your down and dirty guide to a diy tiki torch

I’m not a crafter.  I don’t have the patience for it.  

And I usually end up gluing my fingers together or inhaling glitter.  

But every once in a while, I find inspiration . . . and (shocker), wine is involved.

Look what I have made! (I’m having a Tom Hanks moment) Wine Bottle Tiki Torches! Of the DIY variety.

diy tiki torch

A couple of weeks ago, I saw a picture of wine bottle Tiki torches pop up in my feed (don’t ask), and vowed I’d get around to making it the week after never.  

But after our wine club Carpe Vinum Rosé study last Friday (wine and food pairings galore), I had a few really pretty, clear wine bottles leftover, and I remembered the torches.

How hard could it be?

Not hard.  I did it.

What You Need To Make Wine Bottle Tiki Torches

Not feeling like making trips to multiple stores to source the parts for this project?

Some enterprising folks have put together a Wine Bottle Tiki Torch Kit and made it available on Amazon. The kit includes everything you need to make 12 torches (minus fuel).

How To Make Wine Bottle Tiki Torches

  • Fill your wine bottle about 1/3 full with crafting pebbles
  • Insert the Tiki refill wick into the coupling doohickey
  • Fill the bottle with Tiki fuel
  • Insert the wick
  • Voila!  Wine Bottle Tiki Torches!!

A note about the crafting pebbles:  some pebbles are bigger than others — they won’t all fit into the wine bottle opening. Where is the quality control in made-for-crafting pebbles?


You can always take the rejects and bedazzle a lamp shade.  

Or follow my lead . . . and throw them straight into the recycling bin.

Shazaaam . . . they work!

Where To Find Empty Wine Bottles for DIY Tiki Torches

If you’re looking for empty wine bottles to use in your crafty pursuits your first and best option is to drink some wine!

If you need more empty bottles than you can drink, you should check out your local wine bars. It never hurts to ask right!

Just go in, buy a glass, and ask the bartender if they would set a few bottles aside for you. 

If you don’t have a local wine bar check out local bars that serve wine, or even a restaurant that serves a lot of wine.

Think Italian & French restaurants. You can also check out Craigslist or even post in a local neighborhood Facebook page asking for empties.

If you want to make a whole collection of torches and can’t your hands on used bottles you can always buy new bottles online for a pretty reasonable rate.

Choosing Fuel For Your DIY Wine Bottle Tiki Torches

You should be able to find a nice bottle of tiki torch fuel at your local hardware store for under $10.

If you live in a particularly buggy local you should give serious thought to picking up some citronella tiki torch fuel.

Keep the mozzies away!

DIY Tiki Torch FAQ

Are DIY tiki torches safe?

Since this tiki torch uses citronella oil, it can be a fire hazard if used incorrectly. As with anything DIY involving glass or fire, use caution when making and using these. Glass can break unless treated with care.

Can you make your own tiki torch fuel?

You can make your own Tiki Torch fuel. A mix of isopropyl alcohol and distilled water will burn in a tiki torch, however will not repel bugs. To make your own tiki torch fuel, combine 1 teaspoon of distilled water in a 16 ounce bottle of isopropyl alcohol.

What is a cheaper alternative to tiki torch fuel?

You can use Isopropyl Alcohol as your fuel. Add 16 oz of distilled water, and then fill the torch the rest of the way with alcohol. This is 91 proof isopropyl alcohol, but lower proofs will also work.

Can you make a tiki torch out of a Mason jar?

You can absolutely make your own tiki torch by using a jar, oil, and a wick. You can even reused old jelly jars with tiki torch wicks.

Do tiki torches really keep mosquitoes away?

Tiki torches do repel mosquitoes. Tiki torches may be effective in the immediate vicinity of the flame, as they work to ward off mosquitoes with the scent from citronella oil like a candle.

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