How to Make Silicone Dipped Bulbs

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Silicone bulbs can be found in home specialty stores and online. If you can't find the color of bulb you want in the off-the shelf choices, consider making the bulbs yourself. Homemade silicone-dipped bulbs can be created to match your own decor needs. Customized bulbs can be made in different colors, textures and tip length. You can make several silicone-dipped bulbs at once and save more time than if you made them one at a time.

Things You'll Need

  • 100% Clear outdoor silicone caulk
  • Oil-based model car paint
  • Utility knife
  • Small 4-inch deep throw away bowl
  • Plastic butter knife
  • 5-watt or smaller light bulb
  • Lightweight wire
  • Wire snips
  • String

Mix the Silicone

  • Roll the silicone tube back and forth between your palms to warm the silicone. Warm silicone will be thin enough to dip your bulbs in.

  • Trim the top from the tube with a utility knife. Squeeze silicone into the throw-away bowl until it is about one-fourth full. Stop squeezing and bump the bowl's edge to remove any air pockets.

  • Add color to your silicone dipped bulbs. Apply two drops of model paint to the silicone. Turn the paint into the silicone using a gentle folding motion. Add more silicone to the bowl until it is almost full. Turn the silicone until the color is distributed evenly throughout.

Dip the Bulbs

  • Mount a string between two posts. Pull the string tight. Your dipped bulbs will hang from this string to dry.

  • Plug each bulb into a socket to make sure it works. Wrap the end of a piece of lightweight wire around the shaft of the bulb twice. The wire should be secure enough to hold the bulb as it is being pulled from the silicone. Leave a two-inch tail on the wire and clip the remainder. Fold the wire tail into a hook.

  • Place the bulb in the silicone-filled bowl. The shaft will be the only part that is above the silicone.

  • Pull the bulb from silicone bowl. Twist the bulb, slowly, at the same time as you are lifting. This will make the surface ripple. A smooth texture will be created by pulling the bulb straight out. Pull the top of the bulb out very slow for a longer tip.

  • Hang the bulbs on the string using the wire hook. The bulbs should hang for three hours to dry. Do not let the bulbs touch anything until they are completely dry.

Tips & Warnings

  • If you want a primitive or grungy bulb, add ground cinnamon to the silicone instead of paint.
  • Fold the silicone instead of stirring. Stirring will create air pockets and could cause defects to the surface of the bulb.

References

  • Photo Credit Jupiterimages/liquidlibrary/Getty Images
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