If you have been to Thailand around the month of November, you will have no doubt been to the famous Loy Kratong full moon party which takes place each year on the twelfth month of the Thai lunar calendar. At Loy Kratong, it is tradition to release lit lanterns made from tissue paper stretched over a bamboo frame into the air. In Buddhism, the act is said to bring good luck and to symbolise the cleansing of sins, flying away any wrong doings with the lanterns in the sky to re-begin a pure existence.
Thai sky lanterns are often used at weddings on the orient and are making their way over to Europe as an eco-friendly, zen alternative to fireworks. Once darkness has fallen, either after dinner and before the dance party begins or at the very end of your wedding reception, everyone is invited to gather outside. The Bride and Groom set off the first lantern together. Guests then release a lantern, upon which they can write a personal note for the bride and groom if they wish. While flicking through a French wedding magazine today, I came across a company in France called Sky Lantern who sells Thai lanterns online and distributes them anywhere in the country within 48 hours. www.skylantern.fr sell three types of real flame lanterns priced at around 20 euros for 5, the lanterns can be used either on land, water and in the sky and are 100% biodegradable. Tip: check out the safety notice on the company’s website, the lanterns are not suitable for use in strong wind and densely wooded or populated areas.
Paper lanterns of any kind are an attractive, low-cost décor item and can be used to add a touch of magic to any indoor or outdoor space at your wedding reception. As well as the real flame lanterns which can be purchased online with Sky Lanterns, if you go to any home ware store, you can pick up a huge variety of paper lanterns lit with bulbs which you can hang in trees, or suspend from the ceiling.