Awhile back I wrote a very basic post on How to Make Your Own Halloween Luminaries by hand, but I’ve since updated my design a bit, and created free svg files, so today I will show you how to make a cardstock luminary with a cutting machine! However, you may still cut by hand if you prefer, or don’t have a cutting machine.
What You Will Need
Some of the items below are affiliate links for your convenience.
- Free SVG File (available in my Resource Library)
- Cardstock (Stardreams is my FAVORITE!)
- Translucent Vellum
- Flameless LED Tealight Candles – I love these color changing ones!
- Cutting machine (Silhouette, Cricuit, etc.)
- Alternative: X-acto knife if cutting by hand
- Pencil (Optional, if cutting by hand)
- Scoring Tool/Bone Folder (optional)
- Adhesive (I like to use a combination of Duck Easy Sticks Roller Adhesive and Scotch Tape Gun with 1/2″ Tape)
How to Make a Cardstock Luminary
NOTE: I should mention I use a large format cutter for my designs, so I cannot walk you through how to use your specific machine to actually use the cut files, but the assembly steps will be the same.
First you will cut the luminary design using my template.
- You can fit (2) on a single piece of 8.5″ x 11″ piece of card stock.
- NOTE: If your machine has trouble with the score marks you can delete those and use a bone folder or scoring tool if you like, or simply fold in half by hand. I like using a tool to create a nice, crisp fold line when folding my hand.
Next you will need to cut your vellum panels (4 to an 8.5″ x 11″ sheet), and your bottom insert (4 to an 8.5″ x 11″ sheet)
NOTE: If you are using color changing LED lights your vellum color does not matter; the colors will show through in the dark, not the color of the vellum! The finished luminary in the example shown in the photos below has a pink sheet of vellum, but you can see that does not keep the beautiful changing colors of the LED candle from shining through!
Once you have all your pieces it’s time to assemble! Line up your vellum panel and use your favorite adhesive(s) to secure the panel on the inside of the luminary. My favorite products are noted above. I often use a combination of the two adhesive rollers because they give me the most flexibility; I find roller adhesives to be less messy than glue.
You can see how the Duck Roller comes out in small rectangles that allow you to get very small, detailed areas. You can also adjust them if you go over a cut spot where the adhesive will show through…I often just take my finger or a vinyl weeding tool to fold those pieces up and out of the way. The Scotch Tape Gun is great for larger areas, but it’s not quite as easy to manipulate if you make a mistake, or need to make adjustments.
Once you have your adhesive where you want it, simply lay your vellum piece on top and firmly smooth it into place. Your cardstock luminary is almost complete!
Finally, fold the base insert on the fold lines and apply the adhesive (either adhesive works fine for this area) to the “end” sections of the base.
(You might want to double check how the base folds up inside the luminary before you add the adhesive. It seems so easy and obvious now, but when I first started making these luminaries I got it wrong more than once! Sometimes the adhesive is forgiving, but it’s awful when you pull it off and ruin your luminary in the process.)
Once you have the adhesive applied, secure each side of the base to the inside of the luminary panels in the appropriate places.
Now you can add the LED tealight candle, turn off the lights and enjoy your new creation!! Isn’t it gorgeous?
The fold lines in the base allow you to fold to store if you used a seasonal design (scroll down to see my beloved spooky Halloween luminaries!), or mail flat if you are gifting these little beauties; they are adorable even without the candle!
Other Ideas for Luminary Designs
You can customize your design to suit any celebration or event…I’m including a free svg file in my Resources Library for 2019 and 2020 graduation party decor! Looking for other designs? Join our FB community and ask! I’m happy to create new designs for you as I have time.
You can create so many amazing projects with my free template.
My first bunch of designs were made for Halloween. Look how FUN and SPOOKY they can be!
Here are some designs I think would be awesome for this project! (Some may need some minor tweaking to work, so just play with them, get creative, and have fun!)
WANT TO REMEMBER
HOW TO MAKE A CARDSTOCK LUMINARY?
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