My brother, sister-in-law, and niece recently moved back home to KY after living in Chicago for the past few years. We live down in AL, but we visited them in their new home for the first time when we were in town over Memorial Day weekend, and we couldn’t show up empty-handed, right??
I wanted to give them a little something to help turn their new house into a home, and since they have a HUGE, amazing deck out back (seriously….it’s ginormous, is covered and has a couple ceiling fans, lights along the rails, and a fancy fire pit surrounded by gorgeous patio furniture), I thought some greenery would be a nice addition.
Now I’m not too sure if my sister-in-law has a green thumb, but I think she’s like me, so that means no way. ;) I therefore decided to use some super-easy-to-care-for-and-hard-to-kill plants, also known as succulents! I had a lot of fun making myself an upcycled succulent planter a couple months ago (and all of the little fellas are still alive, thank you very much), so I decided a cute little succulent planter would be a nice little adornment to their new outdoor living space. Hopefully they like it too!
Faux Aged Copper Succulent Planter Housewarming Gift
- Plastic bowl from Target
- Copper metallic paint & paint brush
- Blue patina spray
- Some rocks
- Cacti/succulent potting mix
The Cheap Improvised Planter
I wanted a planter that was wide and shallow(ish) since shallow containers work well for succulents, but I also didn’t want to break the bank. A trip to Target didn’t let me down!
Technically, this beauty is a salad bowl, but whatev. It’ll work perfectly for this purpose too, and the price was right. I love you, Bullseye….
The Copper Paint
I wanted to fancy the bowl up a bit and give it some character, so I grabbed my trusty jar of copper paint! I loooooove this stuff. This little jar is lasting me forever (this is the third project I’ve used it on and I still have well over 2/3rds of the jar left), and the blue patina spritz and ensuing aging effect are so cool…..ya just can’t get that with regular craft or spray paint!
Applying the Copper Paint
I first applied one light coat of copper paint over the entire surface of the bowl, inside and out, then let it dry completely.
Applying the Patina Spray
The blue patina spray is what causes the cool aging effect, and it needs to be sprayed on while the paint is still wet. So, once my first coat of copper paint was dry, I applied a second coat and then got to spritzing!
The Faux Aged Copper Process
Here’s the aging copper effect, spanning from about 10 seconds after patina application to roughly an hour later (I sort of lost track of time once my son woke up from his nap….Mommy Duty calls!).
The part I love most about this paint and patina combo is that you never know what the final result will be. It’s like DIY magic unfolding right before your eyes. You can add more or less patina, and sometimes the entire surface will age, other areas will be spotted or have drip streaks, and some sections stay a nice bright, shiny copper. The randomness is the coolest part I think. Plus, if it’s exposed to the elements, there will be more natural aging over time, as long as you don’t seal it (which I don’t do).
And here’s a little animation showing the process unfold. Pretty neat, huh?
The Succulents & Potting Mix
Once the patina spray and paint had fully dried and all the aging was complete, I then moved on to planting the succulents.
Unlike my first succulent buying experience, this trip to Home Depot proved to be much more successful because they had a HUGE selection to choose from. I also had lots of the cacti/succulent potting mix left over from making our planter, and it was put to good use here.
When I made our upcycled succulent planter a couple months ago, it was quite the learning experience for someone with zero horticulture knowledge like me. For example, I learned that some of the succulents are actually a bunch of little ones….the soil breaks apart and there’s actually multiple plants than can be spread out around the new planter. I know, amazing! And here I thought you just pull them out of their tiny containers and plop them right in the new planter as is. Silly me.
This is the case for all the succulents below except numbers 6 and 7.
In case you’re interested, here are the specific types of succulents I used for this planter, according to their original containers:
- Crassula Platyphylla
- Rainbow Elephant Bush
- Graptupetalum ‘Murasaki’
- Sedeveria ‘Sorrento’
- Pacific Devil’s Food (what a cool name!)
- Crassula Rupestris
Preparing the Planter for the Succulents
To get my newly-faux aged copper planter ready for the succulents, I first added a shallow layer of rocks that I grabbed from the side of the road behind our house (once again, don’t tell my HOA!).
Planting the Succulents
Next, I added in some of the cacti/succulent potting mix (while wearing gloves…..because dirt is gross), then in went the succulents one by one. No pics of this step (sorry, The Hubs was at work and my hands were covered in soil, and dirt + camera = not good). I just tried to space each type out evenly and give the planter nice variety in terms of size, shape, texture, height, and color.
The Completed Faux Aged Copper Succulent Planter Housewarming Gift!
And here it is! I actually like this succulent planter better than the one I made for myself, and I momentarily considered keeping it. But the angel on my shoulder won out this time and I presented it to my sister-in-law when we visited them and their new home over Memorial Day weekend. Doing the right thing is tough sometimes. ;)
I love the fullness of all the succulents and how then spill up and out over the sides. I also cannot get enough of the copper paint and patina spray…..that faux aged copper is just so darn cool! You never know what the final effect will be, and I love the random, surprise aspect to it. Every project is a unique and original DIY experiment!
You May Also Like….
Once again, don’t forget to check out my original succulent planter….I transformed an old toy box of my son’s into an upcycled faux copper beauty!
And here’s my first project ever using this super cool copper paint and patina spray. I turned a damaged craft store clearance find into an elegant decorative faux aged metal letter!
Make sure you check out my Project Gallery too to see all the creations I’ve shared!
Thanks so much for stopping by!
Nichi - The Mandatory Mooch
Sunday 5th of August 2018
Christine, Thank for contributing this post to my Craft & Food Roundups request. I have featured it in my latest post "All About Succulents: Decorating". Come check it out and feel free to share with your friends!! Thanks, Nichi http://www.mandatorymooch.com/2018/07/all-about-succulents-decorating.html
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