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Canned light

I came across these wonderful light shades made by recycling aluminium tin cans and thought that this was a great idea for a DIY craft project. Out came my Dremel MultiTool to see how easy it would be. For this project I cut a coffee tin in half with an angle grinder, but you can use half tins or whole tins for a completely enclosed fitting.


Empty, clean tins (small tins, coffee tins, and even paint tins)
Black permanent marker
Bosch drill/driver and sharp bit for metal
Dremel multitool with cutting disk and grinding stone
Rust-Oleum painters touch
Light fitting and wall mounting
Safety goggles
Images - click here for stencil designs






1. Safety goggles on before you start!

2. Print out and copy your designs onto a tin with a black permanent marker.

3. Use the drill/driver and drill bit to drill holes at each start and end point on your drawn lines. Punch the tin a couple of times with the drill bit before starting to drill. This helps prevent the drill bit from slipping around.

4. Using the Dremel multitool and cutting disk work from left to right, starting from a drilled hole, to cut out sections along your drawn lines. Don't be too light handed when doing this, but don't apply too much pressure. You should see sparks as you cut.

DIY Tip: The cut lines don't have to be perfect as you will sand them smooth in the next step.

5. Use the grinding stone to smooth the cut out areas, around the edges and on the back to remove all rough edges. Stroke rough areas from left to right.

6. Use Rust-Oleum painters touch - you only need one coat and it dries very quickly to a high gloss finish.

7. All that's needed now is to attach the light fitting and wire up.


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