Monday, August 30, 2010

Design: Recycled gate with embellishments

My house came with a perfectly situated area on the south side for a veggie garden. With two big curious dogs, I needed to block off the area to prevent the hounds from foraging through the future veggies. (Photo from four years ago.)I had a guy build a six-foot tall fence with vine-like twisted rebar on the top, for fun.

Instead of having him build a gate from scratch, he installed a beautifully functional sturdy second-hand iron gate that I found for a very low cost. However, as one of my friends (who for what he may lack in imagination, he more than makes up for in stating the obvious) said, "the gate is missing three finials". Well, yes it is, and my "plan" was to continue the organic theme of the wild rebar topped fence onto the gate.
Yesterday afternoon I completed this little project. I created sunflowers and leaves from saved tin cans and connected them all with a "vine" made from metal coat hangers. There is now a handmade sunflower (matching this year's main garden crop) in each place of a missing finial. The center of the "vine" twists and turns into the word "Sun".

I hung a big iron sunflower (votive candle holder) on one side of the gate (to obscure the old lock mechanism). The tin flowers, leaves and iron vines will rust over time just as they have on the wind chime I made over ten years ago, shown in the photo below.


  1. Love your gate finials....sunflowers are much more interesting that "spikes". Some folks just don't get the idea of "creative re-design" but you, certainly do! Very Cool. What kind of metal did you use? The leaves look large, what kind of can did you use for them?

  2. Hi Jan:
    I saved the lids and bottoms from large V-8 juice tin cans. I cut the leaf shapes, folded them over in the middle (creating the leaf crease) then I pounded them with a hammer till they looked more leaf-like in shape and texture. :o)

  3. Hi Toni,
    Very clever recycling!

    Second Hand Chicks




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