Water Balloon Luminaries


A fun and easy project with a beautiful payoff. Learn how to make these Balloon Luminaries.

You will need: 


luminaries11. Fill a balloon with tepid water.

2. Melt your wax. Optimum working temperature for this project is 180 degrees Fahrenheit. Try to maintain this temperature for your wax while working by keeping it on a double boiler.







3. Slowly dip your balloon into the wax  to just below the water level in the balloon. Warning: Do not dip the balloon into the wax past the water level. This could cause the balloon to pop.

4. Hold the balloon in the wax for a few seconds, and then slowly lift it out of the wax. Dip the balloon a few more times, allowing some time between dips to let the wax cool.



5. While it is still quite warm, carefully set the balloon down onto a piece of paper or a cookie sheet, making sure it is level. This will create a flat bottom for the luminary.

6. Dip your balloon a few more times until it is the desired thickness. A good target thickness is 1/4 to 1/2 of an inch.

7. Set the balloon on the paper or cookie sheet again and let it cool.



8. When the wax is completely cooled, hold the balloon over a sink or bucket, facing away from you. Carefully pop the balloon with a skewer or knife and let the water drain out. Throw away the balloon shards.







9. To level the top of the luminary, heat a cookie sheet on the stove and place the luminary top-down onto the hot sheet and carefully melt the edges until it is level.

10. Place a tea light or votive inside the luminary and burn on a candle holder in a dark area.
Candle Making Kits



Here is an example of these luminaries when using dye.


28 comments on “Water Balloon Luminaries
  1. Norma says:

    Muy interesante me encanta

  2. Katherine says:

    I have 2 questions, which they might be stupid questions but 1, will these melt with a tea light inside? And 2. Do they float? If putting a platic (fake light) inside, would they float in a bathtub? I was also thinking if putting a tea light in it, would this wax bowl hold water and let a real candle float inside? Thank u so much, i really love this idea. Planning on making them for christmas presents 🙂 u are awesome at what u do!

    • administrator says:

      As long as you are using a tealight candle or a votive candle to place in the luminary, the heat will not get hot enough to melt the High Temperature wax used for the luminary. The luminaries are not designed to float on water, but they probably are light enough to float. However, they might tip over because of the shape.

  3. Amber Fester says:

    How do the luminaries not melt, if they’re made out of wax?

    • administrator says:

      As long as you are using a tealight candle or a votive candle to place in the luminary, the heat will not get hot enough to melt the High Temperature wax used for the luminary.

  4. Jenny says:

    Love this idea. So simple, but so elegent. Very clever. Thank you for sharing. I am excited to make these.

  5. Jackie says:

    Hopefully you are still monitoring this as I have a question. My granddaughter wants to make these for Christmas gifts but we were wondering if you could color the wax. Do you think crayons would work to color them. I know they’re not good for coloring candles but since these don’t have wicks I thought it might work. Thank you for such a cute idea.

    • administrator says:

      Hi Jackie. Thanks for your inquiry. Crayons will work for this. You may lose some translucency because crayons tend to be more of a pigment, rather than a dye. I would give it a shot and see if the translucency after adding crayons is sufficient for your needs.
      Kind regards,

  6. Elsabe says:

    Hi, can you modge podge on it and seal the modged picture with another layer of wax?

  7. DK says:

    Can you use soy wax?

  8. cathy says:

    Can you add glitter to the wax? About how long did you wait in between the layers?

  9. Kim Ryan says:

    I made a few of these and have a few questions, what size and type of balloon did you use? water balloons or regular party balloons? Also mine came out thick at the top but thin at the bottom, do you have any suggestions?

  10. kim says:

    I made one but it is thin at the bottom any suggestions to get uniformity

    • administrator says:

      If, during cooling, you place them on a surface that draws heat from the base of the luminary, it will cool the base more and help build up more wax on the base during subsequent dips. Examples of something that would conduct heat away from the base are aluminum baking sheets, or granite counter-tops. HTH

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