Like A Lighthouse Girls Camp Craft

First I’d like to thank everyone that answered my call on this post for ideas. I really did use your comments to help determine the final design of this project. Our theme was navy/nautical this year, so the lighthouse was a recurring symbol through out camp. My goal was to make crafts with a function, so that the girls would want to use them again. Remember my budget was super-small! Here’s what we did:
I started with these tumblers from IKEA, that cost $0.29/each. I don’t know why they cost $0.29/each, I just know that I went to the store to buy 110 of them, before someone decided to raise the price. Did I tell you how much fun that was with my toddler???
I asked for baby food jar donations from the women at church, and while at first, they were slow coming in, I ended up with lots of extras, by the end. The hardest part was cleaning the sticky stuff off of all of them. Goo-gone worked pretty well, and we ran them through the dishwasher before and after the goo-gone.
We spray painted all of the lids black. For the rim between the jar and the tumbler, we got a bunch of yogurt lids donated because my bishop works for a company that manufactures them. While this was great for our budget, if you attempt this project, I would either look for lids that are already black, or a metal lid that you can paint, because getting paint and adhesives to stick to the lids became quite a challenge.
We bought the spray paint that is designed for plastics, but it would still chip off, and cause problems with adhesives. So we finally decided to keep the underneath side of the lid white, and leave a white center on top, so that the adhesive would stick to the plastic, and not painted plastic. To leave the center white, we took some small baby food jars that we weren’t using and placed them on top of the lids before spraying.
And what was our magic adhesive? We ended up using heavy duty Velcro for a couple of reasons: 1) It has a very strong adhesive. 2) We pre-cut the squares of Velcro to the right size, but the girls were able to put the Velcro on by themselves. We would have had to help them with the heavy duty glues we were considering. 3) They could take the project apart to pack it up to go home, and hopefully keep it from getting broken.
After attaching the Velcro, we used a sharpie marker to color in the rest of the white circle, so it wouldn’t be obvious. The stripes on all of the houses were made with electricians tape.
The most expensive part of this project were the battery-powered tea lights (no fire allowed at camp). The cheapest I could find them was 2 for $1 at Dollar Tree. I told the girls when those lights die, they could put regular tea-lights inside, if there parents let them.
I also made strips of clear stickers with a scripture on them, to wrap around the jars and help them remember the symbolism involved.
Therefore, hold up your light that it may shine unto the world. Behold I am the light which ye shall hold up. {3 Ne 18:24}
I wanted to calculate the total cost, but haven’t figured out all of the incidentals like Velcro, tape, spray paint, etc. But I’m guessing this wasn’t much more than $1/lighthouse. I think this was the favorite craft, but I think they all went over really well. I have two more to share with you….another day.

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  1. oh amanda says

    LOVE THIS. I'm stumbling this so I can remember!

  2. Nicole @ BugaBoos says

    Love this, What a cute idea!

  3. I am so super impressed and loving this Kendra! I have told Jeff more than once since seeing the first pictures of these that you are so perfect for that calling 🙂

    Can't wait to see your other projects…

    P.S. There is just something about plastic lids–when I used them a couple years back to make Christmas ornaments it took a lot of experimentation to make that project work too! 🙂

  4. The DIY Show Off says

    What fun! So creative and cute!

  5. Thanks, everyone!

    Becky–why didn't you tell me it would be soooo much work? Fun, but sooo much work! I'm still not recovered!

  6. says

    Great idea! You're so clever…the girls at camp must love you:)

  7. michellejohnnie says

    Great idea! I linked to this at

  8. What a neat craft! There are so many great crafts to do with baby food jars & they are all cheap!

  9. Anonymous says

    I found your craft on Sugardoodle, and am excited for our YW to do this! Our camp song is "Light a Lighthouse in the Night", so this goes perfect with that! I thought I'd let you know what we are doing instead of the yogurt lids – the Dixie PerfectTouch Cup lids.

  10. Thanks anon! Great idea…they are already black and are inexpensive. I'd love to see pictures when you are done!

  11. Nanny Dee says

    What a great idea! We New Englanders love our lighthouses!

  12. Kendra this post was so helpful for me! I am considering a similar craft…

    1)Did you get the tea lights online or in store at The Dollar Tree? The cheapest I can find is .79 Did you have any problems with them not working?

    2) Did you post the rest of the camp crafts? I'd love to see the life preserver!

  13. Kendra@My Insanity says

    Hi Bonnie!
    1) I just bought the two packs at Dollar Tree (in store), so each light worked out to be $0.50. There were a few duds, but most of them worked, if we played with the battery a little. That was the most expensive part of any of the projects.

    2)I posted all of my camp projects. You can see them by using this link, and scrolling down.

    I'd love to know what all you end up doing! Good Luck!

  14. Amanda@Imperfectly Beautiful says

    LOVE this…so cute and super creative! What a great craft for girl's camp, too!

    Thanks for linking up with us over at The CSI Project.


  15. Kim @ Starshine Chic says

    What a great camp project.

  16. Keep Calm and Decorate says

    These are great! I am visiting from the CSI project.

  17. says

    Great project! Perfect for camp! Thanks for sharing … I've posted a link.

  18. I.LOVE.THIS!!!! Great idea!

  19. Lona Blankenship says

    I love these light house girls camp craft. But I need to know all the stuff they used to make them. I wanting to make one for my older sister for christmas this year.

    Thank you
    Lona Blankenship

  20. This is really cute, I love light houses. But I wanted to mention, you may not want to use real flame tea lights because it will melt the plastic lids once it gets hot. Just wanted to mention it to you.

    Really cute idea.


  1. […] Lighthouses from My Insanity are a great recycling craft, and any of the components could be substituted with whatever you have […]

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