Picture of Make a Parol - a Filipino Christmas Lantern
Making a Parol - a Filipino traditional star-shaped Christmas lantern, is something I loved doing growing up. It is mainly made up of bamboo, strings, and japanese craft/gift paper but the ones hung outside (lighted with a bulb) can be made of tougher plastic, capiz (shells), or any other transparent/translucent materials.

I had the option of purchasing a kit (materials and all) from an online store but they proved to be expensive (plus shipping cost!). Instead, I was determined you could make one for only under $10 (no light) or under $30 (with light). After scouring Home Depot and some party stores, I found my materials and started building away! I came up with an instructable on how you can make one for your self or anyone you'd like to share the Christmas spirit with.

Let's begin making a parol!

Step 1: What you will need

  1. Bamboo garden stake - Home Depot has some. Search for "bamboo stake". ~ $1.89 (6pcs)
  2. String $2.00 / roll
  3. Plastic table cloth - I got this from a party store. ~ $1.99 ea. Choose your colors. I used Green and white ($4 total)
  4. Coffee cup covers - About $2.00 / pk
  5. Small nails - I had spare nails from previous project.
  6. Electrical wires, socket, plug - $5
  7. LED bulb - This came in a pack of 2 for $15. I used only one.
  1. Saw
  2. Tape measure
  3. Utility/Outdoor knife
  4. Hammer
  5. Wood glue
  6. Quick Dry glue - works with plastic tablecloth
  7. Wire splicer
  8. Electrical tape
  9. Cutter or X-acto knife
  10. Scissors
  11. Cutting board
  12. Drill with small drill bit
  13. Hot glue gun

razezar made it!8 months ago

That took a very long time, but next time I'm sure I could do it in half as long. I had these puck lights from the dollar store and I decided to attach them to the bottom of each tail so I can illuminate those too.

Thanks for the tutorial!

rsucgang (author)  razezar8 months ago

Well done. Nice color combination.

CementTruck8 months ago

These always bring back good memories. Great job.

If you use colored cellophane for the wrap you can use some water and a blow dryer to make the cello stretch nice and tight (like shrink wrapping a boat for the winter).

Have you seen this video? This guys uses pre cut carboard stencils to make the parol. It goes very quickly. I just wish I knew where to find the stencils. His video doesn't have any links for the materials.

Thanks for pointing out there was no link in the video. I just added a link. From there one of the pages has downloadable templates... If you don't have a cnc laser I bet a band saw would be perfect for cutting a big stack of them...

Love this build. Have you seen the cardboard one I made? http://inventorartist.com/philippines-christmas-pa...

It's been quite popular and is really fun to make.

ASCAS1 year ago
Wow, ang ganda naman nito! :D Merry Christmas kababayan!
rsucgang (author)  ASCAS1 year ago
mehlani1 year ago
rossapaula1 year ago
merry christmas :) to all filipinos all over the world! :)
nlazaro1 year ago
Nice parol
bakunin1 year ago