DIY Wood Lantern

3 Materials
2 Hours

Let's build a set of cute, decorative wood lanterns for under $10!Yup, an easy and inexpensive DIY project. If you like this be sure to follow me here on Hometalk for lots more simple DIY projects. Like simple building projects like this one? Let me show you how to easily build stain and stencil any kind of wood sign.

Let's start with supplies

  • 1/2 inch balsa wood strips total of 52 inches in length
  • 4 - 4x4 wood plaques
  • 2 - wood drawer pulls
  • Black spray paint

Plus these tools

  • Craft knife
  • Wood Glue
  • Pencil
  • Ruler
  • Clamp

Use what you have as far as wood squares and knobs. These wood knobs came off an old dresser that I updated.

Start by cutting the wood wood strips down to size, you can use a craft knife for this they are very thin! You will need 4 strips of equal size for each lantern. Add glue to the ends and use a clamp to hold them in place. I did 2 at a time, let them dry, then did the next 2.

Once the lantern is built and dry, glue on a wood knob to the top and let it dry fully.Then head to a well ventilated area and spray the lantern a high gloss black. This will give your lantern a metal like look. Consider using a metal effect spray paint or another color to match you decor.

Once everything is dry you can start styling. A few tips:Do not use open flame in these lanterns, it is not safe.Add small jars and fill them with different items to match your decor and the season. Try corn kernels an LED tea lights. Or fill a jar with twinkle lights!

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Sarah Vanderkooy

Want more details about this and other DIY projects? Check out my blog post!


Have a question about this project?

3 questions
  • Deborah Owens Busch
    on Jan 21, 2020

    Where did you hide the battery pack for the little twinkle lights. I'm thinking of trying this but my twinkles use a 3 AA battery pack.

  • Barbara
    on Jan 23, 2020

    I love this idea! I have never used a clamp, please tell me the size you used. What is a good size to buy so I can use it for other projects as well.

    Thank you

    • Sarah Vanderkooy
      on Jan 28, 2020

      I really like a slide clamp, it's the one pictured in this project. It adjusts to any size so you can use it on a variety of projects. I have a set of 2 and I love them.

  • Sarge
    on Feb 12, 2020

    Where did you find the lights with the black battery pack? Something local or any big box store? I have not seen them anywhere

    • Ang
      on Jul 5, 2020

      You could paint the battery pack to match.... you could add a little trim strip to the top if you need to so that the battery pack tucks in

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