Whenever we find an item that needs a little TLC – whether it’s found curb side, at a garage sale, thrift store or an antique show, I rarely know in advance what we’re going to do with it! Yet more often than not, I always find a way to transform our finds into a vehicle to show off plants! Plants make me so happy: there’s no better reason to upcycle than that!
Now that the weather has FINALLY caught up with the season it’s the perfect time to showcase some of our favourite before and after planter upcycles to inspire some out of the box thinking – or should I say outside the planter! These ideas are all original to Birdz of a Feather and just about all of the tutorials are Pinterest firsts. We’re revealing every detail so you can successfully make your own! Follow the DIY links to spark your own one-of-a-kind creations!
1. Blue Jean Planter
Some people think this planter is the bees knees and others think it’s creepy, but it’s still our most popular post ever! The video was our first to go viral when it was shared on Facebook with over 11 million views!
All it takes is some upcycled clothing, wood and poured concrete for support. Whether you love it or hate it, the Blue Jean Planter is sure to be a conversation piece! What’s your verdict on this planter?
2. The Guitar Planter
The wood was spit and strings were broken when we found this once well-loved guitar kicked to the curb.
Its condition issues meant we could transform it into a stunning showpiece in our garden without feeling any guilt. After transforming it into a planter, it’s playing a different tune 🙂
The secret to it’s longevity is all in the waterproofing.
Find out the secret to waterproofing and how to create your own guitar planter here.
3. Phone Booth Planter
Although not technically a phone booth – it’s more of an enclosure – this vintage throwback was described by one Birdz of a Feather reader as “the best use of a phone booth since Superman”. We’ll take that as a complement!
Don’t tell the vendor, but I probably would have paid copious amounts of money to own this piece. Luckily it was already well-priced, and just like superman, we flew off with it before anyone else could snap it up. We were inspired to create two versions: the planter you see below and a shelf (still featuring some plants).
Our second version shows off a perfected faux barn board technique we developed using milk paint of all things (and an ingenious way to support the shelves). If you love barn board, but not the costly price tag, you’ll be amazed at how close our technique comes to replicating it.
4. Fire Pit Planter
Our next original planter idea proves that if you look beyond the rust, you can breath new life into cast off items. We again looked no further than our own neighbourhood on garbage day when we found this fire pit.
Paired with a vintage “The Surge Milker” – another unexpected vehicle to plant in – the fire pit planter looks pretty stunning now with its display of wave petunias. The best part is that it keeps blooming all season long!
5. and 6. Hypertufa Chair Planters
The seat on this imitation cast iron chair was already broken so you could say that half our prep work was already done! We just had to bust the rest of it out.
The chair you see below was in perfect condition and had a price tag to match. We found the same one at a garage sale with a torn vinyl seat for only $5.
If you think mud pies were fun to make as a kid, they’re just as much fun when you’re all grown up. We cast our own hypertufa planters to replace the seats in both these chairs and planted them with succulents.
They both make a gorgeous accent in any garden.
7. Bathroom Light Fixture Planter
Even Hubs raised his eyebrows when I told him what I wanted to do with this outdated bathroom light fixture.
It wasn’t too very long ago, in the grand scheme of things, that bathrooms were located in outhouses so I was inspired to reimagine this bathroom light in the great outdoors too! Why not?
We replaced the glass (safety first) with plastic planters and recreated a candlestick effect with film canisters. Check out how we paired the bathroom light fixture planter with a mirror (another curbside find) to complete the vignette.
8. Soda Bottle Vertical Planter
It’s heartbreaking to see just how much plastic waste has polluted our oceans and is harming our sea life. Our mantra has alway been ‘good planets are hard to find’. That’s what inspired us to create a vertical planter out of common soda water bottles. We don’t drink soda water, but looked no further than a neighbours’ blue bin on garbage day to find an entire box full.
Judging by the Pringles box they were in, It must have been some party! The celebration lived on after transforming these into a vertical planter.
Although we displayed the Soda Bottle Vertical Garden indoors, can you imagine how awesome an outdoor display would be? Think about how an entire wall of plastic bottle planters would be a great way to bring privacy to an exposed yard!
9. Partners in Grime Planter
There’s always an abundance of galvanized planters at garage sales and the dollar store this time of year. So what’s so unique about turning a planter into a planter?
The fact that I tried out a bonding agent to make milk paint stick to metal (or anything for that matter)! My ‘Partners in Grime’ planter is also an homage to Hubs: it just wouldn’t be as much fun bringing our visions to life without my partner is grime!!!
It also looks pretty smashing on the bottom shelf of our phone booth planter! And it’s practical too: all the water from the plants above can drip right through to the bottom.
10. Bird Bath
This sculptural bird bath with its entwined lovers looked great as-is.
By adding some decorative stones and a glass bowl (which we drilled holes into for drainage), it starts to take shape.
We finally settled on a larger ceramic bowl and once the oak leaf hydrangea grew, it enveloped the sculpture and took it to the next level.
One year, we switched up the succulents for flowers and when the hydrangea and clematis bloomed, it was quite the show of colour.