Turning Thrifted Wooden Bowls into Trendy Succulent Planters
Hello avid DIYers and welcome to another Less Is More Thrifty Thursday. This is a monthly series where I join up with some amazing designers to collaborate and share our thrift flips. Please check out their project links at the end of mine. I love seeing how creative and different our ideas always are.
Wood Bowl Ideas
I couldn’t believe it when I scored all of these wooden bowls! When I got them I had no idea what I was going to do with them yet. So some brainstorming was needed. Here’s my list of ideas in case you would like to pursue one of these too:
- Paint the inside and use as a jewelry bowl
- Draw/Engrave an image inside and arrange a few on a wall
- Revarnish and use as a decorative centerpiece
- Create a stacked sculpture
Ultimately I decided on combining the largest wood bowl with another hobby of mine: succulent plants.
Important Points For A Wooden Planter
The inside of the bowl is varnished and seal well. After some research, I decided that the mix of soil used for succulents shouldn’t hold onto moisture and cause the bowl to rot. To protect the bowl even more, you can use a liner inside the bowl as well. I’ve done this for wood crate flower containers before. I urge you to do your own research before making this wood bowl succulent container and using your own judgment. Especially if you’re considering using a wooden bowl with some value or sentimentality. For me, this was a free bowl to experiment with and had no value beyond the fun of creating it.
Steps To DIY a Wood Bowl Succulent Planter
Step 1: Clean It
As always, cleaning your bowl is the key to getting a good finish in the end. I used a fine scrub brush and warm soapy water to give the bowl a good cleaning. Then allow it to fully dry.
Step 2: Tape Off the Pattern
Painters tape works best for this job and doesn’t leave a sticky residue. Use the tape to mark out the pattern you want to paint on the bowl. The areas covered by tape will still look wooden once your bowl is painted.
Step 3: Start Painting
My son was allowed to decide the colours for the bowl. His first choice of purple happened to be dried out, so a dark blue was picked in its place. It’s better if you can use separate paint brushes for each of the paint colours you plan to use. This way the paints don’t get mixed together, and you don’t have to wait for your brush to dry between cleanings to do a second coat. Which will be needed.
So paint on your first coat of paint. I worked with one colour, then moved onto my second colour, then finished with the third paint colour.
Allow your paint to dry before applying a second coat. A third coat may be needed too. I found the lighter yellow colour needed a third coat in order to cover the dark wood and hide the brush strokes.
Step 4: Remove The Tape
It’ll work better if you work backward from how you applied the layers of tape. So the last strips will be the first removed. Work slowly and carefully to make sure you don’t rip off flakes of paint in your rush. Take the time to clean up your paint lines and any areas with paint that you didn’t intend on painting ha!
Step 5: Clear Coat
Apply a layer of clear coat or clear finishing spray over your bowl to protect your painted pattern. This helps to seal the paint onto the bowl so it doesn’t scratch off as easily. It’s not a necessary step, but it will help to keep your bowl looking new longer.
Step 6: Add a Liner and Soil
If you want to use a soil liner, go ahead and cut it to size and place inside your bowl. Fill your bowl with succulent soil. It is very important that you are using the correct soil for cacti and succulents for them to survive in. Succulents need good drainage. Regular soil is too dense and holds onto moisture for too long which will make succulents rot. No good. Fill your bowl with soil close to the surface, but not right to the brim.
Step 7: Plant the Succulents
Succulents can be grouped together pretty closely in an arrangement. They don’t need to be planted deeply into the soil either. Different types do have different care though so make sure you read the care instructions before grouping them. Or decorate with fake succulents, way less maintenance if you don’t have a green thumb!
Step 8: Check out these amazing posts for more thrift flipping inspiration!
Practical Whimsy Designs: Painting Ceramic Bronze
Windmill & Protea: Boho Terracotta Planter
A Well-Purposed Woman: Sock Easter Bunnies
The Lived-In Look: Dollar Tree Easter Decor
I have more bowls leftover for future projects. Hit me with your ideas and watch for future posts! For more Thrift Flipping inspiration check out our projects from last month.