Workshop on Quirky, Quick DIY Planters

Gardening and planting are addictive activities. So, we always require new planters or we like to have beautiful planters for our plants to add them as a part of our home décor. Buying planters can be expensive at times, so we start making some DIY planters. As much as we love to do these DIYs, we often struggle to find time to do these DIYs.

Watch this workshop on “Quirky, Quick DIY Planters” with our speaker Sipy Mohanty. She’s a preschool teacher and a home gardening lover. Sipy literally means oyster, which holds precious pearls. And just like her name suggests, she too holds some talents such as creating cute, quirky, and fun DIYs from scrap material. You can find more DIYs on her Instagram page “beleaf.in_”

Sippy and her ways to make DIY planters:

“Hello everyone. Welcome to another workshop by TAOS. Today we have with us, Miss Sippy Mohanty. Welcome Sippy, to our workshop. Let me introduce you a bit to our audience. She is a teacher by profession and a gardener by passion. She also makes interesting diy planters with her creativity and artistic skills. We would love to know more about them, Sippy. So, let’s get started without any further delay,” said Zehra.

“Thank you for the beautiful introduction Zehra, and thanks to TAOS for having me. I have inculcated my passion for gardening from my parents, and I have always loved plating. I started DIY in the lockdown, not having much work at hand. So, let’s start with the workshop. In the beginning, here what you can see is called ‘Damroo planter’. To make these, you will need an empty coconut shell and some jute, and a fevicol. That’s it. We will cut the jute ropes into smaller parts first, then make a plait with them. Then, we will take the coconut shell, apply fevicol, and just press it and put it around the shell. You can also put another line of jute fiber if you want,” said Sippy.

“Coconut shells mostly break in an uneven manner. How do you manage to maintain the shape properly?”

“We wet that portion from where we will break it, so that helps in an organized piece breaking from it.”

“Do you hit it on the floor?”

“You can use any hard substance for the purpose. That’ll do.”

“I’ve even seen people using coconut shells for sandpaper and other purposes.”

“Yes, they do give it a very clean look, but I don’t want that. So, I’ve kept it somewhat as it is. So, this is done. You can add an extra jute layer, or make it thicker way, using a piece of thicker jute.  After that, you just have to put some fevicol on top of one of the shells and attach the other shell to it. You can decorate it with anything you feel like, for example, some tussles to give it a more ethnic look. You can plant small plants, like succulents, after putting some cocopeat in it. It is very quick and easy to make.”

“You had made a drainage hole on the upper shell. However, when you stick it to the lower one, will it not get blocked?”

“No, the water can still come out freely. So, that won’t be a problem.”

“The next one will be from a water bottle or cold drink bottle. Here is a sample, that I made. It is called dumbo, the planter. For this, we need a plastic bottle, which we will cut about a finger length above the base. Then, we will need some aluminum foil, to make the face of this planter. We have to crumple it for quite some time and give it the shape of an elephant’s face. Then we will take the mold, and make a dough. To prevent it from sticking to your hand, take some powder, or wheat powder on your hand. Then, you just have to press it on the hook like the trunk portion, to give the face a shape. To give it an even shape, you can just use some water as well,” said Sippy.

“Why are we using aluminum foil for the face? Can we make it using the mold it itself?”

“With the help of molding it, we can not make a proper shape quickly. Aluminum gives it a proper and firm look, in less time.”

“So, when it’s wet, you can shape the face whatever way you want by using a cutter. After that, you can further modify the mold, to make the ears of the elephant. Then we will stick them to the bottle, with the help of fevicol. I have made a small tail also, you can modify it the way you want. Then, we need to color it. I have taken red and white colors here. First we’ll apply some chalk paint on the entire part. You can also apply it on the bottle. It dries up very quickly, so we won’t have to wait for long,” said Sippy.

“Why do need to apply a first coat of chalk paint?”

“That’s because ethnic paint stays nicely on it. It also covers up the transparency of the bottle and gives a clean look. You can directly use acrylic paint on the bottle as well if you want to skip the chalk paint. So, the chalk paint has now dried up, and we can apply the acrylic paint to it. After it gets dried, you can take any pen, preferably a marker, and you can make the eyes. You can also use bindi, or something else. So, then you can use it as a planter. You can paint it as you want. Once the markings a done, your planter is ready,” said Sippy.

“Next, we will make one with cardboard. In the one that i have done, I used a cardboard box. This one I have made is on an aquatic theme. So, you can take any cardboard box, and then apply chalk paint on it. Then, you can use color on it, here I am using blue paint. Then, we will apply bindis on it, which can be placed on the box on various parts, to decorate it. You can also use small stickers, or ribbons for decorative purposes. You can even put sea shells on it, as and how you like it. You can create a grass effect by using black paints, pens, etc., and it’s ready. You can then put a vessel like a vase and put the flowers inside it. You can also decorate your house using dry sticks. I have named it bonfire planters. So you just have to tie it and keep it like a stand. After that, you can keep a terracotta pot, or any other pot on it, to give it a different look!” said Sippy. 

“This is indeed something very different, and interesting indeed,” said Zehra.

“Let us now see some quick decoration tricks. We have a glass bowl here, which you can fill with shells, and small colorful pebbles. Then add some water in it, and then place some plants in it, which you can grow hydroponically. They serve the purpose of decoration on a center table or desk,” said Sippy.

“Next, we have a small barrel planter. For this, you need an empty paint bottle, an aluminum bangle, and some sheets of cardboard. We will use some mold it, and wrap it completely around the bottle. Now, we will cut the bangle, then fold it, and use it as a handle. This needs to be done immediately because the clay is wet, so the handle will get attached right away.  Then we will cut the cardboard into thin pieces, and stick it on the body of the barrel. This will give a wooden sort of effect on it. 

“Can’t we use the cardboard pieces directly on the barrel, instead of using the mold it?”

“You won’t be able to stick the handle in the first place. You can attach the cardboard pieces with glue, but it won’t give the desired effect. So then, we will paint them. You can take any color f your choice. You can apply it with your fingertips only. Once done, dry it up, and then you can mold the other aluminium bangle, and wrap it on its sides. I use it fr small plants, like the Zi-Zi plant,” said Sippy.

“Can you show us your owl planters?”

“I have used a pot for that and used mold it for the eyes of the owl. The rest I have painted myself.  

“Can we make a big barrel planter?”

“Sure, if you have a big bottle, then of course. If you don’t want to paint it, you can use jute to decorate it.”

“That was a very lovely workshop, Sippy. Thank you very much for joining us today.”