Light Bulb Cages as Christmas Luminaries

Light Bulb Cages as Christmas Luminaries

Light bulb cages have been pretty popular- both authentically vintage and modern reproductions- for a few years now. Designed to protect factory or ship workers from exploding glass bulbs, they are found in funky antique shops, but in fewer and fewer numbers.  I’ve been lucky enough to find a few of them in my day, and I had this idea to upcycle them into Christmas luminaries .

Light bulb cages with industrial style for upcycling into Christmas luminaries

Now, this isn’t the first time I’ve upcycled one of these cages. Remember this bird cage that I made with one during Springtime?

bird cage decor with cage light covers

But from a rustic Christmas decor standpoint, these antique light cages are a great size for tabletop displays. Plus they add a little height to whatever you set them on.

Light cage or light bulb cage to be upcycled and repurposed into a Christmas lantern

With the holidays looming around the corner, I decided to pair my collection of light bulb cages with some vintage sheet music that I had picked up on one of my junkin’ adventures.

My hope was that they would work well together as Christmas luminaries (using LED candles, of course).

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Light Bulb Cages and Vintage Sheet Music

The first thing I did was gather the vintage sheet music that I already had. And before anyone gets too bristled by this, much of this old sheet music was incomplete or already damaged/torn.

Vintage sheet music or old sheet music to place inside a light bulb cage for rustic Christmas decor

After selecting a single page from my vintage sheet music, I carefully coiled it and placed it inside a light bulb cage. (FYI, you can also find these vintage light cages on Etsy from time to time.)

I needed to determine how much of the page I would need to create my Christmas lantern.

Making a Christmas lantern with vintage sheet music and a light bulb cage for a rustic Christmas

Next, I marked the vintage sheet music at the bottom of the light bulb cage. I pulled the coil out, folded the sheet at my mark, and carefully tore along the fold. 

For rustic Christmas decor, I liked the idea of a fuzzy tear line instead of a clean cut with scissors.

Then, I coiled it back up and slipped it in the light cage. I carefully taped it together with Scotch tape once it was comfortably in the cage, and that was it!

Repurposing the light bulb cages and vintage sheet music into the Christmas luminaries for rustic decor

The first of the Christmas luminaries was done.

Christmas Luminaries with Light Bulb Cages

In a couple of minutes, I had an entire set of Christmas luminaries with the light bulb cages. And the best part was that none of my changes were permanent.

Rustic Christmas decor with the Christmas luminaries that are made with light bulb cages and old sheet music

But now the grand finale: illuminating the Christmas luminaries!

Because of the vintage sheet music, real candles were out of the question, of course. So, I placed an LED votive or small pillar candle under each light bulb cage.

And when it was dark out, I had stunningly gorgeous Christmas lanterns!

Christmas lantern or Christmas luminaries with a light bulb cage and old sheet music

Not too shabby, eh? I think a cluster of these Christmas luminaries would look lovely on a holiday table for the perfect touch of rustic Christmas decor. They are, in a word, breathtaking when they’re lit up at night.

For another Christmas lantern idea, make sure you also check out this Christmas lantern idea with a camper jack, too!

Christmas tree lantern from a camper jack

Plus, don’t forget that my book, “Crafting with Flannel”, has an entire chapter dedicated to Christmas crafts! It’s available for purchase online from Amazon, Target, Barnes & Noble, and Walmart.

fabric christmas crackers from crafting with flannel

Craft on!


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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.


  1. These are soooo pretty!

  2. These are beautiful! Nice job!

    Popped over from the Tuesday PJ linkup. 🙂

  3. De-light-ful. 🙂 They look so pretty with the candles. Glad you went for the LEDs with the paper. A real candle would start a fire quickly.

  4. ohhh ahhhh yes love these! I was worried for a minute until you said led candles 🙂 Sorry about the paper cuts, sheesh those things hurt! love the Light Cage Luminaries! They would be perfect just about anywhere and any time of year!

  5. Love these! Thanks for sharing them at the Vintage Inspiration Party! Bragging about them on FB today!

  6. Very cool. I’ll have to keep my eye out for those the next time I’m treasure hunting.

  7. Thank you for the inspiration! I have several of these that came from our family dairy farm – always thought they were cool by themselves but now they are even better!

  8. I found these over at On Display Thursday. These are beautiful! Who would have thought…well, evidently, you did! Very creative. I am always looking for old sheet music, there are so many wonderful things to make with them. These cages would be wonderful with spooky images for Halloween, too.

  9. This looks awesome! I will have to see if I come across any light cages in my travels (there is an awesome antiques market in the next town over). Thanks for sharing, stopping by from #MomTimeThurs.

  10. These are beautiful! I would love to have you link up at the Home Matters Link Party going on now


  11. Thank you so much for attending week 11 of #PureBlogLove and linking your fantastic blog post. These look fantastic! You must have the most amazingly decorated house! I can’t wait to see what you have in store for our party next week Thursday 8 PM EST- Sundays at midnight. Your post has been added to the #PureBlogLove Pinterest board for all to see 🙂 Have a great day!

  12. distresseddonna says

    I likesy cubed to the nth power of infinity. Even with the possible danger of hand cramps and paper cuts. Thank you for sharing these at Make It Monday. I likesy that you can un-Make It Monday too!

  13. Thank you SO much for this. I have about 10 of those out in the garage that my husband found on a demo job. I think they came out of an old gymnasium. I’ve been hanging onto them because they seemed good for ‘something.’ LOL Now I know what it is! I can’t wait to make these. Thanks so much!!

  14. Me again. I just thought of another thing. (I DO love these!) and I’m such a map freak, I think they’d also look cool as maps! Oh, the possibilities are endless. 🙂

  15. Hahaha, don’t all good DIY’s leave you with paper cuts and hand cramps?! Thanks so much for linking this up to the Found & Foraged party! I hope you’ll come again this weekend – and Happy Thanksgiving!

  16. How thrifty! I love the metal cages they’re fantastic. I would love for you to link up over at Scraptastic Saturdays. I pin all projects and share via Facebook and Twitter. Hope you have the chance to drop by. Have a wonderful week.

  17. This is such a lovely idea! I am glad that you risked your crafty hands to link up to On Display Thursday.

  18. This is Denise from Denise Designed stopping you from Sunday Features. Thank you for having linked up. Appreciate it!

  19. Peggie Russo-Millard says

    Love them! You are so creative. 🙂

  20. These are gorgeous! (I’m a little behind. I spent 115 days in the hospital, getting out on 9/26. I hope to catch up.)

  21. These are soooo pretty! Love the sheet music in them. Your right it can’t get any easy than this project.


  1. […] you remember my Light Cage Luminaria from my collection of repurposed Christmas projects, then you know I already have a light bulb cage […]

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