Webs of Woven Words, Threads, Stitches and Enchantments

Friday, August 15, 2014

Making Oil Lamps

So... you'd like to have a beautiful oil lamp... or three... or nine... for your altars and shrines, but many of them can be expensive. I have gathered here a few video tutorials about making your own lamps from various bottles and jars.

You have a number of options when it comes to the bottles and jars, just use your imagination. Find colored bottles, plain glass bottles or jars, and decorate them with glass paints, beads strung on wire and molded onto the bottles, ribbons, etc. Just remember to use common sense and practice fire safety.


I found this one easy and interesting, but would not use plastic bottles. This is simple and basic. His intro is a little manly-man with the bullets, etc. but very quick so just grin and bear it.

Another by the same person as above, Jiujitsu2000, that shows how to make a simple oil lamp with an oil/vinegar cruet that can be purchased at any store very inexpensively.

Canning jars with standard oil lamp tops, including the little screw thingy to adjust the wick. These can purchased for very little. Decorate as you see fit. Hurricane shades can be purchased for these which is wonderful when ritual is outside and the wind kicks up, which generally happens after calling the element of air. ; )

Note: don't bother referring to the video channel where she learned about these, Ben has removed his videos.

Any crafter worth her stash can come up with variations on the theme. Another option is really easy, just buys the lamps at garage sales, Goodwill, Salvation Army, or other second hand stores, or big box stores. I live in South Florida and we sometimes get hurricanes and tropical storms so I have a good supply of lamps purchased for a few few dollars each and which have lasted years. That being said, I like the idea of keeping my ritual items separate from daily use items. I also like the idea of decorating and then dedicating individual lamps to my particular goddesses, ancestors, and spiritual guides.

Here are some photos gathered from the web which show to tops of bottles and canning jars as well as some seasonal decorations.

I would be sure to remove all labels unless you have something really special and appropriate.

Use standard wick or 100% cotton yarn as show in the first two videos.

 Standard canning jar lamp.

 Blue canning jar lamps, possibly vintage jars.

 Caps and lid

Something special for the winter holidays.

Oh, but what about oil, you ask. Well, again, you have many options; the standard paraffin lamp oil, some of the finer more refined lamp oils, scented lamp oils, and olive oil. I've used olive oil in a clay lamp and like the way that worked. In the jars and bottles or hurricane lamps, I use a good quality paraffin lamp oil. I don't go for the inexpensive when it comes to oil.


Again, USE COMMON SENSE and FIRE SAFETY. Wipe up oil drips and spills, wipe the bottles and jars of any drips of oil before lighting. Do not leave lamps unattended or where children or pets can reach them.

Blessings nine!

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