Winter Solstice Crafts - Votives or Lanterns : Red Ted Art's Blog

Simple Lanterns for Winter Solstice (or St Martin’s Day!)

| November 4, 2012 | 27 Comments

Well.. one thing that is really “just us” each year, are our St Martin’s Day celebrations – it is  classic Autumn celebration in Austrian and German countries and involves remembering St Martin, making lanterns and going for a lantern walk in the dark whilst singing some classic children’s songs! Personally, I love this tradition and it is one, that I have done with the children on some scale or another in recent years. The lanterns we made this year, would also be PERFECT for Winter Solstice crafts. The magical, beautiful and EXCITING to make…

Materials: Paper or white sandwich paper, tapered candles of assorted colours, matches, a glass jar, tea lights (if using them as a St Martin’s lantern – wire/ string for hanging & a stick), tape

Alternatively you could use a cut down plastic bottle with an electric tea light or a lantern stick. This would make the less heavy and a little saver for young children. But I think our lanterns are just fine as they are. And now that St Martin’s Day is over for us (we celebrated the day early this year, due to other commitments and the opportunity of visiting German friends), we are going to have these as candle votives on the mantle piece.


1) We had two adults and 4 children doing this – as you are working with candles and “live flames”, it is important that you supervise your children closely. We had one adult per lit candle, but the children got do all the “work”. Light your candle, hold over your paper and let the wax drip. Moving the candle around the paper to spread the dots. You can see that my kids took it VERY seriously.

2) Let cool/ dry.

3) Then cut the paper down to size to fit around your glass jar. Tape on.

4) If using as a lantern, tie some wire or string securely around the top of your jar, and tie to your stick.

Light your candles and go sing your heart out (for St Martin’s Day) or light your candles and decorate your mantle piece to celebrate Winter Solstice.

We then took our lanterns outside and went for a walk around our friend’s very large garden. The children and us sang “Laterne, Laterne, Sonnen Mond und Sterne”, as well as “Ich Geh Mit Meiner Laterne”… Lovely.

Have you got any Winter Solstice Crafts to share?


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Category: Christmas, Halloween, Kids Craft, Winter

Comments (27)

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  1. Genuine Jenn says:

    What a great idea :) They would make nice gifts also. I look forward to making these with the kids. Thanks for sharing.

  2. Red Ted Art says:

    Thank you! The kids wanted to go on another lantern walk tonight!

  3. Red Ted Art says:

    Thank you :-)

  4. Sian says:

    these are the sort of traditional celebrations that your children will remember as a magical part of their childhood! : )
    they are lucky kids : )

  5. Red Ted Art says:

    I do hope so Sian! I remember being it as magical and soooo want to do this for them! Finger’s crossed!! :-)

  6. Becky says:

    Oh Maggie how lovely…what was st martin known for?

  7. Red Ted Art says:

    St Martin started off as a Roman Soldier, who as an adult became baptized and became a Monk. He was known for being a kind and helping man, the most famous “story” being, that in one winter’s storm, he cut his cloak in half to give to a beggar that would have frozen to death. That night it is said he dreamt of Jesus wearing half his cloak.

    St Martin’s Day is also linked to Advent and 40 days of fasting before Christmas (a lot of traditions are so interlinked with different things).

    You can find more info here's_Day

  8. Ima says:

    Thank you for this fun idea. We’re definitely going to make these.
    I was just a little puzzled though, when you said “now that St.Martinsday is over”. We celebrate St.Martinsday on the 11th of November. So we’re just in time to make them for next Sunday.

    • Red Ted Art says:

      Yes, Ima, ahem, good point. I originally drafted this post to go live NEXT week… then decided to pull it forward and yesterday, so that anyone doing St Martin’s still has a last minuted idea to use. We actually did our walk a week early as we have a number of Birthday parties on the 11th. So I confused myself I think 😉

  9. oh lovely Maggy! Zak would love Candle Art!

  10. Isil says:

    Very pretty.I LOVED the lantern walk as a child,so magical.

  11. A lantern walk sounds like fun {especially the singing part}. Do you all go Christmas caroling as well?

    Thanks for sharing at the Sunday Showcase.

  12. Red Ted Art says:

    We need to more Carol Singing for sure!!!

  13. So neat! And yes they are SERIOUS about those candles!! Love this! Thanks for sharing on the Sunday Showcase!

  14. Red Ted Art says:

    Yes, I am glad they have a healthy respect for fire!!

  15. I love this – the candle wax is such a different way to create the light spots on the paper.

    Thank you so much for linking up to Tuesday Tots and just to let you know that I’m featuring this over on Rainy Day Mum this week.

  16. Hannah says:

    Very nice lanterns! I featured them today on my blog! Thanks for linking up to the All Year Round Blog Carnnival: Winter!

  17. hcg says:

    You rock. Thank a lot for posting this. I’ll come back to see what’s new and recommend my neighbors about your writing.

  18. Ornella says:

    I love this. My mother’s village in the north east of Italy is called San Martino, so St Martin has always been special for us. I love your idea, as we are never in the village in mid November when there is a big party, it would be nice to feel part of the festivities despite being so far away by creating our own traditions!

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