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Reusing Soda Cans and Beer Bottles

A row of empty beer bottles.
This is a guide about reusing soda cans and beer bottles. Recycle empty cans and bottles into creative craft projects instead of adding to the trash.


Ask a QuestionHere are the questions asked by community members. Read on to see the answers provided by the ThriftyFun community or ask a new question.

October 14, 20030 found this helpful

I'm looking for uses for empty soda cans and beer bottles. Specifically, I recall seeing a wall made of the bottoms of beer/wine bottles. I am amendable to any artsy, groovy use. Also, I would like to learn about crafty uses for used soda cans. Please, no pencil/scissor/knitting needle holders. If anyone could advise on decent websites, that would be appreciated also! Thanks!

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By guest client (Guest Post)
May 5, 20040 found this helpful
Best Answer

If you have enough beer bottles that you can save the caps, you can cut squares of fabric and sew around each cap. It doesn't have to be pretty, the back of the cap isn't seen. Hot glue onto your favorite wreath style or make your own wreath from wood or cardboard. A great kids craft. My sister won a first place ribbon at the county fair when we were kids by making this wreath. (That was also when most sodas came in glass bottles. ha ha)

The tabs from aluminum cans can be taken off and collected for local dialysis centers. In many areas dialysis patients are given a discount for so many tabs.

Maybe you could recreate the license plate purses using soda cans, only making them smaller for dinner purses.

You could glue a row of soda cans together and fill with sand and use as a decorative door stop, book end, etc. Seal the top with an apoxy type glue.

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August 5, 20040 found this helpful
Best Answer

Lighted Christmas Tree

225 Aluminum cans

225 Christmas Tree Lights


Ice Pick

Large Phillips head screwdriver

Metal Glue


2 Lawn stakes (5')

Remove the tops from 225 aluminum cans. Trim the cans to 2" from the paint line. Using the ice pick, poke a hole in the center of each can bottom. Use the Phillips head screwdriver to enlarge the hole to fit a small Christmas tree light.

Glue the cans in 30 rows with the following number of cans in each row: 1,2,3,4,5,6,3,4,5,6,7,8,5,6,7,8,9,10,7,8,9,10,11,12,9,10,11,12,13 and 14. Push a Christmas tree light through the hole in the bottom of each can. Prop the tree against two 5' lawn stakes and secure with wire.

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December 15, 20090 found this helpful
Best Answer

Think of these products as raw materials to use in creative ways. Soda bottles have a curve to them so you would have to work with it but soda cans can be thought of as sheets of aluminum to be bent and shaped to your will.

2 liter soda bottles

*put together and make a bag holder - mine is next to the trash can

*make a watering system for your plants

*cheap food storage containers - I store sugar, flour, beans, pasta, biscuit mix because of the bugs

*use as a funnel

*plant terrarium

*fish bowl

*[since I hate cardboard around my house - roaches] kleenex/tissue holder hung on wall

*pencil/pen holder - my kids are constantly looking for a pencil that works so I have several of these holders around the house to collect said pencils.

*recycle for cash

*curtains of color -

1 lace = cut the bottom of the bottle making a flower then attach them together

2 geometrical = cut out rounded edged shapes and rounded circle shapes then attach them together making long strings of shapes to hang

soda cans

*I save the tabs of these cans and other food pull tabs to sell on

*jewelry -- flickr


*recycle for cash

*create picture frames

*wind chimes

*light catching tree - once saw a sculpture of a tree and they used soda cans as the leaves, only one side of the leaf was painted - these were attached so that when the wind blew the "leaves" the sun would reflect off of the unpainted aluminum

glass bottles

++ 2 pieces of equipment is needed to work with glass - glass cutter and a rock tumbler

*jewelry after rock tumbler worked its magic

*set of drinking glasses

*mosaic tile work after bottle have been broken

*pebbled rocks after rock tumbler worked its magic

*trivet - cut off the curled lip (making a circle of glass) and glue together side by side

*tray - someone melted down a wine bottle so that it could be flattened and made a serving tray

*vase - typical

*candle holders on the cheap

scrolling on flickr (recycle, soda bottle, cans) gives great ideas. Someone even make a series of sculpture of great looking underwear out of aluminum cans!

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By guest (Guest Post)
November 26, 20071 found this helpful

Regarding Tawnda's post above, Aluminum can tabs being redeemed for dialysis or wheelchairs or anything else is a very old urban legend. It's not true. See here for details:

Don't waste your time or good intentions saving them.

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By guest client (Guest Post)
June 19, 20040 found this helpful

you could fill the glass bottles most of the way with sand, then stick a candle in the mouth. you may want to pour a little bit of melted wax in right before you put in the taper candle so that it sticks well.

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August 31, 20040 found this helpful

My alcoholic uncle made a table and two chairs using beer cans and boxes for me when I was younger. They were very sturdy and I was impressed. He also had a beer bottle headboard. Made by facing one upright and gluing to one face down, etc. He had the matching side boards and and everything. He was working on making a guest frame out of his skoal cans

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By guest (Guest Post)
September 16, 20040 found this helpful

Seems BeckyTN has posted the exact instruction for the Lighted Christmas Tree off the Aluminous Publishing website.

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By guest (Guest Post)
May 30, 20050 found this helpful

What is a good glue for gluing Aluminum cans?

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By guest (Guest Post)
June 6, 20060 found this helpful

For bottles, you might want to visit...

Jackie Stack Lagakos:

Edourd Arsenault:

http://www3.sym … nce/bottlehouses

Rhyolite Bottle Building:

Tressa Prisbrey's Bottle Village:

http://echomati …

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By guest (Guest Post)
August 14, 20070 found this helpful

I made one of the most fuel efficient camp stoves out of 2 Dr Pepper cans. It burns Denatured Alchohol, and fits in the palm of my hand. Great for hiking! My favorite drinking glass is made from a Sapporo Japanese beer can with the top removed. It is very sturdy as the can is made of steel. One of the Kemton brothers of the Airheads Beemer Club makes the coolest tall glasses from old beer bottles.

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By guest (Guest Post)
December 15, 20070 found this helpful

These tabs CAN be used for many different charities. The Ronald McDonald House in Indianapolis uses them by recycling the donated tabs and using the profits to offset costs of housing parents and families of children receiving services at Riley Children's Hospital. The fee for the familes is $10 a night or less because of the many people who donate these tabs. Myself included.

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By guest (Guest Post)
March 11, 20080 found this helpful

Speaking of the glass bottle wall, I once saw a picture of a shed that had a wall made of adobe-like material with bottles placed in it, surrounded by the adobe, so that the upper halves and necks faced the outside of the building and the bottoms were flush with the interior of the wall. Not only did this allow light to filter into the shed in interesting colors and patterns, but the wall made a hauntingly lovely sound when the wind blew past the bottlenecks. I've been intrigued with the idea ever since I heard if that.

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By guest (Guest Post)
March 20, 20080 found this helpful

Reality Check Posted:

Regarding Tawnda's post above, Aluminum can tabs being redeemed for dialysis or wheelchairs or anything else is a very old urban legend. It's not true. See here for details:

Don't waste your time or good intentions saving them.

Although that article states that the tabs cannot be used to "buy time for dialysis patients" they can be collected for charities!!

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December 15, 20090 found this helpful

I'm saving my wine bottles to bury and make an edging for my garden! I don't save the ones that have inverted bottoms so they wont collect water for mosquitoes. I guess I'll need a post hole digger!

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