Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Hydrangea Topiary

Don't forget - today is the last day to enter our giveaway!

With summer in full swing in Minnesota, we've been enjoying fresh flowers a lot.  And I LOVE fresh flowers right from the garden.  But sadly they don't last forever.  Before I know it, it's time to replace my little lovelies with a new arrangement.  And even though artificial flowers last forever, they just can't measure up to the real ones....most of the time.

I keep seeing great projects out here in blogland where people make fake flowers look SO real, and so beautiful.  I wanted to get in on the action....so I thought I would give fake flowers a try this week.

I had found this ugly vase/urn thing at the thrift store last week. 


Eeeeeew!  The green and gold were just NOT working for me.  But what a cute little shape, right?  (I'm just kicking myself that I didn't buy the two other matching urns that were there.  Oh well.).  Step one was to spray paint that vase a more flattering color.

I just needed something to put in my new thrift store find.  While I was at Joanne's I saw that they had all their spring flowers on sale for 70% off.  It didn't matter to me that they were spring flowers - they're still flowers, aren't they!?!?

So I bought five hydrangea stems.

Pretty, right?  I didn't care that they were spring colors - I loved the pink and peach in the middle of the flowers.

I also found a floral  styrofoam ball lying around that I never used for another craft (which just happened to fit perfectly into my new urn - yay!).

I took my hydrangea stems and cut them apart.  I cut each individual flower off of main stem.  You'll want it so that there's about an inch to half inch of stem left off the flower base.


Just like so.  Then I took a pencil and poked a hole into the styrofoam ball (a really professional technique, I know).  


Take one of the hydrangea flowers and poke it into the hole.  You want the stem to go through part of the styrofoam, but you don't want to bend the stem.  I tried poking it in on it's own first and I ended up bending the wire stem and ruining the flower.  So then I tried the pencil method - it worked really well.  Just be careful not put a hole that is TOO big in the styrofoam, otherwise the flower will fall out.


There, one done!  Only like a million more flowers to go.  Now continue pushing flower stems into the styrofoam ball until it is covered with flowers, or your thumb feels like it's going to fall off -- whichever comes first.  My holes ended up being about 1/2 inch apart, depending on the size of the flower I put in.  I tried to make sure I had small and big flowers next to each other to give a varied, more natural look.

I used almost all of the five stems going around the topiary ball.  But I was SO incredibly thrilled with how my fake flowers turned out.  It actually turned out better than I had expected.  Here's what the hydrangea covered sphere looks like:


Do you love it??  Then I placed the topiary ball into my spray-painted urn:

Perfect!  Now I can enjoy "spring" flowers all year long!!

Here's the materials and cost breakdown for this project:

Floral or Styrofoam Ball:  Had on hand
Flower Stems (I used hydrangeas):  $1.05 each x 5 = 5.25
Urn, vase or pot:  $2.99
Spray Paint:  Had on hand
Scissors
Pencil

TOTAL:  $8.24

Not bad, right?  And don't worry, the thumb pain from pushing the flowers in isn't really all that bad - you'll forget all about it when you see your beauteous flower topiary. :)
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68 Hand-Me-Downers Shared:

Traveling Thrifter said...

Looks great! I made a few of these once and it looked amazing on my table as centre pieces. Can't wait to see your next post

ourlifeinaclick.blogspot.com said...

YES I love it!!! How pretty. Good job. I want to try this. Thanks for sharing!!

heather

Green Willow Pond said...

How pretty! I love pink too :) I can imagine this done in red flowers for Christmas too.

she wears flowers said...

I love this! I feel the need to dash out to JoAnn's RIGHT NOW! Thanks!

Diann @ The Thrifty groove said...

Very pretty transformation!

Laurie said...

Awesome, girl! Hydrangeas are my absolute fave flower and I love the urn. Just look what you created! Love Laurie from Scene of the Grime

Amber said...

What a great idea thanks for the hints.

Megan said...

It's beautiful! I love that you included the project cost, too. That's always the most interesting part.

Christina said...

You inspired me to go to JoAnn's as soon as I get home to pick up some "spring" flowers! Yay! Thanks for the idea :)

Debbie said...

Amanda that is awesome!!~ You really inspired me too, I have a few ideas for one in the fall:) Thanks for joining in on the party:)!!~ Enjoy....Debbie

Stephanie@cre8tive said...

That looks nice Amanda. Being that I use nothing but artificial flowers for my etsy shop itmes for brides, I am really picky about the quality and look of the flower. You did a great job on picking a good looking hydrangeas. And the price, awesome! If you use a floral foam ball next time you won't have to use the pencil method, but using what you have on hand is always a great choice!

brandi @ tales of a domestic goddess said...

beautiful!!! love those flowers!! =) =)

Suzanne@Meridian Road said...

How pretty!

I'm heading off to JoAnn's!

Cheryl said...

So fluffy & pretty. I totally love topiaries. May need to make some of these very soon.

Tara@JustDevineStyle said...

It is so cute! I love the color soft with a hint of pink. Perfect project.

KasiaJ said...

Gorgeous!

Jeralee said...

Love the project! Thanks for the tutorial, it turned out great!

liz @ bon temps beignet said...

Such a good idea! I did the same thing for our wedding but strung a piece of ribbon through the ball to use as a handle for the flower girls.

Here's 2 pictures (about half way down the post)

http://bontempsbeignet.blogspot.com/2010/03/wedding-week.html

Kimberly said...

ooooh, very pretty! I LOVE spray paint - it makes everything better! (and hydrangeas are one of my favorites...)

Thanks for stopping by my blog and commenting on my dresser redo! It's loads better than it was at first... I appreciate your super sweet comment.

Kim said...

It looks beautiful, I'm glad your thumb is better ;).

Nikki said...

Super cute!!!!!!! Thanks for linking them to gettin' crafty on hump day :)

Amanda said...

Another gorgeous project Amanda :) Featured you here http://homeandgarden.craftgossip.com/hydrangea-topiary/

Melissa said...

I love fake flowers, they are so versatile, love this use for them!!

Country Mouse said...

So cute!!! Love it!

Kristi @ Creative Kristi said...

very cute!! Thanks for visiting my blog and commenting on my from built in to pantry! I love that door too...it's actually a frost spray that I sprayed a few coats on the glass :)

Bette said...

That looks great Amanda. Spring flowers can be enjoyed any time of the year as far I'm concerned.

- Brittany said...

Hooray! What a great idea. I found the same urn next to someone's trash! It was gold though. I spray painted it white too and now enjoy it as a center piece!

Thanks for the inspiring post.

Brittany
http://www.prettyhandygirl.com

Tina said...

Hi Amanda, your blog was my morning reading today. I enjoyed it as much as a freshly delivered PB catalog. and that's saying something. Blessings to you dear. I'm adding you to my regular link list. I don't want to miss a moment in your journey.
T

Tere said...

Very decorative! Thanks for sharing at It's Party Time Thursday at PonyTails&FishScales!

Ms Bingles Vintage Christmas said...

Oh, my goodness! What a clever idea! Love it!
I am signing up to be your new follower.
Leticia

Life in Rehab said...

You never cease to amaze me. That's just lovely.

Stone House Mama said...

Lovely! I've had a similar thrift store urn collecting paper clips for months as I awaited inspiration. Now I can go put something pretty in it!

Keep Calm and Decorate said...

Thanks for the nice comment on my blog! Lovin the topiary...turned out great!

Marianne@Songbird said...

That looks so lovely, you can hardly tell that the hydrangeas are fake. Enjoy your flowers! Btw. hydrangeas aren't really considered as Spring flowers here (=Holland), or at least most of them are not, they grow all summer and are 'harvested' in Fall. Funny he.

Val said...

This is absolutely gorgeous!!! Hydrangea is my favorite flower!!!!!!

Heather said...

Beautiful! I love great job!

Larri @ Seams Inspired said...

Lovely and inspiring! Found you at Frugal & Fabulous. Thanks for sharing. Happy Friday! :o)

freckled laundry said...

Beautiful! I love this. I found you through Hodge Podge.

Jami

Helena said...

Beautiful! And I love your professional pencil technique :)

Thank you for participating in the Therapy Session with Life in the Pitts!

Cecily said...

Pretty, pretty, pretty!

patchworkdelights said...

Wow what a beautiful flower arrangement, at first i thought it was a fresh hydrangea head but then read your post, it's very realistic, gorgeous!

Chic Creations said...

Beautiful. I must do this. Looks very real. Thanks for sharing.

Ann Martin said...

So elegant - great idea!

Rachelle @ Adventures in Creating said...

I love how this turned out! What a cute idea. And I love the fact that is was so inexpensive to make! Thanks for sharing it!

Kara @ Craftastical! said...

This turned out so pretty! I love hydrangeas!

Thanks for linking up at Craftastical!

Lori said...

I love this... so beautiful..

Thanks for joing Get Your Craft on Thursday at Life As Lori!

Jen T said...

See...I love projects like this. They are simple and pack a punch! Great job!!

Gina @ The Shabby Chic Cottage said...

How pretty! Love, love, love this!

Adding it to the idea files :)

Michele {The Scrap Shoppe} said...

Great makeover for the urn! And the hydrangeas had me fooled. They look great!

Secret Garden Cottage said...

What a great idea, and so simple! Thanks for sharing!
~ Jo :)

Secret Garden Cottage said...

P.S. Oops! I meant to say it looks beautiful, too! :)

Lady Pamela said...

Thank you for the inspiration. I might try this one. Now I am kicking myself for giving away my cast iron urn. *smiles*

Kat @ Black Kats Design said...

How pretty and what a great idea!

I’m having a new link party “Cheap Thrills Thursday” starting the 29th. It’s for creative ideas that cost under $20. If you have a project you’d like to share, I’d love for you to stop by and join in!
Kat
www.BlackKatsDesign.blogspot.com

Blue Ridge Altered Art said...

I am a florist and love it that there are others tha like silks as much as I do. They look so real. I have many people think my silks are real flowers and my real ones are silk. Thanks for sharing. Your topiary is gorgeous.

Jenglamgirl said...

ONE WORD~ GORGEOUS!!! hugs jenn

Mandy [Mandy's Yellow Corner] said...

This is a brilliant idea! And $8.24?! You can't beat that. :]

Ann @ makethebestofthings said...

Beautifulness. There, I made up a word to describe your lovely topiary. It would even be pretty in blue!

Kaysi said...

WOW, so beautiful!

JHill said...

Thanks for linking up to the Mad Skills party!

Pam said...

How pretty. That's a great idea.

Katie@LeBeauPaonVictorien said...

Your topiary turned out beautifully! I love to use faux flowers; many of them look so real nowadays. I have two ugly rummage-sale urns that I've been trying to decide what to put in them; I love your idea!

Sarah @ The Pumpkin Patch said...

So pretty. I've never seen fake flowers look so good. :) Thanks for linking to Transform Tuesday!!

anne maskell said...

Very thirfty, and sooo pretty! I'll have to try this one!

Ginger said...

Super cute! Love it! Thanks for linking up to Mad Skills Monday!

ethelmaepotter! said...

Amazing! I love projects that cost a little bit of nothing, and especially ones that turn out this beautifully!

Stopping by from Gone Walkabout,

Kuzak's Closet said...

So cute and what a great bargain!

Ashlee @ I'm Topsy Turvy said...

very pretty. I grew up with blue hydrangea's outside my window! Thank you for linking up to Topsy Turvy Tuesdays!

AUDRA said...

So pretty! Thanks for linking up to Socialize with me Monday til Sunday!

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