It's important that we all start taking steps to reduce waste and pollution in the world. Little Green Cyclo is proud to offer our single-origin Vietnamese coffee in 100% recyclable cans. Aluminum cans are easy to recycle and are a much more sustainable alternative to most plastics. You can do your part to eliminate waste and have fun doing it by upcycling your coffee cans! We've found a few DIY aluminum can crafts that will give your cà phê sữa đá can a new life.
Vietnamese Coffee Can Lantern
Our first craft is creative and useful. You can transform your Vietnamese coffee can into a stunning lantern with just a few tools that you probably already have around the house. There are a few variations for this craft, but the basic principle is the same; you poke holes through the can to make a design of your choice. When light is added to it in a dark room, you have a one-of-a-kind lantern that casts fun light on the walls. To make the design, punch a series of holes in the can using a nail, think needle/pin, or even an X-Acto Knife. Please be careful during the process in case the sharp object slips. You don't want to cut yourself! Once you're happy with the design, you can decide what type of lantern you'd like to make. There are a few common options that both turn out great:
- Tabletop Lantern: You'll want to remove the top of the can so that you can insert a candle or tea light. Light will be cast up through the top as well as through the holes you made.
- Hanging Lantern: You will once again want to remove the top of the can. Add a handle by poking two holes directly across from each other and attaching wire over top. Make sure the wire is sturdy enough to support the candle or light and bend the ends to prevent the wire from slipping out.
- String Lights: For this variation, you'll want to make several coffee can lanterns. Get your hands on some fairy lights or basic string lights once you're satisfied with your cans. You'll want to cut the bottom off the can this time, and use the pop tab and opening at the top to string the lights through. This is a great option for hanging on walls, porches, tents, and more!
We encourage you to be as creative with the designs as you can (no pun intended). You can make a matching set, abstract art, or even spell out words. The choice is completely yours to make. Feel free to add paint or other embellishments, but be sure they are safe for use around flames or hot bulbs.
Aluminum Can Jewelry
Our next craft is a little bit more intense, but still totally do-able for all skill levels. You can use your Little Green Cyclo Vietnamese can to make some adorable jewelry pieces! As with the first craft, you want to be careful with this one; you'll be working with scissors or a knife as well as cut aluminum. You get a flat sheet of metal, cut around the top and bottom of the can. Make a vertical cut on an area you don't mind not including in the final piece, and flatten the sheet out. Be careful while cutting because our cans feature a shrink sleeve with our label on it - you don't want it to peel off while you work. Cut out the shapes you want your pendants to be and be sure to include the most fun areas of the label! A precision knife or a punch will work best for this craft. Punch out a hole where the earring or chain will be threaded through. To seal the label to the can for good, coat your new pendant in Mod Podge or a similar clear coat.
Coffee Can Pop Tab Bracelet
Do you drink Little Green Cyclo coffee every day? If so, save your pop tabs! Pop tabs are the little ring-like piece that you use to break the seal of the can. They come off easily if you wiggle them around a bit. Start a collection so that you can make a custom bracelet. You'll need anywhere from 20 to 28 pop tabs, depending on the size of your wrist. You can then choose one or two colors of ribbon that fit through the holes in the tab nicely. There is absolutely no glue required for this craft, making it mess-free and simple. You'll take pop tabs and overlap them, stringing the ribbon through the top and bottom holes of each. Continue on until your bracelet is long enough to fit comfortably on your wrist. Check out this helpful video tutorial for in-depth instructions: https://bsyl.ink/PopTabBracelet.
DIY Succulent and Herb Planters
The last craft is the most simple, but it's one of our favorites nonetheless. You can grow succulents and herbs and show off your love of Vietnamese coffee at the same time! For this quick upcycle, simply remove the top of the can. You may want to poke some drainage holes in the bottom as well to prevent root rot. Add a few small stones to further aid with drainage, then add your soil of choice. If you buy a plant that is pre-potted, simply transfer it into your new planter. Both of our current flavors have beautiful labels and will look great on a windowsill or desk, but we think the green Matcha label adds even more of a nature vibe. Nothing says "I love Vietnamese coffee" like showcasing Little Green Cyclo cans around your home!
As a general note, please make sure that you are being as safe as possible while trying these crafts. Any exposed edges should be folded over with pliers or sanded down to prevent scrapes and cuts. We hope you have fun upcycling your Vietnamese Coffee cans into these DIY crafts. If you're feeling inspired, but don't have a can on hand, head over to https://coffeelgc.com/collections/ready-to-drink to order your favorite flavors of ready-to-drink cà phê sữa đá. If you upcycle our cans, tag us in photos on Instagram @coffeelgc.