Join in from home: Make a paper lantern with Kate Rolison

These lanterns make great decorations for any home. Hang them up, or place them over a battery operated tea light.

Things you need:

  • A sheet of plain or coloured paper (if you want to decorate your lantern), or a piece of recycled gift wrap or an old magazine or catalogue page (but beware of paper that is too thin)
  • A pair of safety scissors
  • Sellotape or a glue stick
  • Coloured pencils or crayons if you want to decorate your lantern.


1) Decorate your paper if you want to (in the video I’ve done a scribble design).

2) Cut a thin strip off one of the shorter ends of the paper to use as the handle.

Cutting the end off the paper widthways

3) Fold the paper together lengthways, with the decorated surface on the outside.

White paper with colourful scribbles over it is folded in two lengthways

4) Cut some wide slits halfway into the folded side, leaving some space at each end. Then cut a narrower slit at each end, so it’s not too bulky when joined together.

Photo of cutting into the paper to make slits

5) Open it out, and sellotape or glue the ends of the paper together.

Photo of the lantern joined together showing the sellotape

6) Finally, join the handle onto the insides of one end – this is the fiddly bit!

Three paper lanterns together on a shelf, made from white paper with colourful scribbles

Here are more Festival family activities for you to enjoy:

To find out more about our activities for families and young people, email

Click here to return to the Festival programmeTogether! 2021 Disability History Month Festival. 11 November-9 December 2021. A Month of inclusive Dance, Drama, Exhibitions, Family Activities, Films, Poetry and conversations, all free and from the comfort of your own home. Including the international Together! 2021 Disability Film Festival. Supported by the National Lottery Community Fund and Arts Council England.