Introduction

Make Solar Lanterns From Mason Jars on an outdoor table
Photo: Wendell t. Webber
»
For wire-free outdoor illumination, try these DIY solar lanterns, which give off a warm glow well after the sun sets. This easy project uses wide-mouth mason jars, with each lid's metal insert replaced by a piece of plexiglass to allow the sun's rays to power the solar cell through the lid. We coated the interiors of the jars with Rust-Oleum's Frosted Glass Spray (about $9; rustoleum.com) to give the lanterns a hazy, aged-patina look, and glued the solar-cell assembly of a mini pathway light from the home center (about $4 each) to the underside of each lid. Once assembled, leave the lights in a spot where they'll get direct sun, and you'll never be left in the dark again.
Ask TOH users about Lighting

Contribute to This Story Below

    Tools List

    • black marker
      Permanent marker
    • Aviation Snips
      Aviation tin snips

    Shopping List

    Three wide-mouth mason jars in various sizes

    One 8-by-10-inch plexiglass sheet, about 0.05 inch thick

    Rust-Oleum Frosted Glass spray

    Three mini stainless-steel solar stake lights, about 2.5 inches in diameter

    Fine-grit sandpaper

    Super glue