How to create a miniature Victorian lantern

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25 June 2020
Learn how to create a miniature Victorian lantern in 10 simple steps using copper art clay for your dolls house, diorama or fairy garden.

As part of the 'miniature garden' series, learn how to create this wonderful miniature Victorian garden lamp and light up your mini garden!

Miniature Victorian lantern tutorial

By Candy Chappill.

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You will need

  • Art clay copper
  • Roller
  • Spacers 1.5mm
  • Tissue blade
  • Needle tool
  • Sanding pad
  • Sanding file
  • Drill bit 4mm
  • Swivel pin vice
  • Water
  • Paint brush
  • Firing method
  • Brass brush
  • Superglue
  • Thick acetate

Download the templates used in this project here.


1. Roll out your clay 1.5mm think and cut around your square, lid and window templates. You'll need four of each (tissue blades are great for straight edge cutting).

2. Roll out your clay 1.5mm thick and cut some strips for the post of your lantern. You can make these as long or as thick as you want.

3. Once all your pieces are dry, sand and refine any rough areas or edges using a sanding pad and file. Keep all your sanding dust as you may need this later.

4. Using a 4mm drill bit, drill a hole in the centre of your square lantern base. Again, keep any dust from this.

5. It’s time to join your pieces together. Start with the windows and the base. Apply water to the areas to be joined, arrange them, and hold them together with gentle pressure and leave to dry. Once dry, mix some water with your sanding dust to create a paste and fill in the joins (you may have to do this a few times).

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6. Repeat step seven for your lantern lid and lantern post.

7. Once you're happy with the joins and they're strong enough that you're able to pick them up and handle them, sand and refine any rough areas or stray bits of paste.

8. Once your pieces are completely dry (very important), it's time to fire and finish. Candy fired hers in a kiln at 970ºC for 30 minutes and finished with a simple brass brush.

9. Add windows to your lantern using thick acetate, securing into place with superglue.

10. Glue on the post to the lantern head, again using superglue.

You could also finish yours with a miniature bulb by threading it through the pre-drilled hole and securing it in place with polymer clay. 

The end result is rather impressive!


Now you've created your miniature Victorian lamp, what will you build next for your miniature garden? There are plenty of options...

Miniature bird bath tutorial

Miniature garden gate tutorial

Miniature dog kennel tutorial

Miniature garden wall tutorial

Miniature stained glass window tutorial

Miniature spade and fork tutorial

Miniature wheelbarrow tutorial

Miniature terracotta pots tutorial

Miniature paving slabs tutorial

Miniature weather vane tutorial

Miniature topiary trees tutorial

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