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Make Your Own Lantern Craft

Make Your Own Lantern for the Pingxi Lantern Festival in Taiwan

This weekend in Taiwan, near Taipei in the Pingxi District, thousands of people will release lanterns into the sky for the annual Lantern Festival.  It’s a beautiful sight!

Every February around the Lunar New Year, the Taiwanese and many visitors from all around the globe write their wishes for the coming year onto a lantern.  The lanterns float into the sky when released, using the same concept as a hot air balloon.  A candle or butane flame is lit inside the lantern, and the hot air created from the flame makes the lightweight paper lantern take flight.

Thousands of lanterns are released into the sky and thousands of wishes are made. Make your own lantern with a few household supplies to celebrate – check out the tutorial below.  Here at Little Passports, we wish you and your family a happy and prosperous New Year!

To celebrate this joyous time of year, we’ve created a fun and simple craft to make your own lantern out of wax paper, washi tape, a little paint and a stencil.  To keep the little ones safe and to avoid creating litter, we decided to make these lanterns the type that sit on your kitchen table or windowsill and look pretty, instead of releasing them into the sky. Add a little wish when you light it, and think of world travel!

Supplies to Make Lanterns

  • Wax paper
  • Washi tape
  • Ruler
  • Flameless candle
  • Ruler
  • Scissors
  • Paint brush
  • Stencil – Print it here!


Step 1: Download and print our plum blossom stencil or use your own design.

Step 2: Cut 4 pieces of wax paper 6” long with the scissors (using scissors instead of the wax paper box’s serrated edge helps prevent tearing). Keep the original width of the paper, because you’ll need to fold it over.

Step 3: Fold wax paper in half and crease, so that you have two squares that lay over each other.

Step 4: Use the stencil to paint your design on the bottom half of the wax paper. Repeat across all 4 pieces of wax paper.

Step 5: Allow the paint to dry.

Step 6: Fold the top half of the wax paper over your painted design.

Step 7: Tape together all 4 wax paper pieces with the washi tape and place a line of tape across the bottom

Step 8: Form the wax paper sides into 4-sided lantern – like a box, with the top and bottom open.

Step 9: Insert the flameless candle and enjoy!