Plexiglass Lantern

15 Materials
1 Day

Summer nights and mood lighting go hand in hand. When you can’t – or it’s too hot to light a fire – you can still enjoy the soothing flicker of a flame with this giant Plexiglass Lantern.

You'll Need:

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* A piece of plexiglass. Mine measures 40 and a half by 30 and a half inches.

* Pressure treated two by fours and fence pickets and 16 two-and-a-half inch screws.

* Spray paint, frosted glass spray, and a drop cloth.

* A miter saw, nail gun, measuring tape, safety glasses, a drill, and bits for pilot holes and screwing.

* A flaming effect LED bulb and a clamp light.

This type of LED bulb looks like a real flame but is cool to the touch and safe to use.

* Some kind of finial for the top

First, measure the plexiglass’s long size and divide that number by 3.14. This will give you the size for your base. For example, my plexiglass measures 40 and a half inches long. Dividing that number by 3.14 gives me 12.89 and I’m rounding up to an even 13. Which means the inside of my base will need to be 13 inches square.

Use the miter saw to cut the 2 by 4s to size. Cut four to the same length as your base measurement and another four at 3 inches longer than the base measurement. This will accommodate for the width of the two by four. For my lantern, I’ll need four pieces cut at 13 inches and another four cut at 16 inches.

Your base will be assembled by lining up two of the shorter 2 by 4s perpendicular with two longer ones' ends.

Drill pilot holes with the bit and use two screws to secure.

Once you have your two-by-four square, cut fence pickets to size. I want a little overhang on the sides so I’m cutting my pickets at 16 inches long. I’ll need three to fully cover the top.

Secure the pickets with a nail gun.

Disassemble the clamp light so you separate the light socket and cord from the clamp and hood. I found that it’s easier, cheaper, and faster to go this route than to purchase a lamp kit and have manually wire the socket.

Create a second base using the same process as the first. When nailing the fence pickets on, run the light socket’s cord between two of the boards so you don’t have to drill any holes.

Paint the wood over a drop cloth. I’m using Rust-Oleum’s Painter’s Touch 2x Paint and Primer in Rustic Pink.

Then use the frosted glass spray over the entire surface of one side of the plexiglass.

Once the paint and frosted spray has dried, secure your finial to the base piece with the electrical cord. Place it so that the cord is hidden behind it.

Place the base piece without the electrical cord where you want to assemble your lantern.

Screw the LED bulb into the socket and ensure that it’s switched to the ‘on’ position.

Bend the plexiglass into a cylinder and insert the bottom end into the base piece.

Place the other base piece on top to secure the plexiglass in a cylinder shape. Adjust the top piece as needed to straighten.

Plug the socket’s outlet in so that the bulb illuminates. Raise and lower the cord until you have the flame at your desired height.

Tie a small knot in the cord so that the bulb remains at that height. The finial will hide the cord and the knot from the front.

The Plexiglass Lantern can be used outdoors however it should not be left out to be exposed to the elements.

Watch the easy-to-follow video tutorial here! The proceeds from this video (and the entire channel) are also all donated to no-kill shelters and rescue organizations. Please watch, like, subscribe, and share to help the videos raise donations ❤

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


Have a question about this project?

3 of 8 questions
  • Frankie Martin
    on Aug 8, 2020

    Do you need to wear fancy hi heeled shoes for this project? Esp with the miter saw? Just kidding!

    • Cindy
      on Aug 9, 2020

      So ladies, what did you think of the project? I thought it was amazing and love that ultra feminine vibe as well.

  • Tina
    on Aug 8, 2020

    Beautiful! I also love seeing your dog in the photos. Thank you for helping animals in this way. Bravo!🐶🐶🐈🐈

  • Kat
    on Aug 8, 2020

    How much did it cost for the project? It’s beautiful!

    • OnTheFly...DIY
      on Aug 8, 2020

      I already had the piece of plexiglass but they run about $30 for that size at a home improvement store. Everything else was scrap wood and items I had already. There's a 'materials' section at the bottom of the project that Hometalk provides where you can click and look at materials (if you don't have some of the items already).

Join the conversation

2 of 28 comments
  • Lisa West
    on Aug 14, 2020

    Hey I say if the shoe fits the job wear them lol. Love the. Lie shade of the heels. You know you need 2 of these for the holidays by the front door. How beautiful they would look with autumn leaves and pumpkins skeletons ats what have you and Christmas time fhe holly and pine branches etc very pretty very romantic too. Thanks for sharing.

  • Tonya
    on Aug 15, 2020


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