Drink can butterflies

Drink Can Butterflies

DIY Drink Can Butterflies Fence Art

Creating butterfly from drink cans is a fun and easy way to turn everyday items into something extraordinary. This DIY project allows you to unleash your creativity, upcycle materials, and add a little charm to your garden fence.

drink can butterflies

Supplies for Drink Can Butterflies

  1. Empty drink cans (beer, soda, flavored water, whatever suits your taste)
  2. Scissors and utility knife
  3. Spray paint (my favorite is Rustoleum 2X)
  4. Staple gun and staples
  5. Sharpie permanent marker
  6. Gardening gloves (optional but recommended)
  7. Protective eyewear (for cutting the cans)

Step 1: Gather Your Cans

Start by collecting a variety of empty drink cans. Rinse the cans thoroughly and let them dry before you begin.

You can use soda, fizzy water, iced tea or craft beer cans- whatever suits your taste. I found that you can get two of the small butterflies from every normal sized can and two of the larger butterflies from the “fancy” beer or large iced tea cans. This was an excellent excuse to try a variety of new craft beer that comes in the bigger cans!

Step 2: Safety First

Before you dive into the creative process, remember to put on safety gloves and protective eyewear. I cut the cans outside wearing sunglasses and gardening gloves.

Using my new “potting mat” was so helpful as it contained all of the metal scraps and slivers so I could easily carry the leftover aluminum over to the recycling bin. You can get PDF pattern for that project here.

Step 3: Cutting the Cans

Use scissors that you no longer need for careful cutting of fabric or paper- this will dull the blades a bit.

drink can butterflies drink can butterflies https://www.etsy.com/listing/1471745386/pdf-sewing-pattern-vinyl-potting-mat?click_key=d8219d66eeb5878e9719d921363bb99bb845e3e7%3A1471745386&click_sum=c9a34c42&ref=shop_home_active_11&sts=1

I started by making a slash with your utility knife along the top and bottom of each can just under the curved rim. Then, carefully cut the top off, cut vertically through the body of the can and then cut the bottom off each can.

You should now have a rectangular sheet of aluminum. Flatten out these sheets as best as you can. I found it worked just fine to run the metal sheet across the edge of the outdoor table to straighten out the bend. I’ve heard you could also use a hot iron to flatten your cans, so if you just love to iron things, then go for it!

Step 4: Sketching the Butterfly Shape

drink can butterflies

Cut out your butterfly printable from paper. Fold each can in half if you’re aiming for two butterflies from a can and then trace the butterfly outline on the flattened aluminum sheets using a sharpie.

Step 5: Cutting the Butterflies

drink can butterflies

Cut along the drawn lines to create your butterfly shapes. Take your time and make smooth cuts to avoid any accidental nicks. Once again, be cautious of sharp edges. I did this part wearing gloves too. It’s helpful to cut the part near the fold last, to keep everything together if you’re trying to cut two at a time like I did.

Step 6: Paint your Drink Can Butterflies

Now it’s time to paint your butterflies, yay spray paint!

I chose to lay them all outside on a plastic sheet and spray paint both sides in bright colors. They did move a little during spraying and this was a little more challenging with a slight breeze. Putting them in a large box to spray paint would have prevented my butterfly chasing, but I made a LOT!

You could also keep the natural can colors or use acrylic paints to decorate your butterflies.

Step 7: Arrange and Hang your Butterflies

Now comes the fun part! Arrange your vibrant drink can butterflies along your garden fence. You can create a pattern or go for a random arrangement – it’s entirely up to you.

Once you’re satisfied, secure the butterflies by stapling directly onto the fence. I found that using two staples added more security and they held up fine in one of the worst hailstorms we’ve had in decades. You can gently fold the wings back a little to make them look like they’re flying.

Check out the other fun ways to dress up your garden fence with fence art.

See how we used these in The Giant Fairy Garden.

Happy Crafting!


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