1) You’ll need three or four empty soda cans. I used a variety of cans so my chimes would be more colorful.
2) You’ll also need a butterfly shaped punch. These are made by several manufacturers and you should be able to find them at craft or scrapbooking stores.
3) You’ll need some metal washers. These cost about a dollar a bag, but you probably already have some in your toolbox.
First you need to cut off the top and bottom of the can. You can use scissors or a knife, but be careful not to cut yourself, as the jagged edges could snag you. Discard the ends of the can, then cut it down the middle so it can lie flat.
Trim the edges so that they are smooth. Wipe down or wash the inside of the can before you begin.
Now use your punch to make butterfly shapes. You’ll need two shapes for each completed butterfly. I had 14 butterflies on mine, so I punched 28 altogether.
Use your hole punch to make a hole in the center of each butterfly.
Now it’s time to work with the thread. Clear thread can be tricky to work with, because it’s hard to see. But that’s exactly why we’re using it, because it will make your butterflies look like they’re floating. If you’re having trouble threading your needle, try using a permanent marker to color the tip of the thread.
We’re going to thread needles on BOTH ends of our thread, because it will make the thread much easier to keep track of. When you thread the needles, knot the thread right onto it. That way you can be sure that it won’t slip off, and you won’t have to bother with re-threading.
When adding the butterflies to your strand, put them so that the pattern is facing outward. Hold them together and thread the needle through the center hole. Tie a basic knot. It’s best to tie two knots, because if a butterfly came undone later, it would be very difficult to replace it on the middle of the strand.
You’re going to add the washers the same way. I’m using two different sizes, as they make slightly different sounds when they chime together. Try to space them an even distance apart.
You’ll need the center strand to be extra long. Then plan on having about four strands of medium length, and three that are short. The short ones will go on the outer ends of the branches.
Once your strands are completed, you can give the butterflies dimension by folding their wings forward.
I’m using twigs to hang my windchimes, but you could also use an embroidery hoop. If you’re using twigs, trim off the branches.
I’m going to tie my twigs together with a little bit of twine. You could also use yarn. Criss cross your twigs in a star shape and tie together in the center.
Tie your longest strand to the center of your twigs, and the shortest to the outer ends. Finally, tie a loop of clear thread around the center for hanging.