DIY Outdoor Drink Holders
A few weeks ago, I shared this tutorial over at Positively Splendid. Here it is again in case you didn’t get a chance to pop over and see this fun summer project!
It’s officially summer, and now that my baby boy is no longer crawling around the ground but instead off and running, I am really excited to be able to spend a lot more time outside! We have a big front yard that we are currently outfitting with new chairs, a fire pit, outdoor poofs and other fun items in order to make this space the go-to spot for the whole family. While I was strolling through a local market recently, I stumbled upon the neatest idea for outdoor drink holders and knew they were just the thing for our outdoor seating area! Instead of buying them, I decided to give them the good ol’ DIY try, and here’s how mine turned out!
Let me show you how I did it!
Believe it or not, I started here…with a can of Progressive Soup!
Here’s what else you will need!
1. Clean the can. If you haven’t yet, empty the can of its soup or other contents (go ahead….go eat your soup…I’ll be here when you’re ready to get started!) Remove the label off your can by cutting a nice neat line down the side with a scissors, and set the label aside (you’ll see why in a bit). CAREFULLY wash out your can with soap and warm water (I say “carefully” because that inner edge is SHARP! Don’t worry, we’ll take care of that scary edge in a bit! For now, just be careful.)
2. Cut two fabric strips. You will need two strips of fabric for this project: one wider, one thinner, both the same length. I don’t have exact measurements for you…here’s why!
I used some of Amy Butler’s new Lark line for my project. One of the reasons I chose this fabric was that I wanted to use the alternating medallions on each of my cans. One can has the light blue medallions, while the other has dark blue (isn’t this fabric gorgeous?!?)
You may certainly measure your can and cut a fabric strip using a rotary cutter or scissors if you’d prefer, but I found it pretty quick and easy just to use my can label as a pattern! And since I wanted to fussy cut my fabric, this method helped me center my cutting just right.
When cutting your fabric strip for the outside of the can, cut it just wide enough for your can but add an extra inch or two in length for overlap around the circumference. My skinnier strip (shown above) is about 1.5″ thick and the same length as the wider strip.
3. Drill (or hammer) a hole into the bottom of the can. Flip your can over so that the base is facing you. Using a drill with a 1/4″ bit or a 1/4″ nail and hammer, put a hole in the bottom of your can.
4. Glue fabric to the outside of the can. Having worked with it in the past, I really wanted to use Outdoor Mod Podge for this project. Wouldn’t you know that EVERY craft store in my area is out of the stuff (and you know I checked them all!). What I did find was this cute little variety pack. It had just enough regular Mod Podge and Outdoor Mod Podge for this project (and now I can try the other kinds of Mod Podge that I’ve never had a reason to buy!)
Attaching your fabric to the outside of the can is pretty easy!
- (a) Cover the outside of the can in Mod Podge (you can use the regular or the Outdoor stuff for this step!)
- (b) Slowly wrap your fabric around the can, smoothing air bubbles as you go.
- (c) When you get back around, trim your fabric so you have a 1/2″ overlap and secure the end with more Mod Podge.
5. Prepare the skinny fabric strip. To take care of that scary edge on the inside top of the can, we are going to cover it with the smaller fabric strip.
- (a) Brush Mod Podge along the entire back of the skinnier fabric strip.
- (b) Fold in half (wrong sides together) and press flat.
- (c) Snip small slits about every 1/2″ or so (this is because we didn’t cut our fabric on the bias. If you want to cut your fabric on the bias or use bias tape, then no snipping is required!)
6. Glue fabric to the top inside rim of the can. This is probably the trickiest part of the whole project! First, cover the top inside rim of your can with more Mod Podge.
Then working slowly (and patiently), press your fabric strip along the inside of the rim. You may need to go around a couple times to really get it to stick… (Note – in a moment of frustration, I almost pulled out my glue gun. If you can’t get your’s to stick just right…I suggest you use a glue gun or something that has quick drying power!)
But once you do, you will have a pretty (and safe) inside rim!
7. Seal the fabric strips with Outdoor Mod Podge. Here is where you really want to use the Outdoor Mod Podge (if you can find it!) or some other weather-proof sealer! Using a sponge, cover both the outer and inner fabric strips with (at least) two coats of the protective finish. Let dry.
So pretty and shiny!
8. Assemble all hardware pieces. Once your can is dry to the touch, you can go ahead and assemble the whole thing! Here’s a quick snapshot of the hardware you are looking for when you’re at the hardware store!
And here’s how it goes together!
- (a) Twist one bolt about 4″ down the threaded rod.
- (b) Place one washer on top of the bolt.
- (c) Place the can (bottom side down – that’s what the hole was for!) on top of the washer.
- (d) Place the other washer and the other bolt on top of the threaded rod.
It is best to make sure the top bolt and washer are flush with the top of the rod. Here is what I mean:
- (e) Then flip your can over and tighten the original bolt and washer toward the can. You should end up like this: bolt > washer > bottom of can < washer < bolt.
But wait! Before you tighten everything up!!
9. Glue outside washer with Gorilla Glue. Following manufacture’s instructions, put a little bit of water and then Gorilla Glue just under the flat washer on the OUTSIDE of the can. Then twist the bolt and make it as tight as you can!
10. Let glue dry. Let the glue dry for about an hour or so before proceeding by placing the cans on their tops.
11. Cover inside bolt and washer with resin. The last step is to pour resin inside the bottom of the can.
You can certainly skip this step if you’d like, but I wanted to smooth out the uneven surface on the inside of the can created by the washer and bolt. See what I mean?
The EnviroTex Lite is pretty easy to use, and I was able to mix just enough for this project! AND I was really pleased that it didn’t have a strong odor (so we could bring it in over night to dry!).
To pour it in:
- (a) I stood my two drink holders up in a pot filled with sand and made sure they were as level as I could get them!
- (b) I mixed the resin according to package directions and poured it in the bottoms of the cups…just high enough to cover the washer and bolt.
It takes about 5-6 hours to set and then 48 hours until you can put a drink in your can. See? Nice, pretty, smooth bottom! And it really helps to make the whole thing much sturdier!
Now you’re ready to drive your rod into the ground or sand near a comfy seat…insert a beverage, and relax! (NOTE – depending on the soil/sod in your yard, it might be tough to get it in the ground! If it hasn’t rained in a while or if you have really tightly packed soil, drive a garden stake or nail into the ground first, and then put your drink holder in!)
Hope everyone’s summer is off to a great start! If you haven’t yet, I’d love for you to come say “hi” over at The Homes I Have Made! Thanks again to Amy for having me, and I’ll see you back next month!
See You Soon!
10 Comments on “DIY Outdoor Drink Holders”
what an awesome idea! we could use some of these when we play corn hole!
Love this idea. I need it for fishing. It would be perfect to keep my drink and snack out of the sand and junk on the shore. Not to mention perfect for the backyard by the fire pit. Thanks for sharing!
What a neat idea and it's so cute. Those are nuts, btw. Not bolts.
What a fantastic idea – and I thank your husband for his service. And I wouldn’t forget you – you are the glue that keeps your family together and you have also given to our great country and I thank you as well.
Pingback: 50 Backyard Hacks - Home Stories A to Z
Pingback: 12 Ways To Reuse Empty Cans | Monika Trump Official
This is so cute & creative. I have always thought these beach drink holders are awesome when I’ve seen them for sale, but they are always so expensive that I’d rather leave my drink sandy. Can’t wait to try these! Thank you for the tutorial! 🙂
Since I had access to all the different images (from creating the files), I just uploaded the various images into Cricut Design Space and cut them. My best suggestion is to take a screen shot of the sticker(s) you want to cut directly from the PDF, then upload them to your e-cutter software and clean them up. I just tried it with the T-shirt icon and it worked great. Let me know if you need more guidance and I can try and write it out for you!
Hope that helps,
Do you need drain holes or anything absorbent for condensation or rain? (in case you leave them outside)
These are adorable!
Thank you for the cute project idea. I just wanted to let you know that what you are calling a “bolt” is actually a “nut” or “hex nut”.