I may have mentioned before that I am a sucker for creative storage solutions. I really love "re-purposing" too. It's great to be able to take an ordinary item that's meant for one purpose and use it for something else entirely. I'm constantly trying to find new ways to use old items to stash my various crafting supplies.
Case in point? This metal bucket used to hold an old floral arrangement. Now it's a fun and colorful, fabric-covered storage solution. This is a really easy project that you may enjoy trying for yourself.
You'll only need a handful supplies including a large galvanized metal bucket or container, some Modge Podge sealer, a small strip of some favorite fabric (this patterned print is from Heather Bailey's Freshcut line) and some optional decorative trim. Talk about a minimum of supplies indeed.
The first thing you'll want to do is measure your fabric strip. Place your bucket on top of the fabric and trim so that your fabric will be long enough to reach all the way around your container. Cut a few inches wider than the dimensions of the container.
Prepare your fabric strip by turning one top side over as well as one end over and ironing flat. This turned-over edge will be placed just under the rim of the bucket as well as overlap the end of the fabric once it's placed completely around the bucket. This will give you a smooth edge under the rim, as well as a nice finished seam at the point where the two fabric ends meet.
The photos below give you an idea what the edges of the fabric should look like before you adhere it to your container.
Don't forget you can always click on each photo here for a larger view.
If you plan to apply the optional trim, I think you can skip turning the fabric over that will go under the rim because the edge will be hidden under your decorative trim. However, you should still fold over the edge where your two fabric ends will meet.
I'm briefly jumping ahead in the construction sequence with the photo below, so you can see what that finished seam ultimately looks like. You don't want a raw edge at the point where one end of the fabric meets the other end as they come together to cover the container. I added machine stitching, but that's completely optional.
OK, getting back on track now. Trace the bottom shape of your bucket onto a piece of paper and use that as a pattern to cut out a piece of matching fabric. When you cut this shape out, make sure you cut the fabric about 1/4-inch beyond the pencil line. This will give you just enough fabric to turn over at the bottom of the bucket for a finished look.
After you cut out your oval shape, turn the bottom fabric over about 1/4-inch and press firmly with an iron. Iron this 1/4-inch measurement around the entire oval shape. Set this piece aside for now. This fabric shape will ultimately be adhered to the bottom of your bucket.
Next, apply the Mod Podge directly to the metal bucket or container and then place your fabric strip on on the container. You'll definitely need to smooth the fabric across the metal as you go in order to eliminate any bubbles or lumps.
Once you've applied the fabric all the way around, make sure you smooth all areas. In this case since the galvanized metal bucket has ridges in it, I had to make sure the fabric was smoothed out so that the ridges appear beneath the fabric.
Once the fabric is applied all the way around the bucket, apply another coat of Mod Podge directly over the fabric for a nice glossy finished appearance. The Mod Podge will dry clear.
It's a good idea to finish off the bottom of the container too.
After the fabric has been adhered all the way around your bucket, simply trim off the excess on the bottom. Leave yourself just enough fabric on the bottom to turn it under about 1/4 inch. Then apply Mod Podge on the bottom to adhere the fabric to the bottom of the bucket.
Now you can pull out that oval-shaped bottom piece that you set aside earlier. Use more Mod Podge to adhere the fabric oval to the bottom of the bucket. This will give you a nicely finished under side.
For this project, I neglected to remove the price tag from the bottom of the bucket before I applied the fabric and because the Mod Podge makes the fabric more transparent, the tag is clearly visible. See the little square white sticker in the center? Since this project is for my use only, I think I can live with the tag showing underneath the fabric (even though it does bug me a bit).
However, if your project is going to be a gift, remember to remove all tags and labels from the container, because they will show through the fabric-and that's just not ideal.
If you want to dress up the edge of the project you can always add a little decorative trim. Ribbon, rick-rack or even a fun line of buttons would work. I decided to use some beaded trim and I think it adds the perfect touch of whimsy to the bucket.
To apply any trim, just whip out your trusty glue gun. Hey, what did we do before glue guns anyway? Apply a line of glue just under the bucket rim and adhere the trim slowly. Because the glue dries really fast, take your time and squeeze just a small amount at a time, pressing the trim into place as you go.
For another finishing touch, I added this little woven label that I found in my scrapbooking supply stash. It fits perfectly just inside the interior metal rim.
Since I'm trying harder this year to use up more of my paper crafting supplies, I thought this cute label would inspire me to reach for what I already have, rather than buy new stuff.
Those of you with loads of scrap supplies know exactly what I mean, don't you?
My new fabric-covered storage container fits perfectly on the end of my crafting island. I was surprised to see how many scrap supplies this bucket could actually hold. This is a really great way to put some of my more frequently used supplies right at my fingertips.
This is such an easy project and can be applied to any kind of container or bucket size. I'd say the entire project took me about two hours to complete and that was only because I puttered around with it for a bit. You may be able to finish yours even faster.
Now that's a real bucket of fun with fabric.