ideas I've gathered for you!
I saw the first project below last Christmas season but never got around to making any. So this year it was the first craft project on my list to do and share. A benefit to having been delayed a year, there are multiple variations now! This project's main component are a set of tea lights like the ones Leisure Arts sells (#47150).
Use tea lights to make ornaments and luminaries for holiday decor!
The goal is to make Christmas tree ornaments that look like snowmen using the tea lights. Last year when I started gathering supplies I never could find a stove pipe hat so I moved on and chose a felt stocking cap. Luckily I found one misplaced pack of six and bought them. Fast-forward to this year, I followed a Pinterest pin to this post on Tea Light Snowman Ornaments and followed its directions very closely.
I tried to purchase another set of the felt stocking caps [in the same size] as I found last year, but they couldn't be found in a local brick-and-mortar store. After not feeling positive about my manipulating ribbon and glue to replicate a scarf, I just experimented with pipe cleaners and really liked the result. Here is a picture of most of my supplies; some supplies were added as modifications to the original tea light snowman were made.
Most supplies needed for Snowman Santa and Snow Lady tea light ornaments.
Oh, I'm beginning to have a holiday smile on my face!
Positioning the felt hat on tea light with eyes and mouth already marked!
I added a little more personality to each of the light's characters. The Snow Lady has long eyelashes with a warm chenille pipe cleaner scarf. She's wearing ear muffs crafted out of a smaller piece of pipe cleaner and mini poms-poms. Snowman Santa has a gift with him!
Snow Lady tea light wears ear muffs with her chenille scarf. The battery compartment is still accessible from the back
My next project was also inspired by a Pin I saw last year using toilet paper cardboard tubes to fashion owl ornaments.
Molding the cardboard tubes to have owl ears.
I painted my owl a fairly true-to-life color and added details using my black Sharpie marker. As I was looking at the owl's detailed face and feathers, and thinking about its placement on a tree or wreath, it dawned on me to make it a luminary IF a tea light would fit inside the cardboard tube. I had not planned on the owl decoration to be a luminary, so I had to carefully cut slits through the layers of painted cardboard. Next, I used Loctite® Fun-Tak® to hold the tea light in place.
Angled feather-slits made with a craft knife through painted cardboard tube.
Guess what; a tea light from Leisure Arts was the PERFECT FIT!
A tea light fits perfectly inside the cardboard tube; it is held in place with some Loctite® Fun-Tak®.
I hot glued a wooden clothespin (Leisure Arts #48158) to the back of the owl so I could perch it anywhere on a tree or wreath. I think the angle of my feather slits need to changed, and the feathers need to be opened more to enhance more illumination.
A little illumination is visible. Perhaps a different angle or wider slits are needed for more light to be seen.
I think I'll experiment with another owl and circular holes.
A two-tone red owl with pin-pricked holes for better tea light visibility.
The owl's features are done and the tea light is in place!
I checked the "better" illumination by sitting my owl in the office's semi-darkened mail room. I think the red owl will look great on a tree with the tea light snow people!
Sitting in the office mail room.
Now to show you all three tea light ornaments clustered together: Snowman Santa, Snow Lady and Owl. I like the brighter color used to paint the owl red. I think I'll lean towards making more owls in a variety of folk art colors and add whimsical details around the eyes, feathers and wings.
On the office tree! Snowman Santa and the Snow Lady both have their lights on. The owl's light is on, too, but the angle doesn't show it very well.
See the difference in the tea light noses with the light turned on or off. Remember: color the flame orange with a permanent marker.
Next up, more holiday lights on my dining room table at home. I have my LED 3-Pack Candle Set in a row atop a table runner.
The very popular LED 3-pack candle set can be part of a holiday tablescape, too!
I wanted to add to my tabletop candles and decided on making a paper village using my coloring book paper from Art of Coloring Festive (Leisure Arts #6945) and Art of Coloring Holiday (Leisure Arts #7094). I've just gotten started but am very pleased with the simple, clean paper house design found here.
The tea lights make paper house luminaries as part of the table decor.
I looked at many paper house, paper box and paper folded ornament designs but this design by Hello Bee was the best for this project: a house structure to be a luminary and to show off a coloring book design. The paper house on the right has red and green tissue paper taped to the inside of the structure as a line. With the tea light turned on, the tissue paper-lined house was supposed to give a warm holiday glow. However, it was the heaviest tissue paper I've ever felt and was displeased with the effect; that house will get a renovation! I like the intent of the added tissue paper, but I will need to buy some new (traditionally lighter-weight) yellow tissue paper. When the tea light is turned off, the tissue paper liner masks the appearance of the tea light if you don't like it being seen inside the house.
In the early Fall, I showed different ways to use and decorate the LED 3-Pack Candle Set for National LED Day. Along with button garlands wrapped around the pillar candles, other embellishments were incorporated to the tablescape that included leaves, more buttons, baskets, etc. Not shown in my earlier post, was the below image of a wintry decorated candle; it is perfect for Christmas and beyond. I made snowball pom-poms (watch how here) and used them along with another button garland to decorate around the largest LED candle in the set.
These snowball pom-poms look great in holiday colors complementing the ribbon and button garland.
Candy canes are quite popular to use as part of your holiday decorations this time of year. This home decor candy cane candle project is so festive you could use it in any room for some extra holiday glitz. I wanted to try making a ring of candy canes surrounding a large candle, that I first saw here. It was a great decorative tip or trick, but I wanted to use the largest pillar candle from my LED 3-Pack Candle Set so I would not have to worry about the candle burning down.
Simple idea - festive look! I'll use my LED pillar candles and won't worry about any flame!
Since I was going to use a hot glue gun to secure the candy canes to each other and I didn't want any hot glue seepage onto my LED candle, I first made a poster board sleeve, or ring, to fit around my candle. Then I glued each candy cane to the poster board and made the candy cane ring. By using the largest pillar candle from my LED 3-Pack Candle Set I don't have to worry about wax getting a bit too warm for plastic wrapped peppermint candy!
Peppermint candy canes are hot glued to a poster board sleeve [a 3"-4" ring] wrapped around the tallest LED pillar candle.
I bought inexpensive candy canes, white poster board and wide ribbon. Since I wanted a long section of each candy cane to be glued down, I cut a 3"-4" wide strip of poster board to act as a protective sleeve around the LED candle. I tied on a ribbon for extra security to assist holding the candy canes in place. Now I have an extra pop of color that can be added to any room -- and this is before the LED candle is lit!
Fluff out that ribbon -- when you're using an LED pillar candle as part of your table decor!
What a fun and busy couple of weeks I've had preparing and gathering these project ideas for you. I hope they will come in handy and lead you in using your tea lights and LED candles as home decor in different ways than you might have expected - craft on!