Creating a welcoming fall planter out of trash and household items.
From learning to play an instrument to how to how to code a website, The internet is full of information on almost anything one could want to know.
I often search the web for ideas when I want to create something. This autumn, I wanted to make my front porch festively welcoming. Researching trending color schemes and designs ideas, I used Pinterest and found a pumpkin planter using 3 faux pumpkins in a stack on an urn planter. I fell in love.
Deciding it was something I would like to make to return to my porch every year, using faux pumpkins versus real ones seemed like the optimal choice. I began hunting for foam look a like craft pumpkins and my local craft store was having a sale! SCORE! However, when I nailed down the sizes I wanted they were still so expensive. Eeek! Was there a less expensive way to make my own custom pumpkins?
I have worked with paper maché before using the traditional method of newspaper strips dipped in a batter made of flour, glue, and water. I wasn’t positive that even if I seal it, it would hold up in the outdoor elements. I ‘Pinterest-ed’ other methods of creating sculptures, and found that paper maché clay was “a thing”. An artist uses her recipe to make wonderful art pieces from animals to masks. Impressed by her finished products and suggested application of spreading it on with a knife, I paralleled it to making frosting and icing a cake. (Now we’re talking my language!) Plus, maché clay didn’t have to be sanded. I set my sights on working with this medium to make pumpkins.
Using a form of plastic shopping sacks and the paper maché clay, I created 3 pumpkins for my fall planter. After they were dry, I painted, assembled, added additional fall embellishments. VOLIA! I made my own pumpkin planter welcoming guests to my front porch this Autumn.
If you are a DIY-er, you can make your very own pumpkin planter. Here are my steps for turning a pile of trash plastic sacks into a treasure.
I rooted through my utility room and asked neighbors for plastic shopping bags. I gathered a heaping pile of all types, some were flimsy while others were made of thicker plastic.
For the large pumpkin, I stuffed a giant plastic bag full of smaller plastic bags and tied it closed.
For the medium pumpkin, I used an average size plastic bag from the grocery and stuffed it absolutely full of additional bags. Then, I tied it closed.
The small pumpkin was an average size bag, stuffed, but not full. Then, I tied the handles together so it was tight around the inner bags forming a small ball.
After all three sacks were stuffed and tied, in a criss cross pattern, I used masking tape to wrap TIGHTLY around the sacks making them “poof” out like pumpkins naturally do.
For the stem on the small top pumpkin, I rolled up on plastic sack and doubled it over. Then, I wound masking tape around it tightly.
I set my “stem” on the top pumpkin and taped the two forms together.
For this project, I used Joni’s Paper Maché Clay recipe and followed her instructions.
This project used:
Lots of paper sacks, but filling with newspaper would be a good option too.
Faux Fall Florals – leaves, branches, acorns, pine cones, bows, flowers
Outdoor Urn or Planting Pot (I wanted something tall and slightly smaller in circumference then the largest pumpkin.)
6 rolls of toilet paper (Cheap 2 ply)
3 C Proform Lite premixed dry joint compound (Do not use DAP brand)
2 1/4 C Elmer’s Glue
1 C White flour
Pumpkin Orange, Apricot, Harvest Orange, & Brown Oxide Apple Barrel Brand acrylic craft paint (matte finish)
Electric Stand Mixer with whisk & paddle attachment
Small off-set spatula
Curved rubber spatula
Craft paint brushes
I made the paper maché clay by following The Ultimate Paper Maché recipe here.
After the clay was mixed, I used a small offset icing spatula to spread on my pumpkin forms.
I covered the tops of the forms and let dry for 36 hours. Once they felt dry to the touch, I flipped them over and covered the bottoms.
After totally dry, I repeated this step again, but using a curved rubber spatula the second time, so I would have well coated and a durable final project.
When all three pumpkins were dry, it was time for paint. My son helped me with this part.
We used 3 different shades of orange paint for a natural pumpkin color and used a touch of brown in the crevices, so they would stand out.
Once I was done painting, I used a screw driver to punch a hole through the hard outer shell.
I used a dowel rod to secure all pumpkins together. Getting the dowel rod through the inner sacks was a bit tricky and requires patience. I sharped one end of a dowel with a box knife to puncture each pumpkin.
When I had gotten the dowel through each one individually, I stacked them all together and secured with hot glue.
I sat the kabob of pumpkins on a large planter I bought on clearance for $10.00. I had fall florals laying around in my craft supplies, so I used leaves, branches, pine cones, acorns, bows, and flowers; hot gluing them in between the layers and filling in the space around the pot and bottom pumpkin.
Here is the final product!
I am super excited about my trash pumpkins and hope you enjoyed my project!
Learn and create something new today.
Don’t forget to feed yourself!
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