Autumn Mason Jar Paper Lantern Craft

  • 01 of 07

    Ready for Fall

    three paper mason jar lanterns
    Rita Shehan

    Fall is in the air, and it's time to change up our home decor to reflect the passing of the seasons. These papercraft lanterns are so easy to make, taking less than five minutes total crafting time!

    Another enjoyable aspect of the autumn-inspired Mason jar lovelies is that they cost almost nothing to make. All you have to do is print, cut, fold, paste and insert a glass mason jar into the paper shades! Cheap and easy with incredible results!

    Almost everyone has some leftover mason jars in their homes. Why not clear up the clutter and recycle them into beautiful fall-themed lanterns? This project is a paper craft that doesn't require huge amounts of artistic skills. Almost anyone can make the lovely mason jar lanterns. We all love that!

    Teachers will also find this project valuable because it is a wonderful school arts and crafts lesson. Have your students make some for Thanksgiving or as classroom decorations. Your kids will have fun and feel a sense of accomplishment with this easy to make Fall craft.

    Supplies Needed

    • Wide mouth ball mason jar
    • Autumn Leaf Printables (download here)
    • Hot glue gun
    • Hot glue sticks or any other strong adhesive that bonds paper
    • A printer that accepts 11 x 17 tabloid-sized paper
    • 11 x 17 white cardstock
    • Scissors
    • Ruler
    • Bone folder
    • A votive candle or battery-operated tea light

    The photos used in this project were obtained from the following sources:

    Continue to 2 of 7 below.
  • 02 of 07

    Print the Lantern Templates

    fall mason jar lantern printable
    Rita Shehan
    • Download the lantern printables. The printables are pdf files that work with most graphic software.
    • Print the templates onto 11 x 17 tabloid-size white cardstock. If you don't own a printer that accepts tabloid paper, don't worry! You can go to your local quick print shop or office supply store, such as Staples or any small local quick print business with the pdf files. They will be able to print them for you for a nominal fee.
    Continue to 3 of 7 below.
  • 03 of 07

    Cut the Templates to Size

    fall lantern printable templates
    Rita Shehan

    Cut the printable template to size with scissors. Your rectangle should now measure 16 inches wide and 7 inches tall.

    Continue to 4 of 7 below.
  • 04 of 07

    Score and Fold the Printable Templates

    scored lantern printable template
    Rita Shehan
    • The printable has light gray dotted lines that do not show up in the photos. These lines are 1/2 inch apart and are to be used as scoring lines. Score the gray dotted line with a bone folder and ruler, then fold the rectangle accordion-style so that it resembles the above photo.
    • Rub the bone folder across the pleats to sharpen the edges.
    • Gently stretch the folded printable lengthwise making sure that the pleating remains.
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  • 05 of 07

    Glue the Ends of the Printable

    printable lantern cover and ball mason jar
    Rita Shehan
    • Apply hot glue, or an adhesive of your choice vertically down the edge of one of the short ends of the rectangle.
    • Place the other short end of the paper square over the hot glued edge and press down firmly with your fingers. Be careful to protect your fingers from hot glue burns. You should now have a lovely pleated paper cylinder.
    • Insert a votive candle or battery-operated tea light into the base of the ball mason jar.
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  • 06 of 07

    Light the Inserted Candle

    lit mason jar lantern
    Rita Shehan
    • Carefully light the candle in the ball mason jar (making sure to protect your fingers from burns), or turn on battery operated tea light. Long-nosed butane lighters that you use to light your grill are the best with this type of lantern. Your fingers will be protected from the flame, and the candle will be easily lit because of the length of the lighter.
    • Slide the paper lantern over the outside of the ball mason jar and adjust the cylinder pleats and space them evenly around the mason jar.
    Continue to 7 of 7 below.
  • 07 of 07

    Enjoy Your New Autumn Lanterns

    three lit autumn paper lanterns
    Rita Shehan

    That's it! You're finished! It is now time to enjoy the fall ambiance of your beautiful ball mason jar lantern shades! These lanterns are beautiful not only as home decor, but can be used outside to line your walkway or decorate your deck as well. Get ready to stand back and receive the compliments from your neighbors and friends when they come to visit your home!

    Always use common sense with lit candles. Never leave a burning candle unattended or allow small children in the vicinity of the lanterns without adult supervision.