I want you -- I'm assuming my Uncle Sam stance here -- to go to your local Dollar Tree. Yes, I know, I am asking a lot. But ignore the somewhat unkempt aisles full of ticky-tacky but at the same time strangely useful merchandise, the ever-present screaming kid and that woman in front of you, who is purchasing $27 of assorted crap-ola.
You are on a mission to make something vintage-y for the Fourth of July, although you could display it all summer long.
You start with this.
Which is a battery-operated paper lantern. But forget the battery part. You will make it sparkle with your creativity and a lot of glitter.
First, paint some of the stars with some white glue thinned with a little water. Mod Podge will work too. Then sprinkle on some silver glitter. I recommend Martha's because it's fine enough to retain the shape of the stars.
Then paint more glue on the bottom of the lantern, on that cheesy blue plastic part. Then cover up the cheesy plastic with a bigger, bolder red glitter. Also, remove the cover from the battery compartment and glitter it too. By the way, a piece of wax paper on your glittering service makes cleanup a lot easier.
Then glitter the top part of the lantern with blue glitter, which makes the blue plastic handle a lot less noticeable.
Then, on the under side of the now-glittered (and dried) battery cover, glue on some curling ribbon that you picked up somewhere at some garage sale and have been holding onto for at least two years.
Curl the ribbon.
And hang the finished lantern where everyone is sure to admire it (and probably hit his or her head on it).
Complete the arrangement with a few more patriotic paper parasols (try saying that 10 times fast) that you found at the grocery store.
And don't forget to take in the view that only the cats and the drunks in the family will see. Happy Fourth of July!