Friday, April 18, 2014

DIY Constellation Luminaries

After a frigid and stormy winter here in the Northern Hemisphere, many of us are ready for warm weather and long, sunny days.  To celebrate the coming spring and summer seasons, I dreamed up a tutorial for all my fellow stargazers out there in the world.  So if you're ready for fresh air, fireflies, cold drinks, bare feet, and mild evenings watching the stars sparkling in the sky, I've got a little something to help set the scene.  Keep reading to learn how to make your own constellation luminaries!
DIY Constellation Luminaries
One of the coolest things about this project is that it can be done with any constellation you choose.  For my test run, I created miniature, glowing replicas of the Aquarius, Scorpius, and Pegasus constellations.  You can do an image search on the web to find images of your favorite constellations, or you can use the perfectly-sized templates I've included below.

You will need:
Printed images of constellations sized at 7” x 2.5”
Colored paper
Awl or toothpick
Glass votive holder
Tealight candles

DIY Constellation Luminaries

1. Gather supplies and cut paper to measure 7” x 2.5”. 
2. Use a pin to poke holes through the points of the constellation. 
3. Use an awl or toothpick to widen the holes made with the pin. 
4. Lay the constellation image on top of the colored paper. 
5. Use a pencil to fill in the points of the constellation. You may wish to create marks around the holes to keep track and make sure they’re all filled in. 
6. Check the colored paper to make sure all points of the constellation are marked and visible.
7. Repeat steps 2 and 3 on the colored paper to create holes for the light to shine through. 
8. Wrap the colored paper around the votive holder and secure the edges with tape. Trim any excess paper to create a clean edge around the top of the glass. 
9. Light a tealight candle and gently drop it into the luminary. 
10. Repeat this project to create luminaries for all your favorite constellations.

When I was designing this project, I had to do a bit of exploration to find images that were clear and properly sized.  I ended up creating my own templates in Photoshop and decided to share to make it easier for anyone else who might want to join the fun.  Just follow the links below for pre-designed, perfectly sized images to fit your luminaries.  You can either download the photos or send them straight to the printer without downloading (click next to the download button for the print option).  Make sure you set up the print job so that the image fills the whole page to ensure your printout is sized to fit a standard glass votive holder.
Constellation Printables
Click here to download a printable template featuring Pegasus, The Big Dipper, and The Little Dipper.
Constellation Printables
Click here to download a printable template featuring Hercules, Leo the Lion, and Orion.


Pili said...

Oooooh, seriously fantastic tutorial! I know this one I'll be doing for sure, since I love looking at the stars!
Great job, Holly!

Katie Frank said...

what a lovely DIY!
this is such great idea! i definitely must try it as soon as possible <3

DancingMooney ♥ said...

This is such a cute idea Holly, I love it!!

Aik said...

What a great idea to lighten up a room. You always have the best DIYs, Holly!