Festive Tin Can Gift – 12 Days of Christmas {Day 10}

Let’s face it – Christmas is an expensive holiday.  It’s hard enough to buy gifts for your immediate family, but when you add on a gifts for the teachers, and a gift for the hostess of the party you’re going to, and a gift for the great aunt, who you only see once a year, it can become outrageously expensive, and your fa la la starts to fade fast when you realize how long your gift-giving list is getting.  Don’t despair – you can give a thoughtful gift to all those “extra” people – one that would even fit Scrooge’s budget!

If you’ve been a reader of my blog for any length of time, you know I dearly love the humble tin can, and I couldn’t do this 12 Days of Christmas event without including it.

Today, we’re going to make a simple and charming gift that even old Aunt Bess will love – a potted plant in a festive tin can, that has a charming country style .  The best part is – it costs next to nothing to make, so let’s get started!

Christmas tin can

For this project you’ll need:

* empty tin can (I used one that had sweet potatoes in it, from Thanksgiving)

*red paint (I used the same red paint that I used on the Mrs. Claus sign)

*clear sealer with a satin finish

*ribbon (I used red and white gingham ribbon)

*glue gun and glue sticks

*herb or other plant

*potting soil

1.  Clean your tin can well, then give it one or two coats of paint.  You could use spray paint, but I used homemade chalky paint, because I wanted a matte finish, and I wanted a more rustic look with the brush strokes.  You could really change up the look, and use gold paint, and colorful ribbon with gold accents, or use black paint with an elegant ribbon, or white paint with some old lace – mix things up and make different styles of cans.

painted tin can for Christmas project

Use your glue gun to adhere ribbon around the top and bottom of the can.

Christmas tin can

One your can is dry, you’ll want to give it a coat or two of spray sealer, so the paint won’t scratch off the can.

Now, just add a few rocks into the bottom of the can, and some potting soil, and put the plant in.  You may also want to drill a few small holes in the bottom of the can, so water can drain out.  You’ll want to put something under the can to catch the water, so you could paint the base from a terracotta pot to match the can, and glue ribbon around the edge of it too.  I picked up my rosemary plant for just a few dollars in the produce aisle at Walmart.

You can also glue buttons on the can if you want to dress it up a little more.

(Tip – glue magnets to the back of the buttons, so they can be used on and off the can!)

Christmas tin can

Or, you can just add an old-fashioned tag (printables here), and call it done!

How easy (and cheap) was that?!!  And cute to boot!!

plant in a tin can

My 12 Days of Christmas crafting is winding to a close, but there’s still 2 more days of fun ahead!

If you missed any of the daily projects, you can find them all HERE.

DIY Christmas Crafts and Gifts

Here’s a little heads up for you, the 12th day will be a doozy!!  I’ve teamed up with the Junkers United group again this year, and we are bringing you another “junk” theme Christmas event!  It starts bright and early in the morning on Dec. 2nd.  If you missed last year’s event, you can see what all the fuss was about here – seriously, it was an amazing event, with 11 feature projects + 275 other Christmas project ideas shared by our readers!

repurposed Christmas projects

See you tomorrow for day #11!!

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  1. This is charming, Angie…I can just imagine paperwhites in it, too!

  2. This is so cute, a great teachers gift!
    I saw a little basket made from a little flavored coffee tin the other day. It was painted and they had used wire for the handle. Darn, knew I should have kept those, too! Love your site and thanks for sharing!

  3. Angie, I so enjoy your blog and all your ideas. This is so cute! I love the little details like using a magnet for the button! I have saved to larger tin cans this week to use for something and this would be a great idea. Also, I was searching through some of your furniture posts and love your quilt inspired wood chair. That one I’m definitely going to try.

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