Christmas Lantern from a Vintage Camper Jack

Christmas Lantern from a Vintage Camper Jack

A friend of mine was cleaning out her barn when she asked me, “Could you do anything with this?”. In her hand was a vintage camper jack…and right away, it screamed “CHRISTMAS TREE” to me. And a moment later, it whispered, “No…Christmas lantern!”.

Upcycling a vintage camper jack into a DIY Christmas lantern for Christmas home decor by Sadie Seasongoods /

It has a pretty good shape for Christmas, doesn’t it?

These were used for old campers- or “glampers” as we now refer to them- but as you can see, the actual jack part is missing, so it’s just the stand.

Repurposing a vintage camper jack into Christmas lantern for Christmas home decor by Sadie Seasongoods /

The actual jack goes through this top hole.

Either way, though, the shape jumped out at me- it was very Christmas Tree-esque! I wasn’t exactly sure what I’d do with it, but I knew right away it would be a holiday project. This post contains affiliate links for your crafting convenience.

A Camper Jack Makeover

The first thing I did was clean it up a little and then I gave it a paint job. Because it’s made of rough metal, I decided to use latex paint (instead of basic craft paint). Plus, that allowed me to pick the exact color I envisioned- a vintage-y bright avocado/bamboo green. So I got a sample from Home Depot and gave my camper jack a couple of coats.

A Christmas tree-y makeover…

But what now? Where would the project go from here?

After some brainstorming and craft room-puttering, I knew what I’d do. Earlier this year, I hit up an estate sale and came back with a box filled with vintage gift wrap remnants- bits and pieces of unused and used wrapping paper, mostly Christmas. So I dug through the box and came away with several squares of paper that coordinated well with my now-green camper jack.

Vintage Christmas wrapping paper or vintage gift wrap to upcycle into a Christmas lantern by Sadie Seasongoods /

Vintage Christmas wrapping paper to the rescue!

A four-sided Christmas lantern would be so cool, right??

So I measured the side triangles on my camper jack and cut out a slightly larger version from one of my gift wrap scraps. And since the paper was delicate and easily torn, I used double-sided laminating sheets on each triangle- to protect it and give it more strength.

Using laminating sheets on vintage Christmas wrapping paper for DIY Christmas lantern craft project by Sadie Seasongoods /

When office supplies become craft supplies…

Making a Christmas lantern from upcycled camper jack and vintage wrapping paper by Sadie Seasongoods /

There! Panels for my lantern…

And then I did this three more times, each with a different gift wrap scrap.

Using vintage wrapping paper to make a Christmas lantern for vintage Christmas home decor by Sadie Seasongoods /

All four panels, ready to go.

Christmas Lantern from a Camper Jack: The Big Reveal

Then, I simply dragged a bead of hot glue along the inside edges of the camper jack and carefully set each “panel” inside. Ta-da! A Christmas Lantern!

Upcycling a camper jack into Christmas lantern and Christmas home decor by Sadie Seasongoods /

Well, would you look at that?

I need to show you all four sides of my camper jack Christmas lantern. Unfortunately, I didn’t think to shoot video, so this will have to do!

Creating simple Christmas home decor from an upcycled camper jack turned Christmas lantern by Sadie Seasongoods /

All my panels at work…

Now to see it lit up!! I didn’t have a bright enough LED pillar candle, so I used a cluster of these awesome bright white LED tealights– I didn’t want the amber glow of traditional LED tealights, so the cool bright white was perfect! And with battery-operated candles, I have no dangerous flame to worry about.

Upcycling vintage camper jack into handmade Christmas lantern for Christmas home decor by Sadie Seasongoods /

Even better at night!…

Again…here’s every view at night…

How to make a Christmas lantern from an upcycled vintage camper jack for Christmas home decor by Sadie Seasongoods /

Gosh…which side is your favorite?

How fun is that?? I love the different designs and how they are illuminated from within my camper jack Christmas lantern! Such festive Christmas home decor- and it definitely puts me in the holiday spirit. And please check out my full collection of DIY Repurposed and Upcycled Christmas projects for more festive inspiration!

Craft on!


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  1. Omg! Such a cute project. I love that you shared it lit up as well. Super nice!

  2. This is so creative! Who would have ever thought to turn that jack stand into a Christmas lantern? It turned out beautifully!

  3. Wow! This is stunning! You always come up awesome ideas and yet they’re so easily put together. That’s what you call artistic vision, I suppose! Well done!

  4. This is the greatest Christmas recycle I have seen. I love it! Do you want my address to send it??
    Merry Christmas.

  5. Awesome. I’m keeping an eye out for one of these. Thanks for sharing!

    Happy Christmas!

  6. This is so clever and beautiful. Looks great!!

  7. I never would have thought of doing that! So cool!

  8. Sarah, this is so cool!! Very imaginative of you to see a Christmas lantern within that old jack! Love the vintage look you gave it, and those LED tealights make it shine perfectly!!! 🙂

  9. Totally gorgeous!

  10. too cool! love it and just think you could swap out the Christmas paper for other holidays/seasons to use year round!

  11. Genious! What an awesome idea and so clever to use the wrapping paper like that. 🙂 Thanks for sharing at VIParty.

  12. Oh, this is just delightful! What a creative idea — and it looks terrific. Great job. I saw your link at Elizabeth & Co.’s party.

  13. Got two in the barn. Making this weekend! Thanks for the idea, I was gong to toss the jacks. 😜

  14. I have a couple of these downstairs (came with the house), but I had no idea what they were! They would be great luminaries for the driveway

  15. So Creative, as usual

  16. Now that’s a great idea what a wonderful example of visioning something where there is nothing. I truly would never of thought of his so super cute.
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  17. Oh my gosh…what a neat idea!!

    Thanks for joining Cooking and Crafting with J & J! Merry Christmas!

  18. Love this! Now I just need to find an antique jack stand.

  19. Love your vision to see a way to repurpose almost anything. Thank you for sharing at Vintage Charm and I’m pinning to out Favorites and Features board.

  20. Sarah, it is really cool!! You’re right, it has the perfect shape for Christmas!
    Thanks for sharing at #2usestuesday
    Merry Christmas!!

  21. Oh Sarah, this is so neat! You come up with the most amazing upcycles, I’m always impressed!

  22. Wow… you continually amaze me! This is so pretty… only you would think of something so cute with a jack stand!! :o)


  23. Love this so much.

  24. Seriously girl, would I love to get inside the creative brain of yours – genius! I used to have some of these and got rid of them…dang.

  25. Another fantastic project! Love it!

  26. Of course it’s a Christmas tree!!! Nice job! 🙂

  27. How creative and cute! I never would of seen a lantern out of that jack stand. That’s really thinking our side the box. Love it!


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