Three Ideas to Reuse Aluminum Cans

With a little imagination and some materials, you can lower your carbon footprint and save money on decor by making your own products with aluminum cans.
Three Ideas to Reuse Aluminum Cans

Last update: 10 October, 2022

Today, we’ll show you three great ideas so you can make pots and votives from aluminum cans. After all, there are probably a few of them in your house.

It’s estimated that about 28 pounds of aluminum cans per person end up in the landfill every year. It’s clear from this data that finding new ways to reuse those materials is important, as most don’t degrade for hundreds of years. Collect the cans that are no longer used, wash them, dry them and proceed to turn them into something new.

The firmness and durability of the material are great to make a wide variety of objects as diverse as pots, organizers, toys, art, and even curtains. Aluminum is a rigid material, but it’s very easy to manipulate and you don’t need any specialized tools to do so.

Bonus tip: cutting aluminum cans with your old, dull scissors, is a great way to sharpen your scissors!

Three Projects to Reuse Aluminum Cans

With a few materials and after making an inventory of what you have and what you need at home, you’ll not only obtain a few items that you may need, but they’ll be original conversation pieces you can brag about and even give away as gifts to your family and friends.

It’s just about looking at those old materials with a new perspective and thinking about how they can be reused to your advantage.

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1. Candle Holders

Aluminum can votives

These candle holders are ideal to create a cozy corner. They’re simple to make and are quite nice looking. To make them, it’s better to use tuna cans. That way, you’ll be able to see the candles inside.


  • 4 tuna aluminum cans
  • 4 votive candles
  • 2 decorative paper napkins
  • A ruler
  • glue stick
  • utility knife
  • scissors
  • 4 nails
  • 2 yards of hemp cord (or any other pretty cord you may already have)

How to Make Them

  • First, measure the height of the can.
  • Second, measure the napkin paper and cut it to size.
  • Then, glue the piece of paper to the entire periphery of the can. Let it dry.
  • Next, make a hole in it for the rope to go through.
  • After, thread half a yard of the rope through the hole and make a knot to keep it from slipping through it.
  • Then, hammer a nail on the wall and tie the other end of the rope to it.
  • Repeat all the steps for a set of three candle holders. For a chic decorator-effect, arrange them asymmetrically.
  • Finally, place a candle inside each can, as shown in the picture above.

2. Desk Organizers with Bas Relief

Aluminum can desk organizers.

In order to reuse various sized cans, you can decorate several decorated containers in any style you like the most, and then you can use them to keep those loose objects in your desk.


  • 2 aluminum cans of any size
  • White paint
  • Decorative paper napkins
  • White glue
  • Water
  • A mixing bowl
  • Brushes
  • Paint
  • Lace ribbon (or make your own out of paper)
  • A thin hemp cord, or some other cord you may have

How to Make Them

  • First, paint the cans white. Give them a couple of coats, and then let them dry.
  • Second, cut the paper napkins into several small pieces.
  • Then, place equal parts of glue and water in the mixing bowl, and mix it.
  • Then, with the help of the brush, stick the pieces of paper on the cans, using the mixture as glue.
  • Let it dry for at least 12 hours.
  • Afterward, paint them in the color of your choice. Then, let the paint dry.
  • Place a lace ribbon in the center of the can. When you’re happy with the way it looks, make it permanent with glue.
  • Finally, place the rope around the ribbon and tie a decorative bow in the front of the can.

3. Aluminum Can Pots

Aluminum can pots.

This is a great wall piece for your garden or your balcony, and furthermore, we’ll show you how to turn a boring corner into a cozy and colorful one.

Read this article: The Health Benefits of Plants in Your Home


  • 1 pallet
  • 8 aluminum cans
  • Paint
  • 8 plants
  • Nails
  • Brushes
  • A marker

How to Make It

  • First, make some holes in the base of the aluminum cans for the water to drain.
  • Second, paint the pallet in lilac.
  • Then, paint all the cans. Give them two or three coats of paint. Then, let them dry.
  • After, draw decorative motifs of branches, or any other design of your choice, with the marker.
  • Then, attach the cans to the pallet in a seemingly random arrangement.
  • Finally, place a plant inside each pot.

You’ll never throw away aluminum cans once you start making these and other items. You’ll enjoy decorating your space with your own creations, and you’ll feel better for reducing the waste you would otherwise send to the overly-filled landfills.

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This text is provided for informational purposes only and does not replace consultation with a professional. If in doubt, consult your specialist.