Classy Tin Can Craft Ideas for Kids

Re-using and up-cycling products have become a great means to be more environmentally conscious, and one such product that you can easily up-cycle in your house is tin cans. There are tons of different ways to use a tin can—you can use it to make planters, vases, silverware caddies, even cameras! There are also many crafts that you and your kids can do with tin cans using materials that are readily available at home! They can make fun presents like surprise boxes and planters, games like tin can bowling, or some decorative items like Christmas trees and scarecrows. Your little ones will love to get down and dirty and create something beautiful and useful with just a tin can. You can even customise these projects to your liking or depending upon what materials are available at home. Here are 10 fun and classy tin craft ideas for kids.

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Fun Tin Craft Ideas for Children

Tin cans can be used for home decoration projects or to make some simple crafts with your kids. Make sure that you do not let your children use any of the tools or sharp objects. If you are using open tins or drilling holes in them, be sure to sand off the rough edges or use washi tape wherever possible so that your kids don’t accidentally hurt themselves. Be sure to clean all the cans before using them and soak them if they have any odour. Here are some fun ideas for crafts made from tin cans that you can try using materials easily available at home:

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1. Birthday in a Can

Your kids can make a cute birthday surprise for someone they love with a regular tin can.

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Supplies

  • A tin can (with a pull tab top and without a rounded edge on the bottom so that the can opener works)
  • Washi tape
  • Clear tape
  • Can opener
  • Scissors
  • Hot glue gun
  • Colored paper
  • Markers
  • Small goodies (the surprise)

Instructions

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  • Remove the product label on the can and remove the bottom of the can with the can opener. If the can smells of food, soak it for some time till the odour goes away.
  • Cover the sharp edges with washi tape on the inside and bottom of the can.
  • Take thin pieces of colored paper, about 4″ x 1½″, and make a paper chain by sticking them with glue.
  • Hot glue the paper chains to the inside of the top of the can.
  • Fill up the rest of the can with candies or other small treats, and then tape the bottom back on the can with the clear tape. You can even put tiny gifts inside, like a toy car or earrings.
  • Cup a rectangular piece of paper large enough to cover the side of the can and decorate it with the birthday message before gluing it on.

2. Tin Can Night Light

If your kid sleeps with a night light, this is one of the best recycled tin can craft ideas for them as they can now customise their night light!

Supplies

  • Tin can
  • Thick black marker
  • Cordless rotary tool (be sure not to let your kids use this)
  • Sanding block
  • Painter’s tape
  • Glitter
  • Adhesive spray
  • White paint
  • Paintbrush
  • Fairy lights

Instructions 

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  • Take a clean tin can and mark some spots on it with a marker where you would like the cut-out stars to be
  • Take the rotary tool and cut 8-point stars where the dots are, and then use the sanding block to smooth out the jagged bits.
  • Use the painter’s tape to cover the stars and spray the inside of the can with adhesive.
  • Pour glitter into the can and ensure that it is completely coated.
  • Remove the painter’s tape and cover the paint on the outside of the can with white paint.
  • Once it is dry, put some fairy lights inside the can. You can try this project with different shapes and paints as well.

3. Tin Can Christmas Tree

Decorating tin cans is an easy and fun way to up-cycle the cans into some beautiful decor items, one of which can be a Christmas tree!

Supplies

  • 3 empty tin cans of three different sizes
  • Primer spray paint
  • Green spray paint
  • Adhesive-backed magnet sheets
  • Scissors
  • Yarn (cut it into 18” pieces)
  • Pom poms
  • Hot glue
  • Toothpicks
  • Hammer and nail

Instructions

  • Spray the cans with one coat of primer and then two coats of green paint.
  • Make a small hole at the top of the smallest can so that you can insert the star in it.
  • Hot glue the cans in accordance with their heights to make them look like a tree.
  • Cut the magnetic sheets into ¼” square pieces. Stick them to the yarn and pom-poms and decorate the tree. You can use any other decorations that you have.
  • Add a star to the top with a toothpick. Your Christmas tree is ready!

4. Tin Can Phone

This is one of the easiest empty tin can craft for your kids to try.

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Supplies 

  • 2 tin cans
  • Paint
  • Paintbrush
  • Yarn (a long piece)

Instructions

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  • Paint the cans with any color you like, and you can even decorate them with a phone symbol or stickers.
  • Make a small hole in both the cans and then insert the yarn through it and secure it by making a knot at the ends.
  • Hold one of the cans and ask your kid to hold the other and move further away till the yarn is taut.
  • You can speak into the can, and your little one can hear you on the other end!

5. Tin Can Frankenstein

If you’re looking for some tin can art projects for Halloween, this is the perfect one!

Supplies

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  • Tin can
  • Green and black paint
  • Paintbrush
  • Wine cork
  • Googly eyes
  • Hot glue gun
  • Black felt

Instructions

  • Paint the tin can green. If you want it to dry faster, use a sponge brush.
  • Cut the black felt into a circle that is 1 inch larger than the can lid. Glue this on top to make Frankenstein’s hair.
  • You can also make eyebrows by cutting the felt into 2-3″ long strips that are 2 ½” wide and sticking these on the can. Then, add the googly eyes.
  • Cut the wine cork into half to use as arms.
  • Finally, make a crooked or wiggly smile or mouth with the black paint.

6. Tin Can Bowling

This fun craft will give your kids a new game to play!

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Supplies 

  • 10-12 empty tin cans
  • Wrapping paper/paint
  • Scissors
  • Glue
  • Cricket or tennis balls

Instructions

  • Remove the lids from all the cans and peel off the labels. Ensure that all the cans are of the same size.
  • You can either cover the cans with wrapping paper or paint. If you want to use wrapping paper, measure it to the size of the cans and glue it to the cans. You can also make the cans specific to a theme, like Halloween or Christmas.
  • Stack the cans into a pyramid and take turns bowling. This can be a fun game to play at birthday parties or picnics.

7. Tin Can Bees and Bugs

Make some cute decorative creatures with tin cans.

Supplies

  • Tin cans
  • Paint
  • Sponge brushes (or any other paintbrush)
  • Colored floral wire
  • Ice pick
  • Googly eyes
  • Hot glue gun

Instructions 

  • Paint the tin cans. You can paint it red with black dots for a ladybug, yellow and black stripes for a bumblebee, or use any colors you like to make your own mystery bug.
  • Use the ice pick to make holes in the bottom of the can. You have to make two holes for the wings of the creatures and then make a bigger hole on the opposite side so that you can insert the stick into it.
  • Make the wings by turning the floral wire into spiral or oblong shapes, depending on the bee or bug. Put these wings into the holes.
  • Add the googly eyes.
  • Take a stick from your garden and put it in the can. Now, you can put this stick anywhere in your garden and have cute garden decor!

8. Tin Can Planters

This tin can craft is easy and can make a great handmade gift.

Supplies 

  • Tin cans
  • Acrylic paint
  • Decorations (like stickers, glitter glue)
  • Succulents
  • Drill (don’t let your kids operate it)
  • Waterproof sealer

Instructions

  • Drill a small hole in the bottom of the can to allow for proper drainage.
  • If you want to use this planter for a longer period, be sure to coat it with a waterproof sealer so that it doesn’t get rusted.
  • Paint the can with colors of your choice and then decorate it. You can customize it, depending on whom the can is for, with messages like “I love you, mom” or “happy birthday.”
  • Add soil into the can, and then plant your succulent. Food and vegetable plants are not recommended because they need a lot of water and can cause rusting faster.

9. Tin Can Wind Chime

Make some pretty wind chimes with tin cans!

Supplies

  • Drill (don’t let your kids operate it)
  • 3 empty tin cans of different sizes (they must fit inside one another)
  • Wire (floral wire or picture hanging wire)
  • Surface protector
  • Spray paint or acrylic paint
  • Paintbrush
  • Ruler

Instructions 

  • Drill a hole in the middle of the bottom of each can and then drill random holes on the side to allow passage of light.
  • Paint the cans however you like and decorate them if you wish to.
  • Once the paint has dried, insert the wire through the cans. First, insert the wire through the smallest can, then the middle one, and then the biggest one. Tie knots after each can for it to be more secure.
  • Make a loop at the end so that you can hang the wind chime.

10. Tin Can Scarecrow

If you are looking for a more elaborate tin craft project, this is the perfect one!

Supplies

  • 2 big cans (for the body), one smaller can (for the head), 12 normal size cans (for the hands and legs, 2 rectangular cans (for the feet)
  • Drill
  • Wire
  • Paint
  • Hat
  • Scarf
  • Gloves
  • Hose
  • Metal strip

Instructions 

  • Drill holes into the bottoms of the cans.
  • Use the wire to secure the cans together. Use the two big cans to make the body of the scarecrow. Then, pass a wire through the sides of the upper can and use three cans for each arm. Drill two holes into the bottom of the lower can and pass a wire through them for the legs. Use three cans for each leg. Wire the rectangular box at the bottom to make the feet of the scarecrow.
  • To paint the cans, paint the legs, hands, and body to make the scarecrow’s blue overalls and red shirt, paint the shoes black. Paint the face and paint the scarecrow’s eyes, nose, and mouth.
  • Once the paint has dried, accessorize the scarecrow with a hat, scarf, and gloves.
  • Put a garden hose in the scarecrow’s hand. You can even stick some beads to make it look like water pouring out of the hose.
  • Attach a metal strip at the back to make the scarecrow stand. Place your scarecrow in your garden.

Recycling, reusing, and up-cycling is an important step towards being more eco-conscious. Try out these fun ways to repurpose tin cans with your kids and teach them the value of reusing and recycling. Take all the necessary precautions mentioned so that you can have an enjoyable experience with your little ones making something amazing!

Also Read:

Cardboard Crafts for Children
Plastic Bottle Crafts for Children
Craft Ideas From Waste Material for Children

This post was last modified on April 21, 2021 5:37 pm

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