PDP Exclusives by Rebecca

Thursday, December 15, 2011

Fiber Optic Beer Can Tree

You know what rules? Holidays that some people find serious, and others can have FUN with. Wenchie is a master of FUN THINGS, and this project is no exception. Viva la PBR tree!!!!!

Yes it is obvious I do not have kids and I do not take the holidays very seriously. With that I bring you every cheap beer drinker's tree of choice, the beer tree. But I jazzed it up by using the cans to decorate the tree instead of be the tree this year.

I try to keep my "how to" blogs as cheap as possible so there is a good chance you can get a small fiber optic tree at a thrift store for less just plug it in and make sure it works. For piece of mind and so that this lasts longer then just this project I caved and bought a new one.
This white fiber optic tree I picked up at my local wal mart for 13 bucks they also had tree colored ones but I opted for white thinking it would better suit the cans I am choosing color wise.

So this is basically easy as long as you remember one thing. Hot glue will not stick to the tree no matter what you do so avoid even trying to glue anything to the tree directly. It will just melt the plastic parts, ruin the fiber optics, stink to hell and back and make you very unhappy.

So to start all I really used is
a 24 pack of empty cans,
a hot glue gun,
extra glue sticks,
a sharp knife.

I take the tree out of the box and fluff down the first layer to make a base for my first row of cans to sit on top of.

Then because I do not want the glue to melt the tree I assemble a circle of cans off the tree first leaving the last one out. Sorry my picture leaves something to be desired but I run a bead of glue again on the insides where every can meets just for added stability.

I then place it on my tree on top of the bottom row of branches

and glue the remaining can into the circle

Then because I am not thrilled with the way the bottom branches are sticking out so far I bend each one of them back in a z shape still leaving the end of the branch sticking out at that it the part where the fiber optics are.

So now it looks something more like this.
You do not have to do this, it is just how I want to shape my tree.

Now I start taking the next row of center branches and bending them down and over the first row of cans all the way around the tree.

And for some reason I seem to be missing the next photo, awesome except for the fact that all it showed was me repeating the same make a beer ring minus one can, make it one can smaller then your previous ring, mine went 7 cans, 6 cans, 5 cans, 1 can. and continue to pull down branches and fluff them out where you want the light up ends to be.

For the final can I used a sharp knife to cut the bottom out then I pulled the last longest branch of the tree through the mouth hole.

and plugged it in

Wenchkin is an amazing artist, specializing in muerto-inspired drawings, and thick black outlines. You can find her on Google+, on Facebook, or you can shop her ArtFire shop! She currently resides in Albuquerque with artist Scott Krichau, and their tripod Jack Russell "P."