DIY Drink Can Garden Charms

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Written by: empressofdirt
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Turn Rubbish Into Charms

There are some really sweet crafts hiding in your recycling bin! The metal from drink cans (fizzy drinks or beer cans) is easy to turn into art. Gather up some cans, rinse them out and you're ready to make some fizzy drink can garden charms. 

One common question with this type of project is,  is the metal sharp

Yes and no. I find it's only sharp if the design has pointy tips. I don't find a problem with curved edges (they're dull), so keep this in mind when you dream up your designs.  

If you'd like to involve kids in this project, have them draw the basic designs on card. The adults can take it from there, preparing the cans and creating the charms.  

To keep things safe, always use safety glasses and protective gloves when cutting metal. The project is easy and you can make a set of charms in just one afternoon. 

This video gives a quick overview of the steps.
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Easy, right? 

Here's what you need:
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Supplies

Optional
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Steps

1    Clean empty cans (rinse, dry)

2   Cut off top and bottom of each can using a box cutter
Tip: Hold the can inside an open box while cutting to catch any tiny bits of metal 

You want three pieces: the top, bottom, and one cylinder of metal (this is what we'll use)

3   Cut the cylinder of metal down one side. Now you have a rectangular sheet of metal. Trim off any jagged edges. 

4   Draw templates on card. Make sure your templates fit the size of the metal sheets (not larger).  I made butterflies, birds, snails and flowers.  

Keep your shapes simple, use rounded edges (these are dull and safer) and avoid any pointed tips (they are very sharp). 

5   Use a fine tip Sharpie marker to trace templates onto metal sheets.
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6   Cut out shapes. 
7   Draw designs for nail holes on the back/wrong/printed side of the metal.
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8   Add design to your shapes by hammering small nail holes into the back/wrong/printed side of the metal.  Punch nail holes equal distances apart (it will look better). 
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9   When your design is complete, remove any marker lines with acetone nail polish remover. 

To create the butterfly antennae, I punched two small nail holes at the top of the butterfly's head and inserted a piece of fine wire. It's held in place with a dab of hot glue on the back.
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Ideas for Displaying Your Charms

  • Attach to plant markers or flower pots
  • Add to hair clips
  • Decorate a wrapped gift
  • Dress up a garden sign
  • Glue on picture frames
  • Christmas tree ornaments
Attach your garden charms using a glue gun, magnetic buttons, all-purpose glue, tape, or E6000 (depending on how permanent you want it to be).

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DIY Soda can garden charms. Turn your old cans into art!
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And happy gardening to you! 

Written by:  empressofdirt
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