Autumn is such a beautiful season, I think it just cries out for some arts and crafts for kids that explore the colours and natural textures and patterns that emerge all around the children at this time of year, don’t you? Some of our other favourites are Autumn Leaf Sewing and Window Painting Craft.
We’ve been lucky enough to receive some wonderful craft products from Viking recently. I’d though of them largely as office suppliers but their stock of crafts goods is great and all really reasonably priced too. We got a fabulous pack of coloured cellophane (48 sheets for just £2.75) and I thought it was just perfect for combining with some old glass jars to make Lanterns, a fun and easy recycled Autumn/Fall craft for kids and a great way to explore colour mixing too.
To Make your Autumn Lantern Craft You will Need:
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- Glass jars (We used old jam jars and coffee jars.)
- Battery Tea Lights UK / US
- PVA Glue UK / US
- Wire UK / US
- Wire Cutters
- Paint Brush
Lantern Making Is An Easy Autumn Craft For Kids:
Crumb had a friend round to join in with this lantern craft and it was really interesting to see how differently they approached the project. First, I showed them the jars and cellophane and let them explore how the colours changed when you overlaid them, and how vibrant the colours are when held up to the light.
Next, I gave them some scissors and glue and let them follow their own ideas completely. They experimented with glueing the cellophane and glueing the jar and found that applying the glue to the jar was the easier method.
Crumb went for covering whole jars in just one colour because he thought it would look really fun to have lots of lanterns of different colours.
His friend Poppet took a very different approach and built up strips of colour, adding strips of different thicknesses.
We loved the way stripes could be partially overlaid on each other to create new colours.
By the end of the afternoon we had a fantastic range of different styles, from stripes,to circles, to random collage to monotone lanterns and I think they all look great. I’m so glad I didn’t suggest a way for the children to do it. Their own ideas are just fantastic.
The only thing I helped them with was cutting and wrapping the wire to make the handles. I preferred to do this myself because the ends are quite sharp. (You might want to tape them or use string instead for younger children.)
The children loved adding the battery operated tea lights to their lanterns and literally glowed with delight themselves to see the effect of the light shimmering through all their chosen colours like real stained glass! These tea lights are useful for all sorts of play activities and crafts and great value from Amazon UK and US. If your little ones like lights and torches too they might enjoy our super Sensory Play Lights Activity too.
This lantern craft obviously looks best in the dark but I just couldn’t photograph it very well that way I’m afraid. But I hope this gives you a rough idea of how pretty the lanterns look.
We’ll be using our Colour Mix Stained Glass Lanterns for decorating the house and garden for Halloween, Bonfire Night and we’ll probably have them out at Christmas too!
(Please remember the dangers of glass and small batteries and supervise your children appropriately.)