Inside: 52 fabulous upcycled empty tin can craft ideas anyone can make.
I have a confession to make, I’m a sucker for cute packaging, especially if it’s a tin can. I’m tempted to buy stuff if it comes in a lovely tin.
Mind you; I’ve discovered some fantastic new foods just because I was drawn in by the tin can. This is especially true in ethnic supermarkets. I then used the can for crafting and home decor projects.
Before putting that empty can in the recycling bin, consider it a free crafting resource.
Tin cans come in various sizes and shapes, from small rectangular anchovy tins to large round catering-sized tomato cans. All can be upcycled and crafted into something unique.
Why Craft With Empty Tin Cans
Upcycling empty tin cans can be fun and rewarding for many reasons:
- Sustainability: Tin cans are part of everyday household waste recycling them into projects is a great way to reuse materials and reduce waste.
- Affordability: Tin cans are readily available and often free.
- Versatility: Use them for various craft projects, from simple storage solutions to more complex decorative items.
- Durability: They are sturdy and robust.
- Creativity: Crafting with tin cans allows for endless possibilities and encourages creativity and imagination.
What Can You Do With Tin Cans
Make fun and helpful home crafts by transforming tin cans! Here are a few examples.
- Lanterns and candle holders: Punch holes in the sides of a clean tin can, add a handle made of wire, and place a small candle inside for a pretty lantern.
- Tin can planters: Food cans have a protective coating that makes them waterproof and suitable for use as planters.
- Garden decor from wind chimes to bird feeders and plant labels.
- Organizers: Form art caddies to cutlery carriers and even wine racks.
- Vases: Decorate food cans to make upcycled vases for the table or mantle.
Before repurposing tin cans, wash them in hot soapy water to remove any labels and clean the inside.
Awesome Tin Can Crafts For The Home
A collection of the best ideas for repurposing and crafting with tin cans to make extraordinary things for your home and garden. From planters to lamps and organizers, you will find something you'll want to make.
DIY Craft Caddy With Copper and Denim
Not only does this craft caddy look stylish with the copper and denim finish, but it is also convenient. Use it to organise your art materials or as a cutlery carrier for the table.
Tin Can DIY Outdoor Lighting
Turn vintage tin cans into cool pendant lights for the front porch. Large catering-sized tin cans work best for this.
Hanging Tin Can Planters Door Numbers
Are you looking for a unique, fun way to display your house number? How about cute hanging tin can planters painted with numbers on your front porch?
Decoupage Tin Can Wind Chime
Decorate the cans with paintings of songbirds and then make them into a wind chime for the garden. The tutorial includes beautiful bird prints.
Cute Upcycled Easter Baskets From Tin Cans
Add wine cork handles to decorated tin cans to make cute Easter baskets, and then fill them with your favourite treats. The buckets would be handy for any Easter egg hunt.
How to Make an Adorable Washboard From a Tin Can
The ridges on food cans make them perfect for making a fun mini washboard shelf organizer. This would look great in a laundry room.
DIY Can Desk Lamp
This is a creative way to make a desk lamp from upcycled materials, a tin can and a wire coat hanger.
Repurposed Tin Can Ornament For Christmas
Use small sardines or anchovy cans to make fun hanging upcycled Christmas ornaments. This craft is also a fun way to repurpose old Christmas cards.
Seed Packet Planters
Create antique-looking rustic planters with tin cans and some decoupaged seed packets. The tutorial includes a beautiful collection of vintage seed packets to download.
Marrimekko Wallpaper Desk Organizer
Decoupage tin cans with wallpaper samples to make a bright, colourful desk caddy that matches your decor. At the same time, make a handy wooden carrier for the pots.
Tin Can Wall Organizer
I'd love one of these in my kitchen; not only does it look amazing, but it would also be really handy too.
Trendy Upcycled Planters With Velvet
Velvet is very popular in home interiors at the moment. And these glamourous upcycled tin can planters are right on trend. It's easy to create an ombre effect with velvet ribbon.
Herb Wall Planter
Vertical planters are great space savers, and this handy indoor herb planter would look great in any kitchen.
Upcycle Tins With A Faux Marble Effect
Turn old coffee and biscuit tin cans into high-end-looking storage or gift tins. You only need some nail varnish to create this excellent faux marble coating.
Gold Crushed Can DIY Planters
This has to be one of the quickest and easiest tin can crafts. Hammer the cans to get the dented look, and if you plant the right succulents, they will look like tin can pineapples.
Upcycled Old Tin Organizer DIY
Stack vintage tin cans to create some unusual-looking tiered storage. It's also a great way to display old tins.
Road Map Tins
Cover cookie tins in old road maps and then make leather handles for a stylish storage idea. You can even make map magazine racks to match.
Boho Table Lamp
Wrap two stacked soup cans with twine to make a Boho table lamp. You can buy twine in many different colours, and I think it would be fun to make a colourful striped version of this lamp.
Fun and Unique Oriental Vase DIY flower pots
Paint and decoupage large tin cans to look like antique oriental vases. The tutorial includes the ming vase prints.
How to transform tin cans into candles
I love how the lids were left intact with some of these candles. They give this pretty craft a quirky feel!
Tin Punched Votive Candles
Learn a neat trick to punch holes into tin cans without squashing them. Then use this to make some excellent candle holders. A fun way to decorate for any holiday, you can change the words depending on the season.
A fun DIY project with pegboard and soup cans
I have one of these peg boards in my craft room, and I'm now going to make some pretty tin can hanging pots. Not only are they handy for my craft supplies, but they brighten up the peg board.
Recycled Tin Can Owl •
Combine cans with jar and bottle lids to make these cute owls. Hang them in the garden as decoration or use them as fun planters for the window sill.
Tin Can Craft Ribbon Organize
Organize your ribbons in a pretty way with these beautifully decorated tin cans. Punch holes into the side of the cans for easy access to the ribbons. It would also work well with garden twine and kitchen string storage.
Outdoor Drink Holder Tutorial
This is such a clever idea and great for summer garden parties. The decoupaged decoration on the tin can is very pretty too.
DIY Beaded tin can
This looks like a cross-stitch from a distance but is made from plastic beads. The design possibilities are endless; look for Perler bead crafts on Pinterest for more ideas.
Tin Can Chandelier
This is one of the most creative tin can crafts I've ever seen, and it is a unique upcycled chandelier.
Tin Can Crafts Tuna Can Swing Out Storage Tower
Turn tuna cans into a clever swing-out desk storage for paper clips and pins. This would also be handy for small screws and nails in the workshop.
Garden Markers from Lids
Paint the lids of old cans and stamp them with plant names to use as labels for the garden.
DIY Bird Feeders
Another tin can craft for the garden making these colourful birdfeeders with a perch.
DIY Shabby French recycled tin cans
Give tin cans a French shabby chic look with the help of paint and decoupage. Use them for storage or as pretty tabletop vases.
Easy Upcycled Tin Can Pumpkins
There must be a tin can craft for every season, including fall. I'd never have considered upcycling old tin cans to look like pumpkins for an autumnal decoration.
DIY Advent Calendar Using Tin Cans
Save your soup cans over the year and repurpose them into a fun advent calendar. Fill each can with a treat and a cheesy Christmas joke. There is a large selection of Christmas jokes on the site.
DIY Color Block Wine Rack Made From Coffee Cans
I love how the tin cans have been painted on the inside and outside. When making this useful upcycled wine rack, you can paint them in colours to match your decor.
Threaded Valentine Tins
Another fun holiday tin can decoration. I love how the hearts on the cans have been stitched with string.
Tuna Can Snowglobe Ornaments
Recycle tuna cans into fun snowglobe ornaments to hang from the Christmas tree. Personalize them by adding a monogram letter.
Upcycled Garden Creatures
Another fun decorative craft for the garden is making these cute creatures; tin can bees and ladybirds.
Happy Hour Cocktail Caddy
Repurpose smaller cans into a bright and colourful cocktail caddy. Use it to store straws and swizzle sticks in the cocktail cabinet. The bottle opener handle is a fun touch.
Punch holes into the front of the tin cans in the shape of a skull to make a Halloween luminary for your front porch.
DIY Spring Lace Tin Can Mug Flower Vase
Decorate a tin can with delicate lace and add a handle to make a pretty spring vase. This would make a lovely homemade Mother's day gift.
Rustic Tin Can Tea Lights
Cut slits into tin cans, then squash them to look like Chinese lanterns. I love these and think they'd look fabulous hanging on the garden porch.
Painted Pinecone and Upcycled Tin Can Planter
Decorate a tin can with pineapple spurs, then paint them to make pretty textured planters.
Vintage Valentine Treat Buckets
I love a bit of cute kitsch at Valentine's, and these crafted tin can buckets hit that mark. The beaded handles are a clever touch.
Easy To Make Colourful Tin Can Planters
Use your old paint scraps to colour old tin cans into a rainbow of wall planters.
Twine Wrapped Tin Can And Top Diy
This is a beautiful way to decorate tin cans with coloured twine and to make a handy lid for the top.
Beachy Tin Can Christmas Wreath....
String together nine soup cans to make a wreath. Decorate with driftwood and shells for a beachy theme. There is also a Christmas version of this wreath where the tin cans are painted red.
Faux Rusty Tin Can Barrel Bag Planter – DIY
The tin can has been cut open on its side (instead of the top) to make a unique planter and looks like a handbag.
DIY Can Storage With Lids
Upcycle tin cans into handy storage containers with wooden lids. I love the leather pulls and the colour of the cans.
DIY Mosaic Flower Vase From a Recycled Soup Can
Green glass tiles were used to mosaic a soup can into a St Patrick's day vase. Different coloured tiles could be used to make vases for particular holidays.
Colorful Upcycled Tin Can Wind Sock Decoration
Another fun tin can craft for the garden making a colourful windsock. I've also seen patriotic versions painted in red, white and blue for the 4th of July.
How To Make Indoor Recycled Hanging Planters
Turn all your tin can planters into hanging versions with this simple tutorial. Make the tin can hangers out of scrap leather or denim.
Upcycled Tin Can Herb Planter
Paint and decoupage tin cans with vintage insect illustrations to make pretty herb planters.
If you want more household waste ideas to craft with, check out my list of easy upcycling ideas. And cool upcycling ideas for the garden.
Pin for later!
Natasha Mairs - Serenity You
Monday 13th of March 2023
I love all these ideas. But my favourites are numbers 3, 21 and 3o.
Tuesday 14th of March 2023
Thank you, I have No. 3 outside the front of my house! I agree on the candle lanterns, you could make one for each season. And I think I'll try to make one of those tin can birdfeeders.
Saturday 11th of March 2023
I thought I'd seen just about every tin can upcycle imaginable, but there are a few ideas here I can't wait to try out.
Saturday 11th of March 2023
Thank you, Michelle. I’m sure you can think of a few more, your so creative when it comes to repurposing junk.
Cara ~ Vintage Style Gal
Thursday 9th of March 2023
Oh my Claire! I bookmarked this one too, there are so many wonderful ideas here, I even went and dug out my cans out of the trash. I had been saving them, but today I through them in the trash bin. I was uninspired, but now? Oh, I have a million ideas running through my head! I cannot wait to get started, thank you for sharing your inspiration with Whimsy Home Wednesday once again!
Friday 10th of March 2023
There are so many wonderful things you can make from empty tin cans and they come in many sizes, great for upcycling. Thank you 😊
Wednesday 8th of March 2023
Do you have a blog I can follow with my email ?
Wednesday 8th of March 2023
Yes of course you can I'll add you to my subscriber list.