Upcycling outside? Can-do

October 28, 2016

The weather is getting warmer, and soon you’ll start entertaining friends outside. If your outdoor setting has become drab over winter, there are some easy and fun ways to bring it back to life, writes Jessica Morris.


The sun is out and it’s the perfect time of year to have a barbecue on the patio. This sounds easy enough, but when you consider the toll of the rain and wind on your garden and entertainment area, you may feel more overwhelmed than excited by the idea of socialising.   

If you want to refresh your yard, but don’t know where to start, I suggest grabbing a simple tin can and sanding it down. There are endless ways to use this humble recyclable, and you’ll be amazed at how your efforts will get your friends talking. Here are four of our favourites:



1. Wind chimes (pictured)
The perfect craft activity for a designer-in-the-making or a craft session for the kids, wind chimes can be painted to your taste. Thread string through the bottom of the cans and hang at various heights, before stringing beads or faux crystals at the end. 

If you’re really ambitious, you can even try bending some utensils with a hammer and attaching so it’s extra chime-y in the summer breeze.


2. Cutlery holder

Instead of lumping your knives and forks together on the table, attach cans to a piece of wood (three on each side) and paint so it suits your table decorations. Nail a handle on top and you can carry your cutlery and utensils to the table with ease, or leave them there as a centrepiece. 


3. Vase
Take advantage of the blossoming flowers and create a vase as your table centrepiece. Simply sand tha can down and paint or SuperGlu objects onto it. You can use ribbon, beads, scrabble pieces or decorative paper for your design. For a nautical theme, try coiling rope around the can, and dress the table in white and blue with hints of red.


4. Lanterns
A great lantern can sit on a table or be strung up around the yard as the sun goes down. Whatever you prefer, grab several cans and punch holes in them with a design of your choice (it helps to fill the cans with rice and put them in the freezer first). 

Paint and attach hangers or string to the cans and place around your outdoor setting. Put a tea-light candle or small light inside and your garden will come alive.


Tags: Salvation Army Australia

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