Make your own flying paper lanterns

Native to China, the flying paper lanterns work on the same principle as a hot-air balloon. The first flying paper lanterns were made up of a bamboo structure covered with paper. They had the shape of a hexahedron or a bag.

In order to make the paper lantern fly, Chinese people put a burning candle or a fabric dampened in oil at its base. When the fire stopped, the lanterns landed easily on the ground.

Nowadays, one uses a special paper that slows down the burning, making the lanterns more secure. Usually people use them to send messages or wishes in the air.

How to do it:

  1. Take four sheets of thin wrapping paper and pin them on a cord used to dry laundry. Use a nonflammable product to spray them. Take care not to touch the corners where the pins are fixed. Let the paper get dry.
  2. Stick each of these papers to another four sheets of thin wrapping papers on their length using a small amount of glue.
  3. Draw four half mitten pieces on a craft paper and stick them together with adhesive tape. Take care to create the opening at the bottom of your flying lantern. If you like your pattern you can remove the adhesive tape.
  4. This pattern will help you cut the papers endings up with four curved pieces having a straight edge. Stick the pieces of the flying pattern with glue. Take care to let the side edges opened in order to form the underside of the lantern.
  5.  Cut a bamboo into thin strips and smooth them down. Stick the ends of the strips together with glue. The result should be a bamboo hoop.
  6. The next step supposes to install a wire X to the frame. Put foil on the cardboard square and secure them to the center of the X with some adhesive.
  7. Create a cup using some foil and stick it in the middle of the pod using adhesive tape. The cotton ball will stay in this cup.
  8. Add the thin wrapping paper to the hoop at the opened bottom. Make sure that the foil cup faces inside.
  9. Place the cotton ball into the foil cup after you have dampened it with rubbing alcohol. Ignite the cotton ball and wait until the hot air is produced. When the lantern warms let it fly in the air.
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