Coastal Candle Holders with Sea Glass Paint

Coastal Candle Holders with Sea Glass Paint

Clothing, books, clear glass- these are some of the things that overwhelm thrift stores. Which means, of course, that I love coming up with new upcycle ideas for them. So, today I’m sharing some coastal candle holders that I made with glass vases that I found at one of the Habitat ReStores here in Charlotte.

glassware section in a thrift store

Image credit: Sadie Seasongoods.

I’ll be the first to admit that this isn’t an overly unique project idea. But it’s SO simple and wonderfully effective if you love beachy decor. Plus, it’s a great way to jazz up all that cheap glassware you see while thrifting.

I picked up a couple of glass vessels for my coastal candle holders, but this bubble glass really caught my eye.

bubble glass vase or compote

Image credit: Sadie Seasongoods.

It reminded me of my Beach Jars in antique aqua mason jars. I loved using jars with air bubbles in the glass because they had such an underwater quality to them.

beach mason jars

Image credit: Sadie Seasongoods.

Anyway, let me show you how I painted these clear glass holders with a coastal makeover!

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This project tutorial was also sponsored by the Charlotte Region ReStore(s).

From Clear Glass to Coastal Candle Holders

First, I collected the specialty spray paints that I intended to use. One was a sea glass spray paint by Rust-oleum; you may remember that I’ve used the Krylon version before. The other cans were stained glass spray paint, which I’ve also used before.

specialty spray paints for sea glass and stained glass

Image credit: Sadie Seasongoods.

Next, I cleaned the glass holders and removed the price tags. I also used a bit of Windex on them to remove any fingerprints, as well. Then, I set up a workstation outside for spray painting.

I proceeded to give the larger glass holder two light coats of the sea glass paint…

sea glass spray paint

Image credit: Sadie Seasongoods.

And for the bubble glass, I layered on single coats of each stained glass spray paint, switching cans between layers. I stopped when I was happy with the shade of aqua/turquoise.

making an aqua color with stained glass spray paint

Image credit: Sadie Seasongoods.

Once they were dry, I gave each candle holder a light spray of clear coat to protect the paints. Matte for the sea glass holder, satin or glossy for the bubble glass.

Next, I decided to embellish them further with some beachy touches, including nautical rope and dried starfish.

coastal decorations for candle holders

Image credit: Sadie Seasongoods.

Using hot glue, I carefully wrapped some rope around the coastal candle holders. I also used hot glue to keep the ends from unraveling.

wrapping the beach candle holders with rope

Image credit: Sadie Seasongoods.

Lastly, I attached a starfish to the larger candle holder with hot glue. I poured a couple of inches of beach sand into the coastal candle holders and they were ready to use.

coastal candle holders from thrift store glassware

Image credit: Sadie Seasongoods.

Coastal Candle Holders with Sea Glass Paint

Because I painted each of my coastal candle holders, I nestled my favorite LED pillar candles inside them. As opposed to burning real candles, which might be a bad idea.

And they looked fabulous, if I do say so myself. The coastal candle holders are just beachy enough without looking too overdone or downright hokey.

upcycled glassware as coastal candle holders

Image credit: Sadie Seasongoods.

I love how different but related they are- like a coordinated set, as opposed to a matching set. I was lucky to have the stained glass sprays on hand already. Believe it or not, I actually found the Rustoleum sea glass spray paint at another Habitat ReStore.

coastal candle holders

Image credit: Sadie Seasongoods.

A few additional thoughts on these coastal candle holders:

  • This Rustoleum sea glass spray paint is much paler than the green Krylon version. The Rustoleum version is almost white; but they both feel the same, texturally. Just keep that in mind if you want to make these and whether you want more or less color.
  • I personally hate using things like dried starfish and prefer using empty shells I find on the beach. I made an exception in this case, but still feel badly about it. But that’s definitely a personal choice! And the large conch shells? I picked those up at thrift stores; I absolutely love finding large shells while thrifting and rarely pass them up.
  • Usually I whip-knot the ends of rope for projects (like I did on this coastal tray or this Pirate Pub sign). But today, I was lazy and used glue. Honestly, either way is totally fine!
  • I used actual beach sand in my candle holders because I had some on hand (remember this project?). But decorative sand would be fine, too.

Think you’ll give any clear glass a coastal makeover this summer? Even though we don’t live anywhere near the coast, I always get that beachy decor itch at this time of year.

Speaking of which, here is a collection of other beach house-inspired upcycling projects. Gotta love coastal decor from the thrift store, no matter where you live, eh?

upcycle ideas for beach house decor

Image credit: Sadie Seasongoods.

Craft on!


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coastal candle holders for easy beach house decor

Image credit: Sadie Seasongoods.

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Sarah Ramberg is the owner of Sadie Seasongoods, a website that celebrates all things secondhand. From upcycling ideas and thrifted decor to vintage-centric travel itineraries, Sadie Seasongoods is a one-stop shop for anyone who loves thrifting and approachable repurposing ideas. Sarah is also the author of “Crafting with Flannel” and has been featured in numerous media outlets and magazines.

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