DIY Light Bulb Vase

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Don’t throw away those old light bulbs just yet! I have a fun, easy DIY for you that will brighten up your home decor or workspace :) This DIY is very simple, but it requires working with glass so you definitely need to be careful!

diy lightbulb vase

What you need: A light bulb (any shape or size will work!), pliers and gardening wire.

diy lightbulb vase

Step One: First you need to remove the little silver layer on the bottom of the light bulb.  Work the pliers under the layer to create a little lip, and then you should be able to peel it right off with the pliers.

diy lightbulb vase

Step Two: Now you have to remove the black cap from the bottom of the light bulb. This was the most difficult part for me – you DEFINITELY want to wear safety goggles and be extremely careful, as it is glass.  Some sites suggest using a hammer to crack the black glass but this didn’t work for me – with some time, I was able to work the pliers into the hole left after you remove the silver cap, and snap the glass.  I used the pliers to tap the rest of the black glass off the bulb.  Do this outdoors or over a hard surface so you can sweep up the bits of glass.

diy lightbulb vase

Step Three: Once the black glass was removed it was really easy to get the little glass tube and wiring on the inside of the bulb out – I simply tapped it with the pliers and it broke right off.

diy lightbulb vase

And now you have your empty lightbulb! I didn’t like how the metal part looked so I covered it with a little piece of fabric:

diy lightbulb vase

Step Four: Add flowers and water, and hang with the gardening wire!

diy lightbulb vase

Now I want to make more! In addition to brightening up my desk space at work, these would be adorable for a summer party or, as Jemma just suggested as I was making it, as bathroom decor!

Be sure to check out our new DIY Projects category for more DIY Inspiration!

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  1. I also saw that image on Pinterest and I can’t wait to try it. Just a few notes, I’ve read that you should never use florescent bulbs because the stuff inside is toxic. Also, some bulbs have a white coating on the inside which I believe is just kaolin, which is safe to remove, simply use tissue to white it out. Anyways, thanks for the DIY, can’t wait to try it.

  2. I’m getting married soon and this would be a great idea for down the isle hanging off the chairs and off the trees!

  3. Such a creative, easy sounding, eco-looking, adorable project! These would look great at an outdoor dinner party during the summer! I think I’m going to have to try them, and hang it on my bulletin board with a thumb tack like shown. Can’t wait! xoxo

  4. That is beautiful…
    I am so going to be makign these tomorrow.
    My friend is visiting from Korea and she will love it!

  5. I love this. Totally linking to it later today! Gotta hurry before those summertime blossoms all but disappear!

  6. I saw this on pinterest. I had some of these that I made many years ago while living in Mexico. I put a piece of ivy in each one and watch them grow like crazy. It was awesome! I just had to keep refilling the water and they took off filling the bottom of the bulb with roots. Thanks for sharing the how-to. That’s how I did it too! :)

  7. Berty: Just because you take it apart, doesn’t mean you can throw away the pieces. I’m sure non-broken light bulb disposal policies still apply.

  8. How clever! I would never have thought it possible to reuse a light bulb. Unfortunately Canada is phasing out incandescent bulbs in favour of compact fluorescent bulbs. Reusing them will prove more difficult. They contain hazardous material and would have to be used intact. They do have a cute shape, though.
    These vases could also be used to root cuttings.
    Thanks for the inspiration.

  9. maybe someone’s mentioned this already…. but I think it’d be really nice if you credited that first image. just saying you saw it on tumblr doesn’t give us much to go on, and I’d love to know more about where it came from originally. do you have any idea?

  10. I agree with Amelia!!! You guys are getting all the credit for the first image on pinterest and that’s just not right!

  11. hey guys – the image links through to where i found it, unfortunately i have not been able to locate the original source as tumblr sites don’t always credit it. i have tried searching for it, but if anyone knows i would be happy to add the credit. thanks!

  12. You may want to make a comment about safe disposal of the tungsten filament in the light bulb. While it is not believed to be toxic, its effects in groundwater and the environment are not fully known, and proper caution should be taken. The fluorescent (newer) light bulbs contain mercury, which *is* poisonous.

  13. also, use safety glasses and other protection. light bulbs have a vacuum inside, which means they will shatter and explode like a grenade if you break the seal quickly.

  14. I use a small saw to cut into the metal screw-in part, then just peel it off using pliers–this usually takes care of all the removing in just one step. Bend the metal rim as much as possible to smooth the sharp edges, then use colored Duck Tape to hold your hanging wire and to soften the cut edges.

  15. I love it and tried it and found it much easier than the directions. Only took a few minutes. Thanks!!

  16. I love this! Perfect gift for hard to buy fors. Really easy (easier than the directions. Ammonia takes the frost off frosted bulbs. Only took me 20 min. from start to finish. Thanks

  17. I love this idea. When I was a kids, cousins and I used the same process to make test tubes fur science projects.

  18. è un’idea spettacolare!!!!!!!lfarò senz’altro!!!!complimenti al suo ideatore!!!!!spero che mia madre non si spaventi a vedere la mia camera invasa dalle lampadine-vaso!!! xD xD xD!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  19. Love the concept…Simple and elegant but is the bulb sturdy enough to use as a vase?? has anyone had issues with broken vases?? Or does anyone have any tips on handling to prevent breaking the bulbs??

  20. Cute idea…love it…I personally think it’s awesome you made it then blogged it…I googled it..and there are tons all over the Internet….where did it originally come from…people should do the research themselves if they want to know that information …:) just saying…….xo

  21. I love how simple this idea is but yet its elegant and pretty. Did you just hang one on the wall? I think it would also be really nice if he hung them at different height.

  22. I did this just now and I absolutely love it! I put a little pink rose in there and it is hanging next to the front door! Thank you sooo much!!!!!

  23. Using your DIY, I was able to make light bulbs into Christmas decoration this year. Thanks for sharing this fun DIY.

  24. Muy buena idea, puedo aporta indicando que para sacar el filamento, calentarlo con un cautil, se esprende facilmente por el calor generdo.


  25. I absolutely love this idea! I think little starter plants would look great in these! I don’t know how well it will work, but I’ll let you know. I think I might try herbs to start off with!!! Dill would work really well I think!!! CAN’T WAIT! Thank you for the awesome idea and instructions!

  26. These tips to much helpful for party hope I am post for my friend Before buying paint, fabric or floor coverings, always check the colors where they will be used. Pay attention to the color throughout the day and night. Consider which direction your room is facing. East-facing and north-facing rooms will receive bluer light and may benefit from warmer colors and lighting. West- and south-facing rooms may feel more comfortable with a wash of cooler light and color.
    Indirekte Beleuchtung

  27. I tried this and it turned out beautifully! I kept in the filaments since i liked the way they looked and they put an air plant inside. I put a link to a picture here >

  28. It’s a bit difficult to make these light bulb planters. If you don’t want to take the time, check out this new product: Light Bulb planter filled with hydro bubbles and standing on our custom-design wood base:

    The Planters are available on their own, or with Bamboo! You also don’t have to water them every day because of the hydro bubbles. There’s no dirt, no standing water – it’s neat and easy to take care of!

  29. Having read this I believed it was really enlightening.
    I appreciate you spending some time and energy to put this content
    together. I once again find myself spending a lot of time both reading and commenting.
    But so what, it was still worthwhile!

  30. Very nice post. I just stumbled upon your blog and wished to mention that I’ve truly loved surfing around your blog posts.

    In any case I will be subscribing in your feed and I am hoping you write once more soon!

  31. So basic and boring. My brother’s friend’s wife makes way cooler ones with the wire wrapping and curling around the glass with beads and charms! That’s what I want to make. Can’t find any tutorials on how to do that anywhere. I’ll just have to ask her.

  32. Cute idea! I love to recycle things! I have used old light bulbs for making ornament befor. I make them every year! I keep a box of them up in my craft closet to use. Maybe I will try this project with some of the clear ones that I have.

  33. Ahhhhhhh!!! You’re a flipping’ genius!!! Hehehehehe so amazingly adorable, I MUST do this! Oh man I feel like going to flick the washroom light on and off or something (in hopes to burn it out quicker haha) no but seriously, very creative! They look like tiny glass vases, so beautiful!!! 5 STARS! :)

  34. Holy LULU,
    Ever heard the saying “If you don’t have anything nice to say, don’t say anything at all?” You could have just moved on when you realized this wasn’t what you were looking for, and saved your breath. I shoulda saved mine and not wasted it on you!

  35. I love DIY creations ! to be more original I always try to find amazing vases! I found the website, the official Murano Glass shop, which guarantees a certificate by the Italian law which is “Vetro Artistico Murano” Trademark of Origin. I found a lot of great items to originally decorate my house, in this way I can easily combine home made creations and original Murano and high quality products which are deliverd at home within a few days.

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