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Wednesday, May 2, 2012

Outdoor Spring & Summer Craft Idea :: Coffee Can Planters

I have a chain link fence surrounding my pool.  While it is a great safety feature, it's horrifyingly ugly! Chain link is so industrial looking, and very un-appealing to the eye (in my opinion).  So what's a lady supposed to do?  Adorn it with flowers of course!

Armed with 6 coffee cans that I got from a lovely woman on Freecycle, some fine grit sandpaper from the garage, a can of spray primer (about $5), a can of beautiful blue spray paint (about $5), a drill and 12 S-hooks ($3), here's what I came up with!  

Beautiful, durable planters for under $15!  Plus, I have plenty of primer and paint left over for another project. You could get away with doing this project for free if you happen to have the supplies on hand, or are able to glean them from Freecycle like I did.  If I had thought about it, I probably could have scored the primer and paint on Freecycle too, maybe even the S-hooks.  

First I removed the labels from the coffee cans, and chipped off the remaining glue on the can.  Then I rubbed down the outside of each can with sandpaper to give the paint a little something to hold onto.  I then washed and dried each can thoroughly.  Using newspaper as a drop cloth, I sprayed each can with one coat of gray primer, then two coats of blue paint, letting them dry according to the directions on the can between coats.  I drilled a couple drainage holes on the bottom and 2 holes on the back rim of each can, attached the S-hooks, then hung them on the fence!  Add a little dirt and some annuals, and voila!  Instant chain link fence beautification is complete!

I actually did this project last year, and totally forgot to blog about it (shame on me), so these photos are from last year.  Because the cans are made of metal and are positioned in full sun all day, it was essential to water them frequently, but they lasted from Spring well into Fall.  I finally took them down when the last of the annuals had expired. 

I'm super excited to pull these out this weekend and replant them!  I am considering purchasing some eco-friendly spray paint to coat the inside of the cans this year to prevent rust from ruining them.  But regardless, this was such a cheap project that I could just recycle the cans and start over from scratch, and maybe even choose a different paint color!


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