watering cans.

Anyone else out there have a thing for watering cans?

That is my friend Sue’s watering can non-collection, so I know that she does.  I have quite a thing for them myself as well.  How about you?

Watering cans are such a quintessential gardening tool, yet I’ll admit I rarely use one to actually water my plants.  I mostly use the hose for that.  For me, they are more for decoration rather than actual function.

I’ve shared a few watering can transformations here on the blog, one of my favorites being this one

I simply added the small version of the IOD Le Petit Rosier transfer to a can that had already been painted white.  I ended up selling that particular watering can, but I loved it so much that I did another one just like it to keep for myself.

That was one that was also already painted when I found it, as was this green one that is part of my own non-collection …

I enjoy painting them myself as well though.  I painted this one in Miss Mustard Seeds Flow Blue.

This next one is also painted in milk paint, Maritime Blue from Homestead House.

That one was another one that I loved so much that I kept it.  I also decided the color should be called Hydrangea Blue rather than Maritime Blue since it was such a lovely match to those pretty hydrangeas.

Your q tip of the day;  I have found that milk paint will adhere fairly well to clean galvanized metal that has a dull finish that feels a little toothy to the touch.

The next little can had a shinier, smoother finish and probably wouldn’t have been a good candidate for milk paint.  Instead I just added a Classic Vintage Label transfer from re.design with prima …

This next watering can also has a Classic Vintage Label added, and this is another that I’ve kept for myself since I love it so much.

I’ve found that the original version of the IOD French Pots transfers (the grey ones from Prima Marketing) were a bit too pale for use on galvanized metal.

Unless of course you like that very subtle look.

The newer French Pots transfers that were released by IOD are black rather than grey, so they stand out quite nicely.

Anyway, all of this wandering down memory lane was my way of gathering inspiration for another watering can that I picked up at a garage sale last season.

If you look closely, you can see that it isn’t sitting flat on my work surface.  I don’t know why watering cans often develop a sort of bulge in the bottom.  Maybe because water is left in them over the winter and it freezes and expands?  For whatever reason, they are often wonky like this when I get them.

That is easily remedied by turning the can over and smacking the bottom with a hammer a few times so that it become concave rather than convex.  Now it sits flat.

After reviewing those watering cans that I painted in pretty shades of milk paint, I decided to pull out the Sweet Pickins Patina for this one.

I absolutely love this color, couldn’t you just eat it up?

Unfortunately, I’ve found that it is a tough sell on furniture.  I painted a dresser in it several years ago and it took a quite a while to sell.  So now I tend to reserve it for smaller projects, like this one.

I felt fairly sure that the milk paint would stick to this piece, but just to be on the safe side I scuff sanded it just a bit.  As you can see, I did get good adherence for the most part, with a little chipping here and there … in my opinion, the perfect result.

I got the most chipping on the handle, which makes me think that I didn’t clean it well enough to remove any oily residue from the previous owners handling of it.

As I’m sure you realize, I love that chippy look though, so this is just fine by me.

In order to preserve it, I gave the watering can two coats of Dixie Belle’s Flat clear coat.  That should reduce any further chipping down the road.

I waited until after the clear coat was dry to add the IOD transfer.  I find that transfers adhere really well over the flat clear coat.

Now, you may be wondering what happened to that medallion sort of thingie on the side with the bee on it?

Well, I was unable to remove it, so it’s still there on the other side.

Before selling them on, I like to test watering cans to make sure they are water tight and they function properly.

This can is water tight, but oddly enough the rose (that’s what they call the spray nozzle thingie on a watering can) is removable.  Which also means that it leaks quite a bit.

So I wouldn’t use this as an actual watering can, but it makes a fantastic vase for a bunch of tulips.

This one won’t be joining my own non-collection though, I think I’ll sell it on.  So it’s in the pile of stuff to take to Reclaiming Beautiful and has a price tag of $22 on it.

16 thoughts on “watering cans.

  1. Those are WONDERFUL! I have my grandmothers old beat up one and love it to pieces! It sits on an end table with flowers in it all the time. One of my most treasured things as she was an amazing gardener and it shows much wear! Thanks for sharing!


  2. I was laughing out loud reading your blog today. I can just see you banging the crap out of the bottom of that can. Your description was so vivid, I read it out loud to the hubby. Love the color and the makeover was fabulous, as always. You’ll have to see if you can catch Sue in cleaning mode and grab her non-collection!


  3. I can’t imagine why the dresser you painted in Patina didn’t sell. It was beautiful!! These things are a mystery to me! 😉 I love all your pots Linda. Always an inspiration to me!


  4. Cute, cute, cute. The cans I find are always missing the rose ( I had no idea they had a name besides “the spout”) and I don’t like them when I water and remove them from ones I actually use too, but I sure like them to look at and wish my old galvanized ones weren’t missing.

    I love the one with the curly spout. So cute.


    1. I often find them without the rose too. Maybe previous owners took them off because they preferred to use the can without a rose, and then they get lost in the shuffle.


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