There's nothing better than a cold beer on a hot day, and this summer had provided many a sweltering moment. Next time you set out to return your empties consider holding on to a few cans... they might come in handy! Here are 5 ideas:
Miniature Vase: Cut the can to the desired height, wrap with decorative paper and secure with hot glue. If using oasis, use the cut can to punch out a perfect sized piece before attaching the paper!
Votive Holder: Essentially the same steps as the vase, only you are all set once the decorative paper is adhered. You can also punch holes in the can with a nail or a pencil compass beforehand so that light filters through.
Impromptu Ashtray: If you are enjoying a summer evening outside and your guests smoke, an old beer can is the classic standby ashtray. Put a little water in the bottom so the cigarettes are extinguished immediately. Again, wrapping the outside of the can in paper makes this far less unsightly.
Grease Container: You'll probably need a big breakfast after drinking all those beers on the balcony, so why not cut the top off one of the cans and pour bacon grease into it after the fry-fest? This way the grease can cool off and congeal before you correctly dispose of it with your other household hazardous materials. You can also save the cooled grease in the fridge to use in later cooking adventures. (Grilled cheese with bacon fat instead of butter, anyone?) Whatever you do, don't pour the grease down the sink as it can adversely affect the plumbing.
Petit Planter: Cut the bottom off the can and use it flipped upside down for seedlings. The drainage hole is already there; simply add a few small rocks to the bottom and get planting!
Note: Because the aluminum is so thin, beer cans are extremely easy to work with. A decent pair of scissors will snip right through the material. Just be careful not to slice yourself on the cut raw edge.
(Images: MaryAnne Petrella)