top of page

“Summer Patio Lanterns” Kids can make at home using recycled jars, vases, paper and collage them.

Miycreations Project article and photographs

by  Madeleine M Langlois   MaddyLane Designs

Illuminate your summer evenings with creative "Summer Patio Lanterns" you can make with the kids with things you probably already have at home. Have fun recreating the cottage feel and look at home, your children will feel like they are at summer camp. Fun for all!

Hands-on time:Less than one hour.

Total time:plus drying time for the medium and top coat.

Skill:Super easy and kid-friendly. (Great cottage project)

Cost estimate:pennies per lantern

Materials & tools:

Plain glass votive holders or drinking glasses that have a few scratches on them or that

you no longer use, or other glass container type of your choice (available at dollar stores

or garage sales)

Paper remnants ~ Tissue paper in assorted colours, textured white rice paper, and

decorative paper with a design of choice such as dragonflies, butterflies, or flowers. (I

used the various colours; green, lime, yellow, white swirl textured rice paper and plain

paper with moss green dragonfly designs)*

* Scissors

* Newspapers

* Mod-Podge for outdoor projects

* A 2.5 cm foam brush or a wide paint brush

* Exterior as varnish water based brush-on type, matt or gloss

* Tea candles or votive candles of your choice

(available at art and craft supply stores and around  your home)

Paper collage luminaries make an ideal cottage or camp project to keep children creative during the summer. It’s actually a great summer activity to do with a group of children. Chic paper collage luminaries are easily achieved using only a few basic supplies to elegantly illuminate summer nights in style. A creative patchwork of colourful tissue papers, perfect to utilize  remnant pieces are applied directly onto small glasses or votive types  using Mod-podge. Since these luminaries are for outdoor patio décor it is best to use Mod-podge medium made especially for use on outdoor projects. They can be made using various glass containers in assorted sizes and quantities to illuminate a table, a deck, a patio, a path around a pool, porch, stairs or garden. Have a look in your cupboards and see what you are not using, it’s a great way to reuse and recycle glassware. The soft glow of the flickering candles, create the perfect ambiance for outdoor parties and gatherings in the city or in the country.

Wash and dry the glass items beforehand. Cover your work area with newspapers.

Using a variation of colours and shapes cut out small pieces of tissue paper with scissors or by simply tearing the edges with your fingers.

Using the foam brush, apply a thin layer outdoor Mod-podge medium to one section of

the exterior of the glass item at a time. Apply some medium to each piece of paper prior

to positioning them all around the outside of the container. Once a paper piece is

positioned, using a foam brush or your fingers gently smooth it into place, removing any

air bubbles. Continue to apply pieces of paper randomly or strategically, overlapping

them to create unique design or colour play, until the glass item is completely covered.

Apply paper pieces along the edges, folding then as you apply the medium with a foam

brush to slightly cover the rim area along the inside of the border.

To add the focal point and embellishment to the luminaries; cut out a decorative design

such as a dragonfly, a flower, or stripes from the paper type of your choice and apply it

to the collage with medium and the foam brush. Let the glass containers fully dry.

Once the glass items are completely dry apply a coat or two of exterior varnish, letting

them dry between each coat application. Wait 12 hours before bringing the luminaries


Place a tea light or votive candle inside the glass container at the center, secure it with

sticky tack, tape or wax if desired. Enjoy the soft colourful glow on a summer’s eve.


Other items that can be created with tissue collage, are lamp bases, lampshade's,

charger plates (using clear glass plates doing the collage on the back side of the plate),

galvanized buckets and watering cans. Decoupage pictures from magazines of fancy

napkins can also be incorporated in any creation.

Recycled wine or fancy juice bottles make cool collage creations to decorate the cottage

with wild flower arrangements or to use as candle holders.

Asian style luminaries can be created combining red and gold rice papers with Asian

newsprint pieces, then paint prosperity symbols on the finished collage. For a contemporary look, use bold geometric shapes or paper band strips in vivid colours. For

a country garden feel use pastels with flower images. Monograms, letters or words can

be painted on the luminaries with exterior acrylics. If you are making several projects at a time, make sure to clean the foam brush between projects. Modge-podge mediums are also available in mat, high gloss and sparkling finishes.

Quick summer entertaining idea: Great idea for an outdoor centerpiece; transform and

decorate a large glass bowl with the decorative paper collage treatment and once dry

place water and floating candles inside. Sure to be the highlight of the night.

View more MIy projects at

Copyright maddylane designs 2020

photos, text by maddylane designs


NEW FUN & FASHIONABLE Face Masks, collection by Maddylane Designs,

Made in Montreal, Quebec, Canada.

Let's face it, if we have to wear face masks, they might as well be fun and fashionable and match your outfits! I invite you to visit my collections on my website, you will discover that you can get matching purses, underwear, tank tops and yoga pants to go with your mask. How fun is that... all to be comfortable and in style everyday!

29 views0 comments

Recent Posts

See All
bottom of page