DIY Aluminum Lanterns

I love these gorgeous aluminum lanterns from Ruffled! She came up with these great DIY lanterns that would be perfect for Christmas decorating. I’m going to paint mine white like she did and scatter them around the dining room and living room. These look really versatile, too, so I could use them all year or even re-paint them a different color if I wanted to!


  • • Perforated metal sheets or upcycle them from used radiator covers (found in places like here)
  • • Tin snips
  • • 20 or 22 gauge wire
  • • Flat pliers
  • • Spray paint


Create templates on a piece of paper to play with the proportions before you begin cutting the metal sheet. Once you have all the templates you’d like to use, outline them with a pencil on the metal sheet. Slowly cut your rectangles away. To create the round cylinders, I used the help of the spray can I used to paint them. Wrap the metal sheet cutouts around the can (or a bottle or jar) and roll them a few times. It doesn’t matter if the size of your lanterns are not same as your can-roller, this is just to help you get a round shape. Once you tie the ends you won’t notice any bends that you would have seen if you had tried by hand.

Thread both ends of your cylinder using 20 or 22 gauge wire and twist tight using pliers. Cut excess wire. Before spray painting, you can insert newspaper in the lantern to avoid spray paint from going through. This gives a two-tone coloring and it conceals the wire closure. To use them as vases, you can simply add kitchen-size glasses before adding flowers.