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DIY CMYK Lanterns

by Jenny Batt

March is a big birthday month for us and my husband, is having his birthday this weekend. Instead of a traditional dude birthday, I wanted something bright. I was refilling my printer ink and noticed how cool the CMYK colors really are together.  I’m also a bit of a design nerd, so a little light bulb went off in my head.  I’ve wanted to make something with tissue squares ever since I found them at the craft store, so I grabbed some of my white lanterns and started gluing. This is something you can do in mere moments and is a great way to customize your party.

Click through for all the instructions.

You will need: white paper lanterns, tissue paper squares, mod podge, and a paint brush.

You can make your own tissue paper squares of course, but the precut squares are ready instantly.  Do you remember these squares from elementary school when you put them on the end of a pencil and stick them on to things? Here we will just be using them flat. Set aside the colors we will be using for CMYK: blue, pink, yellow and black.  Paint a little mod podge on a spot for a square and press it on gently with your finger. Paint a second lighter coat on top.  Repeat around the lantern, making a random but scattered confetti style pattern, sometimes overlapping colors. Here’s a hint, when overlapping colors, always put the lighter color on top, it helps brighten the mixed color.

Let dry.  Hang.  Party.  Mix them up with some solid lanterns in CMY and you are set.

You could customize these lanterns in any color, use the squares or get a 1” punch and do confetti dots. Now with the endless assortment of colors in tissue paper , you could layer large squares on your lanterns in any shade to match your party or décor.

  1. Hailey

    March 8, 2012

    Super cute idea!


    March 8, 2012

    Ok I want to have a party RIGHT NOW so I can make those! FUN! My daughter will love this….

  3. Connie @ Daydream In Color

    March 8, 2012

    You read my mind! I was literally just thinking about re-doing some lanterns with tissue paper earlier this week. I love the way this turned out. Now I must do it! Thanks for the inspiration!

  4. Lexy @ The Proper Pinwheel

    March 8, 2012

    HOly mOly!!! I’ve been wanting to revamp some paper lanterns. Loving tissue paper right now. As always, thank you for the inspiration, Jenny! You rule!

  5. Bernadette

    March 8, 2012

    Wonderful! Where is the metallic fringe garland from? Thanks!

  6. Lauren

    March 8, 2012

    What a cute idea! I’ve always loved those colors together, too. 🙂

  7. Amy Shaughnessy

    March 8, 2012

    Great idea! Those would be so cute for an outdoor garden party or dinner…


  8. Tina Ramchandani

    March 8, 2012

    Great way to spice up party decor. And so simple too!

  9. Brigette

    March 8, 2012

    what a great way to customize a party or a simple room!

  10. Rebecca - A Daily Something

    March 8, 2012

    Jenny, you’re too awesome for words. LOVE how these turned out. So dude-ish/designy/FUN!

  11. Amy @Picture It

    March 8, 2012

    Great idea! I would love to do this for one of my kids’ birthday. Thanks. 🙂

  12. Melanie

    March 8, 2012

    Cool, Jenny! I need to have a party so I can make these. But then I’d have to have a party. Oh, the dilemma! 🙂

  13. kristen

    March 8, 2012

    so stinkin cute. and i love that you can customize to any color palette that you fancy. xo

  14. canvasofculture

    March 8, 2012

    the geometric prints are so cute! great idea:)

  15. meenal@maison marigold

    March 9, 2012

    Wow…that’s really super!! so easy and versatile..xx meenal

  16. Victoria@VictoryPaper

    March 9, 2012

    THIS i love! who knew that cmyk could look so 80’s dance party???

  17. joyce

    March 9, 2012

    so fun!

  18. Maddie Flanigan

    March 9, 2012

    I’ve been into lots of color lately (maybe because spring is on the way) and this is a great way to satisfy my appetite. Thanks!

  19. Ok so this is awesome just because of how easy it is!!! Perfect for a busy mom looking for a cute birthday decoration.

    – Sarah

  20. Marie

    March 9, 2012

    Very cute! Love the cmyk, 🙂

  21. Ashley

    March 9, 2012

    What a cute idea! I love lanterns- especially for outdoor parties in the summer!

  22. cori

    March 10, 2012

    those are just the cutest! i’ll have to try it out for my next party!
    – cori.

  23. Chase l Oh The Cuteness!

    March 11, 2012

    So lovely! That silver garland in the background is great too!

  24. Hanneke

    March 12, 2012

    so simpe but such a great idea! 😀

  25. julie

    March 13, 2012

    I have a bunch of paper lanterns in my basement sitting there in a bag and I knew that one day I would do something cool with them…this is it! Thanks for sharing this.

  26. Jenny @ Hank + Hunt

    March 13, 2012

    Hi Bernadette!
    I got my fringe garland from Bake It Pretty, but they don’t have it on the site right now, I’d keep checking back. I found some here:
    or you could also use the garlands from this kit that you can find here:
    Hope this helps!

  27. PetitCurie

    March 13, 2012

    Love love love these! gonn try it out asp

  28. JoAnne

    March 13, 2012

    Super cool! I could see myself making DIY polka dot lanterns the same way, to match the polka dot / confetti table cloth I just made via your tutorial. 🙂

  29. JoAnne

    March 13, 2012

    Oh haha – I didn’t even read through to the bottom. You thought of the confetti, too. 😉

  30. ibraheem nuaaman

    March 15, 2012


  31. Amy & Lisa

    March 18, 2012

    I’m so in love with this sweet idea I am sharing on my blog tomorrow!

Comments are Closed

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