I love making these origami paper lanterns for celebrations and holidays. I show you how to make these lanterns out of watercolor paper in the video below. Follow along step-by-step — they are actually quite easy to make!
A friend gave me one of these lanterns years ago and I was immediately charmed by its simplicity and beauty. And I do love me some paper crafts! I used to do a lot of hand bookbinding, so anything that calls for busting out my bone folder gets a heart from me.
These make a beautiful addition to any gathering or party, and they make a lovely simple gift.
Paper Lantern Supplies
- Watercolor paper, 90 lb, hot or cold pressed
- Watercolor paints and brushes
- Mineral Oil
- Bone folder (not essential but very helpful)
- Xacto knife or mat knife and straightedge
Paper Lantern How-To Video
I’ve put together a video for this post to show you how to make the lanterns. It’s just easier with paper folding and origami than trying to draw or explain all the folds. One thing to note, be careful what surface you use to fold the lanterns on since some of the oil will come off on your hands and on to the surface.
Abstract Watercolor Painting Video
And… since I’m not much of a painter, I asked my mother-in-law Jean Lurssen if she would do a video about how to do abstract watercolor paintings. Jean has been teaching online watercolor classes for years and has quite a following.
Jean and my daughter Eliza teamed up to make a video teaching you how to easily paint these kinds of watercolors. They like to paint together and Neenie, as we call her, has been showing Eliza these kinds of techniques for years. It’s very sweet — those two have a lovely banter, and they make it so easy to copy and learn their techniques!
I hope you enjoy your paper lanterns! If you are using real candles, be very careful not to leave them unattended since the lanterns are made of paper. If you have children or just want to be 100% safe, you can use the battery-operated tea lights, like the ones in the photo here.