Learn how I turned a finished coloring page into a beautiful flickering candle night light.
(Note: I wasn’t planning on writing up this project when I started it, so I didn’t take very good pictures along the way, but so many people liked it, that I thought I would write it up as best I could.)
Several months ago, I remembered I had some translucent vellum paper in my craft stash leftovers from my card-making days back in the 1990s. I got to wondering how it would work to use it for a coloring page, thinking that the colored design on the translucent paper would make a neat stained glass effect. I tested the pencils and pens I had on hand at the time (which wasn’t much–just Sharpies, gel pens, and Prismacolor pencils) and decided that Sharpies gave the best results on the vellum paper.
Coloring the Design on Translucent Vellum
It took a few sessions just to fill in the background, but the rest of the design went more quickly. One the design was colored, I hung it in a window where the light could shine though.
My original intention was to buy a floating frame and hang it permanently in a window. What I didn’t consider was that the back side of the colored page would not be as pretty as the front, and if hung in a window, the uncolored side would be visible either from the outside or the inside.
Illuminate your Coloring with a Flameless Candle
In a Facebook group for coloring craft ideas, one member suggested that wrapping the colored page around a glass with a tea light inside would also look pretty. Yes! I was on the hunt for an appropriately-sized clear cylinder I could use as a candle holder to wrap the colored page on.
While perusing Joann Fabrics and Crafts for such a thing, the friend I was with pointed out the battery-powered “flameless” candles. Genius! Knowing my design was around 8 by 8 inches, I borrowed a tape measure from the sewing department and picked out the one I felt would fit. Best of all, it was on sale! Shown here is the candle I bought.
Putting the Night Light Together
I came home, removed the colored page from my window where it was still hanging by masking tape, and used my Fiskars paper trimmer to the cut the excess paper away. Next, I tested the paper on the candle, and determined that I needed to trim a bit more off the bottom edge because of the way the candle is slightly tapered. My 8 by 8 inch design didn’t quite wrap all the way around the candle, so there is about a 1 inch gap at the back. But that’s okay, that side can go against the wall. If you were using a full page design, it would probably wrap around the whole candle.
Once I was satisfied with the fit and knew how I would wrap it on the candle, I applied two long strips of double-sided scotch tape along the two edges that would be at the back of the candle. I also applied some smaller strips of tape in the middle and the top and bottom edges. I carefully lined up the paper with the top edge of the candle and pressed it in place all around where I had applied the double-sided tape. Last step… wait for dark to see how it looked!
It turned out great! I love it. And it looks pretty in a light or dark room. This particular flameless candle has a timer so it can be set for 5 hours on and 19 hours off. It makes a great night light!
Here are some notes about the supplies needed for this flameless candle project:
Translucent Vellum: As mentioned, I already had this paper in my stash and, unfortunately, I don’t remember where I got it. The paper I used was originally white but had yellowed slightly with age. If I am remembering right it is “Glama” translucent vellum heavy weight. I used a laser printer, although I did have an inkjet printer when I acquired this paper, so it should also work in an inkjet. If you use inkjet, I’d suggest printing in “draft” or “ink-saver” mode and letting the paper dry overnight before you start coloring it.
Here are some sources I found for what I believe is the same or similar paper:
- Etsy – 48 lb. Heavy Weight Vellum Paper Translucent by CraftyChicBoutique
I believe this product is the same paper.
- Amazon – CTI Glama Natural Clear Translucent 48lb Cover Weight
I believe this is the same paper from Amazon.
- Amazon – Grafix 30-Pound 8-1/2-Inch by 11-Inch Vellum Inkjet Printable, 50-Pack, Clear
This isn’t as heavy as the product above, but it gets good reviews and several customers described it as “thick.”
Amazon and The Paper Mill Store have many other options if you want to shop around.
Pencils or Pens: Both colored pencils and permanent markers worked well on my test sheet. I decided to go with Sharpies because I didn’t like the waxy residue left on the surface of the paper when I used pencils. I have since acquired the Bic Mark-It markers, and those also work well. I also tested gel pens, and they do work, but require a longer drying time on this paper, so I thought it would be too messy to work with them.
Paper Trimmer: A small paper trimmer comes in handy for so many things. The one I have is no longer sold, but it uses the same blades and is similar to this (better) one from Amazon.
Double Sided Tape: Nothing fancy here. Good old Scotch brand does the job!
Flameless Candle: I didn’t want a wavy “melted” top edge on the candle, and I guess I lucked out with the one I found on Joann, because I didn’t find many that I liked as much on Amazon. The one I bought (pictured earlier in this article) is 8 inches tall and 3 inches wide and uses 2 AA batteries. The brand is Inglow and the model number is CGT20308WH. If you get something different, I would not go any fatter than 3 inch diameter for a standard sheet of paper to wrap around it. Here’s the link for Joann and the same candle on Amazon.
Coloring Pages: Of course, you need a design to color for this project, and I’m rather partial to these! The design used in this project is from my book of patterns called OrnaMENTALs™ Splendid Symmetry, which you can download instantly in PDF format as a single page or the full book of all 36 patterns.
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I hope you enjoyed this project! Please share this or any other craft projects with coloring pages in the comment form below.