I love a good challenge. Don’t you?
And I really love a good thrift store find. Do you ever just pick something up but not know what you’ll do with it?
I found a couple of cute little mint green planters at one of our thrift stores months ago. The “cute” part did it, but I had no idea how I’d use them.
They were just 50 cents each, which made a super sweet deal and added to their cuteness.
The little planters hung around on the bookshelf, empty, for months. Just patiently waiting – and looking cute.
Seems like it was going to take a challenge to get something done with them though, so when I started thinking about this mont’s Ten on the 10th, I decided to get my act together and finally make something with them.
And since I’ve wanted some topiaries for something like forever, I decided to see if I could pull it off for under $10.
Boxwood Ball – $2.40 (I found these in the Hobby Lobby spring department. They were marked $3.99, but the spring collection was 40% off.)
Mini Planter – $.50 at the thrift store
Moss – I had this on hand from a previous project, so there was no cost for it.
1/2″ Poplar Dowel – I had a scrap piece on hand from another project too, and only used 11″, which would cost about $.42
Boxwood Stem – $2.49 from Michael’s (another sale item, originally $4.99)
Floral Foam – $2.00 ($3.99 for a twin pack at Hobby Lobby)
Hot Glue – I always have this, so ~ no cost! 🙂
Sponge Brush – because they’re awesome (and I always have one or twelve)
Total Cost for One Mini Topiary: $7.39
(Psst…If you want to make two, it will only cost $12.28 because there’s enough of the boxwood stem to make about 4 of these and the foam is already in a two-pack.)
Let’s Make It!
To start with there was paint! I’m never satisfied with anything I thrift – ever. I always feel inclined to give things a new paint job, and since I wanted to go for a spring feel with this project, I grabbed the white chalk paint and gave my cute little pots a couple of coats each.
I really waffled about distressing them. The original was distressed and I liked it, but I wasn’t sure I wanted it for the topiaries. In the end, I didn’t distress. What do you think – distress or no?
After the paint dried, I was prepared to do some trim work on the foam, but got a nice surprise. It fit perfectly.
Moving right along…after a quick coat of Woodland Green, I pushed the dowel into the center of the foam – right to the bottom for plenty of stability.
This whole project (minus the paint-drying time) took less than half an hour. Really – if you’re like me and running here and there all day long (or taking care of this and that all day long), it doesn’t get much simpler than this. Don’t give up on making something you enjoy just because you’re busy! 🙂
That bare dowel is just so…bare, so this was the most “time-intensive” part of the whole project. The sections of boxwood stem popped right off, and I pushed the ends of a couple of pieces into the foam at the base of the dowel.
For the remaining pieces, I cut the bumpy ends off, then wove them around the dowel, attaching with hot glue.
Filling in the base with moss took a whole 5 seconds…
then a little more glue to attach the ball to the top, and done!
I love, love, love how it turned out so I sprung for the extra $4.89 and made a second one.
Come along with me to visit a few friends sharing Ten on the 10th today:
What’s your favorite thrift purchase? Do you ever take months to decide what to do with a great find? Share your thrifting adventures in the comments below!
This post contains affiliate links, which means that I earn a commission if you make a purchase using these links. The price you pay, however, will not be affected. Thank you four supporting To Work with My Hands. View my full disclosure here.
FREE Creativity Course
Get your FREE 6-day Creativity Course when you join the newsletter. Discover your own creative style, get tips on how to find the best supplies, and learn the secret to fitting creativity into your busy life.