The Top 12 Lanterns for a Perfect Fall Look
The night grows dark and you can hear the wind rustling through the trees. Now is the perfect time for lantern candle holders. There’s a bit of magic surrounding the lantern. It’s been a mainstay for the weary traveler looking for a safe place to lay his head. And it’s practically a necessity if you’re a pirate (and who isn’t on National Talk Like a Pirate Day!). The lantern candle holder can be used singly, in pairs, or groups of three for the perfect look.
All over the world, lanterns are used in a myriad of festivals and rituals. In Japan, the Festival of Lights during their celebration of Ubon helps to celebrate the Buddhist custom commemorating the ancestors. In Thailand, there are two celebrations involving lanterns: Yi Peng and Loy Krathong. I think rituals are made more special with lantern light to highlight the moment.
And although we don’t need a lantern to find our way home these days, the lantern still recalls a romantic aura that transmits you back to a former age. Walking across the English heath, traversing through the wild oaks of a New England forest, winding down the sand dunes on a California beach: all is made to feel more magical when a lantern is lit and used to light the way. I think you’d be able to bring the energy and essence of those special environments into your home with these magical lanterns:
1. First, we have these glass lantern candle holders – the Hawthorne Mini Metal Lanterns Set from Hayneedle. Totally classic and traditional. This set allows you to blend 3 different patterns that complement each other. These lanterns are good for a small entryway. A rich, dark brown metal encases the glass panes. Two have a framed window effect and stand on a hexagonal base with cutouts in the metals tops. The other lantern has a diamond pattern and sits on a square base. One is 14.5 inches tall; the other two lanterns measure 13.5 inches each. Hmmm…their name, “mini,” is a bit of a misnomer. These have some height to them. Still, you could move them around and use them with books and a tiny potted plant, like a little succulent, for a pretty tablescape. A set like this could even be divvied up and placed around the house to add charm and warmth. Each lantern comes with a LED candle in creamy white, which can be used on a 6-hour timer. On sale for $69.99, they’re less than $24 per lantern and that’s including the LED candle.
2. The Lillian Off-White Metal Lanterns which are pictured above, are also from Hayneedle. These vintage lantern candle holders evoke a Victorian vibe. Their creamy off-white metal cases use a pattern similar to the McIntosh style. So I guess there’s a little Art Nouveau thrown in for good measure. Each lantern sits up pretty on 4 little feet, even though they also have rings for hanging. Their square bases give them a robust feel, but the scalloped metal edges make these vintage lantern candle holders more feminine and soft. The 3 range in height from 20 inches, to 17 inches, and finally, to 14 inches. Channel a little Lillian Russell, the famous singer and actress popular during the turn of the century, and pretend you’re decorating your boudoir in the Victorian style, rich with details. These lanterns would set off the corner nicely and give just the right mood lighting for a visit from an ardent admirer.
3. The Gerson Company Everlasting Glow Copper Coat Lantern is another glass lantern candle holder that can be found at Hayneedle. This one measures 6.75 inches in length and width by 17 inches high. It has clean lines and a darkened copper finish. I could see this set out on the deck or patio in the backyard. Its lines are clean and simple. Pair this elegant lantern with a fern to soften its lines. Or you could accentuate its streamlined features by putting it on the porch against the backdrop of board and batten. Blending the rustic with the more refined creates an energy and buzz that’ll complement each other: the charm of yesteryear with a modern-day, aesthetically-pleasing design. Each pane of glass is marked with a copper-encased X. And it does come with a LED flameless candle to shine some light on the dreariest of days.
4. The Ren-Wil Bohemian Chic Hive Lantern Candle Holder stands 14 inches tall and has a 9-inch square base. What a beauty. If you favor something a little offbeat, look no further. I love the tight design of intricate diamond cut-outs throughout the black steel mesh. The beehive shape and the black holes in the design brings a Moroccan flair to your decorating. This Moroccan lantern candle holder borrows a bit of style from Morocco’s bordering country of Spain as well. When fall calls for the exotic, light a candle in this lantern. You could even stand several pillars of varying sizes inside for a powerful punch of candlelight. A perfect centerpiece for the dining room table. Surround the hive with big green artichokes, dark burgundy pomegranates, and a little bowl of candied pecans to make the scene complete.
5. From Smith & Hawkins comes this veritable Steampunk of a lantern. This Brass Lantern Candle Holder can be found at Target for only $33.24 if you catch the sale. It’s 8 inches square and 24 inches tall. And so chic. It has a leather strap for the handle on the top and iron construction making it super durable. But don’t be fooled, this is a brass finish meant for the indoors, so keep it safe from the elements. It has a masculine feel that would blend with many different decorating styles: from country to modern, the straight edges make this one easy to move from room to room, setting to setting. Put it in an entryway with a bowl of fabric balls to create a country feel. Switch that out and add a modern abstract picture and you’ve got a more modern feel. Use a LED candle or a real one inside for that soft glow you need in an entryway.
6. Another standout lantern that can be found at Target is the Lantern Candle Small in Black by Project 62. It has a solid aluminum structure and space for either a LED or real candle. Its size is stout: 8.75 inches by 6.75 inches wide and 12 inches tall. The matte finish of the black gives this lantern candle holder an industrial feeling. Project 62 is bringing it back for this one: way back. If you’re going for a mid-century modern aesthetic, look no further. The style is reminiscent of Eames, van der Rohe, Saaranin, and Heywood and Wakefield. Couple this lantern with one lush ivory-petaled flower in a low vase for a strong look that appeals to all the senses. The base is solid and the handle lets you move this piece with ease. It doesn’t flop down, but instead stays upright lending to the industrial vibe.
7. Let’s not forget about the tea light lanterns that can be found among the lantern treasures of today. The Metal Screen Lantern Candle Holder from 3R Studios, available at Target, removes the glass and inserts a metal mesh screen instead. The trapezoidal shape is cute, 14 inches high by 11.75 inches wide by 11.75 inches deep. It’s not a small lantern for a votive candle. But it does offer the unique quality of a mesh material to filter the candlelight. If you use a battery-operated votive, try using one that flickers to add to the dancing flame effect. The metal screening is tightly woven and will withstand the test of time. The metal is a worn gray and the hardware is a burnished bronze tone. On the top is a large ring that stands erect. Little rivets mark where the screening and the gray metal meet. Use this lantern on the porch surrounded by a collection of shells from the summer to create a soft, casual feeling.
8. The Cambridge Traditions 24-Inch Lantern Candle Holder in Antique Copper from Bed Bath & Beyond is a full 24 inches tall. The base is 9 inches square. This lantern is made from stainless steel and burnished to a rich, antique copper finish. The glass panels are clear of any metal casing and allow you to see inside, fully, the candle of your choice. Meant as an outdoor lantern candle holder, this lantern would look great adorning your front entryway surrounded by some gourds and pumpkins. The top has a gentle swoop that bends like a little slide, overhanging the base of the lantern. The dark copper look would blend well with dark accents in black, such as a black door, a black sign, or a wreath with black feathers, for instance. Go all out for fall with accents like berries or a berry garland around the base of the lantern. The embellishment will enhance the beauty of this outdoor lantern candle holder.
9. Charge forward into fall with these grand lanterns: the Cambridge Showcase Lantern Candle Holder in Nickel from Bed Bath & Beyond. These two lanterns have an enduring style that blends the modern with the classic. For that reason, they can be seen as an investment. They’re made from stainless steel and have flame torched glass. The black metal frames bare a strong X pattern. The top shines with a gleaming, polished nickel. There are two sizes: 18 and 24 inches tall. Each has a 7-inch square base. Add a braided rope handle that swings down and there’s a nautical vibe blended into the mix. These would go great near the bar with all those shiny bottles and clinking glassware. Or place these on a mirrored tray for additional shine. The doors open and reveal a nice size cavity for a candle, LED or real. These can be used both inside and outside. But I love the idea of using what seems like an outdoor lantern candle holder for an inside job!
10. Vintage doesn’t have to have be rustic. Consider using the Bradburn Home Nickel Cage Lantern Candle Holder in Medium from The Mine for fall decorating. This vintage lantern candle holder has a slick silver finish on top of a nickel metal, standing 22 inches tall. And hello, circles…this candle holder is round! It feels like an extended vintage lunch pail for miners working the railroad lines out West. Isn’t it a coincidence this lantern is offered from The Mine itself? The top is a vent but looks like a twist top. The handle has a mango wood bead that adds some texture to the piece. Bring in some live or faux bittersweet to add some color. Add a bright, seasonal candle inside to spark the interest of family and friends alike.
11. A clear seeded glass hurricane takes center stage in the wall lantern candle holder from Hayneedle. The Napa Home and Garden Liberty Outdoor Wall Mount Lantern Candle Holder is 11.5 inches high, 8 inches in length (extending from the wall) and 7 inches in width. A distressed finish has a black wash on the metal and can be used either indoors or outdoors. What I love about this wall lantern candle holder is its perfect blend of old and new, modern and vintage, sleek and soulful. The seeded glass brings a romantic flair to the lantern. Add a white LED pillar candle, especially one that allows you to see the ‘wick’ and you’ll have recreated the warmth of candle glow without the care of a true candle. Set two above the fireplace or over the couch or near an entryway for double the goodness.
12. This statuesque beauty handcrafted in India is called the Extra Large Latika Lantern and is offered through the Cost Plus World Market. It can hold up to a 3-inch wide pillar candle but would be equally attractive with a votive. The iron structure has an antiqued zinc finish and stands over two feet tall. At 25 inches, you could easily set this up on a table in a grand, two-story foyer for a regal looking entrance. You could also set it up in the corner of the living room with an oversize vase and some grasses or by the fireplace, all by its lonesome. A stand-alone stunner, this Moroccan lantern candle holder has traditional Moroccan designs: intricate patterns, arabesque shapes, lacy metalwork, and an octagonal shape. I can practically smell the spices in the air and see the colorful fabrics in the bazaar. Hang two or three on the porch for an exotic appeal.
All in all, you have a plethora of choices for lantern candle holders. Go big, go global. Think Moroccan or mini. On the wall or off the wall. The best will blend with your style or help you create a new one. Remember to consider the number of lanterns that would most complement the space. Also, think about how you can reuse these lanterns at different times throughout the year, in different spaces in your home. Each makes a statement, especially when combined with other favorite objects of yours. I typically add books, books, and more books…but then also a knick-knack or two or three. Then again…the new motto could be ‘less is more’ if you’re going for that minimalist vibe. Any way you slice it, the lantern candle holder provides more than light and decoration; it calls to mind all the romantic and faraway scenes in every book I’ve saved for my rainy day library. Ahhh. And I fall in love all over again.