Old Drawer Becomes a Planter in 1 Hour

11 Materials
1 Hour

With some paint & mod podge turn an old drawer into a cheery porch planter. This is an EASY and FUN project. You can even get the kids involved. I put all of the instructions underneath each photo below. You can also read the full post on my blog here: Turn an old drawer into a planter.

Let’s go dumpster diving so you can make your neighbors jealous. Follow along to make this magic garden box from an old drawer.

The first step to make this old drawer planter is to paint it. I went to the local hardware store and picked up a sample of this beautiful purple color (Home Decorators “Virtual Violet” HDC-MD-25) at Home Depot for about 3 bucks.

I took some darker grey/black paint and went around the grooves of my drawer to bring out the neat little details. After this was dry, I used sandpaper to distress the drawer and bring back some of the wood finish.

Use Modge Podge Outdoor to glue a pretty piece of scrapbook paper (or newspaper, or anything you have laying around) onto the front of the drawer.

Then you'll need to seal both the INSIDE and the OUTSIDE of the planter.

I used Flex seal to waterproof the inside of my drawer. I used a spray polyurethane in a clear Matte finish to seal the outside of my drawer planter. You could also use the Mod Podge Outdoor to seal it but it will be pretty shiny.

Some other options for sealing are neverwet, auto undercoating, tile cement, pond/fountain liner, plastic bags/liners, etc. If you have something on hand I would give it a shot. Also, a bin that fits inside your drawer would make a great option to easily remove your plants and not gunk up the drawer.

Finally, I made a label out of some aluminum roof flashing I had laying around. I know what you’re thinking. WHO has roof flashing “laying around”…. yep. Me. That’s who!

Anyway rolls of flashing are cheap if you want to pick some up, but you can also cut up an aluminum soda can and flatten it out to get the same effect.

Or just use a strip of wood or steal some scrabble letters from your kid. Just kidding! Don’t steal them — you can buy Scrabble Tiles and they are awesome to have around!

To get the same effect as me, you’ll need a metal stamping kit. You take the letter or number stamp, put it onto the aluminum, and whack it with a hammer. It’s really fun, you should try it.

Ta Da! The finished “Grow Dammit” drawer planter sporting some lime ipomoea, ivy, pansies and gerber daisies. Coleus, citronella (for mosquitos), autumn joy sedum and sweet potato vine are also great options for planting this up.

Before and After

Here's the before and after!

How to Make Planters from Old Drawers

For your pinning pleasure :)

Suggested materials:
  • An old drawer   (Dumpster)
  • Paint Sample (I used Home Decorators "Virtual Violet" HDC-MD-25)   (Home Depot)
  • Homemade chalk paint   (https://www.prettypurpledoor.com/chalk-paint-recipe-chalk-paint-mirror)
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Want more details about this and other DIY projects? Check out my blog post!
Frequently asked questions
Have a question about this project?
3 of 7 questions
  • Carolyn Noyer Carolyn Noyer on May 14, 2016
    Would you mind telling me exactly what plants you have in there? It looks a bit like what I want in a box.

  • Superbee Superbee on May 14, 2016
    Does sealing the inside and outside keep the wood from "rotting or disintegrating" due to consistent watering?

  • Lucy Norman Lucy Norman on May 14, 2016
    How did you seal the inside?

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