Easy DIY patriotic votives

Easy DIY patriotic votives made with tissue paper and Mod PodgeHi, everyone! It’s Heidi from Hands Occupied. As hard as it is to believe the Fourth of July is coming up, it’s almost here! Lucky for you, these DIY patriotic luminary votives come together quickly, so you can crank out a bunch in no time.


  • votive candles that come in glass holders
  • matte Mod Podge
  • sponge brush
  • tissue paper
  • pre-filled glass votive candles
  • x-acto knife
  • pencil
  • scissors
  • measuring tape
  • ruler
  • waxed paper
  • cardboard/foam core to protect your work surface


Measure the wider end of your votive and then measure its height using a tape measure. With those numbers, draw rectangles on your tissue paper, one for each of your votives, and cut them out.

Patriotic VotivesSet your tissue paper rectangles on a piece of cardboard or foam core and cut lines down the length of each rectangle, but don’t cut through any edge of the tissue paper. Lay your rectangles on a piece of waxed paper and paint a layer of Mod Podge over them.

Patriotic VotivesLet them dry for 5-10 minutes, and very carefully remove them from the waxed paper. Set each aside on a dry sheet of waxed paper to dry completely.

Why hassle with delicate tissue paper on this project?
Tissue paper lets more light through! The slits in the paper, of course, will let light through, but the tissue paper will let even more light shine. You can swap regular paper for the tissue paper if you’d like, in which case you could skip the waxed paper/Mod Podge layer/careful peel. 

Patriotic VotivesWhen the tissue paper has dried completely, cut along the slits with an x-acto knife and carefully pull each slit apart.

Patriotic VotivesPaint about a centimeter of Mod Podge onto the top edge of the votive holder. You’ll want to start with the top edge here because it’s usually wider than the bottom.

Patriotic VotivesPosition your tissue paper about half a centimeter from the edge of the top of your votive. Stick the tissue paper all the way around the votive, and when you come back around, there will be a little bit of overlap. Add a dab of Mod Podge at the point of overlap to secure. Paint some Mod Podge over the tissue paper along the top end of the votive.

Patriotic VotivesJust like with the top of your votive, paint a ring of Mod Podge about a centimeter wide along the bottom of the votive. Gently slide the bottom of your tissue paper into place about half a centimeter from the base of the votive. Again, add a dab of Mod Podge where the tissue paper overlaps to secure it, and paint a layer of decoupage medium over the bottom end of the tissue paper to finish.

Patriotic Votives^Please pardon my weird claw hand here.^

Here’s what these little buddies look like from the top – gluing the paper on slightly in from the top and bottom edge of the votives make the paper slits flare out for a cute lantern effect. Festive, no?

Patriotic Votives

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