Faux Hammered Tin Luminaries


I love the look of hammered tin for autumn, but I don’t love the time it takes when I’m so busy around the holidays.  So, I let my CAMEO do the hard work for me (poking all those holes!) and created these faux tin can luminaries in a fraction of the time that real ones might take.


Not surprisingly, there aren’t any “3D aluminum soup can” files in the Silhouette Design Store.  So, I improvised and chose this ribbon handle box design instead.  When you open this design, there will be a lot of pieces you won’t need for this project.  Save the solid circle base and the rectangular side shape, but delete all the rest.


You can resize these two pieces to whatever size you’d like, but I kept mine the same as the original design because the finished product ends up pretty close to the size of a small soup can, and that was the look I was going for.


Open your desired shape and resize it to fit within the boundaries of your rectangular cut shape.  I chose this leaf design and this turkey design because I will be using the luminaries as part of my Thanksgiving centerpiece this year…but snowflakes or a graphic background design would be a beautiful choice!


To convert the design to a punched pattern, you’ll need the Designer Edition of the Silhouette Studio software.  Simply click on your shape, open the Rhinestones Window (indicated by arrow 1), click on Edge in the Rhinestone Effect window (arrow 2), and then choose the size of hole you would like for your design (arrow 3).  I chose 6ss so that I could achieve some more detail in the design, especially with the veining on the leaf.


The turkey is a mostly solid shape with few detailed cut lines, so I converted him into a solid punch pattern.  To do this, click on your shape, select Radial Fill from the Rhinestone Effect Window (arrow 1), and select your punched hole size (arrow 2).  You can also adjust the spacing of your holes using the Rhinestone Spacing slider bar (arrow 3).  I adjusted my spacing to 0.05″ because I felt this provided the nicest coverage of my solid shape while not losing too much detail.


I wanted to alter the design even more because I could see some gaps in my fill and I wanted to emphasize certain parts of the shape more.  First, I clicked on Release Rhinestones (arrow 1) so that I could move around some of the holes.  This allowed me to pull out the beak a bit more and adjust the shape of the feet slightly.  Then I added some additional rhinestone holes where I could see gaps in my design.  To do this, simply click on Single Click in the Draw Rhinestones menu (arrow 2) and then click anywhere within your design to lay down a new rhinestone hole (arrow 3).


The final designs looked like this.  I mirrored the leaf design before converting it to a rhinestone pattern on the third tin can  to create three different designs.  Cut each of the pieces out of both Silhouette Chipboard and Silhouette Printable Silver Foil.


Layer each silver foil piece over the corresponding chipboard piece.  This is easier than it sounds if you use the punched hole design to line up the two layers in the center and then press the sides together.


You can leave your piece smooth, but if you’re looking for that “tin can” look it’s easy to achieve with a scoreboard and stylus.  If you don’t have a scoreboard, you can also use a ruler and score your piece on top of some dense foam.  The score lines on my luminaries are set 1/8″ apart and this seems to mimic the patterns on the small soup cans pretty well.


Once assembled, your hammered tin luminaries should look like this (I’ve inserted some bright cardstock here so that you can see the details of the design easily).


With dim lighting and a few flameless color-changing mini candles (please don’t use real candles), they can look really special.  I can’t wait to make some snowflake and candy cane luminaries for Christmas!  Do you use your Silhouette to decorate your holiday table?

Designs Used

2 Comment

  1. Roberta Hibbison says:

    So cool! This is such a dynamic way to use these materials. I saw these on Pinterest and thought they were real cans! Thanks for sharing how you did these!
    Happy Thanksgiving!

  2. Annie Wills says:

    Thanks so much Roberta…I had a lot of fun making these!

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