Mini Paper Lanterns with printable template

Paper lanterns are a classic craft I remember making – and loving – many times as a child. This time we’ve made them in a minature size perfect for sitting a little LED pretend tealight candle inside (I would not recommend using real candles for obvious reasons). They give a happy Christmas glow on the shelf where they sit, and the pretend candles really do look so real. I was happy to be able to share this much loved, simple and popular craft with my girls, who are proud of the lanterns they made almost all by themselves. Here is how we made them…
Note: This post is part of the 20 days of a kid made Christmas series – 20 days of kid-made Christmas ornaments by 50+ bloggers from around the world. further details at the end of the post.

You will need

• Lantern template printed out on paper or card stock (card stock is best but paper will do)
• Scissors
• double sided tape
• Decorative (washi) tape
• milk bottle lids (one per lantern)
• butter knife, cutting mat and metal ruler for scoring
• LED tealight candles (optional)

How to

To score the paper use a blunt butter knife to make a dent in it along the fold lines with a metal ruler. This will make it much easier to fold and give the lantern clean lines when finished. Then fold both forwards and backwards on the lines you’ve just scored. Big kids could obviously do this part themselves but for littlies like mine you will need to do it for them, it will make their lantern-making fun go a bit smoother and it will work better for them.
Cut the rectangle shape of the lantern out and then fold in half and cut along the black lines. Unfold and you have the makings of your lantern.
Put double sided tape around the outside of a standard milk bottle cap.
Wrap the paper lantern around the milk bottle cap and stick in place. You can use a small pice of double sided tape to stick at the top also. Then stick a strip of the washi tape around the base and top for decoration and to give it extra strength also. To make the handle stick a piece of washi tape over the strip marked “handle” on the template, cut it out and attach to the lantern with double sided tape.
Ta-da!
Now it just needs an LED tealight. Slide it in carefully, it should just fit perfectly inside the rim of the lantern and sit nicely in the milk bottle cap (or just on top of it depending on the size of the cap).
Lanterns by the girls, aren’t they gorgeous?
I made a few too (of course!)
These lanterns are small enough to hang on the tree as ornaments.
Aww, this one’s totally kid-made.
…and by night they look lovely.
To download the template click here: Paper Lantern
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