Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Cupcake Planter Tutorial

This is a project that I thought of last summer---when it was too hot & too late to grow anything lush & green in a pot. SO, I had to wait almost a whole year to put my idea into action!! It's a mild statement to say I'm SUPER DUPER EXCITED to finally do this!

Supplies: shorter stubby terracotta pots (I found some at Home Depot & some really cool short stubby ones at Fred Meyer), spray paint, acrylic paint, clear spray sealer, rocks (for drainage), potting soil, plants, drill (with 1/4" drill bit), 1/4" dowel (Hardware store or Walmart), saw blade, round wooden balls (hardware store). Also needed, but not pictured: wood glue, paint brush.

OK, the painting part: I used spray paint. I like a quick job. BUT, the terracotta pots are very porous & you're not going to get an even coat with the spray paint. I sprayed my pot 2 times & I like the uneven faded look of it. If you want a more even, solid covering of color, use at least 3 coats of acrylic paint or latex paint. (Got any extra exterior housepaint in the garage? Perfect!)

My pots will sit outside. They'll eventually show the effects of the weather & daily watering. Definitely paint the inside of the pot as well as the outside. This will help keep the moisture from damaging your artwork. If you keep your pot out of direct weather elements this will help it to keep cuter for longer too. Paint your dowels also. I painted mine with brown acrylic paint so it would remain inconspicuous in the pot-o-flowers. You'll be trimming the dowel to the correct size later. And finally, paint the round wooden balls red. I spray painted mine. AND, I sealed them with a clear spray paint sealer.
When the "cherries" are dry, drill a hole in the bottom. Or you could do the drilling BEFORE the painting. I guess I did it backwards. Mine came with a tiny hole pre-drilled in the bottom, but it wasn't nearly big enough.

Fill the hole with wood glue & insert the dowel. Poke it in the ground to dry.
Now you can work on the details of your pot, which you'll paint with brown acrylic stripes to resemble a cupcake liner. When the stripes are dry, seal the pot--inside & out--with the clear spray paint sealer. This is probably the most important step. Without a good seal, the water could cause your paint to bubble or eventually chip & flake off. Lots of coats of paint & a good sealer are the key to keeping your terracotta pots lovely for a long time! Now, take a break & munch on an ice cream sandwich. Num...

When everything is super duper dry, (OK, I'm impatient. Mine was mostly dry), you can cover the drainage hole with a few pebbles.

And then gather the curious neighborhood kids to help you with the rest. That's what I did. Well, I guess I didn't have to "gather" them. They just came over to see what I was up to. Even one skateboardin' boy said, "I want to paint some pots & fill 'em with flowers too!"

For some reason I had trouble deciding which plants to purchase for my cupcake planters. I wanted something that could be pruned to a roundish shape. I ended up finding this really thick, really lush plant called "Lobelia" Riviera Rose (at Fred Meyer). I also picked out some white Alysum for my smaller cupcake pot. I've never "pruned" them in a specific shape before, so we'll see how it goes! After you plant your flowers, take some scissors or pruning shears & clip away any stragglers. I kinda butchered mine, but hopefully they'll continue to grow nice & thick.

At this time you can measure your plant to see how tall your cherry should be.
Ta-da! That's it! The little flowers will look like sprinkles all over the cupcake.


I'll be sure & take pictures as flowers bloom & the pot fills out more.
Wasn't that fun?

39 comments:

  1. I am kicking myself for tossing out a few old terra cotta pots now! I LOVE this idea, according to the family I am the cupcake girl and these would look perfect in my garden! I think I will be headed out to the store this weekend! Thanks!

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  2. Super cute idea! Totally worth the year long wait :)

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  3. I think these are just adorable!! They would be perfect centerpieces at a little (or big!) girl's birthday party. Love them!

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  4. Oh my! This is the cutest tutorial. I am not a gardener, everything I touch tends to die, so I'll be using fake plants. But the cupcakes will be great for my kitchen. Thanks for the tutorial.

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  5. Yes that was fun , another great idea , thanks .

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  6. That is a cute and clever project, I love it. (and not just because I adore cupcakes either *wink*)

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  7. OMG that was FUN! I'm not really very good with painting but that looks easy enough for me to do. Thanks for the good description. I think they are so cute!

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  8. Oh my gosh- how cute! Look at that vignette- scrumptious!! Your yard is going to be a wonderland when your done- wish I lived in the neighborhood!

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  9. SUPER SUPER SUPER CUTE NIKKI! My favorite part is the shiny red cherry ~ and I don't even like cherries! If you want something that naturally grows all dense and rounded try Sandwort ~ ugly name, cool plant. It blooms with little white flowers too! Thanks for the great ideas ~ enjoy your sun today!

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  10. too freakin' cute! cute! CuTe! CUTE!

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  11. You, my dear, are amazing! That is such a cute idea! You truly are a crafty gal. I am in complete awe.

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  12. You are so clever!! I love them!

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  13. Great idea! I want cupcake plants too!

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  14. Love it!

    The bit of fence in the back reminds me of a headboard a friend and I made with fence and crackle paint.

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  15. No way!! These are so stinkin' cute. Love it. Thanks for the tut on how you made them. I'll be giving these a go some time in the next week. Thanks! ;)

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  16. NOw, that is super cute. I definitely should try that out. My boys would love helping to paint the pots.

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  17. Wowsers! That is too darn cute! Now I can make calorie free cupcakes!!!
    YIPPEE! I love all of your tremendous ideas--thanks for sharing.

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  18. Oh that is SO cute! I wish someone in my neighborhood would make these. I love planning my walks around the creative houses! I'll be linking.

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  19. woooha! too cute girl! Wish I could plant stuff...too cold yet..
    gots me some inspiration now! yay!
    I know I can always count on you for smiles!
    Ciao bella!
    ~Christine

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  20. Okay...beyond cute!!! I am known as the cupcake queen in my little neigbhorhood...it;s a spring/summer must! Adorable! Thanks for sharing!

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  21. Those are super cute, and would be adorable party favors in a smaller version!

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  22. Those are TOOO adorable. Thanks for this great idea! I found your link on oneprettything!

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  23. I am totally in love with this project. Unfortunately, we've only be able to get into our gardens a couple of times so far this year here in the midwest, BUT as soon as I can, these sweeties will be on my deck. Thanks bunches!

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  24. I have to make some with my girls. Thank you so much for the instructions!

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  25. That is incredibly adorable!

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  26. LoVe this one! It's such a yummy project, thanks for sharing!

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  27. LOVE IT! LOVE IT! LOVE IT!
    Great idea just in time for summer!
    Thanks :)

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  28. Hi!

    Today I posted an netry on my blog with a link to this tutorial.

    Would you let me know if that's OK.

    Thanks,

    Nancy Ward
    http://paperfriendly.blogspot.com

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  29. So clever, just in time for mothers day gifts loved this idea !
    Thank you so much for sharing it with all of us!
    hugs

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  30. That is just super cute!!!!

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  31. Hi Nikki,

    Just wanted to let you know that I've featured this tute on my blog The Handmade Experiment - Check it out at http://emilyflippinmaruna.wordpress.com/2009/05/11/must-have-monday-garden-gearus/

    Thanks!
    Emily

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  32. I just noticed that your pots are drying on newspaper that says "Waste Not". For some reason- this struck me as funny. :)

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  33. I love that project! The pots turned out so great!

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  34. Now you've totally hooked me!! I L-O-V-E this!!!

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