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Extend Your Evening with Upcycled Patio Lanterns

May 30, 2017

Turn your mason jars into patio lanterns for a summer project.

 
Dig those old Mason jars out from the back of your basement and put them to good use this season. You can quickly and easily transform unused jars into a charming string of lanterns.
 

You Will Need:

 

  • 5 or more Mason jars, any size
  • A roll of pliable stainless-steel wire
  • Wire cutters
  • Needle-nose pliers
  • Tea light or votive candles
  • Optional: Metal screw-on tops

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

 
 
 
 

 

 

Steps:

 

  1. For a regular-mouth Mason jar, cut a 35-cm long piece of wire.
  2. Bend the piece of wire around the bare rim of the jar, under the glass lip, until you have a U-shape.
  3. On each side of the “U” on opposite sides of the jar, pinch the wire and twist into a small loop. This is where your hooks will go. Try to make these parallel so your jars hang straight.
  4. Once you have loops on either side, pull the remaining wire tight around the jar, twist the rest of the remaining wire together at the ends and tuck the sharp edges towards the jar so they don’t stick out.
  5. Cut a second piece of wire, about 30-cm long.
  6. Create a small hook on either end (using about 2-3 cm of wire on each side), then bend into a U-shape.
  7. Hook each end into the loops on either side of your jar, then pinch closed.
  8. Hang your lanterns from hooks, a chain or e ven a string of twinkle lights, or set them on a table for al fresco flair.

 

Variations:

 

  • Decorative base: Fill the bottom of each jar with stones or sand to raise your candles. This is also helpful for keeping candles level if your jars have bevelled bottoms.
  • Floating candles: Fill your jars part way with water and float candles on top.
  • Oil lamp: These should sit flat on a table. Drill a small hole in the lid of a Mason jar and string a cotton wick through it. Fill the jar half way with lamp oil, secure the lid with the wick in the oil and let sit before lighting.
  • String lights: Hang empty lanterns as normal, but tuck sections of a string of twinkle lights in each one instead of candles.

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