How to Decorate a Lantern for Winter

decorate a lantern
Winter Lantern

Watch the video below to learn how to decorate a lantern for winter. It’s easy and only takes a few supplies. I made this one with some ribbons, twigs, and feathered cardinals.

Decorating a Lantern

I did this lantern swag a couple of years ago, but since then the same lantern has been decorated over and over! But that’s what I like about doing small decorating projects like a lantern topper or swag.

You can use a lantern and change out the filler and topper for so many different occasions or seasons.

My lantern is a rather standard Cape Cod style, made of wood, glass, and metal. I like that the door is big and the glass is unobstructed on all sides.

Check out my Amazon Shop for more lanterns, there are several styles there that are very attractive with simple clean lines.


Since my lantern was done a while back, those ribbons are no longer available at Trendy Tree, but here are some similar ones that would work just as well. Just choose from 2-3 styles. Or better yet….use up your scrap ribbon! Short ends of ribbons are perfect for this sort of project.

  • RG08705 2.5″ Cardinal Polka Dot & Pine Ribbon
  • 71182-40-01 2.5″ Light Natural Linen Cardinal Ribbon
  • RGA1099W4 2.5″ Light Beige Red Black Check Edge Ribbon
  • 78118-09-18 1.5″ Light Tan Pinecone Ribbon
  • RGA127027 1.5″ Black White Diagonal Check Ribbon
  • 701505-21 7/8″ Black White Buffalo Check Ribbon
  • 71095-09-21 1.5″ Black White Woven Josh Plaid Ribbon
  • EZ Bowmaker
add a bow to the top of a lantern
Simple Bow

Red Birds

I used two feathered cardinals in my lantern, but here are some other options as well.

  • MB0635 4.5″ Red Cardinal Birds Assorted
  • 3102594 7″ RAZ Cardinals Set of 2
  • 4102501 RAZ Cardinals on a Branch
Add feathered cardinals around a candle in a lantern
Feathered Cardinals from Trendy Tree

Battery Candles

Battery candles are a must for a lantern. Always safety first! Never be tempted to use a real candle in a lantern. There are several battery-powered candles in my Amazon Shop.

You can’t go wrong by investing in good-quality battery candles. I love the ones with timers so you can just set them and forget them until the batteries play out! That’s a lot easier than trying to keep up with a remote.

Tip: The candle in my lantern has a timer, but is remote-controlled also. So I keep the remote inside the lantern tucked away underneath whatever is in the lantern.

Faux Snow

The white “stuff” in the bottom of my lantern is Faux Snow. It’s a plastic material, similar to Easter grass or Spanish Moss. It will last and last! I’ve used this same bag of Faux Snow in several different projects. When I remove it from one project, I just tuck it away and re-use it again and again.

Sum it Up

I hope this gives you an idea of how you can decorate a lantern. It’s really easy and only takes a few minutes.

The twig pieces came from a grapevine wreath I believe. Sometimes you get one that is so warped it’s really hard to use. That’s a perfect one to tear apart and save the pieces!

I did a tutorial a while back on how to straighten a warped grapevine wreath Here’s that link if you would like to learn more about that.

Here are some other posts you might be interested in:

Choosing a Decorative Lantern for your Home

Spring Lantern Ideas

Fresh Evergreen Garland

Christmas Scentsicles

Lantern Bow with Neutral Ribbons

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