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  • by Barb (Edtl) Shelton

Gift-in-a-Can: Covering It (Part 2)

Welcome to the second post in a series of five in which I give you all the step-by-step instructions you need to create your own gift-in-a-can! ​​

You are currently in post #2 where I show how to cover can, including getting it ready to cover. Here's a visual sneak-peek of what we'll be doing...

Several pics of what we'll do in this post / Gift-in-a-Can: Covering It (Part 2) /




In case you got here from outside my blog, here are the five posts in this series, and where you're at in the process, just so you'll know the context of this post: (All the links to these other posts are at the bottom of this page.)

5 parts of this process; YOU ARE HERE at Part 2 / Gift-in-a-Can: Covering It (Part 2) /


Here in this post (that you're in) I include links to items that will help you with this can-covering part of the process.

Amazon Affiliate links coming up. The Honeycomb Oasis Blog is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to at no additional cost to you.

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1) GET THE RIGHT TYPE OF CAN - You want to get a can that has a pull-tab-ring type lid and a lipped (non-rounded) bottom that can be removed with a can opener. So, just because the can has a flip-top lid does NOT mean the bottom will necessarily work!

Moving closer, the lid top in the left picture below IS what you want. But some cans with pull-tabs have bottoms that can NOT be opened with ANY can opener, as on the right.

Top & Bottom of cans / Gift-in-a-Can: Covering It (Part 2) /

You want your can's bottom to have a lip, like the outer edge of the top has. I repeat ~ a round-edged can bottom (above right) will not be able to be opened in the way it needs to be opened for this to work. You cannot do this project with this kind of can.


2) DECIDE ON CAN SIZE - Veggies usually come in the basic 15-ounce size; pineapple comes in a little-larger 20-ounce can. Pineapple also comes in small ~ short and wide ~ 8-ounce cans, which would work too, if your gift contents don't take up much room.

Any size can will work as long as it will hold the items you want to put in it. Of course, you won't know for sure until you actually have the can and put your contents in it, but you can guesstimate. I usually use the 15-ounce can, but have been glad a few times that I had the larger 20-ounce (pineapple) can when my items took up more space. So get whatever size you want (remembering this is not an exact science); making sure it's the right type of can, which I will cover in step 1. (I actually stock up on empty cans! ~ both sizes, ready for any Gift-in-a-can I want to make!)


3) OPEN CAN WITH CORRECT CAN OPENER - This is VITAL! To open the bottom of the can, you need a "smooth-edge" can opener:

Pampered Chef Smooth-edge Can Opener / Gift-in-a-Can: Covering It (Part 2) /

I actually bought one of these just so that I could make these cans! However, we have both kinds of can openers, and this smooth-edge can opener is now our favorite!

If you do not have this type of can opener, then getting or borrowing one will be its own separate step. I have and love Pampered Chef's Smooth-edge Can Opener (shown), but you can also get one on Amazon.


4) OPEN CAN AT ITS BOTTOM - Open the can at its bottom using the smooth-edge can opener. This kind breaks the seal, which is what we want. A regular can opener cuts the metal, leaving a sharp-edge that cannot be glued back on.

Opening the bottom of a can with the smooth-edge can opener / Gift-in-a-Can: Covering It (Part 2) /

In the photo above, notice the fine, stringy lines between the lid and the can? Those fine lines are the rubbery sealant (which holds the lid and the can together) pulling apart! This can opener breaks that rubbery seal, allowing you to basically just unadhere and pull off the lid, and then glue it back on once you have your can filled with your goodies! So do not discard this bottom lid, or you won't have anything to close your can back up with!

Pulling the bottom lid up with the smooth-edge can opener / Gift-in-a-Can: Covering It (Part 2) /


5) PREPPING YOUR OPENED CAN: Remove the contents of the can and put them into a storage bin, and into the fridge.

Wash (or just rinse) and dry the can, and pull off the rubbery seal residue so you can get a tighter fit when gluing it back on.

Opened can of pears, up-side-down with bottom lid beside it / Gift-in-a-Can: Covering It (Part 2) /

See the residue rubbery sealant around the edges of the can and on the lid? Remove all that by just rubbing it off with your fingers.


6) REMOVING THE LABEL - If the label will pull off in one piece, that's the easiest and best option. But they don't always cooperate. If it doesn't, you'll want to slice right through the label using any vertical (top to bottom) line on the can as a guideline. I use an exacto knife so that I get a clean cut, but you can use the end of a sharp pair of scissors, if you don't have an exacto knife.

Side of can of pears, slicing the label off along a line on the can / Gift-in-a-Can: Covering It (Part 2) /

Carefully remove the label from the can, in one piece, if at all possible, because you'll use this as your pattern. (It doesn't need to be perfect as it'll only be used as a basic guideline, not a perfect pattern.)

Label half pulled off from a can of pineapple / Gift-in-a-Can: Covering It (Part 2) /

7) LAY THE REMOVED LABEL ONTO YOUR PAPER - Lay this just-removed label onto your paper along the edge, lining up the bottom and right edges as shown: (Note that cardstock is stiffer and more difficult to adhere than scrapbook paper, which I prefer.)

Pineapple can label laid out on large piece of designer paper / Gift-in-a-Can: Covering It (Part 2) /

IMPORTANT NOTE: If you pulled the entire label off, you now have the right size piece for your pattern. However, if you had to slice it to get it off, you do not have any overlap. So you'll want to cut your paper 1/4 inch longer since we want the two ends of the piece to overlap, not just have the ends just meet.

Trace around the label with a pencil. You don't want to see these pencil marks, so either draw these lines on the back of your paper, or, in the next step, cut inside the lines so that the pencil lines are cut off. I say this now because you have to plan it in this step.

Tracing around label with a pencil onto designer paper / Gift-in-a-Can: Covering It (Part 2) /

If this was a sliced paper, then I would want

to add an additional 1/4 inch here.

8) CUT YOUR PAPER - Cut out your paper with scissors or a paper trimmer just barely on the inside of the lines so that the lines don't show and so that it will fit onto your can perfectly. (If this is the front, erase any residue lines that you didn't cut off.)

Cutting the pencil lines on the designer paper / Gift-in-a-Can: Covering It (Part 2) /

9) WRAP PIECE AROUND CAN - Wrap this piece around your can ~ no glue yet; we're just making sure it fits inside the top and bottom lips of the can and is not too wide in any parts. Trim any extra to make it fit on the can.

If your paper has a print that is directional, make sure you're positioning the top of the paper at the top of the can ~ which is the unopened flip-top end! It's easy, when working with it, to think that the open end is the top. I'm guessing you don't want people or trees on your paper to be up-side-down!

Attaching the designer paper to the can / Gift-in-a-Can: Covering It (Part 2) /

Make sure the piece meets the can edges perfectly at top and bottom, with the edges (where my forefinger is) overlapping a bit.

Closing the designer paper onto itself on the can / Gift-in-a-Can: Covering It (Part 2) /

10) ADHERE PIECE TO CAN - Now you're ready to adhere your piece of paper onto and around the can. If you are doing a belly band, which is the decorative piece that's wrapped around the middle of each can in the photo below, it will help keep this outer paper on the can.

If you don't have a belly band, you'll need to attach your paper to the can with some "serious adhesive," or it will pop off. I actually use serious adhesive whether I add a belly band or not. Neither glue sticks nor snail adhesives are strong enough. I used a double-sided tape adhesive (Tear 'n' Tape Adhesive is Stampin' Up's) that has a peel-off back. This part can be frustrating, so here's how to most easily do this with the best results:

a) Apply the Tear 'n' Tape adhesive to both of the short edges of your paper on the back side. One of these edges will be sticking directly to the can; the other will stick to the paper that it overlaps onto.

b) Apply some glue stick on the backside of the middle third of the piece of paper. This is so you can "suggest" that the piece stay in place as you work, yet have total flexibility while you're lining up the edges around the can because this glue is movable for a minute or so. Cuz once the strong tape adhesive touches the can, that's where it will stay. So you want to do all your aligning before you "go permanent." Wherever the Tear 'n' Tape (craft tape) touches, it sticks.

c) When you have it aligned, pull off the cover strip of the Tear 'n' Tape, which I'm peeling off with my fingernail below, and press this sticky edge onto the can, making sure that, if your paper is directional, it's going onto the can in the direction you want it to. (It doesn't matter if you overlap the right side of the paper over the left, or visa-versa; it works the same both ways.) Smooth the paper from this edge all the way around the can to the other edge.

Attaching the designer paper securely to the can / Gift-in-a-Can: Covering It (Part 2) /

d) You can see in the photo above that the tape strip is still adhered to the other loose edge of the paper, over on the right. That cover-strip will be pulled off next, and you'll press that sticky edge down, overlapping it onto the edge of the now-taped-down paper.

Yep! Perfect! You still have a bit of wiggle room to adjust your paper's position on the can right up until that last, whole tape-stripped edge is down onto the can.

Securing the end of the designer paper to itself on the can / Gift-in-a-Can: Covering It (Part 2) /

Alrighty! Now that you have your can covered, you're ready to decorate it!!!



of the



Here are links to the other posts in this series:

Gift-in-a-Can: Theme Ideas (Part 1) - All sorts of great ideas for themes that you will love, plus contents for each! Sure to get your creative juices flowing!

Gift-in-a-Can: Covering It (Part 2) [< YOU ARE HERE!]

Gift-in-a-Can: Decorating It (Part 3) - Ideas for decorating the can's top and side.

Gift-in-a-Can: Filling, Sealing, & Tagging It (Part 4) - Tips, ideas and free printables for filling, sealing, and tagging your can.

Gift-in-a-Can: Organizing Your Stuff (Part 5) - For those planning to make more of these cans, and wanting to know how to organize your stuff!


Hexagon-pic for Gift-in-a-Can: Covering It (Part 2) /
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