DIY Sugar Skull Paper Lanterns

With all of the drama happening on the blogosphere yesterday because Disney was planning to trademark the phrase, "Dia de los Muertos", I was verklempt, to say the least.

I've lived in Southern Cali my entire life, and Disneyland is ingrained in the fabric of where we live. I associate many happy childhood memories with the place.

But you can't trademark something that isn't yours.

It belongs to a group of people.

A distinct culture.

I'm happy to report that Disney withdrew their filing. I wonder if all of the irate tweets that were furiously posted today by a legion of Latinos had anything to do with their decision. Like I said, I love Disneyland just like any other person born and raised here in So Cal.

But please, don't make it a love/hate relationship. Leave Dia de los Muertos alone. Just because you have the power to take something doesn't mean you should.

Ironically enough, I've been working on some cool paper lanterns that were inspired by my favorite place in Disneyland.

The Mad Tea Party, also known as the tea cups.

I can't tell you how many times I've been on the tea cups. In fact, now that my kids are older, it's one of the few reasons why we venture into Fantasyland (or, as I like to call it--Strollerland).

What I love most about the Mad Tea Party are the Japanese lanterns. Hanging from cables amidst the trees, they are lovely, colorful and airy. At night, they are magical. Every single time I visit, I always say the same thing: "I wish I had lanterns just like these in my yard." Because they are totally amazing.

Inspired by Disneyland and their dreamy Mad Tea Party, I decided to tweak a set of paper lanterns that have been sitting in my office for months now, awaiting the spring. They are cute on their own but the artist in me just can't leave well enough alone.

I've just got to put my stank on them.

I grabbed a stack of colored tissue paper and began cutting them into shapes: circles, triangles, squares, diamonds, hearts, rectangles and my favorite, sugar skulls. I didn't want to just glue paper onto the surface, I wanted to make it look like my design was literally a part of the paper lantern.

Ya'll already know you can buy a bottle of Mod Podge and conquer the world. I knew it would be perfect to brush over the delicate tissue paper.

First, I lightly brushed a coat of Mod Podge on the area where I wanted my tissue paper shape to be. Then, I carefully placed the tissue paper over it and pressed down gently. Then I brushed another coat of Mod Podge on top of the tissue paper. Get rid of any air bubbles and be careful while you are brushing the Mod Podge because we all know how delicate wet tissue paper is. I specifically chose matte because I wanted the tissue paper to blend in with the paper lantern. Gloss would've screamed, hey, look at me I'm gloss!

I went to town and glued different sized shapes all over the place because you know how I do. You can also overlap the shapes. You can do whatever you feel like, man--they are your paper lanterns.

I also cut out a few sugar skulls because even though Dia de los Muertos is five months away, I look forward to it so freaking much. To make my life easier, I just drew the eyes, nose and mouth with a black sharpie marker but I'm sure you could easily cut the shapes out with black tissue paper.

I love them!

I can't wait to make more of these!

Oh, btdubbs...are you on Vine? I am!

Come and follow me @pearmama on Vine, friends.

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