I turned a storage barrel into a magical wine table!

February 2 | Guest post by Ange

I'm becoming a bit of a recycling center junkie — my husband and I go for a "hot date" every week and come home with a bootload of "treasure." These barrells are storage barrells used by a health food company to import bulk spirulina etc. and cost a whopping NZ$1 each. The paper I used also came from the center — about $2 for a huge carton of old maps, sheet music and atlases — decoupage heaven!

You will need:

  • A storage barrell or an old piece of furniture (wooden works better than plastic)
  • Paper such as maps, sheet music, wrapping paper, tour guides — whatever takes your fancy
  • PVA glue or spray glue
  • Dry rub-on temporary tattoos or decals (optional)
  • Polyurethane varnish

First I removed excess labels and loose tape off the barrel and gave the barrel a wipe down with a dry cloth. This is a good project to do outside because the glue and polyurethane need to be used in a well-ventilated area.

Spray a sheet of paper with glue and stick it on. Stick the middle of the sheet on first and smooth it out to the edges. I lined the sheets up with the top of the barrel so they sat neatly along the edge but you could let them all overhang and trim with a craft knife later. You can also use PVA glue by brushing it onto the paper and leaving it to rest 30 seconds before sticking. After doing a half-dozen of these barrells the PVA is now my glue of choice as it's easier to reposition.

Keep layering on the sheets until the barrel is covered.

Use the dry rub-on tattoos to decorate the barrel. Peel off the backing and press down with your nail to stick. You could also add stickers or paint on details. Just remember if you use anything too thick you may get bubbles around the joins when you polyeurthane the surface.

Brush over a thin layer of polyurethane. Work slowly so you don't make bubbles and smooth the layer out thinly so it doesn't run. Leave to dry overnight (and hide from your pets or it will go furry!!)

Add two-three more coats of polyurethane until you are happy with the final look. Remember to leave the barrel to dry overnight between coats (check the tin but most need 10-12 hours drying time). Add one-two extra coats onto the lid as this surface will have the most wear.

Tip! If you get paint drips or bubbles, sand the dry surface with a fine grade sandpaper before you paint on the next coat of polyurethane.

Once the barrell is dry, reassemble and admire your handy work!

  1. That is SO cute and so easy! I <3 DIY but I always find that it's normally too difficult for me (I need a DIY guide to DIY!)

    Depending on what was used inside the barrel as well, and as long as it's water proof, you could use it to chill your wine and glasses beforehand too!

    2 agree
    • No, it's heavy enough as it is but I use the barrel to hide all the random shit lying around my lounge when someone comes to visit and I want to pretend I'm tidy…

      3 agree
  2. Dude.
    We're in desperate need of a coffee table (so much so that my boyfriend has fashioned one out of cardboard which we destroyed in 2 weeks' time.) Two of these would be an amazing solution.
    Our living room features an ENORMOUS sectional couch that's sitting in separate pieces atm. Movable, space-saving tables like these would be quite ideal!

  3. My mum has quite a few of these barrels and uses them (w/o lids, obviously) as over-sized flowerpots / makeshift veg and herb beds (she loves gardening but can't kneel or bend over all the time, due to deteriorating health, and she loves the opportunity of being able to dig in the dirt standing up) / terrace fence. She spray-painted them with waterproof varnish for outside use.

    1 agrees

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