Bring Back the Light: Winter Solstice Lantern Craft

The Winter Solstice is almost here! What better way to celebrate than by making Winter Solstice Lanterns with your family, then heading outside to enjoy the solstice with your lanterns to light the way. Below, we describe just one of the many wonderful ways to make a lantern. We have also made them out of ice, paper and jars too. We hope you enjoy creating together and connecting with nature this season. 


Jar lanterns lighting the dark solstice evening.
  • Plastic bottle or jar (2L, 1L or peanut butter type jar)
  • White school glue or Mod Podge
  • Water
  • Paint brushes
  • Fall leaves 
  • Tissue paper
  • Yarn or Pipe Cleaners
  • Hole punch or skewer
  • Electric tea light candle


  • Select a nice plastic jar or bottle out of your recycle bin at home. Remove the cap/lid and clean the inside and outside – removing any stickers or labels. If using a 2L or 1L bottle cut the top cone of the bottle off so that you have more of a cylinder. 
  • Pop a small hole in either side of the jar or bottle, about 2″ down from the top edge, using a metal skewer or hole punch. The holes should be on opposite sides of the bottle and will be used to attach your yarn or pipe cleaner handle as a final step.
  • Collect the colors of tissue paper and fall leaves with which you plan to decorate the outside of your jar. 
  • Pour some of your glue into a small dish and add water to dilute (1 cup glue to 1/3 cup water), or use Mod Podge. 
  • Paint the bottle with the glue mixture, then stick on your leaves or colored tissue paper. 
  • Allow the glue behind these to dry a bit before moving onto the next step.
  • When tissue paper and leaves are relatively dry, paint over them with a heavy coat of the glue/water mixture to seal in your colorful lantern art. 
  • When completely dry, create a handle for your lantern with a length of yarn or a few pipe cleaners. Use the two holes made earlier to attach the yarn to your lantern. 
  • Add an electric tea light candle to the inside and head outside on a dark winter evening to see your beautiful lantern art glow!  

Bring your lantern to our Family Full Moon Lantern Walk on Saturday, December 18th or the BTLT/CREA Winter Solstice Event on Tuesday, December 21st. These events are free and open to the community. Pre-registration is required to attend as numbers are limited.