Make A Decorative Lantern With Your Child

by Jenny Banks

If you and your child are bored on a rainy day, make a decorative lantern with them by completing the following steps. Hang the lantern from a hook inside of your home or outdoors in an area that you and your child often spend time in so that you both can enjoy the attractive lighting.


  • glass jar or plastic jug
  • detergent
  • scrub brush 
  • water
  • stencils
  • two-sided tape
  • poster paint
  • paintbrushes
  • small dishes
  • marbles
  • LED light
  • wire
  • wire cutters

Clean The Jar And Paint Its Exterior

Remove labels from the jar's or jug's exterior and clean the container's surface with soapy water and a scrub brush. Rinse the container off with plain water and wait for it to dry. Use pieces of two-sided tape to attach stencils to the container's exterior. Let your child pick out shapes and designs that they prefer and help them line the stencils up on the container. Pour several colors of poster paint into small dishes. Encourage your child to fill in the stencils with different colors of paint. Wait several minutes for the paint to dry and carefully remove the stencils.

Add Marbles And A Handle

Fill the base of the container with marbles. The marbles will reflect the light and will give the lantern a shimmery appearance when the LED light is turned on. Cut a piece of wire that is a few feet long. Wrap the center of the wire a couple times around the neck of the jar. Twist the two ends of the wire together until they are secure and bend the rest of the wire until it is in the shape of a handle.

Place an LED light that is battery-operated in the base of the jar. Press the bottom of the light firmly into the marbles until it is stabilized. Make sure that the light's switch isn't covered.

Hang The Lantern

Install a hook inside of your home or on your front porch. Turn on the LED light and hang the lantern's handle from the hook. Hang the lantern from a tree limb on a night that you and your child would like to spend some time outdoors. The light will shine through the lantern and enhance the painted designs that are on its exterior. If you and your child enjoy looking at the lantern, make some more of them so that you can light up several areas around your home and property.