How to Design a Tin Can Luminary

Turn an ordinary soup can into a flameless tin can luminary using a torch.

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Materials and Tools:

soup can
welding goggles/glasses
ventilated welding mask
leather gloves
permanent marker
crystal with a little wire
1-2 colors of spray paint
clear protectant spray


1. Remove label from soup can. Put on your welding goggles, leather gloves and a ventilated welding mask, and then burn off all the label glue completely by grazing the area with the torch flame.

2. Draw a perpendicular line through the seam of the can with a permanent marker. This will become the window for the crystal to hang.

3. Burn a small hole at the open end of the can where the seam meets the opening. This is what the crystal will hang from.

4. Draw a symmetrical line on both sides of the seam. Cut this design out of the can to create an opening for the crystal to hang in, ensuring it's large enough for your crystal.

5. Turn the can around 180 degrees so that the opening is opposite you. Eyeball the center of the can's side and burn a small hole. From the hole, burn a line from above it to the top rim, bottom rim and side to side.

6. Burn whatever design you choose using these four lines as a guide.

7. Turn the can so that the window faces your right and the cross faces your left. Be creative in designing the remaining areas of the can. Do the exact same thing on both sides to maintain symmetry.

8. Pick out one or two colors of spray paint. Lightly spray the darker color on the inside first, then the outside. Evenness doesn't matter if you're using two colors. Lightly spray the second color wherever you like on the outside of the can.

9. For extra protection, spray a clear spray paint over the color. Wait about 20 minutes for paint to dry.

10. Hang your crystal.

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