Published on July 15th, 2010 | by Jules Yap


Cupcake lights

Materials: You’ll need a package of Drommar, a strand of lights and an X-Acto knife.

Description: Using an X-Acto knife, make a cross cut in the bottom of an Ikea Drommar (cupcake liner $0.99 for a pack of 65). Slip over socket on a strand of lights to create small paper lamp shades that look really sweet.

See more of Camilla’s cupcake lights.

~ Camilla Fabbri, Family Chic

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The Author

Jules Yap

"I am Jules, the engine behind IKEAHackers and the one who keeps this site up and running. My mission is to capture all the wonderful, inspiring, clever hacks and ideas for our much loved IKEA items".

32 Responses to Cupcake lights

  1. Anonymous says:

    Sweet idea! I had no idea that Ikea had cupcake liners…or as pointed out Drommar(please invert this : and place over the o in the preceding word.

  2. Anonymous says:

    I would chime in with the fire hazard as well.

    There is a difference between “dry heat” and “moist heat”. With a cupcake, there is generally moisture involved, so unless is is burning, it won’t go higher than 100C or 212F (boiling water). Once all the water is gone, then the cupcake will get hotter, but then it’s burned.

    With these in contact with the light, having no water involved to help regulate the temperature, even a small incandescent will get hot enough to be a hazard.

    For a good example of how water regulates heat, it’s interesting to watch water boiling in a paper cup, on a grate over a campfire. I wouldn’t believe it if I hadn’t seen it, so give it a try. Basically, the water in contact with the cup keeps the temperature of the cup from ever going over 100C or 212F. Once the water is boiled away, the cup burns up.

  3. Nese Yuzucu says:

    Very nice creation. I liked IKEA Products every time. I will try for my garden,


  4. Anonymous says:

    Seriously? a fire hazard!? never! at 400 degrees in a oven this is a fantastic idea! no hazard at all and turned out wonderful for a party I had! THANK YOU!!!!

  5. Isreview says:

    Nice job! cool idea ! I gotta try this one day!


  6. What?! IKEA has cupcake liners? I have never seen these there.

  7. Jezibel says:

    …strange thread of comments…

    I love the idea! I have seen silicon cupcake cups. That could be an added safety feature, although, not as inexpensive. I think this is a great way to spruce up a string of lights for a party. Toss them out after if they don’t hold up.

    To go the extra distance to make the paper ones hold up, you could always cut out circles of parchment and line the pretty cupcake cups… Just a thought.

  8. Laura says:

    I love how Ikea names their products. The instructions for this post essentially say “You’ll need a package of dreams…” How poetic!

    On a less dreamy note, I have been trying to find these paper liners for the Drommar pan in the store. I didn’t know Ikea sold them actually! It’s too bad that the “Drommar” cupcake pan doesn’t fit the same size cupcakes as other “regular” cupcake pans in the US. (More of a “nightmare” than a “dream” if you ask me!) Us silly Americans must like our cupcakes bigger than the Swedes.

  9. Melissa says:

    An incandescent bulb could certainly get hotter than a cupcake. Baking in a 350°F oven does not mean the cupcakes get to 350° all the way through. The ideal center temperature is just over 200°F according to http://cakecentral.com/cake-decorating-ftopicp-6546453.html and the outside will be hotter but not necessarily the full baking temperature of the oven. Heat transfer is pretty complicated…I got an A in it in engineering school but I still couldn’t get the max temp a cupcake liner would see.

    This idea might work for a party but I wouldn’t use it long term and I would never leave it unattended. LED bulbs are safer but fluorescents do get hot, just not quite as hot as incandescents. How about putting something else under the cupcake liners to get a pretty garland with no electricity? Maybe small silver Christmas ornament balls tied to a strand of wire or twine?

  10. jo says:

    fahrenheit 451…only to quote.

  11. Amy says:

    Wow, I just clicked on the full post because I wanted to ay what a great idea this is. I didn’t expect such drama LOL. I’ve touched some tiny lights before, they were room temperature so no fire hazard concerns there. I had no idea Ikea sold cupcake liners… oh well it gives me a reason to go there again. ;)

  12. Anonymous says:

    I suspect the liners are not really fire-retardant. It’s just that the contents they’re usually filled with are baked at a temp below temp at which paper burns (450 degrees F, I believe). They’re very pretty, but I wouldn’t care to take a chance on using them with lights.

  13. Anonymous says:

    Ich komme aus Deutschland. Mein gesprochenes Englisch ist sehr gut, mein schriftliches eher mieserabel. Ist das wirklich wichtig?
    Mir gefallen die Lämpchen. That’s it!

  14. Julie says:

    Back on the subject of the lights themselves, they make small-base light bulbs in LED technology. They do not emit any heat at all, and would be very safe to use with paper cupcake liner shades.
    Link: http://www.lampsplus.com/products/10-Light-Frosted-LED-Bulb-String-Light-Set__64153.html

  15. Those cupcake lights are WONDERFUL! And you know if the paper can handle the heat of an oven, it will handle the heat of the lights. What a fun idea.

    - David

    Aloe Vera 101
    Holistic Health Info.

  16. Martin says:

    Being a Swede I can´t really understand why “The Swede” above gets so offended by not using Ö/ö in this instance. Would never consider it to be rude, and can’t think of any other swede that would either. Better not misspell a swedes name though, but thats a different story.. Pay no attention to his/her remark. Misspelling may make it more difficult to search for hacks though.

  17. prue says:

    With regard to the umlauts – by the way, the German plural would have to be Umlaute, and you’d have to capitalize the word, too – anyway, the umlauts and other foreign language accents or letters: what I actually do a lot in order to a) keep my normal keyboard layout and b) try to avoid spelling mistakes, is using keyboard codes to type ñ, for example (my keyboard is a German one, so no ñ available).

    It is a hassle if you have to use a lot of these letters, but it’s the only way out actually.

    See http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Umlaut_(diacritic)#Keyboard_input
    for the notorious umlauts :)
    Oh, and you have to type the numbers on number pad, don’t use the ones above the letters.

  18. Anonymous says:

    These look beautiful. The whole point of using the cupcake liners is their heat resistance. What about the danger of using glass bulbs? They could break and a shard could end up in your eye. That could be really dangerous! Back to the padded room, quick!

  19. Anonymous says:

    Form follows function! It puts the wrong ideas and messages out to people – lamp materials need to be fire retarded – designers have a responsibility, and although beautiful and surprising – its quite irresponsible and very dangerous! accident waiting to happen!

  20. Anonymous says:

    These look darling. What a great little hack!!

  21. K says:

    The umlat isn’t readily available on American keyboards. The only time I might even consider using the umlat is when I’m talking about stuff from Ikea.

    Re: the Post — such a cute idea! I didn’t even realize that Ikea sold cupcake liners. Will definitely keep an eye out for them the next time I’m there.

  22. syko1096 says:

    Well, they are cupcake liners after all. Do small incandescent bulbs get hotter than an oven set to bake cupcakes? (I don’t know off hand, thus the question.)

  23. Jen says:

    They look fab, but I would also be worried about paper in contact with a light bulb.

  24. Kellye says:

    I think these are really cool, I’d love to try them out! Too bad there isn’t an Ikea store anywhere near here, or I’d run out and pick some up.

    And Swede, I’m an editor of English by profession so I’m as much of a grammar Nazi as anyone, but correcting the spelling of perfect strangers (while also off-handedly stereotyping and generalizing them according to their nationality) is considerably more rude than leaving out a foreign accent by mistake.

    Manners – use them.

  25. Anonymous says:

    Very decorative. Fire-hazard would concern me also though, but if you use low effect bulbs I suppose it’s okay.

  26. Cara says:

    Miss Manners says it’s rude to accuse other people of rudeness. ;-) Especially when those other people have done nothing wrong. Do you seriously think Americans are sitting around, thinking, “Oh, I’ll get that Swede today! I’ll refuse to use umlauts!” Please.

    These cupcake lights are too cute. What a great (and simple) idea!

  27. Anonymous says:

    I agree about the accents, I am now living in Sweden and feel bad about the accents, I do have it set to change the keyboard config with alt+shift but I’m also good enough with computers to know how to do it, not that I leave it on the swedish keyboard as default because I have an american laptop(I moved here because of a guy :3)
    He and his friends and everyone I speak to at least know I don’t have the keyboard, and honestly the keyboards are setup a little differently so While I can plug one in (and I do practice a bit) its different so a bit annoying to my fingers that know the american standard setup. Setting up the computer to think its a swedish keyboard without plugging one in is crazy too btw, but I’ve done it. Its not that fun because of the change in letters. Seriously, don’t get your panties in a bunch.

    Also very cute idea! I would hope they arn’t warm bulbs tho (they could be the hidden LED bulbs)

  28. Anonymous says:

    Actually, The Swede, most Americans do not have the extra accents built into their computers’ typeboards. Do you have an ñ (Spanish enye) on yours?

    Omitting an umlaut is not done as an intentional offense – she very likely does not have her computer set up to be able to do foreign characters or accents. And yes, I do understand it changes the word and pronunciation – o is not the same as ö in any language.

    Peoples’ computers and keyboards are generally set up based on the country in which they live and generally favour that country’s primary language. So in the States, peoples’ keyboards will not have the plethora of other characters that a French, Spanish, or even Swedish one will have.

    Many people accuse Americans of being rude and inconsiderate – but take a moment and step back and look at yourself. Consider others’ situations.

    I suppose I should add here that I am French, a people notorious amongst Americans for being “rude.” I do have access to accents – but many of my friends in the States do not and write me emails in French with apologetic notes at the end for “omitting” accents. They know, they simply do not have the keyboard to type them out.

  29. The Swede says:

    I think this is a pretty nice idea (and I doubt that a tiny lightbulb outputting maybe five watts is hot enough to start a fire) but how difficult is it for americans to actually spell stuff right?

    It’s “DRÖMMAR” with an umlaut. It’s swedish for “dreams”, which is what that certain kind of muffin is called here. Learn it. It’s just rude not to spell things right.

  30. Anonymous says:

    Could just be me, but a hot lightbulb paper against it sounds like a fire waiting to happen. Looks pretty though.

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