Have you been embracing the world of solar lighting? It sure has come a long way with everything from solar string lights to hanging outdoor porch lighting. I keep leaning toward solar because a) there’s no wiring required. That keeps it simple. B) There’s no flame from a candle or oil lamp. That keeps it safe. C) It doesn’t rack up your electric bill. Say no more, right?
Did I mention my favorite reason of all? E.A.S.Y!
Of course, we do need to count on our buddy, Mr Sun. But he hangs around most days anyway. So I’m guessing he won’t mind.
Here is a pretty basic project using thrifted lanterns upcycled into solar lamps.
With a few small adjustments, these lanterns now light up my patio with a subtle glow.
DIY upcycled lantern solar lights
I started with several thrifted lanterns. Two were intended to hold candles, and one was a broken wall lantern (not shown in this photo).
Ken helped by removing the wiring on the wall lantern, and then cutting wood pieces to fit into the bottom of each lantern with a scroll saw. Although he said a jigsaw could be used as well.
He also used a large drill bit to drill a hole for the solar light tab.
The inside, top portion of the covered lanterns were painted with reflective chrome paint.
I painted the bottom wood pieces. One of them with the reflective chrome paint, as well.
And the wire, open top lantern was painted to compliment the color scheme of the painted vintage metal chair.
Full disclosure, the solar lights on the lanterns with the top cover do not stay lit as long as the one with the open cover. I have considered using a shorter, squatter solar light. This would enable it to get more daylight. I haven’t tried that as of yet, but I do think it would stay lighted longer.
Everybody is turning something into a solar light these days.
What do you have hanging around your house that you can turn solar?
chris aka monkey says
good idea and cute project xx
Christine Vandormolen says
so clever, love this!
Thanks so much Christine !!
Good idea! I have a lot of lanterns (they’ve kind of been an obsession with me lately!), so I think I might have to make some of them solar!
I have a thing for old lanterns, too. Making some of them solar has been handy around the yard. Thanks for stopping by!
Nice! Great idea.
Thank you, Genie
Carol ("Mimi") says
Genius!! I have some LED candles on timers in my lanterns But, the solar lights would be even better!
I like your idea of LED candles on timers, as well. Thanks so much, Carol!
Love these!! Thanks for stopping by the Home Matters Linky Party.
Thanks so much for hosting, Julie
Where did you get the Solar lights from?
I bought the solar lights from one of the larger department stores, like Walmart or Home Depot. Most every dept store carries them, I would even think dollar stores sell them, too. They are often called standard solar lawn light or pathway light. They have a plastic piece on the bottom (like a spike) that you can insert into the ground. To make these lanterns, I just removed the bottom piece. They’re very inexpensive. Sometimes they sell them in 6pk or 12pk lots.
I hope that helps. Let me know if you have any other questions.
Amy to the rescue again….looking for an idea for an old lantern I just took a candle out of and washed up. I can do this!
Of course, you can do this. YOu are Bliss Ranch!