Many of us have old metal baskets and wire cages hanging around our garden sheds that we cannot find the right-sized liner for. Give these wire baskets new life as temporary garden chandeliers for use at one-time parties or as a permanent part of your outdoor décor.

The process is easy and quick. Once you have gathered your supplies, you can whip one of these out in mere minutes. This would be a fun project for a Mother’s Day gift, as a hostess present, or themed for a summer party.

You may find it much easier to use battery-operated votive candles as it is so difficult to light the real votive or tea light candles and then drop them into the jars. Plus, the battery-operated ones last throughout the whole evening (and then some) without any risk of fire hazard. You could also try using outdoor solar lanterns or lights in the jars.

The vine choices are almost endless from jasmine to ivy to clematis. You could even do edible vines like grapes or trailing cherry tomatoes. If you want to keep the vines at their freshest, you can also insert the cut ends into water-filled floral tubes and insert the tubes in the moss layer to hide them from view.

Assemble your tools

These instructions are just a guide – take them and run with your creativity. Add strings of beads, ornaments, crystals, and other baubles as you like.

You Will Need

  • 1 old wire hanging basket
  • 1 bag of Spanish moss and/or soaked florist moss
  • cleaned-out jars with labels removed
  • floral tubes
  • tea light candles (real or battery-operated)
  • assorted cut flowers or plants
  • assorted garden vines
Fill floral tubes

Step by Step

Step 1:

Layer the moss on the bottom of the basket -- green-side-out if you are using floral moss. If your hanging basket has wide openings between the wires, you can line it with chicken wire or mesh to hold in the moss better.

Step 2: 

Place jars you have collected into the basket. You could do 3, 4, or 5 -- depending on the size of the basket and the size of your jars.

Fill the basket with vines

Step 3:

Fill your floral tubes with water and then insert cut flowers into them. Then place the tubes down in the moss in the middle of jars.

Step 4:

Turn on (or light) the tea light candles and place them in the jars.

Step 5:

Take lengths of flowering or foliage vines and wrap around and among the jars for decorative effect and to keep the jars in place. You can also weave them between the hanging baskets wires and leave some hanging down.

Finished project

Step 6: Hang your chandelier and enjoy!

Tip: You will need to switch out the flowers and vines to freshen up the chandelier arrangement periodically or for special occasions.

By Kathy Jentz