Lantern Made From Dollar Store Finds

6 Materials
2 Hours

I love the look of lanterns for decorating but they’re so expensive so I made my own out of Dollar Store items

I wanted a tall lantern so I bought 4 collage frames.

1 - I removed the back and all of the papers inside.

2 - Then I removed the glass

3 - I applied glue to each corner and along the edge.

4 - I cut the metal pins in half. These pins hold in the glass; however, if they aren’t cut, you can see them through the glass

5 - Putting the lantern together:

1: I applied glue on the edge of each frame

2: I place the edges of two frames together and taped them together using painter’s tape

3: I continued to glue the frames together

4: As I glued all the frames together, I continued to tape the corners together

5: Allow the frames to dry

6 - I wanted to make a peaked roof/top for the lantern. Using old wrapping paper, I made a template.

1 - I wrapped the paper around the top of the lantern. Bringing the center together on two sides, I taped it to secure

2 - I then brought the other two sides to the center and stapled to secure

3 - I took the paper off of the lantern and folded the bottom inside to make an even edge

4 - I brought both sides together again flattening the template

5 - I measured 3” from the bottom which would wrap around the lantern

6 - I folded the top right corner to the center, then folded the top left corner to the center.

7 - I flipped the template around and did the same thing on the other side.

8 - I cut out the 4 triangles that were created

These are my templates

7 - To make the actual roof/top:

1 - I purchased two packages of aluminum cookie sheets (2 in one pack)

2 - I cut the edge from all four sheets so I was left with a flat surface

3 - I laid one triangle onto the sheet and traced around it

4 - Using a utility knife, I cut out the triangle. I did not cut on the traced line but cut an inch wider

5 - I cut one diagonal cut from each of the top points

6 - I used a paint stir stick, laying the edge on the traced line, then folded the one inch piece up

This is what each of the four triangles should look like after they’ve been cut and folded.

8 - Putting the roof/top together

1 - I laid the lantern on it’s side and laid the first triangle underneath and taped it into place

2 - I righted the lantern and added the second triangle directly across from the first piece. I taped it to the lantern and taped the top together.

3 - I then added the other two sides, taping them into place.

4 - I removed the roof/top and hot glued the triangles together. The glue was applied to the one inch pieces which were inside the roof/top

9 - I spray painted the entire roof/top black using Rustoleum spray paint. This paint will stick to metal surfaces.

10 - I wanted a bottom for the lantern so using an 8”x 8” aluminum pan, I cut the sides down leaving one inch on all sides.

11 - I spray painted the pan black

12 - I attached the bottom by placing the pan inside the lantern, pushing it to the bottom and hot glued the sides directly to the lantern.

I added a battery operated candle and some seasonal greenery. I really like the way it turned out and to think this whole project cost $7 and everything was from the Dollar Store.

Resources for this project:

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Frequently asked questions

 17  questions
  • Terri T on Jun 21, 2018

    All glues are not equal. What kind did u use.

    • Nancy-Michigan Zierler on Jun 27, 2018

      Try E-6000

      It’s used for crafting, hold almost anything together.

    • Diane Krall on Mar 04, 2019

      Looking at the picture, she is using WELDBOND glue. Any multi-surface craft glue should work, though.

  • Retiredmom55 on Mar 03, 2019

    Looks like a lot of work. How long did it take you?

    • Pat whitmus on Mar 03, 2019

      Once you get everything together and start...I imagine it would only take an hour or two depending on the glue time for drying.

  • Dpbeee2 on Mar 03, 2019

    That is very nice thanks, but....This was a link to a cookie sheet project?

    • Jul on Mar 03, 2019

      The cookie sheet is one of the disposable ones, she used it for the top to the lantern.

    • Sherry on Mar 10, 2019

      1 - I purchased two packages of aluminum cookie sheets (2 in one pack)

    • Jean Dunn on Mar 10, 2019

      You use the cookie sheet for lattern top.

    • Mary-Beth on Mar 10, 2019

      Cookie sheet project?

    • Jami Gano Boslow on Mar 10, 2019

      That’s exactly what I want to know! WHERES THE COOKIE SHEET PROJECT?!

    • Marsha Litten Johnson on Mar 10, 2019

      It’s the roof to the lantern

    • Karen Parsons on Mar 10, 2019

      She used dollar store aluminum cookie sheets to make the top and bottom

    • Dpbeee2 on Mar 10, 2019

      Thank you one and all for responding to my question. Hmmm? Some of these click bait titles are still misleading.

  • Terri on Mar 10, 2019

    So where’s the cookie sheet? This was advertised as being made with a cookie sheet.

    • Rebecca on Mar 10, 2019

      It’s the roof

    • Kelly Kolassa on Mar 10, 2019

      The disposable cookie sheet is used for the roof of the lantern. Read the article & it will tell you.

    • Melissa on Mar 10, 2019

      Then the picture showing cookie sheet project should be the disposable instead of a regular cookie sheet.

    • Melody B on Mar 10, 2019

      The cookie sheet was cut to form the top of the light the bottom was 4 photo frames all from the dollar store go back and read the part about the paper being a templete for cutting the cookie sheet

    • Nikki Olivier on Mar 10, 2019

      I was wondering the same thing... 😅

    • Lisa on Mar 10, 2019


    • Ellen Brodfehrer Robak on Mar 10, 2019

      I agree Terri...the title is misleading. Makes you think the item is made solely from a cookie sheet instead of picture frames with a cookie sheet as the top.

    • Karen Parsons on Mar 10, 2019

      She used Dollar Store aluminum cookie sheets to make the top and the bottom

    • Melissa Burt Bell on Mar 10, 2019

      Cookie sheet is the roof top

    • Jo Cook on Mar 10, 2019

      It’s the roof top

    • Sandra Hankins Cormier on Mar 10, 2019

      WOW some people have a lot of time on their hands. Spend it reading!

      Not misleading at all. She used 2 cookie sheets for bottom and too. She also used 4 picture frames. There was also a battery candle and greenery.

      Looks great to me.

      I really would like to some projects you have done teri, nicki and Ellen. Post some pics and let us see your style.

    • Linda on Mar 10, 2019

      Me too!

    • Lisa Wingert on Mar 10, 2019

      Read the instructions its used for the top of the lantern

    • Ces on Mar 10, 2019

      The cookie sheets made the top and bottom of the lantern

  • Diane Shewmaker Barrow on Mar 10, 2019

    Did you put the glass back in?

    • Peg Hetzer on Mar 10, 2019

      In order to keep her seasonal items contained around the battery operated candle yes I think she put the glass back in

    • Ellen Brodfehrer Robak on Mar 10, 2019

      The glass was put back in. I can see a reflection off of the side glass. :)

    • Patricia on Mar 10, 2019

      It shows gluing in the glass.

    • Michelle on Mar 10, 2019

      She did not mention gluing the bottom edges of the roof she created. I think the roof slides up and off.

  • Pat Goostree Sprowl on Mar 10, 2019

    How do you get back in it to change greenery or candle, battery etc?

    • Lee Deal on Mar 10, 2019

      She didn't glue the top to the lantern, she only glued the sides of the top to each other so she can lift off the top to change things out.

    • Lori on Mar 10, 2019

      I don't think it has a bottom so just lift

  • Debra on Mar 10, 2019

    I like the bottom looks great but that roof looks like a first graders art project. Can you think of another way to do the roof.

    I would really love several of these.

    • Barb on Mar 10, 2019


    • Virginia Mahalak Mize on Mar 10, 2019

      I agree

    • Tammy S on Mar 10, 2019

      I agree to.

    • Audrey on Mar 10, 2019

      I think it looks great . I would never had thought of this , great thinking outside the box .

      Will have to try this for my pool area also .

    • Lisa Olson on Mar 10, 2019

      Roof would look better not glossy. Flat black or rusty tin maybe?

    • Cathy on Mar 10, 2019

      I totally agree with you I was so in tell the roof it blew the hole project in my opinion

    • Tina on Mar 10, 2019

      I totally agree!

    • Barbara on Mar 10, 2019

      Gluing sheet moss or something else to the roof would make it look finished.

    • Melissa Elliott on Mar 10, 2019

      Why not just leave it open?

      Or maybe spray paint a fine mesh screen black to match, either to fit right on top or domed a bit?

      Happy crafting!


      For the rest of you my grandmother always taught us if you can't say anything nice don't say nothing at all. God rest her soul!!!

      If you rude ladies have a better idea go for it, but why attack someone who's sharing her idea with you. Have seen several other ideas for the top but I like this one better.

      Personally I hope you ladies project falls apart...sorry NANNIE...just cant handle grown women knocking another woman who was trying to share her talent ...and again THANK YOU & I APOLOGIZE FOR THEIR RUDENESS.

    • Brenda on Mar 10, 2019

      I think I would purchase another collage frame and use the wooden pieces to put on the bottom of the top. I would make the wooden pieces slightly bigger so that it would fit over the the top and make a sort of lid that could be lifted off and as to easily access the inside. Using the pans is a great idea, but their are endless possibles. With the use of a glass could make a glass top, or use the heavy cardboard in the frames cut and glue together, also the lid could be decorated with mosaic to make a one of a kind lantern.

    • Melinda on Mar 10, 2019

      I thought the same thing. I think the top should be tucked inside so it will have a nice edge. But I do think it's a great idea.

    • Donna on Mar 10, 2019

      Very creative thinking!

    • Renee Williams on Mar 10, 2019

      I like it! You could always glue a mosaic to the top to cover anything you don't like. You could also use another frame, remove the glass, separate the edges, form the the pyramid dome, glue the tin to that, and then maybe paint it a matte black or brown. So many ideas! Thank you to the original poster for sharing this idea. So creative!

    • Katie Arritt on Mar 10, 2019

      I agree I love this idea. I think that these would also make great gifts. This may actually get me to give it a try. Thanks for sharing

    • Denise Robertson on Jun 08, 2019

      I love this. But I also like the variety for things on the top. Miss or Mosaic sounds great as well as small holes in the top for light to come through/add small colored glass beads also if not too heavy. I actually love the look of “old tin” which seems to happen when you soak those dollar store tins in water in your sink and/or put through dishwasher! Then if you followed instructions but didn’t spray paint, I wonder if that would look interesting also?

    • Denise Robertson on Jun 08, 2019

      I meant moss

  • Wanda Barnes on Mar 10, 2019

    This turned out Beautiful! 1 question how do you get back into it to change greenery and battery for candle?

    • Carol on Mar 10, 2019

      That was my first thought too. Everything looks great until you see the top. Sorry for negative thought

    • Quesha on Mar 10, 2019

      I agree Carol, it looks so nice without the top

    • Jill Wilson Vraa on Mar 10, 2019

      You had me until the top.

    • Ronda Jaramillo on Mar 28, 2019

      Jill Wilson Vraa, You took the words right out of my mouth!

    • Kiersten on May 23, 2019

      It looks like the top lifts off, in order to replace the candle batteries, etc..

    • Shug on Oct 22, 2019

      I’m thinking you have more money in this project than if you were to just buy one ????? Not sure but just wondering. But it is very nice.

    • Theresa Teets Libert on Jul 27, 2021

      I would think she only has maybe 6 dollars in it at most. If she purchased it all from the dollar tree. That is a lot cheaper then purchasing a lantern. One that size could run anywhere from 25 to 50 bucks. She made it at an awesome price.

    • Zoe Emiko on Jul 28, 2021

      I bought a few like this but they have glass filled paned sides for $2 at Family Dollar (originally $8. but end of season discount). In it is a faux candle & at the top the little solar flat piece. I bought a $1 bag of the potpourri & added some whole nuts along with a couple pieces from a fall pick I already had. Mine also have a ring at the top and a door on one side that opens.

  • Rose Brady on Mar 10, 2019

    is there anyway you can save a project to a wish list or something so I can do it later? and if you can where do you go then to find the saved projects?

    • Barb Jenkins on Mar 10, 2019

      I save projects that I like to Pinterest. However if you do not have or want a Pinterest account, you can use the "share" link (with the 3 dots on a 2 sided triangle) at the top of the page to email it to yourself or post it to Facebook, Messenger or your texting service. Happy crafting! ☺

    • Suzanne on Mar 10, 2019

      And I believe usually at the end of product and instructions there is a “” I want to make this “you can click on ... I do go Pinterest

    • Kat Rogers on Mar 10, 2019

      Hi Rose,

      I save my favorite projects the easiest way possible~ The way Hometalk has set it up: At the bottom of the Screen/Project you will see where it says:


      Tap or Click on the Heart.

      THEN, When You Go On To Hometalk You Will See At The Top Right Corner, The Icon Where Your Account Information Is. Tap or Click There And THAT IS WHERE YOU WILL FIND SAVED PROJECTS AS WELL AS OTHER INFO SUCH AS COMMENTS, etc.

      I trust these instructions were helpful to you.

      Have Fun!


    • Ginger on Mar 10, 2019

      I always forward it to myself so that I can save it n have it when i need it .

    • Peggy on Mar 11, 2019

      I have ask the same question many times but no answer from anyone

    • Jennifer Ann Mendez on Mar 12, 2019

      if you are on your phone you can click on the upper arrow in the right corner of this project and it will let you either send in messenger or copy the link. Then just bookmark, send the link to yourself, or save it somewhere. Here is the link to this project.

    • Jennifer Jarvi on Jun 08, 2019

      Can u screen shot the steps? Then have it into ur photos?

    • Gretchen Dietz on Oct 15, 2019

      I save things to Pinterest

    • Missy on Oct 22, 2019

      If you are a member on this site and have a profile, it allows you to save projects to your page/profile/bio

    • Eileen Cordova on Nov 08, 2020

      Bookmark page

    • HFredda on Jul 27, 2021


      This project was in my e-mail. Keep the e-mail, Rose. 👌🙂

  • Carmen on Mar 10, 2019

    Can you translate the proyect to spanish?

    • Carmen on Jun 08, 2019


    • Yenta on Oct 15, 2019

      Copy and paste it using Google Translate it Babblefish.

    • Susan Severino on Jan 25, 2021

      Very nice! Although I am going to make it without the top.thank you 😊


  • Mary on Jul 27, 2021

    It's a great idea but after looking at it, i think the top could use a little tweaking, the rest of it looks great but i think it's because of the raised bumps on the aluminum cookie sheets it looks weird. Maybe cookie sheets without bumps would look better, but what a great idea, very creative

  • Coco on Jul 27, 2021

    I love that you used your imagination to create something that you are clearly proud of, as you should be! Well Done. Ignore those who can't see the labor of love of your beautiful creation, and take pleasure from those who truly admire your skills. Thanks for sharing Alicia.

  • Jeanne on Jul 28, 2021

    Cute project, I'm gonna put it on my list of projects! Thanks for sharing

  • Cynthia Cooke on Jul 28, 2021

    I love it. I have something similar that was 3 panes that came apart. It didn’t have a bottom or a top. And I also love that you can change up the flowers or put shells or glass beads if you leave the top off. Maybe small glass panes of 3 and then a smaller topper. I have no imagination for crafts unless it’s sewing. My twin got the crafty brain. Lol.

  • Shelley Kim Gray on Jul 28, 2021


  • Wendy P. on Jul 28, 2021

    That's so awesome great project to do.

  • Wendy P. on Jul 28, 2021

    Yes I would do this

  • Bonnie on Jul 28, 2021


  • Hana Juncaj on Jul 28, 2021

    Had me until the tin

  • Benjamin on Jul 29, 2021

    That top looks really rubbish. The rest is cute. There's gotta be a better topper for this...🤔

    • LinneaSanchez on Jul 29, 2021


    • Keahi Garcia on Aug 03, 2021

      I agree

    • Louella Holroyd on Aug 22, 2021

      If you are not using a real candle, I have seen some use a small picture frame on top, others just leave it open.