HER DIY: Tin Can Lanterns

Home Essentials / Stories / July 17, 2015
  • Food cans, cleaned and label removed
  • Awl or nail
  • Premade design (optional)
  • Tape
  • Spray paint
  • 18 gauge wire, 14″ long
  • Towel to cushion can while hammering

Punch through the holes in pattern.


Fill can with water and freeze completely – this allows the can to retain shape when hammering.

Tape on printed out design or draw with sharpie.

Put the can on the towel and use the awl and hammer to punch each dot. You can control the size of the hole with the amount you hammer the awl into the can, or by changing the size of nail you use.

Punch a hole on each side of the can for the handle.

Let all the water melt out of the can and allow can to dry.

Add your wire handle to each side by bending up 1” of wire on the inside.

Spray paint your can.

Add an electric votive and enjoy a night on the patio.


Spray paint cans in well-ventilated area.


Put electric candles in your lanterns and watch them light up.

Project and in-progress photos submitted by Jamie Drake | Finished lanterns photographed by Kile Brewer

Alvin Leifeste

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