Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Wine Bottle Lanterns

Last night, I got together with some friends to make the wine bottle lanterns I had mentioned in one of my enewsletters (what? you don’t get my enewsletters? Sign-up here.) as our June “How Do They Do That?” class.

I served up some watermelon with goat cheese (a great combo introduced to me by my dear friend, Sheila) and cantaloupe with prosciutto –and some wine, of course—then we got started.

You will need:

an empty wine bottle

one, 1/2” x 3/8” copper coupling

one, 1/2” copper cap

one tiki replacement wick

a roll of Teflon tape, 1/2”

torch fuel (not shown)

wine bottler lanterns 002

After one false start of wrapping the wrong end of the coupling piece, this project took about 10 minutes. Super easy!

So, you start by wrapping the large end of the coupling with teflon tape until it fits snuggly in the neck of the bottle. (Now, try to keep up . . .)

You then insert your wick into the coupling, so it sticks out beyond the narrower end by about a 1/2”.

Then, using a funnel, pour the fuel into the wine bottle—be careful not to overfill.

Then you stick the wick into the bottle—with the tip fitting into the neck of the bottle.


The cap is used to keep the wick dry when not in use.

Here’s Travis demonstrating his mastery of the teflon tape.

wine bottle lanterns 001

Here’s Ryan demonstrating what not to do—this product is not for consumption!

wine bottle lanterns 002

Taylor diligently tending to her project.

wine bottle lanterns 003

The finished wine bottle lantern/torch . . .

wine bottle lanterns 004

A couple notes:

1. The refill wicks available at home improvement centers are a good size for the coupling, but they only reach two-thirds of the way down the bottle. Granted, they will absorb fuel without touching the bottom, I thought I’d rather have one that does; plus I wanted something a little more economical. I found this web site where I purchased 10’ long lengths of the wick—even with shipping, it was less expensive than the refill packages. While the coupling opening is 3/8” we decided the large wick would be better—next time I’ll get the 1/2” wick. If you’re going to make quite a few of them, you might want to order, otherwise, shop local.

2. The picture below shows a bracket you can make to attach the bottle to your privacy fence or deck, which would look cool, but make me crazy nervous about fire hazards—the link for those instructions are here.

wine bottle lantern

3. Never leave an open flame unattended and don’t run with scissors.

As always, for me anyway, it wasn’t the project as much as it was the friends! Thanks to Karen, Ericka, Lauren, Debbie, Ryan, Taylor and Travis who came and participated. I had a great time with you all!

One parting shot—Travis posted this on Facebook as soon as they got home (about a 100 yard walk down the street). Lovely . . .

T & R lanterns on table

Thanks for your indulgence!


I'm linking to French Inspired Thursday--thinking you might use your empty French wine bottles! I am having trouble with blogger and loading the picture for the link, so just click on the words link.


Tanya said...

Great idea Paige. Is the coupling from the plumbing dept? I think they look really good in the white wine bottles. As red drinkers we'll ask a restaurant to save us some white wine bottles. I'm with you, the mounted ones make me a little nervous too. Is your newsletter electronic? Should I sign up or is it for locals?

Paige Thomas King said...

Yes--the coupling and end cap can be found in plumbing supplies. My enewsletter is electronic. I send out decorating ideas, plus local info. You can sign-up, but if you find that it's not of interest, you can always cancel. I appreciate your interest! As far as the bottles go--I'd use any color you can get your hands on! We have some blue bottles we'll be using soon!

Anonymous said...

This is such an awesome idea, but I've run into a problem... everytime we light the lantern it goes out on it's own in about five minutes. the flame slowly gets smaller and smaller until it's totally gone. Have you had any problem with this or do you have any suggestions to fix?

Paige Thomas King said...

I haven't had that problem. I am wondering if we're using different wicks. Perhaps that is it.
Sorry I am not better help . . .

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