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Jar Lanterns

Turn classic canning jars into hanging lanterns to light up your outdoor Christmas decorating. You can make a dozen of these decorations for about $15.

 Jar lantern hanging from a pine tree branch

Project Overview

Skill Level


Estimated Time

A few hours

Estimated Cost


Tools and Materials


  • Wire cutter
  • Needle-nose pliers


  • 32-ounce glass jars, case of 12
  • 18-gauge galvanized steel wire

Items may be Special Order in some stores. Product costs, availability, and item numbers may vary online or by market. Paint colors may vary slightly from those shown. Availability varies by market for lumber species and sizes.

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Step 1

For each lantern you'll make, cut a piece of wire about 12 inches long. Wrap a wire around the mouth of a jar just below the lower lip of the neck. Bring one end of the wire against itself and twist the wire tight enough that it won't slip off but with enough space to pass the other end under the loop on the opposite side. You should have about 1 inch of twisted wire where they come together.

Step 2

Loop the remaining wire up and over the top, bringing the end down on the other side to pass under the wire tied around the glass. Bend the wire about 1 inch from the end and twist the wire as you did on the other side.

Step 3

Clip off any loose wires and hang the lantern from a 6-inch forged hook (#58681), stake lantern holder (#76169), or tree branch.

Good to Know

If you plan to use real candles, check that the glass and wire don't become hot from the burning candle. Keep lanterns away from children and pets.