DIY Monsters Inc. “Scream Canister” Money Box

My, oh my, it’s been quite a journey to get to this post. I have re-made the vinyl decorations for this money box SO many times, in SO many different colours and shapes, to the point where I ended up running out of certain coloured vinyl and transfer tape ๐Ÿ˜…

Honestly, my first prototype was an EXACTLY replica of the canister from the movie, but it was so ugly in real life as I couldn’t make it look layered that I ended up throwing it out!

Then, even after ending up with what you’re seeing in this post, I decided not to share it after all… until now. As you may have noticed by the lull of posts in the second half of August, I hit a real creative wall at one point.

It wasn’t that I couldn’t come up with ideas, as I had plenty of them, it’s that they all kept failing. Over and over again! I wasn’t even happy with my last cupcake recipe, which is why I decided to make the point of the post how cupcakes are NOT as easy to make as they seem!

DIY project money box scream canister Monsters Inc thesmalladventurerDIY project Monsters Inc Scream Canister money box thesmalladventurer

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Anyway, at some point I realised I had to get over myself and share something, so here we are. Long-time readers will know that I love collecting money boxes the most AND that I also love making them, and whilst this is my fourth DIY money box, this is my FIRST one using an upcycled Pringles can. (Previously I have used mailing tubes and empty baking powder containers.) I just love discovering new mediums and items to use for my crafts ๐Ÿ™Š  Now, onto the tutorial!



โ™ก One empty Pringles can
โ™ก Vinyl in black, grey, yellow, and red
โ™ก Transfer tape
โ™ก Paint brush
โ™ก Yellow acrylic paint
โ™ก White primer
โ™ก Pencil
โ™ก Scissors
โ™ก Ruler
โ™ก X-acto knife
โ™ก Cricut machine OR small black letter and number stickers
โ™ก String or non-metal measuring tape (optional)


1. Using a just-damp cloth, gently wipe out the inside of the Pringles can. Wipe once again with a paper towel, then leave to dry with the lid off. Repeat again if necessary.

2. Place the lid back on the top. Get the largest coin from your country’s currency, hold it near the top of the Pringles can, leaving about 3mm between the coin and the bottom of the lid. Trace around the coin with your pencil.

3. Carefully use your X-acto knife to cut along the lines you just drew, then push out the piece of cardboard that you just cut and throw it away. If needed, use the knife to cut away any scraggly edges just cut.

Monsters Inc Scream Canister Money Box DIY Project thesmalladventurerScream Canister Monsters Inc Doors Money Box DIY Project thesmalladventurer

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4. Take off the lid, then cover the outsides of the Pringles can in primer. Let it dry, and repeat as many times as needed until you can’t see the logo anymore. Let dry completely.

5. Paint the entire can in yellow paint. Repeat with as many layers as you deem necessary, but remember to allow to dry in between each layer, then allow to dry completely when finished.

6. I first measured how long the two black strips of vinyl needed to be. To do this, I got some baking twine, wrapped it around the can, and cut it to size. I then flipped over the black vinyl, measured how long the twine was, and used the ruler to rule two 1.5cm thick strips of black vinyl.

You can do something similar with a measuring tape, or you can just wrap the vinyl around the can backwards, and draw on the back. Choose whichever method you like.

7. Get your grey vinyl sheet and flip it over. Measure out a strip that’s 2.5cm wide and 8cm tall, and cut it out. Flip over your red vinyl, measure out 5 small rectangles that are each 1.7cm wide and 0.9cm tall, then cut them out.

8. Go back to your black vinyl and measure out one small rectangle that is also 1.7cm wide and 0.9cm tall, then cut that out too. Stick the rectangles down onto the larger grey rectangle, ensuring that they are 0.4cm away from each other and the edges.

9. Flip over your yellow vinyl and draw a small “plus” and “minus” symbol, each 0.7cm wide – the plus will also be 0.7 tall. Stick them down onto some grey vinyl, and cut closely around them again to give them a bit of a “shadow”.

10. I decided to do my triangles part of the canister grey as that’s what they are in the movie, but you can barely see them in real life, so you may want to make yours with black vinyl so they will be more visible.

Whichever colour you choose, flip the vinyl sheet over and draw six identical mini triangles (you may want to draw one on a separate piece of paper and trace around it to ensure that they end up being the same size), then cut them out. Stick them down on opposite sides of the bottom rectangles, top rectangles, and in between the third and fourth rectangles.

DIY project money box Monsters Inc Scream Canister thesmalladventurerMonsters Inc Scream Canister DIY Project money box thesmalladventurer

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11. Position the can so that the coin slot that you cut out earlier is at the back. Grab your grey rectangle vinyl piece and peel off the backing, then carefully stick it down in the middle of your can. Find your “plus” and “minus” pieces, then stick them above and below that rectangle too.

12. Grab the two long black vinyl strips and very carefully stick them around your can one at a time as well. Ensure that the top strip will not go over the coin slot BEFORE you start to stick it down. If one of the strips starts to curve or bend, gently and slowly peel it off and stick if back down again, DON’T rip it back up quickly, or paint might come off with it!

13. If you’re using stickers, stick them down next to the rectangle now. If not, open up Design Space and click on the text box option. Change the font to Cricut Sans and make it bold, then type “Max. Scream Capacity 8400 SUV” all in capital letters.

Hit ‘enter’ after the word “capacity” so the sentence is on two lines, and change the size of the text box so that the width is 3.1 inches, then cut it out.

14. Peel away the excess vinyl, then use your transfer tape to stick it down just as you see in the photos – then you’re done! I hope that was worth it because I’m so over this project, I’d like to publish this post and never look back ๐Ÿ˜‚


Okay, now I’m going to leave you with some Monsters Inc.-inspired posts that are 100% worth your time: Mike and Sulley cake jars, DIY pencil holders (too cute!), Sulley s’mores dip, PLUS this three-in-one post: DIY Sulley pom pom slippers, Mike Wazowski cupcakes, *giant* iconic door DIY garland – ALL made by Studio DIY ๐Ÿ™Œ

Until next time,
Indya xx

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27 thoughts on “DIY Monsters Inc. “Scream Canister” Money Box

  1. This is soo cool. You totally gave me a flashback to the 80s when my dad made me a coin bank out of an old peanut butter glass jar. I remember watching it as we would fill it up together, my dad with his loose change and me with my coins I earned doing chores. Then we would take it to get a sno-ball or some treat or use it to pay for hot dog day at school or something! But I love how easy and creative this do it yourself Monsters, Inc Scream Meter Coin Canister is to make. I wonder if you could actually cut out a section where you put the meter and put some sort of colored film so the coins could be the meter actually going up!


    • Aw, that’s such a nice story from your childhood โ˜บ๏ธ I never had homemade money boxes as a kid, but I collected secondhand ones from charity stores, and have started novelty ones like this over the last two years because it’s just so much fun ๐Ÿ™Š

      That’s actually a really good idea! Perhaps even just cutting out the meter altogether and sticking red cellophane over it instead instead, so when the coins fill up the tube, it darker and looked like it was filling up? Hmm ๐Ÿค” I actually wanted to somehow make it like those heat-changing mugs so it would change from grey to red when it got fuller, but I couldn’t figure out a way to make that happen since coins aren’t hot! ๐Ÿ˜…

      Liked by 1 person

      • Haha, yeah the heat changing idea sounds neat in theory but I can only imagine how many crazy kids would be trying to “warm” up their coins to make the meter change!


    • Thank you! We’re currently in lockdown where I live so I’m running out of craft materials, so I’m trying to make do with what I have ๐Ÿ˜… and my partner loves Pringles! Thanks, I love the charm bracelet too ๐Ÿ˜ I had an obsession with making them out of everything I could possibly think of a little while ago!


  2. How creative! I will try and make one then give it to my grandson. I know he is saving money so that he could buy a Nerf gun on Christmas. This money box would really motivate him to save money! Thank you for the step by step instructions.


  3. How cute! I love Monsters Inc so much, and this is an adorable craft. I really like that you upcycled a pringles can, and the vinyl cutout make this look so good.


    • Thank you! I love Monsters Inc too โ˜บ๏ธ I’ve been running out of a lot of craft supplies whilst we’re in lockdown where I live, which has forced me to be extra creative with my projects and led me to upcycle quite a few things lately! And yes, vinyl makes everything look better ๐Ÿ™Œ


  4. OMG that’s such a cool idea. My son loves Monsters Inc so I’m sure he’d love this. It makes a nice big money box!!!!


    • Haha, thank you! Truth is, I just love money boxes ๐Ÿ˜‚ They’re one of the *many* things I collect! Thank you again. I honestly usually give up when a project doesn’t seem like it’s going to work out, but I’m glad I stuck with this one โ˜บ๏ธ


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