How to Tin Punch

Tin Punching is an art form that uses primarily tin as its medium. Tin is a soft and malleable metal making it well suited for tin punch or punch cutting. Since tin is easy to shape, adding indents or perforation to tin pieces takes little effort. However, the most professional results are obtained by using the proper tools and supplies.

To get started, you'll want to gather the following items needed to complete your project.


  • Old Piece of Plywood
  • Heavy Cardboard
  • Tin Sheet
  • Tin Punch Tool
  • Rubber Mallet
  • Tin Punch Pattern
  • Tape
  • Tin Snips (optional)
  • Antiquing Finish (optional)

1. Before starting familiarize yourself with the tools and practice using the Tin Punch Tools along with the rubber mallet to get a feel for the amount of force you need to make an indention in the surface of the tin.

2. Place your piece of plywood on a table with the cardboard on top. Cut the tin to the desired sizes if necessary. (We offer two sizes of Tin Punch Sheets - 10" x 14" and 24" x 29." The 10" x 14" tin sheets are precut to fit the size of our Tin Punch Patterns and coordinate with the openings on many antique pie safes. Check size before order.) Tape the tin sheets to the cardboard to keep it from slipping. Tape your tin punch pattern to the tin.

3. Select the tin punch tool that coordinates with the mark indicated on the tin punch pattern and position it over the mark on the pattern. Hit it lightly with the mallet. Check to see if it made a mark in the tin at the depth you desire. If you hit the mallet too lightly, you may not be able to see the mark well enough from a distance. If you hit it too hard it could go all the way through the tin. Keep moving through your pattern, checking occasionally to make sure you are staying consistent.

Your basic tin punch project is now complete! However, there are many other options that you may want to use to create your own unique piece of art. Try using a finish on the tin to give it an aged appearance. Once you become experienced with tin punch why not try the technique using copper sheets. We have a large selection of Copper Sheets with unique aged finishes that will add rustic appeal to your decor. Try using punched copper sheets to replace the panels in your cabinets for a custom look.