Tutorial + How-to

Published on December 15th, 2011 | by Bonnie Getchell


How To: Toilet Paper Roll “Christmas Lights”

Christmas decorations can be very wasteful, so why not recycle items you already have around your home? I mentioned in my How To: Transform Christmas “Candles” post that I am addicted to using toilet paper rolls in craft projects. Well, my love for them has not changed– especially after this project!  I decided to take my love for toilet paper rolls and combine it with my love for Christmas decorations. It made a beautiful combination–toilet paper “Christmas Lights.”

DIY toilet paper Christmas lights

What You Will Need:

1. Toilet paper rolls. I probably used 1 and 1/2 rolls for this project, but it depends on how many “lights” you want to create.

2. Twine. Like I’ve mentioned in previous posts, hemp twine is more eco-friendly!

3. Paper. I used red, green, and brown scrap paper that I had left over from another project.

4. Hot glue/Hot glue gun.

5. Scissors.

How To Do It:

1. Cut your toilet paper rolls into 1/4 inch sections.

2. Hot glue your toilet paper sections directly onto your scrap paper. You can also use school glue or EcoGlue if you would rather do that (or if you’d like to make it safer for your children to participate in the project!). I used hot glue because it dries faster.

DIY toilet paper Christmas lights

3. Cut around the toilet paper sections. When you’re finished cutting them all out, they should look like so:

DIY toilet paper Christmas lights

4. Cut out the tops of your “bulbs.” I simply cut out a small square. You will eventually fold these in half, so make sure you make it big enough. As you can see in the picture below, I intended on using brown paper as the tops of my Christmas light bulbs. After I glued together one bulb, though, I felt like it would look better black. I didn’t have black paper, though, so I improvised. I got out a black marker and colored over the brown paper.

DIY toilet paper Christmas lights

5. Fold your brown/black squares in half like the one in the picture above. Then, glue it to the top of the toilet paper “bulbs.”

DIY toilet paper Christmas lights

6. Glue your twine in between your folded square. I put a line of glue at the top (where it folds), and then pushed the twine into the glue. I put a dot of glue at the bottom as well just to make sure everything stayed in place. Make sure you space your bulbs evenly on the twine! I also varied the colors (red, green, red, green, etc.) I think it would look cute with multi-colored bulbs too!

DIY toilet paper Christmas lights

7. When I was done, I felt like it was missing a little something so I took my black marker and outlined the toilet paper roll “bulbs.” I feel like outlining it tied the tops and the “bulbs” together.

Once you’re finished, you can hang your string of “lights” on your mantle:

DIY toilet paper Christmas lights

On your Christmas tree:

DIY toilet paper Christmas lights

Or you can lay them on your table for a festive centerpiece:

DIY toilet paper Christmas lights

At your next Christmas party you can explain that you made your fabulous centerpiece or adorable mantle decorations from toilet paper rolls! It’s a great conversation starter, right?

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About the Author

Hello! I'm Bonnie -- a craft nerd, musician, writer, furniture and vintage lover, crafter, and diyer! If you would like to learn more about me, I also have my own blog, Revolutionaries, where I write about more craft projects, furniture redos, and my faith! You can also find me on , Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.

10 Responses to How To: Toilet Paper Roll “Christmas Lights”

  1. Pingback: How To: Cardboard & Toilet Paper Roll Tree

  2. Pingback: How To: Cardboard and Toilet Paper Roll Tree

  3. Pingback: 60 Fresh And Fun Ways To Recycle Toilet Paper Rolls :

  4. Pingback: Crafting a Green World | Toilet Paper Roll Turkey | Page: 1 | Crafting a Green World

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  6. Emmeline says:

    Pretty cumbersome in my opinion. Ugly comes to mind. Sorry but really… Just more trash laying around at the end of the day. Instead of having to recycle only tubes of cardboard, one ends up with a mix of glue, twine, paper, cardboard…
    Honestly, how many rockets or garlands can you cram in a house before finally put the tubes in the recycling bin?

  7. Lynne says:

    We volunteer teaching English in a small rural school in Nicaragua. And maybe it’s not a craft everyone would want to do and have hanging in their home but I think the kids would love to do something like this and I appreciate you sharing it! 🙂

  8. Rosa says:

    I loved this craft. You are so creative. Thank you for sharing.

  9. Rana says:

    My granddaughter and I are making these as we speak for her momma’s office.
    Love it and thanks for sharing!

  10. Evie B says:

    I found a great was to get colored paper for these small projects. I go to the paint store and choose the colored paint chips (paper squares) to match the project I’m doing…I ask if it would mind my taking some of the chips and permission is always given. Menards is a good place to go for these colored papers…

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