Light Columns à la Martha

My wedding planner found these fantastic light column instructions on Spoiler alert: this was an expensive project! But, I wasn’t allowed to hang anything in our reception venue, and for the price, I was happy with the unique visual element these added to our reception. I’ll probably reuse them for a homemade photo booth in the future, and the lanterns and lights can be used again and again for other purposes.


Challenge: Because our venue was inside, I couldn’t just shove some dowel rods into the ground. I needed a system that could adequately support the columns while keeping them upright, yet be easily disassembled for transportation in my car.

Here’s what I used: 

  • 3/4″ dowel rods instead of 1″ (I found dowels longer than 48″ at Menard’s),
  • Terracotta pots turned upside down for the base (the hole in the bottom is a nearly perfect fit for the 3/4″ dowel rod)
  • Pool noodles (another near perfect fit for the 3/4″ dowel rod!)
  • (32) 14″ lanterns sourced from Luna Bazaar for $60.60 including $11 shipping
  • (8) strands of white Bridal Lights

Before the wedding, I:

  • Unwrapped all of the lanterns
  • Painted the pots
  • Cut the noodles with an x acto knife and bundled them together with masking tape
  • Miter-sawed the dowel rods to size and masking-taped the stringed lights to the dowel rods

My planner assembled the pieces at the venue and voilà!

Total Cost for 8 Columns: $200 (or $25 per column)


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