Recycled Flower Vase- Mrs. Greene

Hello, blogland! It’s great to be back here at The CSI Project again. My name is Rhonda, and I blog over at a little place I like to call Mrs. Greene. (You may have also seen me at Dollar Store Crafts, where I spend a lot of time as well!) I found out the other day that this week is National Wildflower Week. Flowers are one of my favorite things about spring, so I decided to embrace them as my inspiration for this project. Unfortunately, I live someplace that is just beginning to warm up and, unless you count the already-relentless dandelions that are taking over my lawn, the local wildflowers haven’t done much blooming. The only flowers currently in bloom in my yard are the daffodils, so by default they became the center of my design! After much stash diving and brainstorming, I came up with these somewhat unexpected vases.

What is so unexpected about them, you ask? They are made out of containers that aren’t water-tight! To make your own, here’s what you’ll need:

  • Empty tin
  • Paper
  • Ribbon
  • Spray adhesive
  • Scissors
  • Disposable drinking cup or empty water bottle

At least once a week my husband and I go over to his brother’s house for tea, and we always like to bring a sweet treat to snack on. Because of this, I have an excess of tall, skinny tins from “fancy” cookies. However you can use whatever you have on hand, even if it’s something that won’t hold water on its own. Dig through your recycling bin for things like empty soup cans or even cardboard canisters like Pringles cans and coffee or drink mix containers. I’ve done a few projects over the years that involved covering a surface with strips of ribbon, and I can’t believe I’ve never tried it this way before. This was SO much easier than any other method I’ve used! Start by cutting a piece of paper that fits around your container with a little bit of overlap. Give the paper a coat of spray adhesive. (Make sure you use permanent adhesive, not the repositionable kind, and spread out some newspaper to protect your work surface from sticky overspray!) Cut strips of ribbon just wider than your piece of paper. Using the straight bottom edge of the paper as a guide, carefully place the first piece of ribbon onto the paper. Continue adding strips of ribbon until the paper is covered. Flip the sheet over and firmly press down on the paper to make sure the ribbon is tightly secured. Trim the excess ribbon from the edges to make the ends even with the paper. Spray the back side of the ribbon-covered paper with adhesive and carefully wrap it around the tin. Wrap slowly and make sure that there are no wrinkles or bubbles. Press firmly, especially along the seam edge, to make sure everything stays in place. This container also had writing around the top edge, which I covered with a simple bow. However if bows aren’t your thing, you can embellish your vase any way you want! By itself, the tin isn’t water tight and when filled it quickly leaks out into a puddle. To solve this problem, cut down a disposable drinking cup or empty water bottle to fit inside the bottom of the vase. (I used a styrofoam coffee cup rescued from the garbage can.) When filling the vase, make sure the water goes into this liner. My hyacinths will be blooming in the next few days, so I made a vase in purples and blues to hold them when the time comes. Until then, I made a little sign to put into it instead. The sign, made from scrap paper glued to a bamboo skewer, bears a lyric from the Dolly Parton song “Wildflowers,” saying, “when a flower grows wild it can always survive.” Give your display visual interest by using containers of different sizes and heights to make multiple vases. If your containers are similar in height, create variations by gluing inexpensive glass candlesticks to their bottoms. For a centerpiece or other small display, make one or two vases. If you’re decorating a mantel with them, try a more-is-more philosophy and make as many as you can muster. Use a unified color scheme to tie all of your vases together, or do what I did and create different colored vases to hold flowers in corresponding hues. Happy National Wildflower Week!

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