Introduction: Hanging Paper Lanterns

About: Retired techie in love with crafts, cooking, and all things creative.

Use paper and an easy origami folding technique to make these low-tech hanging lanterns that are perfect to enhance the mood of any party. Since they use battery operated tea lights, they are especially ideal when electricity is not available such as at a camp site. Make several. They only take a few minutes to make. When not in use, they can be flattened for easy transport and storage.


Square sheet of white paper (8 1/2 inch vellum was used for the samples shown)

Long length of string (tied together at the ends)

Tea Lights (Battery operated, 2 per lantern)

Paper Punch

Paper Clip

Old Credit Card or Bone Folder


Scissors or Craft Knife

Step 1: Fold

Fold in half crosswise. Open.

Fold in half lengthwise. Open. The sheet now has 2 creases and 4 sections that form the shape of a + sign.

Flip paper.

Fold diagonally. Open. Flip paper.

Step 2: Shape

Pinch in the sides so that it forms a cone on the bottom. Note that there is a wall and 2 sections on the inside.

Step 3: Punch Hole

Use a paper clip or clamp to hold the 4 layers of the wall together.

Punch a hole in the center of the 4 layers of the inside wall with a hole punch.

Step 4: Attach String

Bring the loop of the string through the hole made by the paper punch. Pull it half way through. Take the other end of the string (the knotted side) and pass it through the loop. Pull to tighten. This will make a larks head knot.

Step 5: Add Lighting

Add a battery operated tea light in each section of the lantern. Use the string to hang from a tree or terrace. Enjoy.

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