Lacy Luminarias

Martha Stewart Weddings, Volume 22 2002

Give the decorations at your wedding reception the romantic look of lace. The intricate patterns shining through these luminarias (paper-bag lanterns illuminated by votive candles) are courtesy of doilies glued inside. Place a grouping of the lanterns in different sizes on the guest-book table or dinner tables for a beautiful, glowing display. We chose ivory paper bags for an understated look, but you can use thin paper bags in any light color. Set the candles in heavy-glass votive holders to help anchor the bags.

Tools and Materials
Light-colored paper lunch bags in various sizes
Ruler
Scalloped rotary cutter
12-inch gold-colored doilies (white ones won't show through as well)
Utility knife
Scissors
Glue stick or Xyron sticker-making machine
Votive candles in glass holders
Utility lighter

Luminarias How-To
1. Lay each bag flat; use a ruler to guide the scalloped rotary cutter as you cut a new top edge 1 inch below the bag's original edge.

2. To cut doilies to fit the bag, lay a bag flat on the work surface. Lay a doily on the bag, and determine where to cut in order to create a pleasing design. Cut straight lines with a ruler and a utility knife; use scissors to snip along curves. The final size of the doily should be 1/8 inch narrower than the width of the bag so the doily will lay flat inside.

3. Coat the gold side of the doily generously with glue from the glue stick, or coat it with self-adhesive using the Xyron machine. Attach doily to the inside of the front of the bag, positioning it as desired. After gluing, close the bag, and run your hand firmly over the design to seal. Open the bag, and let dry at least 1 hour.

4. Set the bag in desired location, and then put the votive candle, in its holder, inside. Light the wick once the candle holder has been securely placed; do not carry the lit luminaria.

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