Monday, April 27, 2009

Tin can organizer mini-tutorial

You may remember this picture from my craft room photos - either my recent "messy" photos, or from when I first organized my craft room. It's an organizer I made out of quart-size paint cans. I'd love to take credit for the idea, but I saw it in a magazine (wish I could remember which one). There IS a really cute one pictured in the current Stampin' Up! catalogue, on page 151.

I decided to make another one as a birthday gift for my friend Deanna, using slightly larger cans (recycled 24-oz infant formula cans). It's a fun project, doesn't take too long, and the organizer is fun, functional, and adds a touch of color to any room you decide to use it in.

1. Clean out your cans well. I recommend against using water if your cans are metal, as it is very hard to prevent them from rusting. I used a baby wipe to clean mine out, and then dried them well with a paper towel. Be careful with the edge - it's not super sharp, but it's still possible to cut your hand if you're not careful.

2. Decide on your colors and choose 6 coordinating patterned papers. For these cans, one piece of 12x12 was enough for each can, for the outside. I chose to line the cans with a neutral solid cardstock as well.

3. Measure the height of your can, as well as the circumference, and cut the patterned paper accordingly. You will most likely (if using large cans like I did) need to cut 2 pieces and tape them together.

4. Attach the paper to the cans using double stick tape. If lining the cans, also attach the linings with double stick tape.

5. Begin to assemble the pyramid by using a hot glue gun to attach the cans to each other, making a long strip of glue from one end of the can to the other. Do the entire bottom row first, before starting the second row. The bottom row won't feel very stable, but once you get the entire thing assembled, it's much more stable.

I recommend always picking it up by holding the cans on the bottom. You don't want the hot glue to rip the paper off the cans, which I guess could potentially happen if you grabbed it by the top can.

I'd love to see pictures if you decide to make one of these - so come back and post a link!!

9 comments:

Sally said...

I really like this idea! Now, I just have to figure out where to get some cans! Tim and I are going to IKEA this week to look for something so that I can get my craft room organized so it doesn't look so junky! Plus, I'd like to be able to go in there and do something in there! Anyway, I think this would be a great addition once I get the big pieces.

Mama Parker said...

Love them! Thanks for the tut. I am such a dunce - all this time I thought your cans were just balanced on your shelf in a pyramid formation and wondered how they stayed there and didn't roll away. Duh. Maybe I'll have to make some! :) But I'll have to find some cans...those quart-sized paint cans you used for yours look brand new!

Jen Clark said...

um, the quart-sized paint cans WERE brand new!! :) i got them at home depot, for about $2.60 each. it makes the project a bit pricey, especially when compared to the recycled formula cans...

Mills Memories said...

Can't wait to make some of these! Where will I put them??? I might make a set for the nursery. Thanks for the tutorial!

Crafty Mom said...

I'm sooo happy to be the recipient of this wonderful gift! Thanks so much! They look lovely in my kitchen and hold my mail, pens, notepads, quite nicely. Much prettier than the overflowing basket that used to hold all my stuff!

Also, I'd be more than happy to take some empty formula cans off your hands! I'd love some more baby food jars, too!

Dawn said...

I've been looking for something to organize the kids' art stuff-this is great. I'm going to try it with coffee cans. Thanks for sharing!

Glamour Moms said...

I LOVE this...I am going to try and incorporate this into my new playroom for the kids craft supplies. Thanks for the inspiration!!

tabitha said...

What a great idea. I think this will be perfect for my daughter's art area. Might even be a good idea for some of my things!

Melissa said...

Love this! I'm trying to figure out a way to do this to help keep O's art shelf organized. Thanks for the great idea!

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