Curbly Video Podcast: How to turn a wine bottle into an oil lamp with found objects.

created on: 11/17/08

If you have a bin of nuts and washers and things, you’re half-way to turning a wine bottle into an oil lamp. (And even if you don’t have a nut and washer bin, you can pick a few up–plus the other items you’ll need to complete this project–at the hardware store for pennies!)

The supplies you’ll want to gather:

  • An empty wine bottle
  • A 1 ½” or so long threaded nipple–I used one from an old lamp kit
  • Two ½” to 5/8″ nuts–one wide, one skinny–that will thread onto the nipple
  • A 1″ washer that fits onto the nipple
  • Oil lamp wick (I bought some at my local hardware store. It was a bit too thick, so I ran two zig-zag stitches down the center of one and cut it into two.)
  • Lamp oil

To assemble your wine bottle oil lamp:

  • First thread the wider nut onto the nipple about 1/3 to ½ way down, slip on the washer and then thread on the skinny nut.
  • Slide a lamp wick through the nipple and set aside.
  • Fill the wine bottle 3/4 way full with tap water.
  • Fill the bottle the rest of the way with lamp oil.
  • Thread the wick through the neck of the bottle, and rest the washer on the bottle’s opening.
  • And you’re done!

Wait a few minutes for the wick to soak up the lamp oil before you light your lamp. Also, make sure your wick is VERY short; otherwise, the flame will be VERY high. (Learned this the hard way!) Your lighted wine bottle lamp will burn for 3 to 4 hours before you’ll need to raise the wick. And, of course, DO NOT leave your burning lamp unattended.