Painted Ash Bucket

This simple design can be freehanded to conform to any size or shape bucket! Fill your ash bucket with fireplace matches, scented pine cones, and some kindling tied up in raffia.
By  Linda Hollander  

size varies


  • Black ash bucket with shovel


  • Loew Cornell American Painter:  Series 4050 Script Liner #1; Series 4350 10/0 liner; Series 4400 Angular Shader ¼”; Series 4450 Chisel Blender #6; Series 4000 Round #2
  • DecoArt Americana: Arbor Green,  Bleached Sand, Cocoa, Colonial Green, Dark Chocolate,  Forest Green, Hauser Dark Green, Raw Sienna
  • DecoArt Americana Spray Sealer

basic supplies

  • Rubbing alcohol
  • Old toothbrush
  • Paper towels
  • White chalk or charcoal pencil

This idea was originally published in our 2016 Holiday issue. Subscribe today and save off newsstand prices! You’ll get ALL the projects delivered to you in six jam-packed issues per year. 

Project Instructions

1. Wipe outside of pail with rubbing alcohol. Use chalk pencil to freehand design to suit your surface. 

2. Use script liner double-loaded with Dark Chocolate and Raw Sienna to paint thick branches. To double-load brush, drag bristles through darker color then through lighter color without mixing or blending them. The colors will blend slightly while painting branches. Use dirty brush and touch of Cocoa to blend highlights into wet paint. Use 10/0 liner to paint fine branches and twigs; thin paint with water as needed for flow.

3. Use water to slightly thin puddles of Hauser Dark Green, Forest Green, Arbor Green and Colonial Green. Use 10/0 liner and Hauser Dark Green to pull first layer of pine needles. Wipe excess paint off brush then load with Forest Green and pull few more needles. Load dirty brush with Arbor Green and add more needles. Paint random highlights with dirty brush and touch of Colonial Green.

4. Paint cones Raw Sienna with touch of Cocoa until opaque using round brush. Float shading Dark Chocolate using angular shader. Float highlights Cocoa. Paint crosshatching detail with thinned Cocoa and touch of Bleached Sand using 10/0 liner.

5. Paint checks Colonial Green with chisel blender.

6. Thin Bleached Sand to heavy cream consistency. Load toothbrush with thinned Bleached Sand, off load excess on paper towel and splatter design as desired. Let dry.

7. Erase chalk lines and spray painted areas with sealer.