Repurposed Can to Lantern

8 Materials
15 Minutes

Here is an easy and inexpensive way to create lanterns from cans just in time for summer!

Fill your can with water.
Place in the freezer over night to freeze the water.
Decide on your lantern design.
You'll need a hammer along with a nail or punch to make your holes.
Pound the nail or punch through the can into the ice. You only need to go far enough to go through the can.
Continue making holes in your can to make your design. Once your done, place your can upside down in the sink and let the ice melt out.
Add a candle, led light, or solar light.

You can stop here or add a handle...
If you're adding the handle - before you let the ice thaw out, poke 2 more holes on either side where your wire will go though.
You'll need some wire to make the handle, and you can add some beads for beauty.
Poke your wire through the hole and twist the end. Add beads onto the wire.
Once your have created your desired handle length poke the other end of your wire through the can and twist the end.
Hang your can on a garden hook, tree, or fence outside.
I really like the way the beads glow.
Older kids can make these too. I learned how to do this when I was a kid in girl scouts.
I would love to have you stop by my blog    Chas' Crazy Creations  for the full tutorial as well as sign up for my latest creations, posts, recipes, exclusives, and more...

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Suggested materials:

  • Can
  • Water
  • Hammer  (Dollar Tree/Hardware Store)
See all materials

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Chas' Crazy Creations

Want more details about this and other DIY projects? Check out my blog post!


Have a question about this project?

3 questions
  • Vatburr
    on May 8, 2017

    I don't understand the purpose of freezing water in the can???
    • Chas' Crazy Creations
      on May 8, 2017

      You are correct. It helps hold the can's form and also provides a cushion of sorts as you hammer the nail in.
  • Pam Walker
    on May 8, 2017

    Good Job!! Addition: You could also glue the beads to the holes in the heart too. The heart would glow multi-colored. You could also do multiple cans with solid colors on each can & watch them all light up (one blue, one pink, etc). :)
  • Cindy
    on May 9, 2017

    Your lanterns are beautiful. I think I am going to try this. Where did you purchase the beads? Thank you. From Cindy.
    • Chas' Crazy Creations
      on May 9, 2017

      Thank you Cindy. I was lucky enough to have the beads given to me but you should be able to find them at Hobby Lobby or Michaels. Would love to see pictures of your when your done. ☺️

Join the conversation

4 of 58 comments
  • Daisy@TX
    on Jan 26, 2019

    I too remember this from a long time ago! Only we stopped at just the can

    so we could use as luminaries.

  • Daisy@TX
    on Jan 26, 2019

    I will try this with the hanging beads so I can see them glow in the dark!

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