Above: A selection of brass watering cans sit out on a sunlit table.
The appeal of vintage watering cans can be found in their beautiful aged patinas - dented sides, worn paint, rusted spots and even though they may be "retired" from their original purpose - they can still look beautiful on a windowsill or shelf inside.
They can even be turned into plant pots and lined up or clustered together outside on patio or deck. There is something so appealing about galvanized and metals cans in comparison to their new plastic cousins. Although I admit to having my own in-expensive plastic version - I've got to keep my eye out for a metal one as they tend to be so much better looking (although definitely heavier for carrying around but luckily that's not the biggest problem with our Irish weather).
Set out on a plant stand, this collection of green watering cans range in size from petite indoor watering cans to the massive piece on the lawn that would take some serious muscles to even carry around. Keep an eye out at car boots sales, a thrift shop or even EBay to see what you can find.
This alcove around this kitchen sink has been decorated using a range of red watering cans. Some of them even have the added details like painted flowers such as the one the sill.
In a potting shed, a selection of yellow cans sit by a open window.
Greys and blues cluster together on a bench. Note the different spouts and handles.
A portfolio of watering cans demonstrates the many different styles and finishes. From top left (by row): A child's toy can from the 1930's sits with an 1880's painted can. An American galvanized iron piece, 1910-20. English wooden grained can, 1880's. Second row: Homemade American can, 1920. Painted can with flat-top handle. Arts and Crafts hammered copper, 1900. Third row: French tole hot water can. A 1920's houseplant can, a tin garden can with double spout support, 1890. Mid-century galvanized can.
All photographs were featured in Martha Stewart Living magazine, Photographs by Gentl & Hyers.Text by Douglas Brenner.
I am planning on running a post on reader's collections so please feel free to send me images of your own collection - do you have it displayed creatively? Do you collect something unusual? Email me at firstname.lastname@example.org and put Weekend Collector at Home in the subject line. Look forward to hearing from you!!!