Four reasons I am in love with mason jar oil lamp:
- So easy yet so pretty, takes only 2 minutes to make using vegetable oils and water!
- Even safer than candles: if it’s knocked over, the flame would be immediately extinguished by the oil and water. Still, please follow basic safety steps and don’t leave the lamp unattended!
- Bright and long lasting: 1 tablespoon of oil can last 2 hours!
- Mysterious and magical: thousands of years of history, remember someone named Aladdin rubbed an oil lamp, and a genie appeared? =)
In a more practical sense, these oil lamps are the perfect last minute decorations for dinner parties and festive gatherings!
Now are you ready for the magic carpet ride?
(Update: we made a new set of mason jar oil lanterns this year. Check them out plus lots of helpful tips at the end ! )
Some of the helpful resources are affiliate links. Full disclosure here.
Materials we will need:
- Large floating wicks: to be honest, I tried some oil lamp tutorials with long cotton wicks, and failed completely! The long wicks simply don’t draw up enough oil (lamp oil can work, but vegetable oils have high viscosity) and would burn up and and flame would go out. These floating wicks work beautifully for all veggie oils!
- vegetable oil: 1 tablespoon of oil can last 2 hours. Olive oil, sunflower oil, canola oil and many others all work well.
- mason jars, glass bottles, water, and some decorative elements such as flowers, pine cones, pebbles, etc.
- You can infuse your oil with herbs, spices or essential oils for a lovely fragrance!
First, gather some glass bottles and jars, fill with flowers or other treasures. Cover with water.
Step 2: pour some vegetable oil on top, till the oil form a layer of about 1/4″ thick.
The large floating wicks come with discs and small waxed wicks. Insert a piece of the waxed wicks half way through the center hole on the disc, and put it on top of the oil.
Now light it and enjoy the beautiful glow!
The flowers and fruits will last a whole week in the water.
Pine cones, pebbles, beads are all great additions too!
To extinguish the flame, just put the lids on the jars. The floating wicks can stay in there.
Here are some new one we just made!
Thanks to everyone who asked some great questions! Here is an update on some additional tips:
- After many uses, the waxed wick will burn off, just replace it with a small piece of pre-waxed wick that you can cut into small pieces. The floating disc can last a very long time.
- some flowers will float to the top, you can hold the stem down with some small rocks, glass beads etc
- add food coloring in the water for a special effect!
- light olive oil and sunflower seed oil burns quite clean, I have not notice smoke except for when they are extinguished.
- fake plants will work too!
Related Article: Easiest DIY Hanging Glass Jar Lanterns
Some more nature inspired fun for you: Make botanical ice luminaries-
Have a lovely weekend everyone! xo