Breaking news! In case you’ve been living under a rock, I thought I should let you know that Mother’s Day is this Sunday, May 13th. You still have a couple of days to get something together for that special lady. As for myself, I decided to go the DIY route this year for two reasons. One – nothing says I love you and care about you than the time and effort that goes into a handmade gift. And two – I’m currently out of work and trying to save some cash!
I wracked my brain for something simple, beautiful and cheap that I could make for the two most important moms in my life (my own, and Mister P’s). It was then that I remembered these wooden flower boxes I had laying around. These were originally purchased at IKEA 5 or so years ago. Yes, they’re that old. Here’s what they looked like after I gave them a good scrubbing on my workbench/outdoor kitchen:
You’ll notice there are three boxes and only two moms. Well, I decided to keep one for myself because I’m selfish like that!
These boxes have metal trays in the bottom, but no drainage. So I used my electric drill to create some!
The next step was sanding. I used my palm sander, but I’m sure regular old sandpaper would have done the trick.
At one point, I had attempted to spray paint these boxes white. It didn’t stick (probably because I neglected to clean them first). A lot of the old paint and grime was scrubbed off during the cleaning process, but I made sure to wear protective gear while sanding, just in case. Safety first!
Notice how red my eyes are? You can thank Mother Nature and the abundance of trees in my area for that!
I painted all of the boxes with two coats of white exterior acrylic paint that we had left over from another project. While they were drying and curing, I took to the computer to create a template. I used InDesign because I can, and the mere though of opening Microsoft Word makes me cringe, but I’m sure Word would work if you’re not a spoiled brat like I am 😉
After cutting and trimming my template (I used a craft knife, flat metal ruler and cutting mat), I taped it to one of the planters and got to painting. I used acrylic paints and a small foam roller.
I don’t have photos of the next couple of steps, but I can explain what I did just as well. After several coats of paint, I removed the template and did some touching-up using a small craft paintbrush. After the paint dried completely (overnight), I sanded the entire planter by hand to rough it up and make things look worn and chippy. Finally, I used a large dry brush to apply tiny amounts of grey paint, and then rubbed it in/wiped it off with a damp rag. There was no real science to it, I just painted and wiped until I was satisfied with the look.
After a trip to the garden center for some plants (the only thing I bought for this project), I had two gorgeous hand-painted flower boxes (I was too cheap to buy flowers for my own, the third one)! For this box, I chose Geraniums and Vinca.
The flowers I chose for the second box are Mexican Heather and Osteospermum (AKA African Daisy). And that, my friends, is how you make a thoughtful gift for the leading ladies in your life using limited resources.