Nature Craft: How to Make a Paper Lantern
Looking for a clever way to add decor to your garden when it’s time to entertain outdoors? These pressed flower paper lanterns are the perfect finishing touch for a summer twilight soiree. Make a pretty paper lantern using blooms and leaves foraged from your own garden, then hang from a tree or cluster a group of them together on the table, and make dining al fresco a whimsical and chic affair this summer!
You Will Need:
How to Make a Pressed Flower Paper Lantern:
First, blow up a balloon to about 20 cm in diameter. Make up a solution of half and half PVA glue and water, mixing well with your brush. Meanwhile, rip up a sheet of tissue paper into bits around half the size of your palm. Brush the glue onto the balloon, and stick on a piece of tissue paper.
Hint: Don’t soak the tissue paper in the glue, you’ll just end up with a big glob! Instead, brush your glue onto the balloon, and place a piece of tissue paper on top.
Continue until you have covered your balloon in around three or four layers. Wait at least 6 hours until completely dry. If you are in a rush, you can speed up this bit with a hair dryer!
Gather some flowers outside, and gently iron them on low between two sheets of baking paper for around 10 minutes. When they feel nice and dry, apply some glue to the lantern, and stick down a flower. Take another piece of tissue paper big enough to cover the flower, and stick this on over the top. Continue over the whole lantern. You can use leaves, flowers, ferns, sticks, flax, fibres – anything you like!
With a pair of scissors, make a very small hole in the balloon near where the tie is. You don’t want to pop it – as all the lovely paper mache you’ve done may fold in on itself as the balloon bursts – just let the air out slowly and use your fingers to gently separate the paper mache from the balloon.
Make some holes at the top of the lantern so you can hang it with twine. You may want to fortify this with matte tape on both sides, so it doesn’t rip when it’s hanging. Fill with battery operated fairy lights, and enjoy!
You don’t have to limit yourself to white tissue paper – you could get even more creative with layering different colours, or using printed napkins… the possibilities are endless!