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How To Paint A Wood Planter For Your Spring Flowers

How to paint a wood planter for your Spring flowers.

An old wood box can be recycled in so many ways. This one got a sunny makeover and is now holding faux hydrangeas, Of course, the painted box can be used as a planter for real flowers too. 

topless wood chest

I bought the old cedar box at my favorite junk shop. I think once upon a time it had a lid or top. I’ve had the chest for a while and used it in various displays around the house.

I tried to sell it in my booth but no one wanted it. I even put it on sale. Still no bites. Time to paint it although some of you may give me a hard time about painting cedar.

FolkArt Milk Paint project

I used FolkArt Milk Paint in Tavern Ale for the finish. This photo shows the box with one coat of paint. I love this FolkArt paint. It is so easy to use and the colors are really vibrant.

milk paint drying

This photo shows the box with two coats of paint. The darker areas are where the paint is still wet.

Farm Fresh FolkArt Stencil

The stencil I chose for the project is from a large package of paper stencils. The paper is really thick and heavy and the stencils can be reused.

stenciling with foam brush and white paint

Once the yellow paint was dry I used FolkArt Wicker White acrylic paint and a foam pouncer to stencil the designs.

Farm Fresh stencil

Stenciling is super easy if you know the secret. Just remember to use a really, really, dry brush. I used pieces and parts of several stencils from the package. 

distressing a stenciled project

I distressed the stencil and the whole chest lightly with sandpaper by hand. You guys know I can’t resist distressing a stencil. The look is perfectly imperfect.

applying sealer to milk paint

The milk paint can be left flat or sealed. I decided to seal the finish. The FolkArt Bonding/Sealer gives the paint a deeper, richer look. And when the paint is distressed it gets a soft hazy look that needs wax or sealer.

how to paint a wood box and make a flower planter


I added faux Hydrangea stems to the chest. Hydrangeas are my favorite flowers.

old wood box painted
paint and stencil and old wood box

I stenciled the words Farm Fresh on one side with a border below the letters and on the opposite side I stenciled the word Quality. 

Wood Chest Stenciled Farm Fresh

The yellow chest full of flowers makes me smile. I have it sitting on the kitchen counter. I’m glad the chest didn’t sell.

I have another project with yellow paint and stenciling. 

old tackle box transformed into a jewelry box

See how I transformed an old tackle box/ tool box into a jewelry box here…..Repurposed Tool Box Becomes A Jewelry Box

how to paint and stencil a wood box



I’m going to hold on to the yellow planter for a while. The flowers and stenciled chest look great on the dining room table too.

Products used in this project:
FolkArt Milk Paint – Tavern Ale
FolkArt Bonding/Sealer
26 Piece Stencil Pack
Wicker White Paint
Foam Pouncer

Wood chest painted yellow for a flower box

What do you think of the project? Leave a note if you have time and thanks for being here, Kathy

Author: Kathy Owen
Kathy Owen is the founder of the home decor blog Petticoat Junktion where she shares tutorials on painting furniture and upcycling thrifty finds into unique home décor. Her DIY projects have been featured on the Home Depot Blog, Plaid Crafts, Behr Designer Series, and in numerous magazines. Kathy’s newest website is HappyHomeDIY.com


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