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Designer DIY: Creating A Colorful Flower Paper Lantern

Posted On: 11/05/14

Copic DIY paper flower lantern light project  by Cheyenne ThayerHere is a fantastic DIY project that transforms a simple and inexpensive lighting fixture into a stunning design element for a focal point in a room, or intriguing spot of accent color. Either way, it's a fun project! Follow along with Copic's newest designer, Cheyenne Thayer, in her first DIY for the blog.

Finished Paper Flower Lantern DIY project with Copic Various Ink  
The finished flower lantern is an impressive way to add color and light to any room. It's not a complicated project, but it is time consuming! Here are the steps along with photos to show you how you can create one, too!

FolidingCopic DIY Paper lantern - Coffee filters into quarters First fold all 300 coffee filters into quarters. This is where the gloves come in handy—as it works best if you wear gloves while you pull the coffee filters apart and fold them. Copic DIY Paper lantern - Coffee filter folded into quarters This is what the folded up coffee filter should look like.

Next, grab your Various Ink bottles and squeeze about 10-15 drops of ink into a cup filled about 1/2 inch with WARM water. I used a clear glass to demonstrate how much warm water you should use in your plastic cups.

Copic DIY Paper lantern - adding Various ink to waterDip your folded coffee filters into the warm, dyed water about 1/4 of the way down the center of the coffee filter. Make sure that the edges stay dry to create the ombre effect, or dye your filters completely to get a different look—experiment!
Copic DIY Paper lantern - Coffee filter dipped into Various Ink and water mixtureYou are looking for a result similar to this close-up shot of a dyed coffee filter. I chose a selection of five Various Ink colors to create the colorful ombre effect of my flower lantern.
Copic DIY Paper lantern - Coffee filter closeup with Various Ink

Colors I Used:

  • R35 Coral
  • R32 Peach
  • R22 Light Prawn
  • R20 Blush
  • R05 Salmon Red
Copic DIY Paper lantern - Coffee filter folded into quarters, dyed with Various ink and drying on stringAfter you have dyed all of your coffee filters, hang them to dry on some string. I needed to use four 6’ pieces of string to hold all of the filters. For quick drying, don't stack more than eight coffee filters on top of each other. Copic DIY Paper lantern - cutting scallops into coffee filter After your coffee filters have dried, fold the coffee filtersinto quarters again and scallop the edges. I chose to cut five scalloped edges into the outside of the folded up coffee filters. I would suggest cutting at least three scalloped edges into the filters. You should be able to cut at least folded coffee filters at a time to speed up the process! Copic DIY Paper lantern - cut slits into scalloped edges of coffee filterNext, cut in a line about an inch long into each of your scalloped edges.Copic DIY Paper lantern - finished, dyed, scalloped edges of coffee filterHere is what one finished coffee filter flower looks like!Copic DIY Paper lantern - ready to apply coffee filter flowersOnce you've finished cutting all of the edgesof your coffee filter flowers, gather your paper lantern, your Modge Podge (or other white glue), and a medium-sized bowl as you're now ready to form flower and begin applying flowers to the lantern. Copic DIY Paper lantern - applying glue to coffee filter flowersThe next step is to place one coffee filter into the palm of your open hand and put a bottle of Various Ink into the center of the coffee filter flower as a placeholder for the following step.

Wrap the coffee filter flower around the bottle of Various Ink. Make sure that the center of the coffee filter flower is flat against the bottom of the bottle of Various Ink so that you have a flat surface to work with for the following step. Copic DIY Paper lantern - applying glue to the coffee filter flowerDip the flat surface of the coffee filter flower on the bottom of the bottle of Various Ink into your Modge Podge or white glue. You don’t need very much glue for this step. Try to add the thinnest layer of glue to the coffee filter flower as possible. Copic DIY Paper lantern - glueing coffee filter flowers to lanternBalance your paper lantern on the medium-sized bowl while pressing the glue-saturated side of the coffee filter flower onto the surface of the paper lantern. Hold the coffee filter flower in place for 2-5 seconds. The coffee filter flower should stand on the paper lantern on its own after you release it. Copic DIY Paper lantern - halfway completed with coffee filter flowersRepeat the last step until your paper lantern is completely covered in your coffee filter flowers! Here is my lantern half-completed. Completed DIY Paper Flower Lantern made with Copic colored coffee filter flowersThe finished product!

Material & Tools
  • An 8" or 10" paper lantern (World Market or Target)
  • About 300 white coffee basket filters for an 8-12 cup coffee maker
  • Copic Various Ink of your choice. For this lantern I used: R35 Coral, R32 Peach, R22 Light Prawn, R20 Blush, and R05 Salmon Red
  • Paper towels
  • Plastic cups
  • Medium-sized bowl
  • String
  • Water
  • White craft glue - Modge Podge or similar. No hot glue

About the Artist cheyenne2.0_600x600 Cheyenne is a digital artist who enjoys photography, video production, graphic illustration, and just about anything that involves visual art and computers. She grew up on a farm in Sutter, CA and currently resides in Eugene, OR where she attended the University of Oregon to study Advertising, Communications and Digital Art. Cheyenne loves cruising on her bike around town, playing on her kickball team, cooking new types of food, and Simon & Garfunkel. You can see more of her work at cargocollective.com/cheyennerosa

We hope you enjoyed this impressive DIY tutorial by Cheyenne!

Tags: Cheyenne Thayer, Craft, DIY, Designer DIY, How To, Inspire, Interior Design, Edited, Guest tutorial,