|Written by Donna Thacker|
This is a great way to recycle your vegetable cans or even your coffee cans. Any size can will do, depending on the look you want to achieve. You will need the cans (however many you want), some spray paint in your color choice, and some craft paint to add decorations. Children will enjoy helping with the decorating part of this craft project. You will also need a hammer and a large sharp nail, and some tea candles.
1. Strip the cans of any paper or plastic wrappings they may have and wash them thoroughly. Next you need to spray paint the outside of them in whatever color fits your theme. I.E. Use red, white or green paint for Christmas, use orange or black for Halloween.
2. When the cans are dry, use a pencil to draw designs on them. For Christmas Luminaries you might draw trees, or snowflakes, or even ribbons. For Halloween Luminaries you might draw a pumpkin, a skeleton or a black cat.
3. Paint the pictures you drew on the cans with craft paint. Let the children help and make it a family project. You can add glitter to the painted drawings or even use a florescent paint if you have it. Let them dry.
4. Use a sharp pointed nail and a hammer and punch holes in the tin can using your painted drawings as an outline guide. Space the punch holes evenly all the way around the drawings. You can also punch holes around the top and bottom rims of the tin can. Be careful not to punch too hard are you will bend the can.
5. When your luminaries are done, place a tea light candle in the bottom of each tin can. Be careful, as the punch holes on the inside will be sharp. To avoid this on the bigger tin cans, you can use a small hammer and tap the inside punch holes flat.
6. To light your tin can luminary candles, use a long fireplace lighter, or long matches. You can set these along your sidewalk, or patio to give the season a festive look. Never leave home while your luminaries are burning. Keep a close eye on them and remember to blow them all out before you go to bed.
Hint: If you bend the can while using the nail to punch holes, all you have to do is reshape it. You can also use an ice pick and a hammer to punch the holes.