Fun Crafts to Make From Simple Tin Cans

Do you go through a lot of tin cans at home? Instead of throwing them out, you should consider making crafts with them. This can be a fun activity if you want the family to get together for a creative project.

Take a look at these different DIY projects you can make yourself with some tin cans and a few other items.

Tin Can Bird Feeder


  • Empty tin can
  • Rubber-coated gloves
  • Glossy, non-toxic spray paint
  • Utility knife
  • 3 feet of rope
  • Bird seed


  1. Using rubber-coated gloves, remove the bottom of the can completely, then spray the exterior with glossy, non-toxic spray paint in a bold color.
  2. Using a utility knife, cut the lid in half, then place each half along the bottom of each open end.
  3. Loop a three-foot section of rope through the top of the can, and secure the outside to a branch, nail or hook.
  4. Fill the inside of the can to the top edge of each lid with birdseed and hang it from a high place.

Tin Can Lanterns


  • Tin cans
  • Cloth
  • Mineral spirits
  • Sand
  • Paper and pencil
  • Sticky tape
  • Fabric bag filled with sand
  • Masonry nails
  • Hammer
  • Small locking pliers
  • Wire-coated hangers
  • Small bolt cutters
  • Ring-bending pliers
  • Newspaper
  • Spray paint


  1. Remove the label and any blobs of glue from the can. Pack the can with sand, fill with water, and freeze overnight.
  2. Draw your design on a piece of paper to fit the size of the can or photocopy a template. Tape in place. If you’re drawing your own design, ensure that the gap between holes is at least as large as the diameter of each hole.
  3. Place the can on the sandbag. Punch holes in the can. Place the can in the freezer for about 30 minutes after each 10 minutes of work to ensure the can remains solid. If you’re making several lanterns, work on them in rotation.
  4. Once your design is complete, punch a pair of holes opposite each other 3/8 in. (1 cm) below the top of the can for fitting the handle. Remove the sand. Make a handle out of a 10 in. (25 cm) length of wire.
  5. Fill the can with newspaper and spray-paint it evenly. Make sure you work in a well-ventilated area or outside. Once the can is dry, attach the handle.

Recycled Wind Chimes


  • 4 or 5 empty tin cans
  • Hammer & nail
  • Heavyweight string (cotton material preferred)
  • White primer
  • Acrylic paint of your choice
  • A wooden ring


  1. Remove the lid and label from four or five empty cans, then wash and dry them. Choose cans that will nest together as a set. Use a hammer and nail to poke a hole in the bottom of each.
  2. Paint the outsides with white primer and let dry, then cover with one or two coats of colored acrylic paint. Beginning with the largest, stack the cans.
  3. Measure a length of heavyweight string equal to the height of the cans, plus 3 feet. Knot a wooden ring onto one end of the string. Thread the other end up through the hole in the smallest can.
  4. Decide how low you want the can to hang, slide it up the string, tie a big knot, and slide the can down again until it rests on the knot. Add the other cans in the same way, making sure they overlap slightly, so they’ll chime. From the excess string, form a hanging loop above the largest can.


Tin Can Bowling


  • 9 or 10 empty tin cans
  • A ball, rock, or bean bag


  1. Stack your tin cans outside, or lay them around outside.
  2. Decide what you want to use to throw (ball, rock or bean bag)
  3. Take turns knocking the stacked cans down. This is a fun activity to play outside with the kids.


Birch Bark Tin Can Vase


  • Birch Bark
  • Twine
  • Tin Cans
  • Glue Gun & Glue Sticks
  • Wood Burning Pen (optional)


  1. Take a tin can and wrap a strip of birch bark around it. Make sure to place glue at the start and the end of the strip, so it effectively sticks to the can.
  2. Grab your twine and wrap it around the can. Cut it off and tie the two ends together once you feel that the can has been properly layered.
  3. If you would rather not use twine, use a pencil to sketch your own designs onto the can. After this, use a wood burning pen to trace over the design you put up. Go over the tracing a few times to make sure it comes out cleanly.



Cheap Crafting

Craft Foxes

My Mommy Style


Jennifer Rizzo

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