When it comes to holiday decor, we love the classic look of luminaries. For those that aren’t familiar, luminaries are small paper lanterns that are popular in the southwest region of the U.S. in addition to Mexico. They complement the adobe style of house well and present a beautiful yet festive lighting scheme in lieu of traditional Christmas lights.

To incorporate these beautiful decorations into your property design, we recommend the following steps:

  1. Decide where to place luminaries
    First and foremost, measure out the areas in which you anticipate lining up the small, white paper bags. You will need to find a rough count of just how many lanterns you will need to allow for an even and well-placed display. Most often we see people line their driveways and walkways. You should expect to place them approximately two feet apart.

  2. Select and prepare bags
    It’s tradition to use either white bags or brown paper bags but these days, we’ve seen people use colorful bags as a nod to the holiday spirit. To prepare your bags, unfold and expand each bag rolling down the top about two inches to create more stability. Next, you can stencil designs and cut them out for extra flare and interesting shadows or you can leave the bags as is.

  3. Weight bags down
    To keep the bags from moving once placed outdoors, you’ll need to weigh them down. We recommend using either sand or gravel to prevent them from blowing away. Aim to distribute at least three inches of sand or gravel in the bottom of each bag.

  4. Put in place
    Now for the fun part, line up your bags along the areas you’ve identified earlier. This is also a great time to evaluate your distribution and placement.

  5. Light up the night
    We recommend using LEDs instead of candles to prevent any risk associated with open flames. Turn on your LEDs and embed one in each bag. Once fully lit, take a moment to step back and enjoy your festive looking property!