DIY Halloween Tin Can Luminarias

Light up the night Halloween-style with orange and black luminarias. We have two different ways to make these fun lanterns, one with a power drill and one without. 

Upcycle empty soup cans into shimmering outdoor lanterns with this easy DIY project.

What You'll Need

  • Free Downloadable Template
  • Tape
  • Clean empty tin cans
  • Hammer and large nail
  • Towel
  • Spray paint: orange and black
  • Wire
  • Tea-light candles

Freeze and Cover

If you don't have a power drill, you'll be using a hammer and nails to make the holes in your can. To prevent the can from bending under the hammer, you'll want to fill the tin can 3/4 full with water and place it in the freezer. While you're waiting for the water to freeze, download the free template below to make Halloween shapes on your luminaries. Cut out around the pumpkin face or bat patterns from our free download, or make your own design. When the water in the can is frozen, remove the can from the freezer. The ice will keep the can from bending while you work.


    Punch Holes

    Lay out a towel to collect ice chips while you work. You may also want gloves to protect your hands from the cold can, or can wrap a corner of the towel around the can. Use a hammer and nail to puncture the design in the can. Punch two holes in the rim of the can on opposite sides to hang the can by. Tape the pattern to the can, centering the design between the two holes. Let the ice melt; allow the can to dry completely.

    Ready to Decorate

    Once the can is dry, cut a 16-inch length of wire. Insert one end of the wire into one of the side holes you made in the rim; twist the end of the wire around the wire length. Insert the other wire end through the other hole in the rim, securing the wire in the same manner. Spray paint the pumpkin can orange and the bat can black. Let the paint dry. Place a tea-light candle inside the can and hang securely from a branch or garden hook.


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