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Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883
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Upcycled Life: Floating candles

UPDATED: Sat., Oct. 9, 2021

By Katie Patterson Larson For The Spokesman-Review

Upcycling materials for holiday decorations is a great way to opt out of single-use decor. These floating candles made out of cardboard tubes will be sure to impress your wizard-loving friends.

Find toilet paper or paper towel tubes and cut them to your desired length. I used toilet paper rolls just as they are.

Using a hot glue gun, add a generous amount of glue drips from what will be the top edge of your candle to resemble melting wax. Make a ridge of hot glue inside the top edge that is the same depth as small battery votive candles.

Paint the tube, including the glue, with white paint. Alternatively, you could make black or other colored candles.

Using clear thread and a needle, thread the string right under the ridge where the votive will sit. Tie the thread together in a loop so you can hang each floating candles from a chandelier or outside on your porch.

Turn on the votives and set them inside the top of the tubes. When the lights are dim, they will look perfectly magical.

Katie Patterson Larson is the director and founder of Art Salvage. Art Salvage keeps usable materials out of the waste stream and makes them accessible and affordable. For more information, visit

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