How To Make Elegant Water Candles

how to make elegant water candles

Have you ever wondered how water candles are made? Do you need an elegant centerpiece for a gathering, wedding, or reception hall? Well I am going to tell you how to make elegant water candles that are beautiful every time in just a few simple steps. Let’s get started!

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Pick A Container For Your Elegant Water Candle

Like any candle you will need a suitable container. I have found that short and narrow containers are a bit more challenging to use. So typically I will use a mid size or large container. Mason jars and glass cups are fine to use for this type of candle. I have used a vase, a stemless wineglass, an old baby food jar, and a small hexagonal jar to make this project.

Gather Decor

You can add any type of decor to your water candle that you like. For this specific type of elegant water candle you can use virtually anything regardless of if it is flammable or not. This is because your flame should never reach anything under the water surface. I used all non-flammables for this project.

Here are the decor choices I made for my water candle.

White Sand


Glass Beads

Vase Filler Gems


Rose Gold Foil

Place Your Decor In The Container

Simply layer your decor however you like in your container. For this elegant water candle demonstration I layered my white sand first. Followed by my glass marbles, beads, and shells. Some people use figurines and artificial flowers. It is totally up to you how to decorate your container. These always turn out so beautiful!

Add Water

You can’t have an elegant water candle without water of course. Simply add water to your containers taking care to leave a space at the top. There is no exact measurement as your containers may vary.

Add Oil

You can add virtually any oil you want to your water candle. I personally prefer to use grape seed oil. It is light in color, it provides a decent longevity for your elegant water candles, and it floats to the surface quickly and evenly. Add a layer of oil that is a little less than a half inch thick.

In this demonstration, I used a few different oils. Olive oil, grape seed oil, and vegetable oil. All of them worked fine.

Grapeseed oil

Cut Out A Piece Of Thin Light Plastic

Ok this step is probably the trickiest part of the entire project. I simply use recycled plastic that I had already laying around the house. Nearly any thin clam shell packaging can be used. The plastic I used was from an empy pack of deli meat, a new pack of drill bits, and a pack of command strips. If you have nothing lying around to use then you can simply purchase thin crafting plastic from Amazon.

Simply take a pair of scissors and cut your plastic into a circular shape that is roughly 1/3 to 1/2 the size of your container opening. Use an exacto knife or sharp precision blade to carefully carve an X pattern in the center of your cut out. Your cutting doesn’t have to be perfect because you really won’t see the plastic once it is in place.

Grab A Wick

After you have cut out your plastic with an X in the center you will need to grab a wick of your choice. If you have wax coated wicks like I did, simply take a bladed edge and scrape off the wax.

Run the wick through the X you made and trim it down. Leave about a 1/2 inch to 1/4 inch of the wick underneath the plastic. Then, leave about 3/4 inch wick on the top side of the plastic. This doesn’t have to be 100% precise and you may have to experiment a little to get your plastic to wick ratio just right.

Place Your Candle Where You Want It And Float Your Wick On Top

Now, place your candle where you want it as it can be hard to move a water candle once it is lit. Gently sit your light plastic piece on top of the water surface. It should float along with the wick. A bit of your wick should be submerged into the oil layer and a part should be sticking out on the top. If your wick underneath is slightly touching the water that is fine.

Your plastic and wick size can vary depending on your container and preferences.

Light Your Elegant Water Candle And Enjoy!

Now it is time to light your elegant water candles and enjoy it! These are oh so beautiful and I’ve found that many people ask me how I made them and compliment them highly.

I hope you enjoy this craft and it brightens your home or special event. Do leave a comment if you attempt this and let me know how it goes! Stay safe, healthy, and crafty!

One Last Thing

If you enjoy this craft and are interested in other crafts like soap making, etching, painting, resin art, bath bomb making, and more…check out my product recommendation page!

Also, if you liked this post you may like some of my other ones.

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11 thoughts on “How To Make Elegant Water Candles”

      1. Hi! Great question! When you cut the wick make sure it is about an inch to half inch above the plastic. The wick absorbs the oil and burns quite slowly. It depends on what oil you use but these will last quite a while before ever reaching the plastic. For safety I would recommend blowing out the candle before it reaches that point. If you want to experiment with a much longer wick you could totally do that to try to get more time from your candle.

        Your candle will only burn for as long as the oil is being absorbed. Once the oil is gone your wick will likely go out and if the plastic melts it will sink and the flame will be extinguished. Of course use your best judgement. A well made water candle can last for a few hours.

    1. Yes these are so beautiful and can liven up any room with a tropical feel. I just love these candles. They are unbelievably easy to make too!

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