Thursday, December 13, 2012

DIY Holiday Ice Lanterns

I have always wanted to make these beautiful Ice Lanterns for fun decor on our balcony…so this was my chance to figure out how!  With all of this Minnesota snow, I thought I would provide the how-to so you all can try your DIY hands at this fun and easy winter project...and they will look gorgeous lining the walkway up to your home, in the back yard, or on a porch or balcony.

So here is the how-to:
Use a 2 liter plastic soda bottle and a 24 oz plastic bottle for the inside – cut tops off.
1. Fill the 2 liter bottle with about 1 1/2 inches of water and freeze.
2. Remove from freezer and place 24 oz bottle inside resting on the ice. Center the 24 oz bottle in the 2 liter bottle and use masking tape to secure in place. Make sure space between bottles is even all the way around.
3. Cut greens from the yard or buy greens (these are Boxwood) and cranberries to fill the sides. Cranberries float, so place some in the bottom first and then add green on top. Add a few additional cranberries on the sides. When you fill the container with water the cranberries will rise to the top.

Fill with water leaving at least 1 in of space from the top for the water to rise as it freezes.

When frozen, remove from freezer. Lift tape and add hot water into the center of the bottle. As the ice melts a little, pull out center bottle. This gets a little tricky as the plastic bottles have larger bottoms than the sides. You have to work it! Run hot water over the outside of the bottle to loosen the large bottle. It is difficult to pull the ice lantern out of the 2 liter bottle due to the larger bottom. I recommend cutting it down the sides to remove it. Be careful - the plastic can be sharp! I also recommend having a set of bottles for each ice lantern you wish to make.
I highly recommend using a battery operated candle inside – the flame melts the ice! Make a couple of days ahead and store in the freezer.

And, voila...a beautiful holiday ice lantern!

You could also make smaller lanterns using cottage cheese containers and small disposable food storage containers. They are much easier to separate as the cottage cheese containers have a smaller bottom and the ice will slid right out.

Good luck, and Happy Holidays!

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  1. Hi!  I’m an editor for and am writing to request permission to use a photo from this post on our blog.
    We hope to feature this in an upcoming round up of ours about natural Christmas decor.  We would include a backlink and clear credit to you via the name of your blog.  
    Please let me know and thanks!