Some people throw the tin cans away, and give up the chance to use them for some simple and still wonderful decoration for their backyard.
You only need two tin cans to build this magic device, then leave it to the wind to play and sing on this beautiful chime! Or you can mix the tin cans with some broken jewelries for a more artistic effect.
You neighbors will definitely copy your projects!
The Singing Wind Chime
Get two different sizes tin cans for this project, and cover them with spray paint in your favorite color. Grab a few small metallic items for a beautiful end of the wind chime (I chose some Chinese bells), a few beads, and some fishing wire for hanging.
Use a nail and a hammer to make four holes in the bottom of the smaller tin can, closer to the edge, and another one right in the middle, like you would shape a star. More holes in the bottom mean more objects to hang. so count you broken jewelries because they turn into gorgeous hanging pieces.
Take a fishing wire piece 11 in. long, pull it through one of the four holes, then tight it to a bead to one end, and hang one metallic object on the other end. The bead should be on the top of the tin can, while the metallic object hangs below.
Repeat the operation for the other three holes, except the one in the middle.
Make a single hole in the bottom of the bigger can. To fix the bigger tin can over the small one, pull the central thread of fishing wire through the middle hole of the small tin can, and tight a small piece of wood or a bead at the end, to prevent the tin can from falling.
Pull the other end through a plastic tube then through the hole of the bigger can, and make a loop for hanging. (The plastic tube shouldn’t be longer than 3/4 of that tin cans’s length, and his role is to keep the bigger can up enough so the smaller one can move within.)
Check the picture below to see how the pieces fit in together.
Hang the wind chime outdoor, and let the wind do the job! You just have to enjoy the sound!
The Fancy Wind Chime
Don’t give up your broken jewelries, but turn them into a fancy wind chime for your backyard! You can’t imagine their potential until you see this!
Here’s what you need for this project:
a small branch from a tree (8 to 10 inches long)
a piece of string long enough to wrap around the tree branch
broken jewelries and beads in different colors
different objects that you can hang – keys, small rocks, sea shells.
Place a bead or a painted key in the middle of a 8 to 10 inch piece of fishing wire, then use both heads of the wire to thread the rest of the beads or broken jewelries. This is how you make small necklaces in different lengths (mine are 4 to 6 inch long) that you will later use.
Hang these necklaces to the tree branch, leaving a small distance between them. Wrap the end of the wires around the branch and secure them with knots. Wrap the string around the tree branch covering the fishing wire coming from the hanging necklaces.
This is what you get after taking all these steps:
This is my fancy wind chime. It’s quiet like a fish, but I love how it looks among the green leaves of my apple tree.
Are you throwing away your broken jewelries, or repurpose them? Share your thoughts in the comment section below!
Do you know those stories about people who find bottles drifting away at the sea with an old letter within? I have always wanted to find one, hoping that I would be the one saving somebody stranded on a lost island far far away. Unfortunately, the most interesting thing I have ever found on a shore was a green shell with a piece of plastic wrapped all over it…
Well, boats are pretty interesting even if you don’t have plans to sail for saving a modern Robinson Crusoe. Since buying a boat or even building one is an expensive project, I choose to play small and build small. So I came up with this idea to craft a decorative boat on a budget. Actually, with no budget, because I did it without spending a dime.
Here’s how to craft this DIY project!
What You Need
If you have an yard and trees, then you already have the basic material – tree branches. Grab two of them – a thick one for the hull, and a thin one for the mast, in similar length – 8 to 9-in. Also get a triangular piece of cloth for the mainsail, a piece of wire (20-ga to 30-ga and 5-in long would be enough), two 3-in pieces of ribbon for the flags.
As for the tools, you need a short knife, a drilling machine with a 1-in drill bit for wood, some glue, a stapler, scissors, and a lighter. Some sanding paper might be useful too.
My hull was an apple tree branch that that I got after trimming the trees in the spring. Can you see those unique marks that look like the piece of wood has drifted away for thousand miles and was bit by the sharks? The wood was bit for sure, but there was no shark around, but only my playful dwarf rabbit called Puffy.
If you don’t have a rabbit to crunch your wood (and you probably don’t), use a screwdriver or a hammer and nail to scratch the branch and make it look old.
How to Build the Mini-boat
I choose to peel the mast to make it look like the hull, but it’s not mandatory to do so.
But you still have to take the following steps. Bend the ribbon in half on its length and make a cut on 45 degrees on each piece to craft the flags. Now it may sound weird, but here’s an old trick that my grandma taught me to prevent the ribbon from tearing apart. Light the lighter and smoothly get the fabric as close to the flame as possible to make the edges melt. Don’t get any closer, and approach should be bit by bit, because you don’t want to edges to become firm, but only to make the fibers stick. You actually use the flame as a tool to melt the edges and make them look neat.
Before starting to build the boat, you need to be sure that the hull will stay firm and won’t roll over when the boat is finished. If the branch is too round, then use the sanding paper to create a plane area on a side. That would be the bottom of your boat.
Use the drilling machine to make a hole in the upper side of the hull, right in the middle of the branch. Pour a pinch of glue, then insert the stick, in order to assemble the mast. Let them dry.
Now let’s fix the mainsail. You will need the stapler to fix the fabric on the main branch, aka the hull of the boat.
Now you will use the wire to make the upper part of the mainsail stick to the mast: bend it tight over the fabric, so it would not slip down. Right above the bended wire, you install the two flags. Pour a bit of glue on the raw end of the ribbon and roll it around the mast, to make the flag stay in line with the mainsail. Repeat the operation with the next flag, to get what you see below:
Well, your boat is ready. If you followed the same steps as I did, it should look pretty much like this:
Now let’s take a look closer. Can you feel the breeze? Can you smell the shells?
This was a surprising project for me. It started from the piece of orange wood that you saw upper in the article, and turned into a colorful picture about crystal clear water, golden sand and happy days on a quiet beach. This color pallet pleased me so much that all my plans about redecorating with beige, olive green and red started to melt. I might turn to turquoise instead…
I don’t know about you, but with a boat like this, I would go sailing with no Robinson Crusoe to save.
This is a boat that I crafted from scraps, with no plan in mind. but you can definitely do much more than that, and use one of the 16.000 woodworking project that cover anything you have in mind. Click the banner below to grab this offer now!
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I loved so much the idea of turning wine corks into knobs that I could not stop looking for other ways of home improvement using these small pieces of wood.
And pretty soon I realized that wine corks and glass pan lids would make a good pair. Here’s why!
Most of the glass pan lids have a holder that usually gets broken in time, because it’s made of plastic or bakelite, which doesn’t seem to resist on long term at high temperatures.
It happened to me too. The shiny polished holder broke to pieces while the glass was clear as new.
I didn’t buy another holder for that lid even if I could, and I thought to make a change and use a furniture knob instead. Poor choice, since I had only one knob at the moment in my stash, and it was a metallic one. You can imagine the burns on my fingers, can’t you?
Now it’s time to fix it up! I gave up the metallic knob and used a wine cork instead, and then I fell in love with the result!
What You Need for the Project
Pan lid (glass pan lids are prone to have this issue with the holder)
Reclaimed wine cork
Wood screw 3/4 of the cork long
Washer in the same size as the screw
Varnish (to protect the cork from getting wet while cooking)
Optional, you might want to decorate your knobs like I did, so get some sharp thin markers to draw on the wine corks before applying the varnish coat. CLICK HERE to see how I decorated wine corks, and to get the inspiration for your own design.
Whatever you choose about design, you still need to protect your knob from steam and humidity, so apply a good coat of varnish all over it, then let it dry.
In the meantime, unscrew the old holder from the lid and clean the surface that has been covered by it. Place the washer on the inner side of the lid, then screw the wood screw through the hole, to the other side.
Turn the cork upside down, and mark the center of it. Place the wood screw (with the lid attached) in the center and gently screw it until it stops drilling through the knob. Don’t push it too hard, or you might break it!
This is it!
But wait, here comes more about it! The following one has been painted by my kid, which means that this project is so affordable and easy that even a child could make it work.
Somebody asked me if this type of pan lid can be washed in the dishwasher. Probably not and I won’t do it, because it’s the same thing as dish-washing wood spoons or other wooden items from the kitchen. But I won’t mind washing it by hand, since it looks so lovely! And it’s not like I would have to was by hand everything in my kitchen in the end…
There’s a box full of wine corks waiting for the next project. I’m still counting them, and wondering if I should plan a party to get more corks, or stay with a smaller project.
First I wanted to get rid of them, but then one idea came into my mind. What if I give these pieces of old wood a second chance and turn them into something useful on long term? Like a log holder.
So I saved them from burning, and built the cheapest and easiest DIY log holder one can have. I did not cut, I did not glue. Just a few nails and a cup of paint, and here’s my lovely DIY log holder!
What You Need for This Project
2 square wood poles 4ft 9 inches long (reclaimed wood)
2 square wood poles 3ft 11inches long (reclaimed wood)
Wooden board 2ft long x 1ft 2in wide x 0.8 in thick (reclaimed wood)
2 wood boards 2 ft long (reclaimed wood)
2 wood boards 1 ft 2 inches long (reclaimed wood)
25 to 30 nails or wood screws 2 inches long
Hammer / screw driver / drill hammer
A cup of paint (9 oz. but it depends on the type of the paint)
A brush for painting
How to Build the Log Holder
I used 4 wood poles and a wooden board (2ft x 1ft 2in) to build a sort of table. Fix them on each corner as you see in the picture below, using the hammer and two or three nails for each corner. The nails I used were 2 inches long, and the wooden board was 0.8 inches thick.
Two of the poles were shorter (3ft 11in), while two others were longer (4ft 9 in), but this difference was useful later in the project.
I turned the so-called table upside down, then I used two boards (2 ft long each) to fix the poles on each side of the log holder. I did the same with the two rear poles, fixing them with a separate board, and two nails for each corner, too.
Be careful when hammering the nails into the wood, as the wood could easily split if you’re hitting too hard. That’s why I recommend using the wood screws instead, for fixing them better.
Since I had two long wooden board for the rear part, I used the second one to build a shelf between the two longer poles.
Sand the wooden holder and clean it with a piece of cloth before painting it. I needed a cup of paint to cover and protect the log holder. I love the sight of reclaimed wood, but it really needed protections since it’s going to stay outside.
When the paint dried, I moved the log holder into one corner of my backyard, and filled it with small cut branches and logs.
This is how it looks now! I am very proud of building it considering that fact that I did it all by myself in less than three hours (including the time needed for the paint to dry.)
Visit my blog to see more DIY projects and find out more about building things out of the reclaimed materials found around the house!