Tuesday, November 26, 2013

How To Make a Christmas Planter

My 2013 DIY Holiday Planter
I'm not gonna lie to you. Making a Christmas Planter is NOT particularly easy.

There's a really fine line between looking like a festive holiday planter and looking like garbage. Seriously. 

The good news is, that line is very easily blurred if you follow a few key tips:

1. Fill your planter almost full with fresh dirt and pack it pretty tight. You'll be sticking a lot of branches into the urn, and you need a lot of dirt to hold them steady. They're going to get rained on, and snowed on, with wind blowing them around too. Dirt is your friend here, so go get some.

2. Start with at least 2 different kinds of greenery. In this planter I made (see left), I used several. The first layer, fanned out closest to the edge of the urn, is from a short-needled pine tree. The second layer is shorter and softer cedar boughs from the ugly hedges all around my house. At least they're good for something (other than spider-condos).
Magnolia leaves, birch branches & pine cones in a
wide rectangular planter: simple, clean perfection!

3. Make sure your center layer has height. My third layer is boxwood - perfect for height. The reason you need the third and center layer to have height and firmness is so your planter doesn't look fat and flat, and so snow won't accumulate in a pile in the middle. Boxwood is great for that, but anything with heft will work. Your "height" layer doesn't even have to be greenery, as it can be thick branches of birch or other decorative twigs. I love magnolia for this purpose too. They're sturdy and add some great dimension to a planter.

4. Add some bling. Whether it's sprigs of red berries, tall sparkly sticks, ornamental balls or sturdy ribbon, you can't go wrong with adding in a few additional elements that really say HOLIDAY. As you can see from mine, I have some tall gold sticks, some crazy green orbs that sparkle, a few pinecones, a silver ball and some thick green ribbon tied into the hardest 4-looped bow I have ever had to create. I clearly need more bow-making practice.

At the end of the day, don't sweat it too much. For most of the winter it will be covered in a lovely dusting of snow and look beautiful as can be, I promise!

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