Halloween at our house

How to Make: Easy-Peasy D.I.Y. Halloween Lanterns for the Impatient and Borderline Disinterested

I’m not a crafty person, generally. I’m not trying to make a statement about being too busy to D.I.M. or anything. It’s more just that I’m selectively lazy, and also until now I lived in a very hodgepodge home. Our rented condo in Westwood was beautiful, but its inherent mid-century vibe combined with our hand-me-down-furniture from various eras, combined with our just-merged-two-households miscellany was just too random to motivate me to add any clever home-made holiday decor to the mix.

But! We’re homeowners as of this year — a fact we appreciate with an extremely dorky level of enthusiasm daily. And that enthusiasm (coupled with some inspiring story assignments about D.I.Y. holiday decor lately) has lit a crafty little fire under me.

And I do mean a little fire. While I loved the five jack-o-lanterns and minimal pre-fab Target decor we have out front, I felt we need a little extra je ne sais quoi — at 3 p.m. on Halloween. And I had about five minutes of attention span for it.

I do few things without consulting the Internet lately, but this hardly-any-work-required project just popped into my head from — what, elementary school? Summer camp?

I grabbed some lunch bags from the kitchen cupboard (no, we don’t actually pack lunches in these bags, but we have them because you can make great low-cal microwave popcorn in there with just kernels and a touch of cooking spray — I guess that could have been another post).

Using a scissors, I cut fun little patterns, similar to how you would fold a piece of paper to make a lacy Valentine heart. Place a tea light candle in each, and you have pretty little lanterns to line your walkway and encourage trick-or-treaters. Cut angular borders around the top, or fold over the sides a couple of times if you prefer that effect. I think common-sense rules of safety dictate that you should add some sand in there too as a fire barrier, but, um, I didn’t have any sand handy.

It goes without saying, of course, that you could make these more intricate using actual stencils, like over here on Design Sponge, or here on CraftStylish.

But hey, I made something!* Happy Halloween, friends.

*Full disclosure: I didn’t put them out. It seemed too windy to be safe. See above re: sand. So please enjoy the above photo of my house with no lanterns and then understand why I did that. xo

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