Introduction: Paper Bag Luminarias

Picture of Paper Bag Luminarias

Lets create a Paper Bag Luminaria! It is very similar to carving a pumpkins, however, it is more simple and less mess.

Step 1: Materials Needed

Picture of Materials Needed

Gather the following materials:

  • Large paper grocery bag
  • Pencil
  • Xacto knife
  • Cutting matte
  • Battery powered candle
  • Stencil (optional)

*Do not use a real candle because it will be a fire hazard.

Step 2: Outline Your Design

Picture of Outline Your Design

Using a pencil draw the design you would like to have on your luminaria. Center your design in the middle of the paper bag. You may use a stencil for this.


  • For beginners use simple designs
  • Think about how the shapes will look after you cut them out
  • Recognize that there are restrictions to the design you will create. Any full outlines will need gaps to keep the inner pieces from falling off.

Step 3: Cutting Out Your Design

Picture of Cutting Out Your Design

Tips for cutting out your design:

  • Place your cutting matte inside the paper bag underneath the design you've drawn
  • Using the xacto knife cut out the shapes, following the lines you've drawn. (see picture)
  • After you have finished cutting a shape, gently push it out and cut out the next section.

WARNING: Be careful that you keep your fingers out of the way of the blades's path. The blade is sharp and can cut you.

Step 4: Open Up the Bag and Set It Upright

Picture of Open Up the Bag and Set It Upright

Be careful to not damage your design while opening it.

Step 5: Place the Electric Candle in the Bag

It is not recommended that you use a real flame because of the flammability of the paper bag.

Step 6: Enjoy!


endro90 (author)2015-12-26

It's nice. Thank you for sharing, i'll try to make it.

seamster (author)2014-10-22

This is a great idea! And using a small cutting mat inside the bag is genius. So nice!

Thank you! It was my friend's idea he gave me.

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