Having a family party or barbecue this summer, or for Labor Day? Chinese paper lanterns make colorful and inexpensive decorations. Best of all, they are so quick and easy that you can get the kids involved in making them. Follow the simple instructions in this craft project to make colorful lanterns using a single sheet of paper.
This project requires few materials and is great for family, classroom or group craft time. No advance preparation is needed.
Start with colored paper to match the color theme of your party. You can use copier/computer paper (letter-size) or construction paper (9" by 12").
Cut off a strip of paper ½" wide from one end of the paper that measures the width of the paper—8½" or 9".
Fold the sheet of paper in half lengthwise.
Mark a line across the length of the folded paper ½" in from the open edge.
Make marks every ½" along this line, then draw lines at each mark straight to the folded edge—marking ½" wide strips.
Cut on these lines from the folded edge to the original marked line. Cut through both layers of paper. Open the paper flat. If the marks are very noticeable, gently erase them.
Bring the edges together in a cylindrical shape with the cut strips running vertically. Be sure that the fold is on the outside of the lantern. Tape the edges together at the top, middle, and bottom. You may use staples instead of tape.
Attach the handle, cut in Step 1, to one end of the lantern with tape or staples.
The lanterns will stand on their own. They can be hung individually from their handles or loosely tied at intervals along a cord or rope hung overhead.
Warning: This lantern is not meant to be used around fire or hot surfaces like light bulbs.
That's it! Now hang your lanterns
and go party!