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Ribbon Lanterns




  • Paper box lantern
  • 4 lengths of satin or grosgrain ribbon per lantern, each ribbon measuring 9 times height of lantern
  • Scissors
  • Pencil
  • Craft knife


  1. Step 1

    On one top corner of the lantern, measure 1/2 inch from top and 1/2 inch from side; mark with pencil.

  2. Step 2

    Using a craft knife, make a horizontal cut at marked point, toward center, equal to ribbon's width. Make another cut, 3/4 inch down. 

  3. Step 3

    Repeat process to make pairs of cuts on all corners of lantern (except on top and bottom panels).

  4. Step 4

    Starting at one bottom corner, thread ribbon through the 4 cuts on that side, loop ribbon over lantern, and thread other side, leaving an equal overhang on both sides. 

  5. Step 5

    Place another ribbon parallel to first; repeat threading.

  6. Step 6

    Give lantern a quarter turn; thread remaining 2 ribbons, looping over first pair.

  7. Step 7

    At each bottom corner, knot the 2 adjacent ribbons together, about 3 inches down. Gather all ribbons, and knot together, about 5 inches down from first knots. 

  8. Step 8

    Trim bottoms of ribbons at an angle. String hanging light through lantern, following manufacturer's instructions, or hang lantern as is.

Martha Stewart Living, July 2007



Reviews (6)

  • Steffy Watson 11 Jan, 2013

    These are really looking cute.

  • DaniDavis 11 Nov, 2011

    Does anyone have a suggestion for where to buy paper box lanterns? thanks.

  • marthalovergirl 3 Jun, 2011

    hi so i am thirteen years old and for my fourteen birthday party i want to make these are they hard to make i dont want anything too hard! so i really like them though i want paper lanterns for my party these look so pretty and cute! do they light up?

  • CHoevey 2 May, 2010

    You can hang solar lanterns and not have to worry about fire hazard or wires

  • aquarious86 1 May, 2010

    well done so sweet,i will try soon!!!

  • lesleyjoy 1 May, 2010

    love the idea I am having a garden wedding and already planned on hanging lanterns, now i can match them to my color scheme