I love labels. Not the designer jean variety, but the everyday cereal box or gum wrapper label. I will buy that bottle of wine because its label is just oh-so-pretty.

I have coffee table books dedicated to 1960’s era food packaging and firecracker labels from China and India. Labels tell you an instant story about the time, culture and ambitions of whomever might have been buying  the stuff.

When a pretty aluminum can is empty, I don’t want to just huck it into the recycling bin. I want to keep it. Re-purpose it. So, I make these little flower magnets and use them to stick other pretty little things (like the business card shown in the picture above) to the fridge or filing cabinet.

Here’s what you need:

empty aluminum cans

sturdy kitchen shears or tin snips

permanent marker

scrapbooking eyelet setter (or hammer and nail)

scrapbooking brad or stud

E6000 glue

disc magnet

What to do:

cut1. Use the kitchen shears or tin snips to carefully pierce the top of an aluminum can and cut the top off. Repeat with the bottom.

2. Cut the remaining tube of aluminum lengthwise to make a sheet.

draw3. Draw flower shapes in graduated sizes with the permanent marker on the un-printed side of the aluminum. Use different types of cans to utilize different colors.  (If you don’t trust your freehand skills, a set of flower-shaped fondant cutters can be handy.) Use the kitchen shears to cut the flower shapes.

fold4. Fold each flower shape carefully in quarters (to make the petals 3D) and release.

punch5. Layer the flower shapes together, the largest on the bottom and smallest on top. Use a scrapbooking eyelet setter to punch a hole (the same size as the scrapbooking brad or stud) in the aluminum flowers.

magnet5. Insert the brad or stud and use E6000 glue to secure the flower to a magnet.