Crafts With Tin Cans – 61 Great Ideas

Von John Griffith / December 15 2017

Most households go through a lot of canned goods every year. Usually, we throw the used aluminum or tin cans in the recycling bin without giving them much thought. This doesn’t have to be the case, however. With a little creativity and imagination, we can transform discarded cans into beautiful household objects! Plus, crafting with tins is fun, easy and can even save you money!

Regardless of what you want to make, the first step is always thoroughly rinsing the cans, removing any labels in the process. If you’re planning on using a specific tin, make sure to open it with a can opener, in order to avoid sharp edges. Once you have a smooth, clean tin, you can get right down to business. Why not make a beautiful pencil holder? All you need is an aluminium or tin can, some glue, scissors and decorations of your choice. Paper, fabrics, lace, ribbons, beads, stickers or even leather – the possibilities are limited only by your imagination! Cans can also be transformed into storage containers, jewelry boxes and much more.

Lanterns or luminaries are another popular option. They are simple, easy to make, and look amazing. All you need to do is draw a pattern on your tin, and then use a drill to poke holes following the pattern. If you do not have a drill, you can also use a nail and hammer. Once completed, make a handle with string or wire, and then paint the can in a color of your choice. We recommend using spray paint, as it holds better, and will give your lantern a smooth, even finish. After the can dries, put a candle inside and enjoy the beautiful patterns projected on your wall!

Flower pots or vases are another great idea. This video tutorial will give you some really useful suggestions:

Crafting with tin cans: make your own flower vase

Here is another beautiful suggestion

tin cans, three tin cans in different sizes, painted in gold paint and decorated with paper doilies, lace and pink ribbons, containing different succulents


Here is another variation of this idea. You can use decoupage to decorate your tins and make them unique!

tin cans, six cans stacked in pyramid shape, decorated with multicolored patterned paper, containing pens and pencils, stickers and various stationary

If you prefer more complex DIY projects, how about making your own desk lamp?

tin cans, small projector desk lamp made from aluminium can, with black wooden stand and metal details

Burlap makes for a great tin cans decoration

tin cans, two cans covered with burlap, decorated with lace, string and a fabric rose, containing colored pencils

Ordinary plant pots are boring – dare to be different!

tin cans, step by step photo tutorial, explaining how to make a plant pot and vase, using cans and paper

Decorating tin cans with colored crayons – a simple, but incredibly original idea!

tin cans, aluminium cans decorated with colored crayons, tied with green ribbon with black polkadots, containing plastic cutlery in different colors

If your kids like the Minion movie, why not surprise them with this cute and easy to make pencil holder?

tin can crafts, yellow and blue minion pencil case, step by step picture guide how to make it, including the necessary materials

You’ll only need a few minutes to realize this effective DIY idea…

tin can crafts, three aluminium cans, colored with copper paint, with black labels tied with string, containing different planted green herbs

…but if you happen to have more time on your hands, why not make a little garden for your desk?

tin can crafts, tutorial explaining how to create little plant boxes, from cans and other objects, using a drill and spray paint

tin can crafts, two tin cans wrapped in burlap, decorated with fabric roses and brown bows, containing colored pencils

tin can crafts, three luminaries made from tin cans with small holes in different patterns, step by step making of tutorial

tin can crafts, aluminium can and green potted plant, black chain and ruler, near metal pliers, person making holes in can with drill, attaching three cans together with chain, close up of a can with plant inside

tin can crafts, six aluminium cans, decorated with paper in different colors, containing crayons in corresponding colors

You can transform cans into little pieces of art

metal tin containers, sardines can decorated with felt details and a rabbit figurine, more differently shaped cans, scissors and glue, two more similarly decorated cans

metal tin containers, two aluminium tins, decorated with string, containing white hydrangeas, step by step tutorial showing string being wrapped around a can

metal tin containers, close up of two cans, painted in pale pastel pink, decorated with lace and white fabric flowers, containing felt faux flowers

metal tin containers, a large tin colored with white and gold paint, containing green potted plant, white and gold decorations nearby

metal tin containers, several vases made from tins containing white hydrangeas, decorated with multicolored washi tape, had wrapping tape around a can

metal tin containers, can decorated with map paper, containing a green succulent plant

How about a tin can Christmas tree?

metal tin containers, christmas tree made from three differently sized cans painted in green, stacked on top of each other, decorated with colorful pom poms and tread, sparkling gold star on top

empty tin cans, floral paper and glue, near small scissors and paint brush, six large cans decorated with decoupage, containing towels and stuck on wooden board, mounted on a toilet wall

empty tin cans, three cans painted in orange, pink and violet, decorated with white marker, containing different succulents, pink can placed in wooden box

empty tin cans, three cans decorated with wooden clothes pegs, containing three different green plants, or a lit candle

empty tin cans, six luminaries made from cans colored in light green and blue, hands filling can with dirt, making holes following a pattern with nail and hammer, spraying can with blue paint

empty tin cans, christmas decoration made from empty cans, in the shape of a christmas tree, most cans contain red christmas ornaments

Colorful candle holders

empty tin cans, three differently sized cans, painted white and decorated with floral paper, containing lit colors in different colors

empty tin cans, flower pot made from a tin can, covered with white stamped paper, decorated with green leaves, containing green plant

aluminum tins, two cans decorated with blue, pink and gold paint, containing green potted plants

aluminum tins, six cans stacked in a pyramid, colored in salmon pink, light blue and pastel pink, decorated with string, floral paper and white doilies

You can even make a cute clock

aluminum tins, tin placed near hammer, screwdriver and nail, with cork bottle stoppers stuck to it, spray-painted with green paint, decorated with eye stickers and made into a clock

aluminum tins, lamp made from three aluminium tins, hanging on power cords, attached to the ceiling

aluminum tins, person making holes into an aluminium can, using a nail, held with pliers, and a hammer

aluminum tins, can decorated with floral paper, with white lace and a pink ribbon tied around it

aluminum tins, desk organizer made from differently sized cans, round boxes and a glass, stuck on a wooden plank, all spray painted with copper metallic paint

tin cans for crafts, three can knitted pencil holders in grey, white and light blue, containing colored pencils, and a dried purple plant

Gorgeous tin can plant pots decorated with multicolored thread

tin cans for crafts, five cans decorated with multicolored thread, with green potted plants inside, hands wrapping the thread around one can

tin cans for crafts, two luminaries made from aluminium cans, with small holes forming patterns, light coming from within and projecting shapes on walls, hand punching holes in can with sharp object

tin cans for crafts, three tin cans painted white, whit twisted wire handles, and flower shaped holes, containing small lit candles

tin cans for crafts, three small round terrariums, with stones and tiny plants, photo shows materials used, small white pebbles, moss and little plant, metal tin with clear lid

We love this creative DIY drum idea!

tin cans for crafts, toy drum made from large tin, covered with a piece of balloon, decorated with red paper, covered in writing and drawings

tin cans for crafts, wall lamp made from cut-up tin, pieces fixed with small red metal nails, light pouring from it

tin can projects, several pencil cases made from tins, decorated with floral paper in pastel colors, containing pencils brushes and pens

tin can projects, five differently sized tins and plain plank, next picture shows the cans decorated with gold and white paint and stuck to the now painted plank, containing pencils and stationary

tin can projects, three tin cans, containing green potted plants, decorated with differently colored paint, step by step photo tutorial showing the painting process

You can even make a cute bird-feeder

tin can projects, bird feeder made from tin can painted green, with purple polka dots, containing lots of different seeds, hanging on a purple ribbon

tin can projects, several empty cans, near scissors and a potted plant, next photo shows close up of two cans, decorated with birch bark and containing green and red plants

tin can projects, three sheets of black and white patterned paper, wrapped around three tin cans, containing different pens

tin can projects, stationary organizer made from several tins, all decorated with different pieces of multicolored patterned paper, containing different stationary

decoration made from six cans in different colors, decorated with paint in different colors, with shapes and stripes, hanging on white thread

projector-like desk lamp, lamp made from wood and a tin can, shedding light on a watercolor drawing

And here are some awesome ideas for DIY lanterns and luminaries made from tin cans:

several luminaries made from cans in different sizes, painted in blue, with holes seeping light

five cans, painted in different colors, with small holes forming shapes, placed on a wooden tray, near a lit purple candle

many luminaries made from plain tin cans with holes, with lit candles inside and with wire handles, placed on grassy area

luminary made from tin can, with little holes forming star patterns, light from within projects star patterns on surface and wall

three luminaries made from cans in blue and green, with little holes forming different shapes, lit from within

lantern made from cut and folded plain tin can, hanging from a wire handle, containing small lit candle

several luminaries made from tin cans with holes forming patterns, small candles placed inside them, close up of the patterns

six luminaries made from cans, painted white and containing lit candles, with holes shaping different letters on each can, placed so as to form the word thanks


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