Tin Can Candle Lanterns
What a great way to recycle your used, clean tin cans.
- empty soup, broth or vegetable cans
- fine gauge wire
- large nail
- votive candles
- thick gloves
- table vise
- permanent marker
- Remove labels from cans and wash and dry thoroughly.
- With your safety gloves on, take the pliers and bend down any sharp edges created when the lid was removed with a can opener.
- With a permanent marker draw dots on the can to create a shape. You can also do this on a sheet of paper to use as a template. I stick with simple geometric patterns rather than intricate representations. It just cuts down on the frustration level.
- Fill cans with water and freeze. This will help the cans keep their shape when you punch in the holes. Keep in mind that water expands when it freezes. I found that one or two of my cans split down the side. The expansion also caused the bottom of the cans to protrude. This was easily remedied by tapping them back into place with a hammer.
- Once the water in the can is frozen solid, clamp the can to a work table with a vise.
- Using a large nail and a hammer punch a hole into either side of the can. This is where you will attach the handle.
- Then punch holes into the can following the pattern you laid out with your permanent marker.
- Allow the ice to melt, pour out any remaining water and dry the can.
- To create a handle, take a length of the fine gauge wire and insert it through one of the side holes. Twist the end to secure. Repeat with the opposite end of the wire on the other side.
- Place a small amount of sand in the bottom of the can and add a votive candle. If you are feeling particularly festive use a spicy scented candle to perfume the air.
- Hang these in various places in the garden and light at dusk.
- Use caution when removing holders after use, as the sides will be very hot.