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DIY Upcycled Tin Cans


I love taking old items that we would normally throw away, or “bin it” for my Aussie friends out there, and turning them into fun creations that contribute a little beauty to our homes.  I especially love when people see an item that looks expensive, and I can say “NO!…You can go to the dollar store, use old tin cans, and make this masterpiece!” Now I’m not saying all of these are “masterpieces” but perhaps they are “mini-masterpieces”.  And if your guests don’t know the secret behind how easy these are, that’s ok too!  They’ll will just think you have a one-of-a-kind, very fun item! Here is how to get started.

You Will Need:

  • Tin cans of all shapes and sizes. I will be using quart cans, paint cans, gallon cans, and a few leftover food cans. The more the merrier!
  • The best hot glue guns with glue sticks
  • Scissors
  • Fun things to decorate your cans with. I’m choosing loose pebble rocks and sand, a self-adhesive faux-tile that looks like a mix between glass tile and travertine, craft sticks, craft paper
  • Mod Podge
  • Sponge brush or artist brush
  • OPTIONAL: Acrylic paint for your wood sticks.


For the Pebbles

1. Pick some larger pebbles for some of the main areas and glue them into place.

2. Roll out the smaller pebbles on a sheet of paper or a hard surface.

3. In sections, going from top to bottom add LOTs of hot glue on to your tin can of choice. You will have to do this step quickly so the glue doesn’t harden.

4. Roll the tin can with the glue on it over the pebbles. Continue to do this until the entire can is covered

5. Now, if we were tiling and grouting, this is where you would add your grout. But instead of doing grout, we are going to add sand to give it a beachy feel.

6. Fill your brush with mod podge and stick it in between all of the rocks. Remember that mod podge dries clear, so it doesn’t have to be perfect in between the rocks.

7. Take your sand and pour it into the spaces between the rocks where you’ve mod podged.

8. Set aside to dry.

9. Fill with your favorite greenery, florals or beachy items to complete the look and enjoy!

For the Faux-Tile

1. Turn the can on its side for application.

2. Peel off the adhesive backing on the tile and lay it on a flat surface, adhesive side up.

3. Roll the can onto the back of the tile.

4. Cut off any excess with scissors.

5. Fill with your favorites and enjoy.

For the Sticks

1. Lay your tin can on it’s side.

2. Make one bead of glue along the stick and immediately attach it to the can.

3. Continue this all the way around.

4. To add a little pop of color, take some acrylic paint of your choice and dry brush the sticks. This will make it look chic and rustic.

5. Set aside to dry then fill it with your favorite plant or floral bouquet!


You could use so many other items to help create these upcycled vases. You could use something as simple as a piece of scrapbook paper. I have a wood grain one that looks so cool and on the tin can would look great. It’s super affordable for a similar look.

This is the perfect addition for your Summer home decor.  Share with us all of your Summer DIYs on Instagram and Twitter @paigehemmis 

If you missed the episode check it out by heading over to Home & Family!



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