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DIY Halloween Ghost Lanterns

October 12, 2021

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Hello friends!

It's a well established fact that fall isn't my favorite season, and Halloween is a holiday I'd be more than happy to skip. 

However.

Today I have the most darling craft. One I never intended to make.

Yet now that it's done, I have four new friends for All Hallow's Eve and I cannot wait to share.

Our story begins a few weeks ago, when my daughter and I hit that adorable thrift store again and I found these. 

Glass Ceiling Fan Shades

I believe they're glass ceiling fan shades.

From now on, I'm going to be looking for more than just old fan blades

They were $2 each, but at 50% off,  the entire bundle was $4...a bargain for sure. 

Now, I know we're deep into fall decor, but contrary to the wall plaque that I knew would be a pumpkin,  when I saw these lovelies, stacked one on top of the other, I heard jingle bells.

And saw a Christmas tree. 

Covered with glitter, topped with a star and glowing from a votive tucked underneath, it would sit on my mantel adding a festive flair.

And my vision was perfectly intact until I got home and showed my husband my treasures. 

Guess what these are going to be? I asked, with an air of authority, knowing he'd never guess.

Ghosts, he said flatly.

Huh. Plot twist.

That honestly never even dawned on me and yet it was so obvious. 

Their translucent appearance, the fluttered edges, the white finish. It was all there. 

I can't believe I'd miss it. 

So I opened my thrift store craft closet to see what I had tucked inside, how I could use it to make ghosts out of these little fellows...and still be able to use the backside as a Christmas tree. 

I just wasn't ready to let that vision die. I mean, it's Christmas...

What I came up with, was a cheap, easy and very reversible idea, if desired. 

How To Make DIY Halloween Ghost Lanterns

You can also peek at a quick video of the process on Instagram.

I started by removing the price tag on each shade. They came off easily, however, I was prepared to use my peanut butter trick.

Ceiling Fan Lampshade Upcycle

Next, I wiped down each shade with a water and vinegar solution to clean the surface. 

Note: If you find clear shades you can use white spray paint to get the same milk glass effect.

Washing Ceiling Fan Glass Shades

The following step isn't necessary, but I wanted something to plug the openings at the top of each shade.

I thought the candlelight would look better with a closed top.

Dollar Tree Ping Pong Balls

I had some dollar store ping pong balls hanging around and thought they'd fit. 

Unfortunately, they were too small, so just like I did with my amber glass pumpkins, I used my glue gun to remedy that issue.

I added a bead of glue to the inside rim of each shade.

Adding Glue To Inside Rim Of Glass

Then I popped the balls into the open spaces and pushed them down.

They'll also provide a nice cushion when Christmas rolls around and I stack them on top of one another.

Adding Ping Pong Ball To Glass Shade

To give my ghosts some personality, I didn't want to mess with paint, permanent markers or add glue to them.

Instead, I grabbed the dollar store vinyl letters I had used to make my Let It Snow cutting board.

Dollar Tree Sticker Letters

There were periods and dots for exclamation points and zeros and other symbols, lots to choose from to make a friendly face.

I don't do scary.

DIY Upcycled Ghost Lanterns on a table

But you could. 

It took me no more than a few minutes to complete my craft.

Halloween Ghost Lantern DIY

I added mouths, you don't have to.

Lots of room for creativity here.

During the day, I have four cute decor accents that hang out with my treat bag banner.

At night, a tiny battery operated votive on a timer automatically lights up at 7pm. ( I use these votives)

DIY Ghost Globes lit up

Darling faces.

Perfect for the girl who doesn't do Halloween.

And even more perfect for the one who demands double duty from her decor. 

(Like my latest Halloween cat craft.)

In November, these faces can be removed or just turned around to let Christmas take center stage.

Until then, these little ghost lanterns will be making me smile. 

And letting my husband write the script a little more often.

Halloween Ghost Globes DIY Pinterest Pin

Do you decorate for Halloween?

  1. Oh my gosh, those are adorable! I'd be inclined to add a little girlie bow on them to show them as girl ghosts :-) Now I have to look for some of these shades at my thrift stores

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    1. Thanks so much. I love them. My daughter said she wanted to make them little Halloween costume hats, so you're not alone in wanting to play dress up! 😉

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  2. Those are really cute, Kim. Hubby scores again! I don't decorate for Halloween. Just not a Halloween girl. But Christmas? Oh, I'm definitely going to decorate more for Christmas this year. It will be fun to see you transform your cute ghosts into Christmas trees. Hugs.

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    1. Thanks Nancy! I'm all about Christmas, too. I like fall decor in general, but Halloween is usually not my thing either. Hugs!

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  3. I'm not a Halloween person at all. I don't do scary either.

    By the way I was laughing when you said you happened to have ping pong balls.

    Because everyone keeps them in their house. I was seriously laughing.

    Your hubby has been promoted to design helper. Tell him not to let it go to his head

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    1. Haha...it is funny, Cindy!! I have no idea what possesses me to buy certain items at the dollar store. I guess I figure, well it's only a dollar and someday maybe I could make something. The best is when my husband says why do you have this? I never have an answer...😂

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  4. Those are adorable! Chalk one up for your husband!

    I do decorate for Halloween. I love Halloween because I've loved to "dress up" since childhood. I have big Rubbermaid containers full of costumes & wigs. I also love to decorate our home for Halloween and create a warm, cozy fall mood. I change the curtains, artwork, pillow cushions and flowers to autumnal hues. I do go all out on our entryway. I hang crepe paper jack-'lantern garlands, mini lights, and fake fall leaves from the ceiling. Thank goodness that my husband tolerates this.

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    1. It sounds wonderful, Briana! I especially like the sound of that garland. Fabulous! I do enjoy decorating for fall, I guess it's the scary stuff that freaks me out. And thanks! I'll tell my husband he scored big with this one.

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  5. Hi Kim,
    You could drape a piece of cheesecloth over them to hide the ping pong ball..just a thought.
    Waiting to see them for Christmas, you'll do something amazing I'm sure.

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    1. That's a great idea!! Thanks! My daughter told me she wanted to crochet little hats for them...so they could be in costume. Haha! And thanks for the Christmas confidence. I hope it comes out as well as I picture it. You just never know...

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  6. Kim these are so adorable. They were meant to be re loved into ghosts. Super cute.

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    1. Thanks Kris! I can’t believe I didn’t see it at that shop.

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  7. I don't do Halloween either, but these are adorable! I love what you did for facial features. Hubby did good and as usual you carried it out perfectly. Now to see what you do for Christmas. :)
    And - I'm keeping my eyes open for shades like that.

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    1. Thanks Mari! ❤️I hope you find a few. I bet the girls would have a ball making these and decorating their rooms with them.

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  8. Very cute. Love the added eyes and smile.

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    1. Thanks Linda! So easy…just peel and stick.

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  9. Oh My Goodness.. they are so cute. And High Fives to that Husband. Now he needs to take you on a road trip to Wisconsin. He and my husband can go grouse hunting.. you and I can visit and fix all the worlds problems. Hee Hee!!

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    1. Thanks Carla and that would be wonderful!! ❤️

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  10. I don't do scary, either, but these wee ghosties are adorable! VERY creative, and I love how you used the punctuation stickers! ;P

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    1. Thank you my friend! They were so easy {and fun!!} to make.

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  11. Kim, you made the cutest ghost globes and I love that your husband came up with the idea. I can't wait to see what you do with them for Christmas!

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    1. Thanks Julie! They really are cute all lit up. They make me smile when I pass them. Enjoy the day…feels like a spring morning here!!

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  12. I do decorate for Halloween, just a few touches here and there. Your ghosts are absolutely adorable and I can't wait to see what they become next.....any suggestions from your assistant? I mean, husband??

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    1. Haha!! Thanks Ann! I'll have to check in with him...although I think he already made a "bell" comment. I can see that.

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  13. Kim, as soon as I saw your new treasures, your hubby and I were on the same wave length. The only thing was I didn't think I could have come up with such a cute way to disguise them. The little faces are so darling and expressive. I will be happy to see what you do with them at Christmas and I know they will be just as clever and cute..Happy Wednesday..xxoJudy

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    1. Hi Judy! I can’t believe I didn’t see it at first. You both have a sharp eye. I love the faces, too. I’ve certainly gotten my money out of those Dollar Tree stickers. Have a lovely day! xo

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  14. I have to say, when I saw your finished products, they made me smile! I don't decorate for Halloween now that my son is away at school, but even then, it was minimal. Had I been reading blogs like yours back then, I'd likely be doing lots of seasonal decorating!

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    1. Thanks Amy! I think I get it from my mom. She loved the holidays and while Christmas was always the decorating giant, there were always other little things out to mark the holidays throughout the year. It certainly keeps things interesting!

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  15. I don't decorate for Halloween, but those are adorable. I look forward to seeing you turn them into Christmas trees later.

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    1. Thanks Penny!! I guess I'll be working on those trees pretty soon now. Where did this month go??

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  16. . I am not a fall person so I keep things to a minimum, but these are adorable. xo Laura

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    1. Thanks Laura! I'm a Halloween minimalist, but I just couldn't resist with these...

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  17. Kim, I laughed out loud when reading your husband's answer. Then I went back to take a closer look and dang, he was spot on. I mean the base of the globes give the ghost sheets a swirling motion appearance. Brilliant idea for the faces too. I'll never look at an apostrophe the same way again. LOL Pinned :)

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    1. That apostrophe was added on a whim, Marie. It was as close to a smile as I could find on my page of punctuation..and it worked! Glad you found the fun in it, too.

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  18. This is so adorable. I wish we celebrated Halloween, it sounds like a lot of fun.
    Amalia
    xo

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    1. I liked dressing up when I was little, but the prancing around in the cold and the scary decorations were never my favorite. These little guys do make me smile, but I think they may need a story. Any ideas?

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  19. That hubby of yours is a keeper for sure, Kim. These little ghosts are the cutest Halloween decorations ever!!! I just want to give them a hug

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    1. Oh, me too Michelle!! Looks like I might be getting more into Halloween after all!!

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  20. These are just so darn cute! You really fascinate me with your creativeness! I know, I always say that. I'm all thumbs!

    Thanks for your visit! And yes, I've been doing IG for about four years so you'll probably see more pics of me than you care to!

    Love ya,

    Jane

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    1. Thanks Jane!! I don't know how crafty I really am, I just wing it most of the time...but I'm glad it looks like I know what I'm doing!! xxoo

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  21. Adorable, Kim. Thank you for sharing at Party In Your PJ's.

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    1. Thanks Ann! I’m trying to get back to “partying” again, make new friends and remember what days everyone goes live!!

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