Use Dollar-Store Solar Lights to Create These Sun-Powered Creations

9 Materials
$20
1 Day
Easy

When it comes to illuminating your home and outdoor areas, solar-powered creations are a great option for those in search of eco-friendly alternatives to more traditional lighting. Drawing their energy from the sun, they’re not only easy to use and simple to set up, but they have some pretty impressive green credentials too.

While this is a major selling point all on its own, solar lighting is more than a one-trick pony, and it has the added bonus of looking simple yet sophisticated. It does a wonderful job of spotlighting specific areas, helping to enhance and illuminate the surrounding space, but it does lack a certain something when it comes to variety.

I decided to customize my solar lights in some super creative ways! Taking some dollar-store solar lights and a few cheap and cheerful accessories, I found these three easy ways to make my highly economical and eco-friendly purchases look gorgeously glamorous and entirely unique.


Solar Light Candleholder

Step 1: Gather Your Materials 

The first idea you might want to try is this individual yet elegant solar light candleholder. To give it a go, you’ll need certain materials to hand, including: Solar lights


  • Spray paint
  • A candleholder
  • E6000

Step 2: Paint 

Once you have everything you need ready, the first step toward transforming your solar lights is to remove the metal rings from around their tops and the stakes that are used to embed them into the ground. I didn’t need the stakes for this project, but I did choose to add a fresh coat of paint to the rings.

I lay the rings on newspaper and spray pained them in a gorgeous turquoise. It’s entirely up to you what shade you want to make them, so opt for a hue that suits your overall palette and individual preferences. 

Once they’re done, set them aside to dry and do the same to your candleholder, so you’re left with two lots of perfectly matching components. 

Step 3: Reassemble 

I allowed some time for the candleholder to dry and then reassembled it. While the stakes you removed can be safely disposed of, the metal uppers need to be placed back on top of your solar lights to give them a newly individual appearance.

Step 4: Glue Lights On

With that done, it's time to complete the project, so apply some E6000 (or another glue of your choice) to the base of your indoor/outdoor solar lights and insert the ends into the holes in your candle holder. This should anchor the lights firmly in place, so they don’t fall out anytime you move your new home accessory around.

Step 5: Enjoy 

All done? Then simply sit back and enjoy your handiwork! 

Mason Jar Sconce 

Step 1: Gather Your Materials 

If you'd like to experiment with something a little different, why not try your hand at creating this mason jar sconce instead? I personally found it really easy to complete, and it only requires a few simple materials to transform your bargain-basement solar lights into this beautiful home accessory. 

You’ll need: 


  • Scrap wood
  • Sandpaper
  • Stain
  • String
  • Mason jars
  • Flowers
  • Hooks

Step 2: Sand and Stain Wood 

Once you have your scrap wood to hand, the next step is simple, if a little messy! You’ll need to begin by sanding your wood, in order to create a suitable surface for staining. With the preparation done, apply the stain liberally to develop a rich, rustic patina. 

Step 3: Assemble the Sconce 

Leaving your wood to dry, gather together your string and a couple of glass mason jars. Using the former, wrap the rope around the tops of the jars to create loops. Removing the metal stakes from the base of your solar lights, insert these into the jars before taking your dried wood and adding hooks. Use these to hang the glass holders from. 

If you want to go a little further with your creations, pick a few of your favorite flowers from your garden and arrange these inside the jars. I personally went for a vibrant pink bloom to add a gorgeous pop of color, but it’s entirely up to you what type of foliage you choose to use. My preference is to update this in line with the season, so that I always have pretty, themed accessories in my home.

Step 4: Hang and Enjoy 

Voila! Now you get to sit back and admire the finished effect. 

Solar Light Hanging Lamps

Step 1: Gather Your Materials 

For something a little different again, give these pretty solar hanging lamps a go. To create them, you’ll need:  


  • String
  • A solar light
  • A light globe

Step 2: Tie Your Hanger

In order to create your hanger, you’ll need to take eight individual strands of string. Using tape to anchor these to the floor, knot them together as shown in the video to create a gorgeously rustic hammock.  

Step 3: Insert Solar Lights 

Once your hammock-esque hanger is good to go, take one of your solar garden lights and remove the metal stake from the bottom. You’re going to need to insert this into your light globe, but not before first placing the vase into the holder you’ve created. When it’s sat nicely, gently slip the light inside.

One way to play around with this idea is by experimenting with different shapes and types of globe. You can create as many of these home accessories as you like, and hang these solar string lights everywhere, from your windows to the trees in your garden. I particularly enjoy experimenting with different colors and opacities of glass, so feel free to let your creative juices flow.

Step 4: Hang and Enjoy 

All finished! Doesn’t the end result look impressive? 

When it comes to transforming bargain-basement solar lights into beautiful accessories, there’s so much you can do with a few cheap materials and some imagination. Why not give these three easy DIY ideas a go to see how eminently simple it is to create gorgeous new fixtures for your interior? 

Resources for this project:

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Frequently asked questions

Have a question about this project?

3 of 9 questions
  • Gillian Rosenbaum Gillian Rosenbaum on Aug 09, 2020

    Do the solar lights actually charge when placed upside down in the holder?

  • Teresa Anthony Teresa Anthony on Apr 23, 2021

    What do you do if you metal candle holder doesn't have a hole, mine from the thrift store has little nubbys that I cut off, what do you do with the stem on the solar light, do they cut off easily??

  • Mar29817527 Mar29817527 on Jul 11, 2021

    do they fill with Water?

Comments

Join the conversation

2 of 21 comments
  • Wanda Murphy Wanda Murphy on Mar 28, 2021

    I hung old chandeliers in trees, and added solar lights, works great, I change the lights out once a year, I like your idea, cute!!!

  • Sandy McClung Sandy McClung on Jul 16, 2021

    These are mine. With a couple of light chandeliers I bought at goodwill and dollar store solar lights. The 99 cent ones from Walmart are really bright and they burn for hours

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