A few months ago my husband and I were shopping at the local Rural King (my husband’s favorite store) and I found this trio of shiny galvanized buckets with a tray that was labeled as a herb planter. My first thought of course was “I can make something with that!” so it immediately went in the cart. I had no idea what I was going to do with a trio of buckets and the matching tray at the time, but I knew I would eventually find something to do with it. Finally, I decided to give the buckets an aged looked with inspirational words to be used in home decor. The end result is some versatile inspirational buckets for easy home decor.
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First I had to age the bright and shiny buckets.
You can find similar buckets on Amazon:
As much as I liked the three buckets and the matching tray, they were just too shiny. A common problem when purchasing new buckets of any kind. So a quick search on Pinterest yielded several ways to age galvanized buckets without leaving them out in the weather for weeks and waiting for them to naturally age.
But in end that is sort of what I ended up doing anyway.
I started the aging process for the buckets by first sanding them down with a fine grit 220 sandpaper. The next step was to soak them in a vinegar and water bath in the sink for a couple of hours as suggested.
When this didn’t work as well as I thought, I then followed another blogger’s advice and soaked a dish cloth in white vinegar and laid it across the bucket for several hours, turning the bucket around as needed. This took a bit more time but definitely worked to age the buckets. Since the vinegar was so smelly I took the buckets and tray outside and sat them in the sun along with the vinegar soaked towel. I think the heat outside also helped to age and oxidize the metal of the buckets as well.
During this process, I got sidetracked with other things and didn’t bring the buckets and tray back inside all day or for the next few days. I figured the weather wouldn’t hurt to naturally age them along with the vinegar bath anyway.
And it worked.
I left the buckets and tray outside all week, in the rain and heat, and ended up with a nice aged patina on all of the pieces.
Honestly, I don’t think just leaving them outside for a week would have aged them the same. It was a combination of all three steps. First the sanding, then the vinegar soak, and then leaving them outside.
I know there are quicker methods to age galvanized buckets, but since I wasn’t in a hurry, this method worked for me.
At first I didn’t know what else I was going to do to the buckets to use them as decor in my home. Did I paint them with some decorative detail? Put numbers on them – but then what numbers? My house numbers? Did I put words or phrases on them or just add some decorative ribbon?
I finally decided on a trio of words – faith, hope and love.
This set of words are perfect for a trio of buckets used for decor. And I can also use them individually elsewhere in the house as needed.
For the next part of the project, I pulled out my Cricut Joy™ and some black Smart Vinyl™.
Using the Cricut Design™ software, I was able to find different fonts and designs for those three words. This post is not meant to be a tutorial on using the Cricut Joy™ but instead is for inspiration for your own version of the project. Whether you use a cutting machine with vinyl or paint, the process is up to you.
To display the buckets, this time I put cut hydrangeas from my own yard (that the heat hasn’t killed yet) in the buckets, but next month I can easily use these same buckets and tray with sunflowers or pine cones. If I don’t want the words to show, I can just turn the buckets around.
This trio of galvanized buckets will find lots of difference uses in my home, especially over the holidays.
“There is hope for your future, says the Lord.” Jeremiah 31:17