Festive & Frugal Holiday Decor: DIY Placemat Lantern

Looking for a great frugal holiday decor craft to light up your Christmas party table? Check out this gorgeous and easy DIY Placemat lantern! This post contains affiliate links.


It seems like we are always looking for a little extra glow around the holiday season. Lanterns are a great way to bring some glow indoors and set some ambiance, but buying them can be quite costly. Instead, why not try making your own this holiday season? You don’t need a great deal of supplies to make one, in fact you may already have these supplies around your home. Below, you will find everything you need to know about making your own DIY Placemat Lantern. Using a simple placemat, you can easily whip up a soothing, glowing lantern in just minutes. Take a peek below at how to make your own.

Frugal Holiday Decor: DIY Placemat Lantern

Supplies needed:


The single socket cord as mentioned can be found at most home improvement stores. They are a single cord with a socket for a 5 watt bulb. They are typically used in outdoor holiday decorations, so if you are wondering where you may have seen one before, that would be it. You can typically snag one for just a few dollars. For our placemat choice, we grabbed one from our local thrift store for around .25 cents. If you don’t have a nearby thrift store, your local dollar store may have a nice selection. Choose anything with a holiday theme and make sure it is plastic, not fabric.

Directions for this easy frugal holiday decor craft:
1. Begin by rolling your placemat into a tube. Stand it up vertically and then start rolling. You essentially want both ends to meet.
2. Apply a generous dab of glue to the ends and press them together. Once they are dry, you want to be able to let go and the tube remains in tact.
3. Next, take your scissors and cut out an upside down U at the bottom back of the tube. This is where your cord will be ran through your placemat. A U about one inch in size will work just fine. When you are done, it will look like an arch or train tunnel in your tube.
4. Finally, run your cord and bulb through the tunnel. Plug the cord in and watch your lantern glow! The light will shine through and throughout the top of the placemat, creating a cool lantern effect!

You can display your lantern anywhere you choose, such as a mantel, kitchen counter, or even on your office desk. It is a great way to add a pop of color and light to your holiday decorating for less. Plus, should you have any old placemats around it is a great way to give them a new life. Remember, only use the wattage of bulb as described and don’t leave any electrical decorations plugged in when not attended. This is the best way to be sure you are using the item safely and not posing any fire hazards.

Gather your supplies and give this simple DIY placemat lantern frugal holiday decor craft a try. You are sure to come up with something just as fun and crafty.

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