Sep 17, 2022
Colorful Upcycled Tin Can Wind Sock Decoration

Are you ready to decorate your lawn and garden for springtime? Check out this super easy tin can windsock decoration. It’s definitely a must for any home and garden. This craft project is perfect for those who want to add a bit of fun and whimsy to their outdoor decor. Since it is made from recycled materials, it is definitely one of those crafts that are free or at least very low cost. Plus, it’s simple enough to make that you can do this with the kids!

tree holding windsock made of tin can and ribbons

Tin Can Wind Sock

If you are like me and hold on to those empty tin cans for a project later down the road, then this is one you will have fun making. Use an empty tin can and a few craft supplies you already have on hand, and you have a decorative windsock for your garden.

Hang this from trees, fences, or a porch roof. Of course, if you want it to blow around unrestrained, you can use a hook or a plant hanger on top. Even a Moses hook would work! Freestanding plant hangers work best for this and it is a great addition anywhere in your garden.

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If you like this idea, then you’ll probably like the ideas that are a bit more seasonal like this tin can ghost that is also a windsock of sorts. Another option is this upcycled CD and tin can wind chime idea. It’s super cute but just a bit different!

green red and yellow ribbon on tin can windsock hanging from deck ceiling

What is a Wind Sock Used For?

A windsock is used to indicate the wind direction. It is placed in an open area so that it can spin and catch the wind. The direction of the spin will indicate the direction of the wind. It creates a beautiful decorative design to add color and movement to your garden. I love this because it looks so pretty hanging outside, but it also shows you exactly which way the wind is blowing and just how strong!

tin can windsock on table with colorful ribbons

Where Do You Put a Wind Sock?

A windsock should be placed in an open area so it can catch the wind. The ideal placement for a traditional one is on top of a building or mast. However, if you don’t have a good place to put your windsock, you can also hang it from a tree or post. I love the idea of ​​using a garden Moses hook for it, or hanging it along the porch roof so it dangles over the rails but has room for movement.

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You may have also seen some similar to this that are meant for interior decorations. You can use this one both inside and outside, but inside, obviously, it’s all about decor and not functional for weather reasons.

tin can windsock on deck

Why is it Called A Wind Sock?

The windsock is called this because it is in the shape of a sock. The sock catches the wind and spins around to indicate the direction of the wind. It is simply one of those words that is very much a literal meaning.

brick background behind tin can with ribbons hanging from the bottom

What Should I Use for the Ribbons On My Tin Can Windsock?

Creating the “sock” part of this is easy when you use ribbons. You can choose from any type or size of ribbon, or even go for actual fabric cut into strips. I grabbed some ribbon that had a few extra feet leftover from past projects. As always, making something upcycled like this is great for using up items you already have on hand.

If you want to be specific, I find fabric ribbons to work well with this since it’s a bit more durable for the elements. The only thing I would avoid is using a paper ribbon that would dissolve if it got wet.

Get creative and look at old towels, sheets, t-shirts, pillowcases, or fabric scraps to cut and create different widths of ribbon to make your own windsock look even more unique.

lady in gray and red holding tin can windsock


tin can twine paper and ribbon on white table with scissors and drill

How to Make a Tin Can Windsock

Measure the diameter and height of the tin can you will be using, then cut a length of scrapbook paper to fit.

ruler and pen measuring against paper

I ended up a bit short so used a length of ribbon as well, but that is not necessary.

lady with gray scissors cutting cactus paper

Once the paper is cut to size, wrap it around the tin can gluing in place and holding it to dry.

cactus paper being wrapped around tin can

If wanted, you can still add ribbon on the seam for decor, but it is not necessary.

gluing red and white checked ribbon onto side of tin can

Next, measure out 3 foot long lengths of ribbon.

hand cutting red and white ribbon

Make a few of each color or pattern of ribbon you want to use until you have 8 to 10 ribbons pieces.

ribbons in multiple colors curled on white table

Now, begin gluing the ribbons just on the inside edge of the open end of the tin can.

hand adding glue to white ribbon

Glue the ribbons along the inside edge until you are happy with how many are dangling, making sure you use different ones instead of all of the same in a row.

hand gluing ribbons inside tin can

Then, use a soldering iron or a drill with a bit to make a hole in the other end of the tin can. A hammer and nail work well for this.

hand holding drill on top of tin can wrapped in cactus paper

Cut a piece of twine that is around 20″ long, then loop and push the two ends through the hole you just created. Reach through the can and pull the ends together to tie them into a knot. Then, pull the twine through the top so the knot keeps it in place with a loop over the top for hanging.

hand poking twine through top of tin can

Add any additional decorations wanted before hanging outside in the wind!

tin can windsock hanging in front of small table with white chairs

More Tin Can Crafts

If you like this idea, you’ll love some of our other tin can ideas. Upcycling is always preferred when it’s time to craft, and below are some more of my favorite ideas using empty cans. Make sure that you bookmark the ideas, print out the tutorials, or pin them to a favorite crafting Pinterest board to make them soon!

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Yield: 1

tin can windsock hanging on tree

A fun upcycled tin can windsock is the best addition to your garden that uses entirely upcycled materials! An easy repurposed tin can craft!

Active Time
20 minutes

Total Time
20 minutes


Estimated Cost


Use any ribbon, streamer, twine, or lace to create the “sock” on the wind sock.

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woman holding tin can with ribbons on bottom

Add ribbon, twine, embroidery thread, or lace to dangle on the bottom of your windsock.

windsock made of tin cans and ribbons in front of white wall

Make these in different holiday colors and themes to make a unique decoration for each season.

tin can windsock with green white and yellow ribbon on white table

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