DIY Tiki Torch Bottles

My husband and I just built a patio and I’ve been so excited to spend time out there! Unfortunately, we don’t have a ton of lighting and there are a lot of bugs, which doesn’t create the best experience after dark.

We talked about buying tiki torches, but being the crafter that I am, I save a lot of bottles and jars so I decided to use what we had to make some for our outdoor table.

It took less than 10 minutes to make them and they work wonderfully! If you’d like to make your own, follow the steps below.

Tiki Torch Supplies

Note: Pick a bottle that has a twist-off cap. The couplings won’t fit just any bottle so choose wisely.

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Step 1: fill the bottles with torch fuel

If you’re using weights in the bottles, now is the time to add them (before the fuel).

Be careful with this step. The fuel is flammable and can easily catch fire if it’s near an open flame so be sure to keep it off your hands and clothes and clean up afterward.

Take your bottles outside or to the sink and fill them with tiki torch fuel through the funnel. (I used one as well but forgot to add it to the pictures.) This is the easiest way to make sure the fluid is contained at all times.

Step 2: Add the couplings to the wicks

There are two important things to remember when setting up your coupling and wick.

  1. When you twist on the coupling, make sure the side with the black rubber pieces are facing the bottom of the wick. These pieces keep the coupling from moving around inside the bottle top.
  2. Keep the wick less than an inch above the coupling. That flame can get big, so keep the wick short.

Step 3: put the wick in the bottle

Push the wick and coupling into the bottle and you’re done!

Now you can take them to your table, light them, and enjoy!

Tiki Torch Safety

I’m probably telling you something you already know, but bear with me because I want you to be safe while you enjoy your new tiki torches. Please keep the following in mind while in use:

  • Tiki torch fuel is flammable. Be careful with the bottles around an open flame.
  • In addition, the bottles you’re using are glass. Please be careful around the bottles whether they are lit or not. If they get knocked over, that liquid will spill everywhere and the bottle could potentially break. Consider purchasing a tin bottle holder or bucket to keep bottles from tipping over.
  • Don’t overfill your bottle with torch fuel. As long as the wick is submerged, the wick will light. It doesn’t need to be filled to the rim to get a flame.
  • Don’t leave your torches unattended! We’re talking about fire here.
  • When you’re finished, extinguish your tiki torches. You want to make sure the flame is completely smothered before you go back inside.
  • Don’t use your tiki toches indoors.

Smoke Art in Bottles

Artist Jim Dingilian’s series of works feature several glass bottles displaying monochrome landscapes. What separates Dingilian’s “paintings” from other works, other than his unique curved canvases, is his technique—he paints with candle smoke. After laying a coat of soot on the lining of the bottles, the artist wipes and etches away with skewers and needles to construct the meticulously defined landscapes. The tedious task requires steady hands and the utmost patience.Interestingly, the artist’s chosen environments are areas that the specific bottle may be found in. Dingilian says, “The miniature scenes I depict are of locations on the edge of suburbia which seem mysterious or even slightly menacing despite their commonplace nature. The bottles add to the implied narratives of transgression. When found by the sides of roads or in the weeds near the edges of parking lots, empty liquor bottles are artifacts of consumption, delight, or dread. As art objects, they become hourglasses of sorts, their drained interiors now inhabited by dim memories.”

Dingilian’s artistically crafted bottles are currently on display at two exhibition spaces. They can be viewed as part of the group series entitled Swept Away: Dust, Ashes, and Dirt in Contemporary Art and Design at The Museum of Arts at The Museum of Arts and Design in New York until August 12, 2012 and at The Aldrich Contemporary Art Museum in Connecticut, under the exhibit title Subtractive Images, until June 10, 2012.



Images via McKenzie Fine Art
via [Neatorama]Info/source directly from My Modern Metropolis