Make Your Own Beautiful Enamel Cup Lantern – Easy DIY
Hands up, who doesn’t love enamelware? I can’t see any hands 😉 To me, nothing says farmhouse quite like a few enamel urns, plates, and cups displayed on an open shelf in the kitchen. And those cups look great in the bedroom, too, if you add a little electricity to the mix and turn them into an enamel cup lantern, as we did with this one.
It looks so beautiful when you switch the lights on and has gorgeous farmhouse decor stamped all over it. The enamel cup lantern was surprisingly easy to make too.
Okay, before we get to the tutorial, be sure to follow us on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, and Instagram. And don’t forget to subscribe so you’ll never miss a post!
What you need
All you need, besides the cup, is:
- Plaster of Paris
- a plastic tube
- electric wire
- metal epoxy glue
- a light fitting and switch
- a kerosene oil lamp or lantern
You only need the burner bit and the glass chimney that protects the flame. Save the rest of the bits to make these gorgeous lantern planters or even these pallet block lanterns. Just check that the burner bit fits nicely inside the enamel cups. Enamel cups usually come in three standard sizes, small, medium, and large. To make the lantern, we used medium-sized cups with a diameter of 8 cm (3 1/8”).
How to Make an Enamel Cup Lantern
There are two parts to this tutorial:
- Modifying the oil lantern burner for a light fitting
- Wiring up the enamel cups
Modifying the oil lantern burner
Start by taking the burner bit of the oil lantern apart. The burner consists of three parts, the top, the body and the wick channel.
The burner top and wick channel are held together with small tabs that are crimped into slots on the burner body. You should be able to use your fingers to lift the tabs and then pull the bits apart gently.
Use small pliers or tin snips to cut a hole just big enough for the light fitting in the burner top and burner body. Be careful; the edges are sharp.
Adding the light fitting
File the sharp edges down before gluing the light fitting inside the burner top and reattaching the top to the body.
You should have something that looks like this.
Stuff a small plastic bag inside the light fitting and paint the burner and the light fitting gold. This step is optional, but it does give the light fitting and burner that elegant, cohesive look 😉
Modifying the enamel cups to fit the electrical wires
Okay, now for those enamel cups. You’ll need to drill a hole in the side of the cup towards the bottom for the electric wire to fit through. Enamel is
a bitch tough to drill into 😀
Putting masking tape over the cup helps a little and gives the drill bit something to grip onto. Plus, if the drill slips, you won’t end up with awful scratches all over your enamel cup. Ask me how I know 😀
The drilled holes will probably be a bit jagged, and those sharp edges could be dangerous if they come into contact with the electrical wire.
So to avoid a potential DIY catastrophe, insert a plastic pipe or tube into the hole to protect the wiring.
Thread the electrical cord through the protective plastic pipe or tube.
Enamel cups aren’t very heavy, so we filled them with a little bit of plaster of Paris to add some weight.
Once the plaster of Paris sets, remove all the messy bits, and you’re ready to put the light together.
Wiring Up the Enamel Cup Lantern
The hubby, whose idea this was, BTW 😉 knows about wiring things up. If you’re not sure how to do it, please, please get a qualified electrician to do this bit for you. Electricity is dangerous!!! Thread the wire up through the plastic pipe and then into the light fitting.
The light switch goes on the outside of the enamel cup. Use steel epoxy to glue the burner onto the rim of the enamel cup before adding a bulb and the lantern chimney, and you’re all done.
Isn’t she pretty? I love the soft glow and farmhouse feel of the enamel cup lantern.
That gorgeous orchid is from our garden. She’s in full bloom right now 😉
And even when the lights are off, I still think the electric enamel cup lantern looks stunning.
What do you think? Have you done something a little different with enamelware? I’d love to hear about it.
If you like the idea of making an electric enamel cup lantern, please don’t forget to pin it for later.
Sharing is caring 😉
And if you’d like to make your own, I’ve added affiliate links below. Disclosure: If you click on the links, we may receive a commission from Amazon. But don’t worry, it won’t come out of your pocket, and it helps us come up with some more crafty ideas to share with you 😉
Or if you prefer to buy rather than DIY, then these beauties may be just what you’re looking for.
And as always, here’s wishing you a beautiful, crafty week filled with lots of love. Thank you for popping in for a visit.
76 thoughts on “Make Your Own Beautiful Enamel Cup Lantern – Easy DIY”
Another amazing project, just beautiful and very creative. I just bought a big enamel bowl, but now you have me thinking outside the box…or bowl. 😉
These enamel cup lights would fit in perfectly with your cottage style, Kim and I would love to see what you have planned for that bowl.
Michelle, the enamel cup light is beautiful!! It gives a wonderful feel to the room I’m sure. The orchid is breathtaking as well!
Isn’t it just lovely. We have another one called the Brassia or spider orchid that just has the most amazing flowers. I absolutely love it when she starts flowering
You have orchids in your yard…. oh my that would be heavenly Michelle. The lanterns are readily available here and unfortunately not used because they aren’t electric. This is a beautiful farmhouse conversion. Very well done.
Thanks Leanna, we have six in our garden. Four huge ones and two smaller ones and some of them flower twice a year. We’re very lucky. I suppose they’re in an ideal spot 😉
Your imagination is something else!!!! It is always surprise me!!!! But I am jealous also for your garden… do you have orchids???? OMG! And one more question… this cross is something that we orthodox Christians we usually have in our homes… Are you an orthodox christian?
Thanks so much Christina. We have quite a few orchids in the garden and that white one just happened to be in full bloom when I took the photos. They are such easy plants, but I think our climate helps a lot. WRT your question about the cross – I’m not an Orthodox Christian, no, but I have a huge collection of crosses, and this one is one of my favorites. The Greek Orthodox community here in South Africa is quite small but the have the most beautiful churches.
It seems really complicated as there are certain tools which not everyone has. But I’m glad you’ve provided a step-by-step! I might just make it myself one day when I have my own house!
These are really easy to make but I hear you about the tools Tiffany. You definitely need tin snips at least to cut the lantern bit.
This is so unique and very useful. The vignette you created is perfect to showcase the light. Another great idea.
Thank you so much Debra 😀
What a great idea, Michelle! That looks so adorable! I do love enamel but have only a few pieces and there’s no cup among them. Maybe one day I’ll find one. It must be cool to be able to pick orchids in your garden.
Have a wonderful spring weekend! 🙂
😀 Thanks so much Julia, that really means a lot coming from you. We’re really lucky and have loads of enamelware in our kitchen and it’s super cheap here in South Africa. I was actually quite shocked when I saw the prices on Amazon. Hope you have a lovely weekend too xoxoxox
Michelle, this turned into a lovely decor piece. I love the way it looks in your vignette. Perfect.
Enamel cups are so wonderfully farmhouse, and you’ve created a pretty piece that’s also functional. I wish that I had a bit of electrical know how, but I bet Bruce could figure that part out for me. At least I hope so, want to make one for our bedroom too. Thanks for walking me through it!
Thank you so much Nikki, what I know about electricity is probably a little dangerous so it’s best left to the hubbies 😉
That’s so clever Michelle! You’re really creative and this is a really useful DIY idea!
Thanks so much Pammy
I wish I would have seen this BEFORE the hurricane! We went out and bought like a hundred lanterns to keep around the house in case the light went out!
Going to save this because these are cute!
I’m so glad your safe Graciela, Irma sounded terrible and so destructive
I think this is an easy and beautiful DIY. It adds a very classic & timeless element, imho
Thank you very much, I so glad to hear that
What a great idea. This lantern would give warmth to any home, but it seems a bit challenging for me to make it 🙂
You should give it a try Elena, it’s really easy to make
Another project that has me completely blown away! Seriously girl, the ideas that percolate inside your head.
Thank you so much Marie 😀
Maybe it’s because of the picture, but I have a friend that would LOVE this post. I think it’s so crafty and I would love to do something like that some day.
I’m glad you liked it Victoria, thanks so much
So creative and beautiful. I’ve never really noticed anything enamel but I definitely will now. This is such an excellent DIY
Oh I love enamelware and we’re very fortunate here in South Africa, that most shops sell it at a bargain
What a creative and interesting use of the enamel cup. Repurposing the old things into useful pieces is a venture that I need to tackle someday.
Thanks so much Calleigh 😀
This is so pretty! I love using a shabby chic style of decorating.
Me too Katie 😉
What a creative way to use enamel cups! I’m always impressed by your creativity!
Thanks so much Samantha 😀
What an intriguing DIY project. I love how vintage but modern this is and it would be great in a country chic decorated home.
Thanks so much 😀
Oh wow you are so talented! I love anything crafty but this is another level. The way you turned over the utility of the enamel cup is seriously impressive, and it’s beautiful!
Thank you Bea, the quick and easy crafts are always the most fun to do
As always, I am amazed by your creativity. The lanterns are very cool, and I’m glad that your husband knew how to tackle the electric side of them. I love the orchid, too. It’s all gorgeous!
I’m glad the hubby knows those things too, thanks so much Amy
This is absolutely gorgeous! Thanks for sharing the step-by-step DIY tutorial. I wish I was so creative like you!
Ahh thank you Ana, I’m glad you like it
What a great idea, Michelle!!! I love the beautiful lantern!!! Thank you for sharing. Kisses, my friend.
Thank you Mia xoxoxoxox
Oh my Michelle you did it again! Your enamel lantern is amazing. Who would of ever thought of that except you. You have a brilliant mind that sees anazing things out of the simplest objects. I love the lantern, it is perfect for the farmhouse style.
Thanks so much Linda. This one was the hubbies brain child 😀
That’s amazing Michelle! I would never have thought of it.
Thanks so much Florence 😀 Glad you like the idea
This is an extraordinary genius work of changing a simple enamel cup to a lantern. I agree with Mary, consider selling them.
Thanks my friend. I just wish we had more time, but for now our crafting and DIY stuff is limited to the weekends
That lantern looks amazing, Michelle! You make the most beautiful things from the most basic items! I also absolutely love the orchid from your garden. So pretty!
Thanks so much Tara and that orchid is beautiful. They’re such easy plants, which surprised me. I always though they would be so difficult to grow
Oh my gosh what a cute idea. It’s so rustic and beautiful. I will definitely have to try this one.
I hope you do Yana, it’s real easy
Oh so amazing, Michelle! I’m with Mary on you selling these cute little lamps. Way to cool not to! The hubs is definitely the one who wires lamps up over here too and I’m so happy he can do it 😀
We were actually chatting about you guys when we made them Angie. So glad you like them 😉
What an interesting and creative use of a mug! Love how you turn it into a lamp. So many uses and functions. It’s really ingenious!
Thanks so much Jin, I’m glad you like them
What a fabulous idea. It came out so well. I would have never thought of repurposing it into a lantern. The end result is super charming, unique and one of a kind.
Thank you Tanvi 😀 I really appreciate that
What a cute way to update your home! And easy DIYs are right up my alley – I wish that I was craftier than I am!
Thanks so much Allison. This is a super easy project to try. Give it a go
Wow, that turned out beautiful! I will definitely have to try this. Thanks for sharing! xo
I’m glad you like them Talina, thank you
wow! I mean WOW! What an incredible transformation that enamel cup had and now it is more beautiful as a lantern!
Thank you so much Maya, I’m really glad you like them 😀
I just got a box of these at an auction, Wasn’t sure what to do with them. But I think these will be super cute at our winter cabin and give more of a homey feeling than the standard lamps we have there. I’m not very good with stuff like this so I’ll have to have a friend do it for me but I look forward to having them up there this winter.
Oh that’s great Cia and they’ll look lovely in a winter cabin.
Oh my Gosh, how do you come up with these inventions! I have seen these cups in our local dollar store and thought they were cute but the only thing that came into my mind was sticking a candle in them, that´s all. This is so beautiful and I´m sure glows so pretty Michelle, another one of your fantastic creations.
Aww Katrin, thank, but I can’t take credit for this one. It was all the hubby’s fault 😉
I’ve never seen anything like this before, Michelle wow. I love it! I don’t own anything enamel but next time I’m out, I’m going to be sure to keep an eye out for it. Beautifully done!
That’s so cool Carolann, about you never seeing something like it before. You always find the most amazing things to share on your blog so that means a lot to me. Thank you
I have never done anything with enamel. I have some but it is full of flowers and chipped. On the other hand I love, love, love how you repurposed your cup into a lantern. You should seriously consider selling these they are so cute. May you enjoy the coming of spring, the flower is beautiful.
😀 Thanks so much Mary, I’ll tell the hubby, he’ll be happy to hear that