Friday, October 12, 2012

Using Buckets in the Office

Most offices need storage solutions for cluttered desks, drawers, etc. But some office organization systems can be a little pricey. Buckets are a great solution to many storage problems.

Use small buckets to organize small items in your desk drawer:

Organize reading material around a waiting area with a colorful bucket:

Use a small bucket to organize pens and other small items on the top of your desk.

Use large paint buckets to organize incoming and outgoing mail. Hang them from a shelf bracket to free up desk and/or shelf space.

Do you use buckets to help organize your office?

Wednesday, September 26, 2012

History of Buckets & Wash Tubs

Buckets and wash tubs were a staple in pioneer days. They were used in almost every aspect of life, from carrying water from the well, washing clothing, harvesting food from the garden, and bigger wash tubs were even used for bathing.

Photo taken at Great Smoky Mountain Heritage Center.
Galvanized buckets came on the scene in 1837. Galvanized buckets replaced leather buckets as the firefighters' bucket of choice. The galvanized tub above most likely would have been used with a washboard to do the family's laundry.

An old chore nursery rhyme summed up what a chore laundry could be:

Wash on Monday,
Iron on Tuesday,
Mend on Wednesday,
Churn on Thursday,
Clean on Friday,
Bake on Saturday,
Rest on Sunday.

Doing the family's laundry would take an entire day just to wash, first the water would be heated, most likely on a wood stove or in the fire place. Once it came to a boil, shavings of soap would be added and the water stirred until they dissolved. Beginning with the whites the clothing would be dumped into the hot water and washed. After the whites, colored clothing would be washed, and then the dirtiest of the work clothes. Clothing was allowed to boil for 10 minutes, then it was taken out, rubbed with homemade soap and scrubbed across the washboard. Fresh water was added to the tub in order to rinse the soap out of the freshly cleaned clothing. Then the clothes would be hung out on a clothesline in order to dry.

Tuesday, September 18, 2012

How to Paint Galvanized Metal Buckets

There are so many uses for buckets, and we've been over many of those uses in past blogs. But sometimes you want to add a bit of color to your bucket that you are using, what better way to do than to paint your galvanized bucket?

Keep in mind that some of the instructions can be altered for your specific bucket painting needs.
  1.  Using a degreaser wash your bucket well. Since you are using a galavanized bucket steel wool is good fore cleaning this ultra-durable surface.
  2. Rinse your bucket off, be sure to remove all the soap so that your paint is able to stick to your bucket well. 
  3. Allow the bucket to dry for at least an hour.
  4. Take your bucket to the area that you are going to be painting it (be sure area is well ventilated and that you have a drop cloth to protect surface of floor/furniture that you do not want to accidentally get paint on).
  5. Prime your bucket. Etching spray primer is recommended. Allow your bucket to dry for 3 hours.
  6. Now you can paint your bucket, enamel paint is recommended as it is more durable. Use stencils or free hand if you want designs or letters on your bucket. 
  7. Optional: Use a clear coat spray paint to help set your design.

Friday, August 31, 2012

Decoupaging a Galvanized Bucket

Decoupaging a bucket so that it will match your decor or make a fun gift bucket is an easy task.

So, how does one decoupage their own bucket?

First you will need some supplies:
Bucket of your choice
Decoupage glue
Paper or fabric of your choice
Sponge Brush
Acrylic Finishing Spray

Clean the surface of your bucket with a damp cloth and then dry it.
Cut your fabric or paper into the shape(s) you want to apply to your bucket.
Brush the decoupage glue onto your bucket and then apply your paper/fabric. Be sure to smooth wrinkles and air bubbles as you go.
Apply a layer of the decoupage glue to the top of your project. For a shinier look add layers of glue (after previous layer has dried) until you are satisfied.
Allow to completely dry then coat with the acrylic finishing spray.

This is also a great craft to use on mason jars or milk bottles.

Wednesday, August 15, 2012

Buckets in the Bathroom

Buckets and wash tubs make amazing bathroom storage. There are so many ways they can be utilized in a bathroom, there are a variety of sizes, making them ideal for storing everything from q-tips to towels.

Here is our favorite bathroom bucket idea for you:

Add hooks and store makeup within easy reach above the sink.
All you need is some wall space, hooks, and buckets of your choice. Designate each bucket to a use. One could be for make up brushes. One could be for hairbands and bows. The limit is your imagination.

Monday, August 13, 2012

Growing Succulents in Buckets & Tubs

On of our great gals in customer service purchased some buckets to take home to decorate her home with. She decided to grow some gorgeous succulents in them, and we all agree that they look amazing.

The above succulents are in one of our oval wash tubs.

So how does one grow succulents in a container?

First we need to know what a succulent is. Succulents include, but are not limited to: sempervivums, sedums, aloes, kalanchoes, and echeverias. They are plants that have fleshy toned leaves. Succulents tend to thrive in hot climates and poor soil.

Step one, select your container, if it does not have drainage holes you will want to add some to the bottom of the container, once you have the holes you need add some gravel to the bottom of your container to help with drainage of water. 

Step two, preparing your soil, you can purchase soil made just for succulents or you can create your own by making a mixture of 25% builders sand added to a good soilless mix.

Step three, plant your succulents, if you are not sure that you are going to keep your succulent container around you can pack the plants in fairly well as succulents are very slow growing plants.

To care for your succulents keep in mind that they love the sunshine, and they do need consistent moisture, they are not cacti. In the winter you will need to bring them in and put them in a window that gets lots of sunshine throughout the day.

Succulents in a bucket.

Succulents in a wood handled wash tub.

What are you growing in containers right now?

Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Chalkboard Labeling a Bucket for Storage

Buckets make great storage solutions, but labeling them helps to keep things even more organized. Instead of creating a permanent label, why not make a chalkboard label so that if your storage needs change you aren't stuck with a bucket that is no longer properly labeled for its contents.

There are many ways to accomplish creating a chalkboard label on a bucket. One of the easiest ways is to use chalkboard contact paper.

Simply cut the chalkboard contact paper into the size and shape you need, peel off the back and apply it to your bucket. Grab some chalk and label away.

Another option is chalkboard paint. When going with this option you will want to sand the surface that you are going to apply the paint to so that it will stay on your bucket. You can either purchase your own chalkboard paint, or you can make your own, (tutorial at Attempting Aloha). You can go all out and paint your galvanized pails entirely with the paint, or you can tape off the area/shape that you desire. Once done, allow to dry, grab some chalk, and create your labels to use your buckets for storage.

What experiences have you had using chalkboard paint or labels on buckets?

Thursday, July 12, 2012

How to Decorate a Flower Girl Pail

One of the simplest DIY wedding projects, is decorating a flower girl pail or bucket. 

To create your own flower girl bucket, you will need a bucket that can work as your flower girl pail. You will also need ribbon, a hot glue gun, and a flower or decorative item of your choice.

Carefully hot glue the ribbon around the bucket (most people either glue in the middle or top, it just depends on the look that you are going for). The ends of the ribbon should meet where you want your decorative item to be placed at on the bucket. This is so that the ends of the ribbon are covered, giving your bucket a finished look.

Not going to be dropping flower petals? One bride-to-be has her "flower" girl dropping heart shaped book page confetti at a literary themed wedding. Using some stickers, book pages, and a printer she mod podged her way to a bucket for her little librarian. 

The possibilities for your flower girl bucket are endless, just use a little imagination and you can have the perfect bucket for your flower girl to accent your wedding.

Tuesday, July 10, 2012

Need Vase Ideas?

Buckets make amazing vases. Even Martha Stewart thinks so! She featured on her website in June 2010:

The white buckets look great in contrast with the galvanized in Martha's example of using these multi-tasking items to decorate at parties and picnics.

Some other great buckets for vases (or planters if you prefer to grow flowers):

What is your favorite way to use buckets in your party decor?

Thursday, June 28, 2012

25 Things You can Grow in a Wash Tub or Bucket

We have seen some amazing container gardens that use buckets or wash tubs floating around on different blogs and on Pinterest. If you have also seen these ideas and were wondering what plants would grow well in a container, we have compiled a list of 25 different plants that are good plants for containers.

  1. Blackberries
  2. Blueberries
  3. Dwarf Oranges
  4. Aloe Vera
  5. Strawberries
  6. Tomatoes
  7. Peppers
  8. Cucumbers
  9. Herbs
  10. Kale
  11. Lettuces
  12. Carrots
  13. Beets
  14. Potatoes
  15. Wheatgrass
  16. Turnips
  17. Parsnips
  18. Onions
  19. Leeks
  20. Mustard Greens
  21. Collard Greens
  22. Radishes
  23. Flowers, Perennials and Annuals
  24. Pineapple
  25. Quinoa
 What have you grown in a container, did it work well? What are your tips for beginner container gardeners.

Tuesday, June 26, 2012

101 Different Uses for Buckets

This post was originally on Red Hill General Store's blog as 101 Bucket Uses. We decided to bring this one over to share with our bucket blog readers, and it's a great "first" blog for this site.

It was hard. And it was a trial of the minds. But with all of us working together we have come up with 101 uses for buckets. If we have missed any uses, please let us know in our comments!

Bathroom Uses:
  1. Hold hair bows.
  2. Hold cotton balls.
  3. Hold Q-tips.
  4. Use under the sink for leaky pipes until they can be fixed.
  5. Use as trash pail.
  6. Use as towel or clothes hamper.

  1. Spoon holder (small tin pails work great for this).
  2. Utensil holder.
  3. Use under sink for leaky pipes until they can be fixed.
  4. Throw scraps in that need to go out to compost heap.
  5. Hold peanuts.
  6. Use for crab and/or lobster scraps when eating.
  7. Beer or drink bucket.
  8. Use for mop water.
  9. Use for cleaning water.
  1. Hold paperclips.
  2. Spare change bucket.
  3. Hold push pins.
  4. Hold staples.
  5. Throw your keys in.
  6. Hold a bottle of glue (great if glue leaks, then it won’t just be in your drawer)
  7. Use as trash can.
  8. Use to catch water from leak during rain.

Kid’s Room:
  1. Organize toys.
  2. Hold crayons.
  3. Hold makers.
  4. Organize painting supplies such as brushes.
  5. Organize pencils.
  6. Hold chalk.
  7. Paint with chalk board paint to use chalk on.
  8. Use as trashcan.
  9. Store building blocks.
  1. Sort bolts.
  2. Sort washers.
  3. Sort gaskets.
  4. Hold nails.
  5. Hold screws.
  6. Hold tools.
  7. Empty ash from a wood stove or fireplace into.
  8. Coal bucket.
  9. Hold kindling for wood stove or fireplace.
  10. Use to wash your car.
  11. Store rags for washing car in.
  1. Flower planters (be sure to put holes in the bottom so that water can drain out)
  2. Container garden (be sure to drill holes in bottom so water can drain)
  3. Store gardening supplies.
  4. Use to water plants.
  5. Use to harvest fruits & vegetables.
  6. Carry fertilizer to garden.

  1. Golf ball bucket (tote golf balls easily)
  2. Tennis ball bucket.
  3. Baseball bucket.
  4. Store croquet balls and hoops in.
  5. Store horseshoes in.
  6. Store hacky sacs in.
  7. Pack a picnic in.
  8. Use to collect seashells.
  9. Use to collect pretty rocks & pebbles.
  10. Build a sand castle.
  11. Use as a helmet and pretend to be a knight.
  12. Keep live fish bait in.
  13. Use to hold fishing tackle.
  14. Use to put names in for drawings.
  15. Use to hold drinks for parties and get-togethers.
  16. Flip it over and pretend it is a drum and play away.
  1. Dog food bucket.
  2. Chicken feed bucket.
  3. Cow Feed Bucket.
  4. Carry fish food to pond.
  5. Use to collect chicken eggs.
  6. Use for slop for hogs.
  7. Use to remove dog droppings from yard. (shovel is highly recommended when using it for this)
Buckets for Gifts:
  1. Fill with bath goodies for gift.
  2. Fill with crafting supplies for child’s gift.
  3. Fill with men’s traveling necessities for going away gift for a guy.
  4. Use instead of basket for Easter gift.
  5. Fill with cleaning supplies for housewarming gift.
  6. Fill with “naughty” presents for embarrassing bachelorette gift.

  1. Use for flower girl to hold flower petals in.
  2. Use for bridesmaids filled with flowers instead of bouquets.
  3. Use as centerpieces to hold flowers.
  4. Use as d├ęcor filled with flowers.
  5. Use mini buckets to put guests’ favors in.
  6. Fill with goodies as a gift for bridesmaids.
  7. Fill with goodies as gift for groomsmen.
  8. Fill with goodies as gift for parents.
  9. Have guests’ write well wishes for the couple on paper and drop into the bucket.
  10. Use as champagne bucket.
  11. Paint number on bucket to number tables at reception.
  12. Use to hold drinks.
  13. Use as aisle pew marker.
  14. Hold supplies for “decorating” newlywed’s car.
  15. Use to hold programs.
Random Uses:
  1. Emergency Port-a-potty.
  2. Use to pour water over camp fire to put out.
  3. Bail out a leaky boat.
  4. For Easter eggs on Easter egg hunt.
  5. Collecting candy on Halloween.
  6. Flip over and use as foot stool.
  7. Use to hold smaller buckets.
  8. Fill with sand and use as candle holder.

Monday, June 25, 2012

Welcome to Bucket Outlet's Blog

With all the things that buckets can achieve, we thought it only fitting that Bucket Outlet should have the privilege of having its very own blog. Come here for bucket ideas, bucket crafts, bucket uses, and much more.

If you have written about our buckets, or any bucket project, on your own blog and want to share it with us, please mention it in our comments and we may feature you on our blog!

Our main website is and we are based out of Hillsville, VA and are owned by Red Hill General Store.

We promise to bring you MANY bucket crafts!