Thursday, February 5, 2009

Bubble, Bubble, Toil and Trouble

Ahhh the Mad Scientist laboratory. A visual delight of spooky sights and sounds and so fitting for your kitchen during your Halloween party.

So you've got your deformed creatures in jars, your Jacob's Ladder, your plasma ball and your bubbling jars. What? You don't have bubbling jars? Well that's something we need to remedy.

This is a super simple trick you can pull off with just a few supplies. Here's what you'll need:

A jar with a plastic lid (a plastic pretzel barrel jar works great)
Aquarium pump (from the pet supply store or ebay)
Plastic tubing to connect to your aquarium pump (pet or home supply store)
Water (you get that from the tap in the kitchen)
Black light reactive agent (Tide detergent, highlighters, glow in the dark paint, etc.)
Black light (found at any party store)
**I couldn't find my pictures of our setup so if you have questions just yell**

1. Remove the lid from your jar and drill or cut a hole just big enough to accomodate your plastic tubing.

2. Fill your jar to the desired level with water but leave some room as we'll be adding some more water in a bit.

3. Put the lid on your jar and run the tubing through the hole to the inside bottom of the jar.

4. Attach the other end of the tubing to your aquarium pump. Plug in the pump and give it a test run. Your water should bubble.

5. Now we need to give the water a creepy glow. We stumbled across this video so we'll cheat and let it show you how:

6. Add your glowing liquid to your jar. Position a black light nearby, turn off the lights, turn on your pump and enjoy!

Here's another glowing water video we thought you might enjoy:

If you'd like to try this with glow-in-the-dark paint, check out this vid by brittadotcom that we found on YouTube:


  1. You can also use plain tonic water that's been left out to go flat for a few days. I found that in Kenneth Pitek's "Halloween Propmaker's Handbook," a gem of a how-to if ever there was one!
    Good call on the colors!

  2. LOVED this post - seeing the slight differences in techniques... and seeing it in video really helped us visual learners! Thanks so much - now I'm off to find a way to fit glowing glass or a fountain into this years theme! ;)

  3. I love that book Shellhawk! Tonic water and basically anything that will fluoresce should work. I'm a highlighter girl myself because I like the variety of colors ;)

    Dawn - you go girl!! The way you build props I have no doubt that you'll be able to work it into your theme ;)


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