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 ❤

Resources for this project:

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

Frequently asked questions

Have a question about this project?

3 of 9 questions
  • Kat Kat on Aug 08, 2020

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

  • Diane Diane on Mar 27, 2021

    This has nothing to do with your project but because you said plexiglass I wondered if anyone had worked with hard Lucite or acrylic and what kind of blade do you use to cut it with I want to make my own size bins in my drawer. Ty if anyone knows...

  • Judy Ellison Judy Ellison on Mar 27, 2021

    I like your idea.

    but I’m sure I'm not the only one wondering.

    what the heck do you have on? White pants and heels?

    are those your work cloths?

    as a safety professional I do not recommend heels for any kind of construction.



Join the conversation

2 of 36 comments
  • Peggy L Burnette Peggy L Burnette on Mar 29, 2021

    Beautiful, thanks for sharing. You have a beautiful dog!

  • MK McDonald MK McDonald on May 24, 2021

    What a great idea instead of those small dinky ones we

    are always making, lol! Like a previous commenter said, you could decorate those based on the season. I say go big or go home! Thanks for posting !