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How to make Acorn Cap Solar LED Lights

Our little acorn cap solar LED lights are perfect for adorning a fairy garden. They are powered using an adapted LED garden solar light, and light up our fairy herb garden beautifully when the sun goes down. This tutorial is in two halves. First, we show you how to adapt the garden solar light and then how to make the string of acorn cap lights.

 

In this simple tutorial, we show you how to adapt a garden solar light to power a homemade string of acorn cap lights for a fairy garden.

Adapting a LED Solar Light to Power Your Own String of Lights.

LED Garden Solar Lights are cheap and readily available on the high street. I think the one we used for this project cost 79p. Below is a step by step video that shows you exactly how to adapt one so that you can use it to power your lighting project.

Making a String of Acorn Cap LED Lights.

To make a string of acorn cap LED lights you will need:

  • Acorn Caps
  • LED Bulbs
  • Copper Wire
  • Sticks (we used wooden round lolly sticks)
  • Solder and Soldering Iron
  • Small drill bit for making holes in the lolly sticks to feed the wire through
  • Something to stand your poles up in while you attach your wires and lights

We used plastic covered copper wire so had to strip the plastic off before we started to assemble our lights. We also assembled our street light poles and dipped them in a solution of tea to stain them.

 

In this simple tutorial, we show you how to adapt a garden solar light to power a homemade string of acorn cap lights for a fairy garden.

Our caps were freshly collected and soft, so we were able to push the wires of the LED bulbs straight through them. If you are using dry caps, you may need to drill a little hole before you can insert yours. If you look closely at the photo below, you will see that one of the LED bulb stalks is longer than the other. The longer stalk is the positive. When you come to mount your bulbs onto the copper wire, all the positives must join the same wire otherwise that bulb inserted wrong will not light up!

 

In this simple tutorial, we show you how to adapt a garden solar light to power a homemade string of acorn cap lights for a fairy garden.

Our string holds six acorn cap LEDs (any more and the solar unit might struggle to light them up). We started by stringing the copper wire onto our posts. Pilot holes drilled through the arms of the posts are used to pass the wire through. It is then wrapped around the arm to hold it secure. Once the lights are in use it is vital that the two copper wires don't touch; otherwise, it will cause them to short.

 

In this simple tutorial, we show you how to adapt a garden solar light to power a homemade string of acorn cap lights for a fairy garden.

Once the posts and wire are set up, you can solder the acorn cap LEDs into place. Remember to have all the positives (the long stalk) attached to the same wire.

 

In this simple tutorial, we show you how to adapt a garden solar light to power a homemade string of acorn cap lights for a fairy garden.

Next solder your adapted solar power unit in place.

 

In this simple tutorial, we show you how to adapt a garden solar light to power a homemade string of acorn cap lights for a fairy garden.

Our Finished Fairy Garden Lights

 

In this simple tutorial, we show you how to adapt a garden solar light to power a homemade string of acorn cap lights for a fairy garden.

 

Then it's simply a matter of choosing where to position the lights in your fairy garden.

 

In this simple tutorial, we show you how to adapt a garden solar light to power a homemade string of acorn cap lights for a fairy garden.

And waiting for the sun to go down.

 

In this simple tutorial, we show you how to adapt a garden solar light to power a homemade string of acorn cap lights for a fairy garden.

We are building our fairy herb garden in stages. We started with our solar fairy waterfall which you can check out here. Two-thirds of the garden is still under plastic waiting patiently to be planted.

Below is a short clip of our fairy garden so far at dusk.

We'd love it if you'd share our little acorn cap LED lights so that we can inspire others to make them.

 

In this simple tutorial, we show you how to adapt a garden solar light to power a homemade string of acorn cap lights for a fairy garden.

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16 Comments

  • Reply Bridget

    This is adorable!

    October 14, 2017 at 11:54 pm
  • Reply Sandra

    What a clever idea. Thanks for sharing.

    October 14, 2017 at 3:27 pm
    • Reply Sarah - Craft Invaders

      Thanks so much Sandra, we’re really pleased with how the lights turned out 🙂

      October 14, 2017 at 11:37 pm
  • Reply Mary

    This is a wonderful tutorial, I’ve watched it 4 times! What size wire is the black wire? How many watts are the light bulbs? Are there calculations you can use to figure out how far apart the bulbs can be? Seems like 6 bulbs for I battery is very low unless you are using some high wattage bulbs. Do you have any tutorials where you can use multiple strands of wire and not have the bare copper wire? (I have kitties). I am sure it would have to be color coded and I assume that is why most of my leds have tape between the bottom of the bulb and the main wire; I don’t know how the mfg. uses 1 l color of wire unless they test for +- every time! Finally, have you ever converted a string of regular lights to LED?

    October 13, 2017 at 6:21 pm
    • Reply Sarah - Craft Invaders

      Thanks for all your questions Mary 🙂 The wire is 0.2mm for your local hobby electrical store. Not sure how much power the LEDs use but would expect it to be low. We have only used 6 bulbs because the battery we are using is not particularly powerful. We worked on the theory that the solar light was designed to only power one bulb overnight and we therefore didn’t want to overload it (plus we were working in miniature anyway). You could leave the covering on the majority of the wire and just remove the areas you are planning to solder, but it is only a 1.5V battery (the type you find in your TV remote) so there is no risk of electric shock. We don’t have any more tutorials currently but may do in the future!

      October 14, 2017 at 1:36 pm
  • Reply nikki frank-hamilton

    Sarah, these are so freaking cool! I always learn so much when I come here. This is brilliant. I love the way the fairy garden is coming together. That house is so cool, love all the succulents and ground covers. But the lights are my favorite! Let the kids know that I love it and can’t wait to see what’s next!

    October 11, 2017 at 2:54 pm
    • Reply Sarah - Craft Invaders

      I will do Nikki 🙂 I think the next area is going to be a little fairy farm – we have a few ideas so we’ll have to see how it all comes together 🙂

      October 14, 2017 at 11:46 pm
  • Reply Amy

    Oh my gosh. I’m dying – this is so cute! What a brilliant idea. It’s the perfect addition to the fairy herb garden, and I love the way it looks when it’s lit up at night. Amazing!

    October 9, 2017 at 10:00 pm
    • Reply Sarah - Craft Invaders

      Thanks Amy, we can’t wait for the herbs to get really established and to plant up the next area 🙂

      October 14, 2017 at 11:44 pm
  • Reply Michelle Leslie

    Brilliant, just brilliant!!!! I abSooooLutely love how you made these Sarah. So incredibly clever

    October 9, 2017 at 2:35 pm
    • Reply Sarah - Craft Invaders

      Thanks Michelle, although it’ll never be as adorable as your little sandy fairy garden 🙂

      October 14, 2017 at 11:43 pm
  • Reply FLORENCE @ VintageSouthernPicks

    Such attention to the tiniest details! But I know this is what makes one of these so special. You have done a great job on it ! Those little acorn cap lights! WOW. Beautiful.

    October 9, 2017 at 2:22 am
  • Reply Linda at Mixed Kreations

    Ah Sarah these little acorn cap lights are sooooooo adorable! Your whole fairy garden is adorable. I absolutely LOVE it all.

    October 8, 2017 at 9:32 pm
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