Make an Amazing CD Tealight Holder

Updated on February 12, 2020
lbrummer profile image

Loraine enjoys making crafts and sharing the projects she’s developed. Her crafts include pictured, step-by-step tutorials and templates.

Can I use CDs in craft projects?

Yes! Learn how to make tea light votives from old CDs. You'll also see how to make photo frames, coasters, and fancy container lids using them.

Recently, my granddaughters and I spent a weekend together making CD crafts and suncatcher butterflies. We wanted to make our crafts extra creative, and we took lots of pictures so we could share them with you. First, we'll show you how we prepared the CDs. Then, you'll see photos of how the new items we made can be used.

What You'll Need

  • 3 old CDs (per project)
  • 1 CD (for each coaster or cookie plate)
  • 1 CD (for each photo frame)
  • Suncatcher paints
  • Felt (for the coasters)
  • Ribbon (photo frame)
  • bottle, pop can, jar (to form the CDs)
  • cookie sheet or pizza pan
  • Preheat oven to 375 degrees
  • Flameless tea lights

1. Paint the CDs

  1. The tea light holders and the jewelry dish are each made with three CDs. Paint the silver side of two CDs with suncatcher paint. Leave one CD as is.
  2. If you want to make a coaster, frame, or cookie dish, you'll only need one CD. Paint the silver side with suncatcher paint.

2. Prepare Them for the Oven

  1. For the molded CDs (tea light holders and jewelry dish), use two CDs and lay the painted CD directly over the non-painted CD with the label sides together. Hold the two CDs together and center them over the top of the glass bottle. Then, set them on the cookie sheet. The two CDs will fuse together in the oven.
  2. The rimmed tea light holder like the green one below is prepared in the same way. You just need to center it over a glass jar or soda can.
  3. For the flat CDs under the tea lights and jewelry dish, lay the painted CDs, painted side up, on the cookie sheet.

In this photo you can't see the bottle, jar or can so, you'll have to look at the next photo to see how the CDs are centered on the bottle, soda can and jar to shape these CDs for tea light holders or a jewelry dish.

3. Bake Them in the Oven

  • Place the prepared CDs on the cookie sheet in a preheated oven (375°F) for 10 minutes. Leave them for a minute or two longer if the CDs haven't folded down over the bottle or jar.
  • Remove from oven, carefully lift the fused CDs off the bottle, jar or can. Use a potholder to place the pieces on a paper towel to cool. Use a pancake turner to gently lift the edges of the flat pieces and cool on a paper towel.
  • Be sure that your room is ventilated. I probably should have lined the pan with tinfoil, and I will from now on. If you are concerned about toxins, you could use a toaster oven in the garage to do the baking.

Purple Tea Light

You can see how the two CDs that form the bowl of the candle holder fused together. The outside of the bowl is the painted side, and the inside is the original silver.

Green Tea Light

As you can see, this bowl wasn't made using two CDs. That's why you can see the written side on the outside of the bowl.

Jewelry Dish

A beautiful jewelry holder for your dresser!

Hanna's Idea: a Cookie Plate

Hanna thought making a cookie plate was a good idea.

Photo Frames

Hope, Hanna, and Hayden are sisters, so we combined their photo frames together.

1. They each painted the CD that holds their photo.
2. We used the bottom of the flameless tea candle for a pattern to draw circles over photos of the girls.
3. Then, we cut the photo circles and glued them to the centers of the CDs.

4. For the frames, we cut cardboard circles to fit the back of the CDs.

5. We took a long piece of wire-edged ribbon and stapled the cardboard pieces to the ribbon.

6. Then, we applied glue to the back of the CDs and glued them over the cardboard circles, sandwiching the ribbon between.

7. We made a bow at the top of the photo trio. Then, we cut a "v" shape in the bottom of the ribbon under the last CD.

Ella is the oldest and only girl in her family. We assembled her photo frame in the same way.

CD Coasters

Hanna and Hope glued the felt to the back of the CDs to make coasters.

  1. Cut circles of felt the same size as the CD.
  2. Glue them on the back of the CD to make a coaster.

We made a set of six coasters.

Decorated Jar

I used this jar to form some of the CDs and thought that it would make a useful container to hold Q-tips or cotton balls.

1. I drew simple flowers on the side of the jar with a black Sharpie.

2. Then, I painted the flowers with craft paints.

3. I thought that all CDs were made the same, but evidently, they aren't. When I put this CD on my jar to bake and form it, the CD didn't get the bubbly look that all the other ones did. I used this one anyway, but I would have preferred that it had the bubbly look.

4. For the knob on the lid, I used a wooden ball that I painted. It's flat on one side and had a hole drilled in it.

5. On the inside, I used a flat washer with the hole smaller than the hole in the CD. I used a wood screw to tighten the ball knob to the lid.

© 2013 Loraine Brummer

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    • lbrummer profile imageAUTHOR

      Loraine Brummer 

      5 years ago from Hartington, Nebraska

      Hi Kris. I didn't wait for the paint to dry before placing them on the bottle or can to shape in the oven. I don't believe it would make a difference if you let the paint dry first though. I did notice that there was one CD that didn't bubble up like the rest did when they were put in the oven. So some CDs are different. I guess the only way to know is to bake them. I hope you enjoy this craft as much as the granddaughters and I did.

    • profile image


      5 years ago

      I didn't read anywhere in the directions, but maybe I missed it. Do you let the pant dry or not?

    • lbrummer profile imageAUTHOR

      Loraine Brummer 

      5 years ago from Hartington, Nebraska

      Hi Mpaturzo. Although I used sun catcher paint that I had on hand, (a classroom Oriental Trading brand, that worked really well), I found a glass stain on Amazon that comes in smaller bottles. It takes very little glass stain paint for any craft, so there's no need in buying larger sizes.

      I'm sure you'll enjoy making these CD tealight holders, and be sure to try other sun catcher crafts. They are easy to do and the colors are so bright that every project comes out terrific.

    • profile image


      5 years ago

      I can't find sun catcher paints. Any idea where I might find it? I'm looking forward to trying this craft with our little ones

    • lbrummer profile imageAUTHOR

      Loraine Brummer 

      5 years ago from Hartington, Nebraska

      Nice to see you here, fullofshoes. Thanks for your visit. I'm sure you'll love making the tealight holders, they make nice gifts.

    • profile image


      5 years ago

      Great ideas. I've got a stack of CDs that I was planning on throwing out but maybe not now :)

    • lbrummer profile imageAUTHOR

      Loraine Brummer 

      5 years ago from Hartington, Nebraska

      Hi Vellur. Thanks for visiting and for your nice comment. The tealight holders really make up beautifully. I hope you try this craft.

    • lbrummer profile imageAUTHOR

      Loraine Brummer 

      5 years ago from Hartington, Nebraska

      Hi peachpurple. The cd's aren't put in the microwave...that would make for a lot of sparks and fireworks. They are put in the oven. If you are worried about fumes, use a toaster oven outside or in the garage.

    • peachpurple profile image


      5 years ago from Home Sweet Home

      wonderful ideas but wouldn't the microwave oven blow up while baking the CDs?

    • Vellur profile image

      Nithya Venkat 

      5 years ago from Dubai

      Great creative idea, they look so pretty. Thank you for sharing and voted up.

    • lbrummer profile imageAUTHOR

      Loraine Brummer 

      5 years ago from Hartington, Nebraska

      Thank you for your visit, Manvinder Kaur. I appreciate your commenting.

    • erorantes profile image

      Ana Maria Orantes 

      5 years ago from Miami Florida

      I like your idea . You are great. Thank you for sharing your knowledge. I like how you create many things from the cds. favorite were the candle holder and the frame.

    • lucretiamcevil profile image


      6 years ago

      love it! this weekend my granddaughters and i made a dollhouse with cardboard boxes, plastic lids (for windows), and not-so-hot glue. we had a ball.

    • profile image


      6 years ago

      Wonderful idea. I have too many waste CDs.

    • profile image


      6 years ago

      Hi Loraine, I absolutely love the CD lights and would like to feature them on with a photo and a link back to this page. Please contact me if you are interested. Best, Jaclyn

    • Elyn MacInnis profile image

      Elyn MacInnis 

      7 years ago from Shanghai, China

      So cool. I bet they loved it! CDs are going obsolete, and what to do with them? Now I know! Thank you!

    • profile image


      7 years ago

      You have some great ideas here ..even the glass jar at the end. Congratulations on your purple star. :)

    • profile image


      7 years ago

      Once again, how delightfully creative of you, it seems that your ideas never end...I particularly like the tea light holder....congratulations on your Getting Personal feature!

    • Mickie Gee profile image

      Mickie Gee 

      7 years ago

      I sent this page to my daughter. She has 3 children who love to make sparkly crafts. The are in to recycling, too.

    • lbrummer profile imageAUTHOR

      Loraine Brummer 

      7 years ago from Hartington, Nebraska

      I guess everyone has to decide for themselves about making this craft. We did have ventilation and the CDs are in the oven for 10 minutes. I didn't notice any smell, but others may. If using the oven is a concern, perhaps a toaster oven could be used in the garage. I do think it is important to have ventilation.

    • profile image


      7 years ago

      Just wondering - have you looked into the possible toxic effects of exposing CDs to that much heat - meaning fumes, deposits in the oven, etc.? When I was working with polymer clay, which is also a form of plastic (as are CDs), there was a lot of discussion about that; many people (including me) bought a separate oven - a toaster oven - for the clay so there would be no chance of anything being collected in the oven and then deposited on food. And polymer clay is actually designed to be baked; that's how it's cured. CDs aren't meant to be put in an oven.I'm sorry to bring this up but I get really concerned when I read about people exposing plastics to high heat.

    • profile image


      7 years ago

      What a great idea! School holidays are coming up and I think my boys would love to try this.

    • Virginia Allain profile image

      Virginia Allain 

      7 years ago from Central Florida

      What fun ways to use all those CDs that would get tossed. I have some DVDs that don't work or are out of date. Gonna have some fun.

    • Rhonda Lytle profile image

      Rhonda Lytle 

      7 years ago from Deep in the heart of Dixie

      This is the bomb! If you showed me those candle holders I never would have guessed they were hand made by kids from cds. Outstanding!

    • marktplaatsshop profile image


      7 years ago

      Well this is a great lens, I love to try this with the kids, it is so easy, thanks for sharing

    • profile image


      7 years ago

      Thank you Grandma for spending this last weekend with us it was very special to us all. We hope to do many more crafts with you soon. Love you to pieces Grandma!! Hope, Hanna, Hayden


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