What you need:
Empty aluminum beverage cans
Sandpaper (sanding block is helpful but not necessary, or wrap sandpaper around a bit of wood)
Pen or pencil
Ribbon or cord for hanging
- Start with an aluminum drink can.
- Cut off the top and bottom with scissors. (Wear gloves and glasses to be extra safe.) A knife is good to make the first cut so you can get your scissors in there. Cut down the side–if you haven’t done so already to get the top and bottom off–and flatten it out.
- Trace your object. I like leaves, but you could use a drawing or just freehand it. (Snowflakes? Fruit? Use your imagination.) Bear down with your pencil or ballpoint or other pointy thing so you make a cutting line.
- Cut along the lines. Be careful. Cut aluminum is sharp.
With your pointy thing and using your object as a reference, whether it is a leaf like mine or what-have-you, emboss your cut-out with veins, other details, etc. Take a nail and make a hole for hanging the ornament.
Sand the piece to remove any burrs and other hazards and to give it a nice pewtery surface. A sanding block or its equivalent is handy for this. I sanded the front and back. If you prefer, you can sand the color off entirely, but I left it for a distressed look. The veins or other details are emphasized by the sanding so you want to make sure you emboss before you sand for this effect.
- Add a ribbon, cord, or a length of raffia to hang it up. That’s it.