Hi there, friends! It’s that time of month when I join some blogging friends of mine to share some of our ideas where we create different projects each month for under $10. Yes! that’s what I said under $10

The theme this month is Christmas in July!

Whoo whoot!

Can I just say that I’m a little excited . I just love love love anything christmas so this challenge was not getting by me!!

I have a huge Christmas wreath that I always wanted to add some vintage Bells on to it but to be honest I just can’t afford or justify paying the money that they want .. So here I am making them myself!

So basically , the deal is that we can’t spend more than $10 dollars on the project and mine basically cost me nothing! because I already had the paints , glue gun etc all I needed was to save up some bean cans.

Why Bean cans!

The reason why I’m using bean cans is because I want to be able to use them outdoors at Christmas, but my main reason is they are free , tough , durable and not easily broken when stored away. I was going to use soda drink cans but opted for the tin cans instead.

If you don’t usually buy product Items in tin cans you can get your friends to start saving them for you now so that you will have them for Christmas. I used two different sizes in this project. Also , a while ago a good friend of mine gave me some champagne corks tops that he saved up because he knew that I do crafts , so sweet of him.. Funny at the time I had no idea what I’d use them for but they came in handy for this project!

Friends! let me walk you through what I did!

I gathered up my cans, 2 different sizes and peeled off the paper and washed them in soapy water.

These are the cork tops my friend gave me!
You can use any type string you can find .. I really wanted to use jute but I couldn’t find mine.
I had a tub of beads .. i think they were 5 bucks when I purchased them but they have lasted me years!! I used a few of these for this project ..
I had these little thread reels lying around . I think I picked them up for $2.50
For the top of the can I used curtain rings .. I picked these up a few years ago at my thrift store for $2 . There was about 20 in the pack
These sticks were from a present given to me on Mother’s Day .. They had chocolates stuck to them. Yep I keep everything just incase I need them for a project and whoopa! I did!
At first I used a hammer upside down. It was workable but the technique below was so much easier to work with.
I switched to this technique. I turned a long handled pick axe upside down… You may have clamps etc so do what makes it easier for you!
Here are the cans all rounded off at the top , you don’t want them perfect. When you paint them the squashed look will make them look like they have been welded!
I used my plyers to put dints in the cans so they will looked a bit more rustic.
You will need your wire cutters or a tool that will clamp the bottom edges of the tin as they are quite sharp… This is only on ring pull cans .. I used a tin opener as it will be a clean cut and you want need to do the clamping.
I did a paint primer on the cans so my plaster / baking soda would adhere to it. Only because the first one I did crumbled away from the can , silly me!!
Here I used bi carb soda and black paint
Mix the baking soda and paint together well.
Then I spread it out smoothly around the can using an old spatula.

I want to mention that the baking soda and bi carb soda is the same product so please do not use baking powder as this product is different

NOTE! Also guys . bi Carb Soda takes 4-5 hrs to dry ( don’t panic it dries rock hard, don’t keep poking at it like I did lol! ) Plaster of Paris dries in an hour and can be sanded right away

Some areas of the can needed to be painted so I painted the can in a cheap black acrylic paint .
I painted the inside of the can also.you can also see the texture on this one, it is un-sanded.
Before the paint mixture dried I shook some cinnamon powder on the cans .. This isn’t necessary and I won’t do it again. I want to store them away so I was a little worried that the scent of the cinnamon might attract unwelcomed visitors and they may nest!
I drilled a few holes in the top so I could easily put the curtain ring in
After I drilled the holes I used an old chisel to punch a hole in the top so I could place the curtain rings
Once the ring was in I twisted it . Just for extra security.
I decided to sand some of the texture off the can and sanded most if the cinnamon.
I sanded down the can . Note: this one I used Plaster of Paris

You can always do another coat so the can texture is completely gone, I didn’t have the time right now but on my other cans I will do two coats ..

I started to experiment with different paint colours like gold metal, hi coppers etc . I settled with Gold in the end And I also let some of the black shine through . I want them very rustic and rusty looking.
Quick tip: If you do use the cork stop , you will need to drill a hole on the Center big enough to allow the string to pass through
I drilled a hole in the Center of the cork and threaded through some roasting cord and added a bead
Don’t expect to have clean hands while doing this project .. it’s pretty messy!
I then hot glued them together.
It’s up to you what way you want to tie and attach the curtain ring beads and cork. That’s if you decide to use the cork… I didn’t stick to the same method for all three bells.
Thread it through and then you can add the beads if you like.
This is one of the cork tops with a bead attached. I fiddled around till I got the length I liked.
TIP: It just needs to be peeping out of the can to make it look like a bell chime

Two different methods!

This shot , the can has been sanded and I used plaster paris here..
This shot is not sanded and i used Bi carb soda.

The list of items you will need!

  • Empty bean can
  • Beads
  • String
  • Players
  • Sissors
  • Curtain rings
  • Glue gun or E6000 ( or any type of glue you have on hand)
  • Plaster of Paris or Bi Carb soda
  • Gold paint or your colour choice.
  • Paint brush
  • Paint tray
  • Cover for your work station as it’s messy
  • Spatula for mixing
  • Drill if using corks instead of beads

Let me know what you think and if you do happen to use this tutorial please drop me a line and a photo of your Christmas Bells!!

Well my friends here is my take on Old Vintage Christmas Bells.

This shot is with all our lights turned on! I love it!!
I’m in love with the tones in the different lighting control around our house!!
Every Angle is different especially when the sun shines or a light is turned on , they just glow
How good do these look ?

https://patinaandpaint.com/felt-christmas-lights/

https://decorateandmorewithtip.com/wooden-christmas-tree-inspo/

https://lifeasaleowife.com/2022/07/10/seashell-christmas-tree/

https://junktogems.blog/2021/12/13/how-i-made-a-faux-christmas-cake/

Till next time!

Stay Blessed friends!

Teresa xoxo

9 thoughts on “Christmas Bells

  1. Teresa this is brilliant! I love how you made these. I’ve seen those antique bells for years, but like you, never felt I could justify the expense. Pinning and going to give this a try. Thanks for sharing!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. These are so creative Teresa!! They certainly don’t look like you could make them for free. I love a DIY that costs you basically nothing. I haven’t used Plaster of Paris or bicarb on any projects yet, but I love the look. Your bells turned out fantastic!! I’ll definitely check out your tutorial video if/when you make one. Pinned!
    Happy hopping!
    Niki ~ Life as a LEO Wife

    Liked by 1 person

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