This tin can transformation REALLY is one of the best on the internet!
See for yourself… it’s almost impossible to tell that the tea light holder below started life as a tin can.
Luckily, it’s also moderately easy to make… so go on, eat a tin of baked beans for lunch… then follow the instructions below…
What will I learn?
1) Finding new uses for objects, especially those destined for the trash, is a really rewarding creative challenge.
2) Tin cans are a valuable FREE craft resource, with imagination they can be turned into something as good as you could find in a shop.
3) Compound lever tin snips are one of the most versatile and useful hand tools you can own.
Step by step guide
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Let’s start cutting…
Take the empty tin can and peel off the label… but hold onto the lid, you’ll need that later (1). Next, use tin snips (preferably compound lever tin snips) to cut around and remove the rim at the top of the tin can (2).
If you haven’t downloaded the free stencil, here’s how to make one:
Cut a thin strip of paper equal in length to the circumference of the can. Measure the length of the strip, divide the length by 20, and use this measurement to make 19 equidistant marks along the strip.
Now, wrap the stencil around one end of the can, use the seam as the starting point as this will help keep everything vertical (3).
Use a permanent marker (a Sharpie!) to make a series of marks on the tin can inline with the marks on the stencil (4).
Slide the stencil to the other end of the tin can, making sure it’s still aligned with the seam (5) and repeat the previous step. Use a ruler to join the two sets of marks, creating 19 vertical lines - draw a 20th line along the seam (6).
The next step is easy… snip along the lines using the tin snips (7)!
Orient the tin can so the base (or bottom) is on top and then bend every alternate strip upwards (8).
To make the feet, curl the ‘bottom’ strips tightly around a pencil and then release… they should spring open to create the spiral shape shown above (9). If they don’t, roll them again or try adjusting them by hand.
Now, shape the ‘top’ strips by using pliers to add two folds towards each end, and then by curving the central section, as shown above (10).
Place a tea light onto the centre of the lid and draw around it with a permanent marker (11). Cut the disc out using tin snips (12).
The next step is a bit fiddly. Overlap the ends of the top strips, in an alternating fashion (if they are too long trim them) and then apply hot glue to secure them (13). Finally, glue the disc into the centre using more hot glue (14).
You can now add your tea light and admire your handywork!
- One tin can
- A pair of compound lever tin snips
- Marker pen
- Hot glue gun
Give it your own unique twist
Once you’ve got your hands on a pair of compound lever tin snips the world is your oyster. Hang onto bicuit tins, tin cans and soda cans - they are all waiting to be transformed, just start snipping!