Step 1: Plug Cans with Ice

how to make tin can luminaries paint cans with ice frozen in them
Photo: Tina Rupp
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Fill cans with water and freeze them. Why? You'll be making holes with a hammer and an awl or a chisel, and if you just start pounding away, you'll have a mangled mess. The plug of ice firms the cans for punching.
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    Tools List

    • finish hammer
      Hammer
    • Scratch Awl
      Awls in various sizes
    • chisel
      Chisels in various sizes
    • spring clamp
      3-inch spring clamp
    • slip-joint pliers
      Pliers
    • black marker
      Marker

    Shopping List

    Metal cans in various sizes

    Clean paint cans (if desired)

    Scrap 1x1s (leftover molding works too) about 10 inches long

    A scrap 1x6 at least as long as your tallest can

    18- to 21-gauge wire

    Tea lights