DIY Lanterns with Battery Seed Fairy Lights

Not long now until Matariki re-enters our skies! One can't help but think of stars and light when you hear the word Matariki so here's a timely blog on how create some lanterns at home. Battery Fairy Lights are a wonderful addition to your lanterns and will help make them sparkle! 

Many community celebrations will involve a walk so why not ditch the torches and headlamps this year for some DIY Lanterns. If DIY ain't your thing, then consider our Solar Lanterns and Solar Jars which will light up the pathway and probably get a load of comments from your fellow walkers. 

Top tip:

Plan to do this at least a day before as you'll need to place water in the can and freeze it. By filling your can with water and freezing it overnight you'll have a much easier job punching your nails and holes.

Also once the tin cans are out of the freezer you’ll need to work fairly fast as the water will melt faster than you think.

You will need

  • Battery Seed Fairy Lights 
  • A used tin can
  • Water
  • A nail, or icepick, or hole punch, or small, sharp screwdriver
  • A hammer
  • Paint
  • Pipe cleaner
  • Paint brush
  • Selection of beads
  • Long stick
  • A freezer
  • Masking Tape

What to do

1. Peel off the label from your can and give it a good wash.

2. Fill it with tap water to just below the top and then freeze overnight


3. Decide on your design and draw it on to a piece of paper 

4. Take your can out of the freezer and stick your pattern onto it using the masking tape.


5. Find a stable surface for hammering on and start hammering holes into the outline of your design using the hammer and nail.

6. Once you have hammered all the way around your pattern add 2 extra holes at the top of your lantern. This is where your pipe-cleaner handle will go through. Remove the paper and tape. 

7. You may then want to drill through each of the small pilot holes made by the nails. This will clean up the holes and create a consistent, polished look. Feel free to play around with other drill bit sizes to create different looks.

8. Paint the whole outside of the can with at least 2 coats. Alternatively use spray paint. Stuff the inside of the can with paper towels or an old rag. Holding the can at least 15cm away, lightly coat with outdoor spray paint. Layer three or four thin coats until metal is no longer visible. Remove rag when dry.

9. Find a decent sized stick that you can hold your lantern on so it can dry.

10. When the paint has dried attach one end of your pipe-cleaner to the tin. Then thread it with beads and attach the other end. Or you can add an old wire clothes hanger or piece of rope for carrying or hanging your lantern.

12. Place your battery seed fairy lights into the tin can and hang it to the long stick by the pipe cleaner.

You are ready for your Matariki Night Walk! Which look will you go for - bright or the dark?

These also make great night lights at home or place as a bedside light for younger children. So verstaile and fun. 

You can check out our Solar Lanterns here: >