These paper lantern jellyfish are so much fun to add to a sea-themed party, with their vibrant, colorful bodies and long, flowing tentacles. You can make as many as you like and cluster them together to have a ‘school’ of jellyfish, or you can scatter each one here and there around the room. They’re the perfect addition to any ocean-themed party, as they really do make you feel like you’re under the sea!
I made three jellyfish in all, with the largest one being the first that was made, and the smaller ones last.
The largest jellyfish was made a large, paper lantern I had found at Goodwill. The tentacles were made from different colors of crepe paper strips from the dollar store and narrow curling ribbon (some were shiny), also from the dollar store cut to various lengths. (I made the crepe paper strips narrower by cutting the width of the strips into thirds-1/3 the width). I also added some tentacles made from cheap dollar store tablecloth strips, stretched, as I will describe below in my tutorial.
The smaller jellyfish was made from cheap dollar store paper lanterns and tablecloth strips, and I thought hey looked very realistic! You can experiment and see what you like!
I love how the tentacles turned out!
- One Paper lantern ( I bought the smaller ones from Dollar Tree and the largest one from Goodwill).
- 3 or 4 different colored cheap plastic tablecloths (for tentacles) from the Dollar Store and the 99 Cents Store.
- Curling Ribbon (color of choice) from the Dollar Tree (used on the large Jellyfish)
- Crepe Paper (color of choice) from the Dollar Tree (used on the large jellyfish)
- Fishing line or string to hang them
- Hot glue gun (Low Temp – Important!! Do not use a high temperature glue gun for this project or it will melt the plastic!)
Cut the bottom part of the lantern off
The blue lantern was cut a little higher than the pink lantern, but I preferred the pink better as the longer globe shape looked more like a jellyfish to me.
To keep lantern from folding up on itself, stretch lantern out and hot glue. Hold it open until it cools. The cooled hot glue will form a solid spine that will keep the lantern open.
It’s easier to have a helper hold the top while you stretch out and glue
Now let’s make the tentacles
Gather all the plastic tablecloths
Unfold them lengthwise but leave folded widthwise, as we will be cutting widthwise
Cut a strip about 1 1/2in wide
Now for the finger workout! Make little stretches on the edges of the strip, working all the way down the length of the strip.
It should look like this
Be sure to stretch the opposite side of the strip as well!
We made at least 10 or 12 different colored tentacles for each jellyfish.
Note: The large jellyfish we used these plastic tablecloth tentacles, plus some colored crepe paper from rolls, and some long strands of packaging ribbon. You can use just about anything you like! Be creative!
Now lets make the ruffle
(Again cutting widthwise) Cut a strip (any color you want) about 4in in diameter
Now do the same thing that we did with the tentacles…unfold and stretch the sides along the length of the strip
Now make another strip a little smaller in width (about 3in wide)…I made mine a different color than the first one
With the first strip, glue onto outside bottom circumference of paper lantern, making sure to gather it as you go
Now hot glue the second strip onto the middle of the first one, gathering it as you go as well…
Time to make the frin-gy stuff that hangs on the bottom
Cut another strip (width-wise) about 5in in diameter
Cut fringe into the side of the strip
Hot glue fringe onto the inside bottom of lantern
Glue tentacles in random places on the inside of lantern as shown by the X’s
Finished! Now hang em’ up with some fishing line and your done!!
Make sure to check out the rest of my Sea Party Ideas!!!