These vellum animals make adorable shades for battery-operated candles. Or, make a beast from opaque paper and dress up a jar of pencils or a simple vase.
To make one animal, cut a 4- by 8½-inch piece of vellum. Roll the strip into a cylinder, using tape to secure the overlapping edge. Cut out features -- ears, eyes, nose, mouth, and four legs -- from sturdy card stock. Add pupils and other tiny details with marker. Use tacky glue to attach the features to the vellum, making sure the four legs extend an equal distance from the bottom of the cylinder.
Originally published in the March 2014 issue of FamilyFun magazine.
These magical globes give off a comforting glow. Each starts with a paper lantern equipped with a cool-to-the-touch LED bulb (we used a 14-inch model with a built-in LED light, $7, pier1.com). Brush tacky glue onto the lantern, then affix strips of artificial snow (such as Buffalo Snow, available at craft stores). Hang with filament or thread. Safety note: Use LED lights only. Do not use bulbs that generate more heat.
Go for carnival bling with a retro marquee-style monogram. These solidly made wooden letters come in a range of fonts, sizes, and colors. 16-inch Vintage-Style Marquee Letter, $59 (bulbs included), junkgypsyz.com
This cleverly pleated pendant will light up the imagination of your would-be globe-trotter. The flat-packed shade assembles in seconds. Loose-leaf Pendant Shade, $29 (lampshade-cord kit is sold separately for $29), landofnod.com
With a trusty pachyderm lighting the way, those spelling words are less apt to be forgotten. A crocheted shade adds cozy texture, but a simpler shade would look terrific as well. Elephant Table Lamp, $59, and Bubble Knit Lampshade, $59, thecompanystore.com
Press this guy's head to make his LED light glow a soothing blue. The light lasts a few hours between charges. $14.99, ikea.com
This sweetie features a 30-minute auto-shutoff, and his LED light shifts colors with the tap of a button. $19.95, americaninnovative.com
Hung in a sunny window by day, this solar lamp emits three or more hours of light after dark. Plus, every purchase allows these lamps to be sold at locally affordable prices in off-grid communities across the globe. $28, momastore.org
Originally published in the November 2013 issue of FamilyFun magazine.