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Luminaries product information

Luminaries are opaque containers that produce a diffuse glowing light. The light source is usually a candle or low voltage globe. Luminaries can be made from paper bags, plastic cups, or frosted glasses. They are used to create a warm and intimate atmosphere for parties, and lining walkways and steps with luminaries is a great way to welcome guests. They are also used at weddings and funerals in some countries, and to mark holidays such as Christmas and Halloween. Even the famous Halloween pumpkin is a type of luminary.

Paper bag luminaries are easy to make, but they can also be bought in stores very cheaply. The store luminaries are available in many different designs. Some designs have cutout shapes representing holidays and events, while others just have common shapes like stars and spirals. The paper bags stay upright due to air inside the bag being heated by the candle. This can cause larger bags to fly away, and sand or rocks may need to be placed at their base. Larger bags are sometimes deliberately released as flying luminaries. The candles will usually have a burn time, and some can last more than ten hours. Perfumed candles also add a pleasant scent to the air as the burn.

Luminaries made from plastic cups and frosted glasses have a more solid rounded appearance than the paper bags, and they also give off a more diffuse light. They can also be bought in stores and are usually sold in kits that have many containers and candles in them. The kits also contain anchor spikes to stop the luminaries from being knocked over or blown away by the wind. Other kits replace candles with light strings that have have many low voltage globes on a long wire.

Solar powered luminaries are available that have a light globe, solar panel and battery built into a white plastic container. The battery is automatically charged by the solar panel so that it can power the light globe throughout the night, and only a few hours sunlight is needed to fully charge it. They can be placed in the garden and remain there for years without much trouble. However, the solar powered luminaries don't have the same charm as the flickering candle type, and are slightly more expensive too.

Making a luminary is very simple and only requires a few basic materials that can be found around the house. Find a paper bag or large plastic cup, preferably one without any markings on it. Draw the outline of some shapes with a pencil and cut them out with a hobby knife. Light a small candle and place the container over it, making sure that the candle is in the center. The container should now produce a soft glow, with brighter light coming from the cutout shapes.

When making luminaries, ensure there is sufficient space between the candle and the container so that it doesn't melt, crack, or catch on fire. Luminaries powered by candles should not be used indoors because of the risk of fire. They should also not be used outdoors during total fire bans. Flying luminaries shouldn't be released if there is a strong wind that will blow them into neighboring properties.

Many luminaries need to be used to create a dramatic lighting effect. Setting up this many can take a lot of time and effort, so they are usually kept for special occasions. Candle powered luminaries also start getting expensive when a large number of candles needs to be replaced each night. But candle luminaries are possibly the most attractive type of outdoor lighting available. The time, money, and effort spent on them will certainly seem worth it the next morning.

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