Well, it is officially spring here! We finally had some gorgeous, sunny days in the 60s and 70s this weekend! Of course, that beautiful weather made it difficult to work on our guest bedroom makeover, so I didn’t get as much done as I would have liked. Oh, well! Life goes on! We had a fabulous weekend! This week is Spring Break for my kids, and I have a feeling I may be falling a little more behind on the challenge. But, you’re not here today to hear about the weather or my guest bedroom…I want to tell about how I aged galvanized metal buckets to make these rustic herb planters!
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This project started when I was checking out the Dollar Spot section at Target (Ikea also has a similar option). I found some really cute small galvanized buckets that I knew I had to do something with. They are $1 each and are the perfect size for so many things. I’ve been thinking about picking up a few more to corral the kids art supplies. It would be super easy to just stick a chalkboard label on them and use them to organize so many things in their playroom!
I love growing herbs indoors for cooking, but usually, I just keep them in the containers they came in from the grocery store. I thought these little buckets would be perfect for giving them a little more decorative home.
The aging process was really easy once I figured it out. I used Zep Acidic Toilet Bowl Cleaner to do most of the work.
Here’s what I used:
- Zep Acidic Toilet Bowl Cleaner
- steel wool
- rubber gloves
- baking soda
I found a large plastic bucket to do all the work in so that I didn’t get toilet bowl cleaner all over everything. I roughed up the buckets with the steel wool and then applied the cleaner all over the buckets.
The glossy finish was worn off in about 30 minutes, but it didn’t have the look I was hoping for. It wasn’t shiny anymore, but it also didn’t have an aged appearance, so I reapplied the toilet bowl cleaner.
30 minutes later it still looked the same, so I needed to try something else. I decided to add some baking soda in with the toilet bowl cleaner to make a paste. It instantly foamed up as soon as I put in the baking soda, so don’t be surprised by it. I applied the foamy paste to the buckets, and that’s when the magic started to happen! Almost instantly I could see rust starting to pool, so I knew it was doing the job!
I let the buckets sit until they were fairly dry, about 45 minutes, and then rinsed them off. They looked so much better this time! They had much more of an aged patina to them.
Once you’re done aging them it’s time to get creative! I decided to paint some stripes on them and label the herbs I was planting. First, I taped them off with painters’ tape.
*A tip on painting stripes on a curved surface…cut thin pieces strips of tape to get straighter lines, and then use wider pieces of tape to cover areas you don’t want painted after you make your lines. I didn’t figure this out until I was on my third bucket, and I was trying to get straight lines from thick pieces of tape. Using thin strips of tapes first made it so much easier to apply!
After I taped them off, I sprayed them with Rust-Oleum’s Lemon Grass, which has been one of my favorite colors lately. It’s a sunny shade of yellow that looks great with gray. Once that dried, I cut the letter stencil with my Silhouette, applied it to the buckets, taped off a few more areas, and sprayed the letters with Rust-Oleum’s Satin Granite.
Since I am using these buckets as planters we punched a few holes in the bottom with a nail for drainage.
To give them a little more rustic look, I distressed the buckets with some sandpaper in a few spots and then filled them with herbs. As I was setting them in front of my window I remembered a small tray I have that would be the perfect size for my new planters. I gave it a single coat of Lemon Grass spray paint, allowing the silver from the tray to show through a bit.
[clickToTweet tweet=”Learn how to age galvanized metal quickly to make these rustic farmhouse herb planters!” quote=”I found some really cute small galvanized buckets that I knew I had to do something with. They are $1 each and are the perfect size for so many things.”]
Check out how they turned out…I love how they look on my kitchen windowsill. They have just the right amount of rustic!
While I was at Target I also picked up a larger oval galvanized bucket with rope handles that I can’t wait to turn into an outdoor planter. Have you aged galvanized metal before? What kind of projects have you used it for?
Here’s a pinnable image you can use:
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