Thursday, August 20, 2015

47 DIY Pretty PVC Containers



Today's project was initially dreamt up the moment I spotted some sweet little planters from Urban Outfitters.  I fell in love with their gold versatility and at around $8-$10 each, I didn't think the price was all that bad.  But I thought, "Hmmmm, could I just make them for less?"  I can certainly try!


It looks like my inspiration has since been sold out, but here is a glimpse of the one that I had heart eyes for.

(via)

My plan was to make three herb planters for our kitchen, so I went through a variety of DIY solutions in my mind continuously came back to PVC.  PVC is both easy to work with and not too expensive at most home improvement stores.

To get started, I purchased one 3" wide x 2' long PVC tube for around $7.50.  I also purchased a few cans of corn and dug out my gold spray paint and Rub-n-Buff.


Going in, I didn't think that I would be able to create a sleek waterproof option, so the cans of corn were purchased to act as an insert for holding soil or water, the PVC was to be more of a decorative sleeve.

The process was simple, we cut down the two feet of PVC into multiple cylinders, slightly taller than the can of corn (we were able to get 5 total cylinders from the single $7.50 tube).  PVC can easily be cut with most saws and lightly sanded to smooth any rough edges.

I then gave each PVC cylinder a few coats of Rustoleum Gold Metallic Spray Paint.


The cylinder on the right shows a nicely sanded cut edge, the one on the left shows the edge I initially missed which was easy enough to go back and fix even after painting.  The one on the left also shows the difference a little gold Rub-n-Buff made to the finish.  It gave it a little bit of that patina that is in the original inspiration piece; you can rub it in a straight or circular motion to achieve the look you are after.

And it was simple as that.  I planted a few herbs into my washed out corn cans, and slide the PVC over the top and instantly had myself some little gold planters.


But then I realized that they couldn't be easily moved without the can falling out of the bottom, which is not really an ideal situation, especially for items that need frequent watering.  So, I went back to the drawing board and also back to the home improvement store to find some 3" PVC caps (which I also sprayed).  Luckily, we cut the tubes long enough that the added height of the cap didn't push out the tin can, but it is something to consider when measuring for your cuts.


For the herb labels I had Parker paint me some thick popsicle sticks with craft paint and I added some vinyl labels with my Silhouette.  Cute right?



Buuuuut.... I ultimately decided that our kitchen doesn't really need three gold planters.  They were pretty, but our kitchen ultimately needs something with more character and color.  They gold was just "too much" anywhere they landed as a grouping of three.

However, I was loving the idea and didn't want to waste the project, so I just kept playing.


Round two I was going to make a wood vase.  We have played with wood veneer edging in the past, so I thought I would see how it would work wrapped around the PVC tubing.  Using scissors, I cut multiple strips just long enough to fully wrap the tube.


Hot glue alone didn't want to hold the strips, I found it stronger and better to start with a piece of tape (I used double sided) and hot glue.  Once the starting point was secure, I continued to hot glue and pull the strips tightly around the PVC.


If you find one doesn't lay the way you like, it is easy enough to pull it back up and try again, even a few strips in.


Once the strips were secure, I grabbed some stain and rubbed it onto the vase with a paper towel (Varathane's Early American).


After it was dry, I filled an empty tin can with water and placed it inside of the tube.  I then filled it with some fresh flowers and fell in love with the warm result.  I also loved the little bit of gold still popping through on the top.


The last tube was wrapped with some beautiful marble contact paper (still leftover from this project), to create a lovely and substantial looking pencil cup.




Once the bottom was added to the tubes they became endlessly versatile, especially with a can added as a liner for planting and water.  Most nights at dinner we keep things informal and I place all of the cutlery into a mason jar on the center of the table.  Now, I can toss them into the gold or marble "vase" to bring things up a notch.


Funny how one idea spun into a whole lot of randomness and the initial intention didn't even stick.  But that is why I love a little DIY crafting session, it allows the creativity to flow and you never know where you will end up.  And who knew that PVC and pretty could ever go together?

These little cups will be useful for so many fun things around the house.  Vases, planters, containers, drawer organizers, oh my!  Only time will tell where else they will land down the road.

First acrylic, now PVC... what's next?

47 comments:

  1. Great post! love your blog! ive only followed you recently and i love it! so helpful and entertaining, what more could i want in life?! xxx

    https://justthatdiy.wordpress.com

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  2. Wow I adore these! You're inspiring me to give this a try!

    Her Heartland Soul
    http://herheartlandsoul.com

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  3. I love everything about this project and have some serious heart eyes myself for that wood veneer wrapped vase! I'm planning my daughter's baby shower and I'm thinking that I could turn your brilliant little idea into a fabulous game prize...that is, if I can give them up.

    Peggy :-)

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  4. Hi Jen! What is the font that you used for the herb labels? I love it! Its the perfect font for cutting vinyl and I've been looking for something like that for a while.

    Christene

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    Replies
    1. Hi Christene! The font is called "Juliette".

      xo!

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  5. Obsessed. That's all there is to say.

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  6. Jen, I love your creativity and the project turned out beautiful!
    Buuut...
    Have you ever heard about the toxicity of PVC and the myriad of spray paint ingredients? Do you ever worry about your and your family's exposure?
    I am so glad you decided not to plant herbs in PVC pots. I would not eat any food grown in polyvinyl chloride. I keep absolutely zerp pvc products or toys in my home with small children. This includes vinyl.
    Just Google PVC to see what I mean. It's like the #1 most toxic type of plastic out there.

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    Replies
    1. Thanks for the heads up! I guess I assumed that because homes are plumbed with the material and our daily water flows through it, that it is safe. But I should also know better than to assume anything so...

      I did find this article helpful: http://www.motherearthnews.com/green-homes/the-vinyl-debate.aspx

      Although we won't be utilizing it for food related functions, I am hoping a few vases or pencil cup holders up on a shelf will be OK based on the article stating the following, "Once PVC is produced, VCM is no longer emitted, so it doesn’t pose a threat to anybody who uses vinyl. Dioxin can only be released from PVC when it is burned at low or extremely high temperatures."

      However, I will continue to research it and greatly appreciate you chiming in because ultimately I only want to select products safe for our family (and readers!)

      xo!

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  7. I have just done something very similiar with tin cans here: www.homemadebyhail.blogspot.com

    Will definitely give these other containers a go, thanks for the idea!

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  8. These look great. Just curious, what rub 'n buff finish did you use?

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    Replies
    1. Hi Sara! My favorite Rub-n-Buff is the Gold Leaf finish. :)

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  9. OMG! Seriously love the planters. Totally going to try them with my metallic spray paint. Now I just have to keep the plants alive...

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  10. Love it! It looks easy to do and yet so pretty. I especially love the wood and gold.

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  11. Ok so am I the only one wondering what you wound up doing for the herbs?? I'd love to know what you wound up putting them in! I loved your original idea for them but then I also loved what you turned them into instead... so cute! -- Katie

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    1. Ha, thanks Katie! They are still in the empty corn cans. :D I am going to hunt down another option that is less blingy and that works better in our kitchen. xo!

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  12. What font did you use for the Silhouette labels?? So pretty!

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    1. Hi Leanne! The font is called "Juliette".

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  13. Oh, I really love all of these ideas. I would probably use smaller jam jars for the insert rather than tin to avoid any rusting. Jen, how do you get such a smooth finish with the spray paint? I always finish up with either drips or bubbles. Where am I going wrong?

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    Replies
    1. Yes to jars, they would work great as well. I will be saving small jelly and condiment jars as we use them. :) When it comes to spray paint, I do better when I use a flatter finish (glossy is more prone to running/dripping). It also helps to add a thin coat of primer or to rough things up a tiny bit with sandpaper if you are spraying something super smooth. Finally, I do a lot of thinner coats, keeping the can about 12-18 away from what I am spraying and only waiting 1-2 minutes between each coat. Too much paint too quickly can also cause dripping.

      xoxo!

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  14. I love your mouse pad. Did you DIY or where I might I find one so cute?

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    Replies
    1. Hi Shelley,

      I purchased the mouse pad from Caitlin Wilson Textiles: http://caitlinwilson.com/products/bridgecity-blooms-in-grey-mousepad?variant=3264208964

      It's a beauty!
      Jen

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  15. I really love all of these! Marble contact paper is so wonderful.
    - Kaitlyn | www.TheCrownFox.com

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  16. Wow, these all turned out beautifully. Who would have guessed it was pvc pipe? I may just have to try to make some of my own. They'd be perfect for a transformation Tuesday post on my blog!

    Cheers!

    Mackenzie @ smithfamilyrenovations.com

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  17. I had saved some PVC pipe from another project. This weekend I will up-cycle those pieces! Thank you for the great idea!

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  18. I love it!

    I'm pretty allergic to DIY - but even I can do this :) (I think...)

    Thanks, Jen!

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  19. Wow. You are such an inspiring person. I love everything you do.

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  20. This is brilliant! im so doing this!
    XO Ellen from Ask Away
    www.askawayblog.com

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  21. Do you have to have drains on those planters? I love all the containers that are used for planting small plants around pinterest; just wondering how they survive without drains. Great ideas, Jen, can't wait for some more.

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    Replies
    1. Hi Anju,

      I don't typically add drains - although - I am far from having a green thumb. I usually just add small pebbles in the bottom of any container I plant in and water just enough to saturate the soil each day. I worry more about drainage on my outdoor plants where I don't have control of the amount of water they receive.

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    2. Thanks Jen, that would help😀

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  22. OMG...Love the white plates with the flowers! Where are they from?!

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    Replies
    1. Thank you! Found them at Sur La Table earlier this summer. xo!

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  23. that's so pretty! can never go wrong with gold ;)

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  24. Jen - you are so clever! Love these... I'd probably go with a pewter finish as that's the majority of my home décor, but love the core idea! Thanks!

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  25. love this! can't wait to try!

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  26. Beyond Awesome :) Now I can justify all the cute shaped cylindrical packaging I've been hoarding, metallic paints I bought on special offer, and even the veneer edging I bought cos it was cheap!!! :)

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  27. What a creative idea! Absolutely love this, and can't wait to try it on my own.

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  28. Those are super cute!! I really love the wood and marble ones, and that little peek of gold is perfection! So clever, love!!!

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  29. Adorable! I'm not sure if you've seen this at IKEA yet but here in Canada we have the HEMSMAK line that comes in a brushed silver finish and a brushed gold finish - tins, little boxes, etc that are quite lovely! The gold finish you use is very similar which reminded me to mention it to you!

    http://www.ikea.com/ca/en/catalog/products/20312312/

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  30. Love this!!! I may be trying this once the kiddies go back to school. Is this the same concept you used for the gold dipped blue mason jars??

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  31. Love this! So easy, cheap and it looks like the expensive ones out there, and who knew PVC could look that good! Great little project and that's for sharing!

    P.s isn't that always the case, where we try something and ended up inventing something new/else?

    Lauren Baxter | Lovely Decor
    www.lovelydecor.co
    xx

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  32. Love this project!!!! So beautiful!!!

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