Introduction: Floating Candles! CHEAP Yet Magical!

Picture of Floating Candles! CHEAP Yet Magical!

I don't know about you, but one of my all-time favorite scenes from the Harry Potter series, is the one in the Grand Hall with the floating candles. It's so simple, and yet so breath-taking! I wanted to re-create that look for a party I held, so let me show you how a mere muggle made something magical ;)

Step 1: You Will Need

Picture of You Will Need

This project is a bit time consuming, BUT

very inexpensive, and super worth it! Here's what you'll need:

  • White battery tea lights (sometimes dollar stores will carry them, but you can also get them cheap around Halloween) I spent 25 cents or less on each one.
  • White poster board/white card stock as many as you wish, cut to 8X10 inches. (I made 50)
  • Clear fishing line
  • White ceiling eye hooks
  • Hot glue gun/hot glue sticks
  • White craft paint/paint brush
  • Scissors

Step 2: Make Your Candle Bodies

Picture of Make Your Candle Bodies

You can use toilet paper and paper towel rolls as well, but it can take a long time to collect them, and places like Etsy sell them for WAY TOO MUCH! So, just make them, added bonus you don't have to paint them :)

  • I used poster board cut to 8X10 pieces, but card stock would work as well.
  • Cut your pieces
  • Roll cut pieces length wise and hot glue shut

Step 3: Tops and Bottoms!

Picture of Tops and Bottoms!
  • Cut small circles and rectangles
  • Glue the circles to the bottom of your candles
  • Fit the rectangles into the top of the the candles and secure with hot glue (this will serve as a holder for the tea lights)

Step 4: Drip Drip Drop!

Picture of Drip Drip Drop!

Now the fun part! Create wax drips on your candles with hot glue! You can add just a few little drops, or make it a melty mess! So fun!

Then when the drips have cooled paint them with white craft paint, and let dry.

Step 5: Create Ceiling Structure

Picture of Create Ceiling Structure

You could hang each candle from the ceiling individually, BUT an easier way to hang them is to create a structure with fishing line on the ceiling, and then hang the candles from that.

  • pick points on the ceiling that are opposite from each other (whatever distance you choose)
  • Place eye hooks on these points
  • String fishing line from one hook to the other
  • Now you can hang candles from the line, instead of individual hooks

Step 6: String Them Up!

Picture of String Them Up!
  • Add fishing line to your candles.
  • If you want them to hand upright, tie them on opposite sides, then on one strand in the middle of those 2 strands
  • Hang candles from structure

Step 7: Light - Em Up!

Picture of Light - Em Up!

Turn Tea lights on, and place them in each candle.

* Tea light batteries can last anywhere from 4 to 24 hours. Be aware of how long they last, so you know when to turn them on for your event.

Step 8: Enjoy Your Magical Creation!

Picture of Enjoy Your Magical Creation!

Muggles have some magic up our sleeves ( we just need time... and fishing line)

If you liked this Instructable please vote for it for the Wizarding Challenge!

Thank you for reading!


emilyvanleemput (author)2016-08-09

Nice! They look so realistic! (as far as floating candles can look realistic, of course ;)

Awe, thank you!

heinzdrei (author)2016-08-12

This is a fantastic effect and so easy. Two Harry Potter themed birthdays coming up in the family, this is sire to be made :)

That Redhead (author)heinzdrei2016-08-12

Thank you so much!

MartinM114 (author)2016-07-21

This is very good idea. I am only curious how do you light on and off all candles during the day? I think they are separate and it's a bit tricky to turn all the lights on and off every time.

That Redhead (author)MartinM1142016-07-26

You can purchase remote controlled tea lights, but yes, I turned them on and off one by one on my ladder.

syates3 (author)2016-07-19

You could use paraffin wax on the tubes to give them the look of real candles rather then glue bit more delicate unless the tunes where filed with a hard foam. But using real eax would be purely cosmetic. In the first movie they did use real candles for the scene hung on wires but dye to safety concerns in later movies replaced them with cgi. Also i think they had to use wires on top abs bottom but 3 string over 2 harnessing would keep your candles floating straight.

That Redhead (author)syates32016-07-20

Great ideas! Thanks!

DonW59 (author)2016-07-19

Pretty damn cool if you ask me!

That Redhead (author)DonW592016-07-20

Wow! Thank you!!!!

KalpeshT1 made it! (author)2016-07-19

wow i am really happy to know that it is possible to do very easily without waste of money anymore.thank you for sharing with me dear.

That Redhead (author)KalpeshT12016-07-20

I'm so glad! That made my day! :)

Mark 42 (author)2016-07-19

Instead of fishing line, pull a thread out of an old nylon stocking - very difficult to see.

That Redhead (author)Mark 422016-07-19

Really? How interesting, is it strong?

Mark 42 (author)That Redhead2016-07-20

IIRC, it's fairly strong.
Used it for a magic trick as a kid (45 years ago)

Ghostrider13 (author)2016-07-19

Very cool. Great job.

Thank you so much!

No prob. I like this and it's a safe alternative to candles. You so totally rock!

LeslieGeee (author)2016-07-19

Hi GREAT idea!!!! Thank you for sharing :) I have one suggestion. Instead of using screw in eye hooks in your ceiling that will leave marks why not use Command Hooks? They come in various styles and sizes. I have two hanging wooden dragon and bird sculptures from Indonesia and I hung them from my ceiling with the tiny clear Command hooks. Haven't dropped and if I want to move them I can take the hooks down by pulling on the sticky tape and no marks no holes :)

command hooks - Google Search

That Redhead (author)LeslieGeee2016-07-19

Brilliant!!!!!!!!!!!! Yes! That was the one bummer afterward was filling in little holes, you are a genius!

TimB2 (author)2016-07-19

Maybe these will keep the Nargles away too.

That Redhead (author)TimB22016-07-19

Ha! Love it!

DavidM45 (author)2016-07-19

My favorite part is the dripping hot glue ( doesn't that happen anyway) This is hot and the floating candles are a great idea too ;-) Really love your wizardry I voted you a winner. - David

That Redhead (author)DavidM452016-07-19

Wow, such a compliment! Thank you so much!

PlanetaryGear (author)2016-07-19

This is an awesome idea! Putting them on strings strung across the ceiling is brilliant. Since they are hanging on strings you could add some motion to them with a traditional crank ghost mechanism and make them even more realistic :) adapting something like to just very slowly add and remove slack from 3 of the lines across the room should not be difficult, though hiding the mechanism might be, you might have to run those 3 strings up from behind a couch and through some eyelets as opposed to mounting it on the ceiling.

That is such a great idea!!!!! I love it!

BobS135 (author)2016-07-19

Spraying the fishing line with a non-gloss clear spray (available under names like Dullcote) will help keep them from reflecting any light and appearing shiny.

That Redhead (author)BobS1352016-07-19

Yes! I discovered this trick as well! Works wonderfully!

p0laris (author)2016-07-19

I wish there was an easy way o turn them all on/off at once!

That Redhead (author)p0laris2016-07-19

I'm with you! I actutually heard you can order remote controlled tea lights! Check this out!

This is great!!! Harry Potter is awesome! And the Grand Hall scene with the floating candles is awesome! Great job!

Wow, thank you so much! I love that scene so much, that really means a lot to me.

You are very welcome!!

negligibleap (author)2016-07-08

Its tremendous

You are too kind! Thank you so much!

RobinDean (author)2016-07-07

Fantastic!!! Thanks for posting this!

That Redhead (author)RobinDean2016-07-07

Thank you so much!!!!

sj77 (author)2016-07-06

this is very cool.I am a big harry potter fan

That Redhead (author)sj772016-07-06

Thank you!!! Harry Potter rules!

sj77 (author)That Redhead2016-07-07

true that

THEFIRSTBDC (author)2016-07-06

Very Kewl...sweet "Ible"!

That Redhead (author)THEFIRSTBDC2016-07-06

Thank you so much! Thanks for reading!

sujistar (author)2016-07-06

oh i love them

That Redhead (author)sujistar2016-07-06

Yay! Thank you!

Lorddrake (author)2016-07-06

next up you can do the floating jack-o-lanterns :)

That Redhead (author)Lorddrake2016-07-06

Ooooh! Great idea! Thanks for stopping by!

shreekulkarni (author)2016-07-05

Really nice

Thank you so much!

TheThinker (author)2016-07-05

Very cool! Thanks for sharing.

That Redhead (author)TheThinker2016-07-05

Thank you so much!

About This Instructable




Bio: Designer of things, Maker of weirdness and Baker of the macabre.
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