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Industrial Kitchen Canisters

I am so excited about today's project!  Ever since we moved into our rental, I've been looking for a set of kitchen canisters that I could love as much as the set I had that burned in the fire.  A month or so ago, I found these vintage yellow canisters at the Meals to Wheels Thrift Store in Clearlake.  Very cute....but yellow is not really my color.  Our new home will be a "Modern Farmhouse" with industrial flair, and the color pallette will be whites, grays, and muted blues & greens.  So the yellow needed to be changed out for something else...and I wanted something fun and graphic.

For this project, you will need:


  • spray paint primer

  • brush-on and spray-on chalk paint of your choice (there are a lot of different brands to choose from - I got mine at Michaels)

  • spray-on wax coating (also from Michaels)

  • paint brush

  • round foam brush

  • extra fine sandpaper or sanding block

  • paper stencils (from local hardware store)


1. Clean your canisters and dry thoroughly.  Next, remove the handles (mine screwed on).  Turn yuor canisters upside down on a piece of cardboard (so that no paint goes on the inside), spray with primer, and let dry 24 hours.  


2. Shake up your brush-on chalk paint, and brush on the outside of your canister only.  I used white paint for this part, but you can use any color that you want "peeking through" at the end of the project.  Be mindful of your brushtrokes and make sure that you are brushing in the same direction around the canister.  These brushstrokes are going to show through in the end and add great texture.  Let dry 24 hours.


3. Use your spray-on paint (I used anvil gray for my farmhouse look, but there are LOTS of colors to choose from), and give your canisters two coats, letting each dry 24 hours.  REMEMBER:  Do not paint the inside of your canisters, especially if you want to keep using them for food! It's easiest to turn the canister upside down on a piece of cardboard and then spray it....not a speck of paint will go inside!


4.  See below.  When your spray-on paint has dried, line up your stencil and use the round foam bursh to lightly "pounce" on the paint. Click here for a video to show you how it's done (although this guy is not using a foam brush, it is the same technique).  When your design is dry, lightly sand the entire canister to let the undercoat "peek" through.  Use a LIGHT hand!  You can always keep sanding, but you can't put the paint back on without starting over entirely.




5. Spray on the wax finish and follow directions.  I let mine dry for 1/2 hour and then buffed dry with an old t-shirt rag, which gave my canisters a nice, subtle sheen.  Optional: I also decided to purchase some new handles, since one of mine broke when I removed it.  I painted these gray first, then white, and followed all the same steps as outline above.  These little wood handles were 50 cents each at the hardware store.

I love  my new canisters almost as much as I love my cow painting!  They really add a fun touch in our rental kitchen.  The chalk paint finish is very hardy and doesn't scratch.  When I need to clean them, I use a slightly damp cloth.  The inside of the canisters is the original tin, so I can put my sugar, salt, and other drygoods right inside.  If you do a similar project, I'd love to see it - please share on the Jag Cag Facebook or Instagram page!

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