DIY Tin Can Candle Votive

As I’ve mentioned before, I’m not typically a DIY-er. My fingers are more buttery than they are nimble but the more projects I try the more enjoyable and (I think) the better I get. Case in point, this tin can candle votive is the type of craft that you see in magazines and on blogs all the time, why? Because it’s pretty simple and almost fool-proof — not to mention almost everyone has an empty tin can they can pluck out of the recyclables. So after finding my can and giving it a thorough cleaning (it formerly contained spaghetti sauce) I gave it my best shot and am happy to say it TOTALLY WORKED. This is a great little DIY to do on your own for yourself or to give as a gift.

I’ve outlined the project in a few simple steps  below, so give it a try and let me know how it goes! 

Step 1
Wrap your tin can in a piece of recycled paper bag and tape it closed. Draw whatever pattern you like on the paper (tip: you can find some on google search) and then fill your tin can up with water and place in the freezer overnight. The frozen water will stabilize the can when you punch the holes in later and prevent it from getting any unwanted dents. 
*As you can see the bottom of my can expanded when it froze. To fix this, I used a soft mallet to gently tap it back in which actually ended up creating a nice platform for the candle to sit on.

Step 2
With a sturdy hammer and several different sized nails start punching holes into the dots on the tin can. Be strategic when using the different sized nails by alternating large and small to give it a more dynamic look. The ice will start to break as you pound the nails through so wrap it up in a towel or secure it some other way in case it gets away from you or starts to get too cold!


Step 3
Unwrap your tin can and run it under hot water to melt the remaining ice chunks away. Give it a good cleaning so that it gleams — and that’s it! No, seriously. You’re done. That was it . . . I know. So, easy, right?


Find a candle that fits and place your tin can candle votive in a space where it will add some much needed sparkle and shine for the holidays.You could even fill it up with some flowers, candy canes, or anything else you like. To give it as a gift and wrap some ribbon around it, place a beeswax candle inside and scribble a little note on the bottom to make it personal.

Happy Holidays!


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Green living and lifestyle writer. Blogger at The Basic Goods. People person.

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