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DIY Tutorial - Upcycled Halloween Lanterns

Halloween is annual celebration where anything goes! Costumes, pumpkin carving, huge piles of sweets…there’s plenty of excitement and fun to be had by kids and adults alike! Hand in hand with Halloween is crafting and we thought we’d walk you through this striking upcycling project using up what you might already have at home.

Making as good a decoration by your front door, as it would as a lantern for little hands to carry while trick or treating, everyone in the family can join in making these plastic milk carton lanterns before Halloween, with some basic art and craft supplies and of course some lights!

What you’ll need to make your Upcycled Halloween lantern

Empty milk cartons – any size will do, but they must be washed out and dry

Paper and pencil

3 AAA batteries

How to make Upcycled Halloween Lanterns

1. Wash and dry your milk carton and remove any labels.

2. Mix 1 part paint to ½ part PVA glue. The PVA glue in the mixture helps the paint adhere to the carton, as well as giving it a flexible coating. Paint the carton completely and leave to dry. We used a two painting methods - a paintbrush for the pumpkin lantern carton and a sponge for the ghost.

3. Once dry, on the reverse of the milk carton, draw a flap that starts at the base measuring 4cm x 5cm, which will allow the battery pack from the LED lights or the tea light to fit inside the carton. Cut the base carefully with a craft knife or scissors.

4. On a scrap piece of paper draw your spooky features for your lanterns, then cut out. Use these as templates for cutting out the shapes on the black foam rubber.

5. Using the double sided tape, secure these in place on your lanterns.

6. Colour in the lid of the milk carton with the sharpie pen, or if your prefer paint this the same colour as your Halloween character using the acrylic / PVA paint mix.

7. Add a piece of double-sided tape to the back of the LED light battery pack or tea light. For the carton using the LED light also add a strip of double sided tape to the inside of the lid. Remove the red backing on both.

8. Switch on the LED lights, open the flap and place the battery pack or tea light into the carton. For the LED lights, let the light string drop through the bottle and secure the final light to the reverse of the lid. If needed tape the flap closed.

9. Volia - you've finished your upcycled Halloween lantern!

Happy Halloween everyone!


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