How to Build an Embossed Metal Planter
Learn how to build a planter with salvaged metal tin ceilings
The patterns in most old metal ceilings were stamped in a tic-tac-toe formation, but instead of Xs and Os, the same floral or geometric design was repeated in each quadrant. To sheath a wooden planter box, I used salvaged tiles in just such a grid with four 6-by 6-inch squares stacked one on top of the other and 12 across. Working from those dimensions, I cut the box's wooden sides so the metal would fold neatly around its four corners. I left a 6-inch reveal at the top so I could tuck and nail the last layer of metal squares inside the box for a finished look. To guard against rot and insect damage, I built the planter out of ½-inch pressure-treated plywood and inserted a plastic liner. Read on for the step-by-step.
Clean the metal panel
Brush off loose rust and cracked paint. To protect against toxic lead, which can be released in paint dust, work outdoors and wear a respirator approved by the National Institute of Occupational Safety and Health. Also, pull on a pair of thick gloves so you don't cut your hands on the sharp metal.