Concrete Base for a Faux Flower
Like concrete, beautiful plants you can keep alive, and baby formula? This is the project for you.
You see, I’ve wanted to do something with concrete for a while. (Disclaimer: I don’t know when I’ll share this post, but I’m writing it in September when the grandparents are visiting and I have free time, and we have some leftover concrete mix in our garage). And my baby drinks a lot of formula (#fedisbest). So when we were at one of our trips to Jo-Ann together (as you can imagine, she loves Jo-Ann because there is SO MUCH TO LOOK AT) and I saw this beautiful faux orchid, I had to have it.
I think it was $14.99 not on sale, but I used a 60% off coupon (obviously). I cannot keep real orchids alive, so when I find a good fake orchid, I jump on it. Especially when it’s such a beautiful purple-ish color. I decided to get my concrete fix by making a base for this faux beauty.
So here’s what I used to pour a concrete base for a faux flower:
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- Faux orchid from Jo-Ann Fabric and Craft
- Concrete mix, something to mix concrete up in (I used one of those Home Depot plastic cups), and mixer
- Empty formula can, kitchen oil, and paper towels
- Disposable gloves and mask (concrete powder is gross)
- Duct tape and stick
- Gold leaf and glue stick
- Optional: wooden dowel, gold craft wire (I had this already from a wreath project), and black spray paint (which I obviously have on hand all the time)
And here’s how I did it.
Step 1: First I lightly greased an empty can. Then I mixed up enough concrete to get about halfway as high as I wanted the base to be. I just guessed, continuing to add water and more concrete powder based on my mix’s instructions.
Step 2: Next I poured it all in my greased-up formula container. After about 30-60 seconds, I stuck my faux flower stem down into the solidifying concrete. Then I used a piece I had cut off of the bottom of the stem (you can use a dowel, pen, stick, whatever) and duct tape to secure the stem in place while the concrete dried. Don’t worry, this stuff solidifies quickly.
As it’s solidifying, use anything to tap around the side of the container you’re using. You’ll notice air bubbles rising to the top of the solidifying concrete and popping. I think some air bubbles give the piece some character, but I didn’t want it to be filled with them.
(P.S., check out how good the Google Pixel 2 XL phone’s camera is! I got it after I accidentally left my old, crappy phone out on the roof of my car during a hail storm. So that’s nice.)
Step 3: After the first pour hardened (about 20 minutes), I mixed up a second batch of a bit less than the previous pour.
I poured that on top of the first pour. This is because I wanted to stabilize the faux flower stem with the first pour of concrete, and then totally lock it in place with the second one.
Here’s a pic after the second pour:
Step 4: I left this to dry for about an hour. Then I cut off the formula can to reveal my lovely base. The line between the two different pours turned out pretty awesome and ended up being a great canvas for my gold leaf!
Step 5: To gold leaf, I roughly applied some glue along the line. Then I pressed pieces of gold leaf on. Do this gently. Gold leaf is extremely fragile (and messy).
Once the glue was dry, I used a paper towel to rub off the excess gold leaf. Love, LOVE how it turned out!
And here’s the final piece! Ah! I love.
I did end up having to add a support in. The orchid was very top heavy—much like a real orchid—so I spray painted a cheap wooden dowel black and attached it to the faux stem using my gold craft wire. This piece is not set in the concrete. It’s just a support I can remove.
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