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How-Tuesday: Cocktail Umbrella Lantern

Jul 5, 2011

by FelixThompson

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(Music by Spencer Snyder)

Ah, summer evenings — by far the best time of day during the hot season. But what if you find yourself sipping your coconut water and reveling in the rooftop breeze, long after the late-setting sun has set? We have the perfect idea for you.

For this month’s How-Tuesday video, Allison Patrick of Zipper8 Lighting will show us how to make a beautiful summer lantern out of cocktail umbrellas. It’s colorful, fun, and easy to make! So give it a try — it’ll keep those summer nights going!

Supplies You’ll Need:

  • A paper lantern
  • Cocktail umbrellas
  • A light bulb and light cord
  • A base for your lantern
  • Scissors
  • A glue gun

Step One: Prep!












The first thing you want to do is cut the stems off your cocktail umbrellas. You will need about 30-40 umbrellas depending on the size of your umbrellas and lantern. Make sure you pick enough of each color! Open up your lantern and put it in the base so it won’t roll away.

Step Two: Glue!



























Take each of your umbrellas and glue them onto the lantern. Be sure to glue them onto the paper of the lantern, not onto the wire structure. Hold each umbrella snugly against the lantern until the glue dries, then grab another.

Fell free to alternate your colors, make a pattern, or cover one whole lantern in a single color. Keep gluing until your lantern is fully covered.

Step Three: Hang!



























With your scissors, carefully cut around the hole at the top of the lantern so you have room to thread  your light bulb and cord inside the lantern.

Thread the light bulb and cord through, hang it up, and let the summer nights continue!

About the filmmakers: Buffalo Picture House is a production company founded by a select group of award-winning, young filmmakers and producers in New York City. Check them out at

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