My DIY adventure began when I fell in love with an urn from Charleston Gardens.
The container was new and lightweight--yet it looked 100 years old, with a lovely faux patina.
I winced when I saw the price.
So I decided to try my hand at faux painting.
I began with two resin urns and gave them a good cleaning.
In a moment, cleaning will seem counter-productive when you read about the unusual ingredient for "patina."
At K-Mart I bought 4 cans of "faux concrete finish" spray paint and several cans of Rust-Oleum (in white and off-white). Next, I unearthed sample pots of Sherwin Williams paint (Tricorn Black and a mossy green).
I put on a mask, and I'm glad. Even though I was working outdoors,
fine bits of paint ended up on my camera. It's always a good idea to
protect your lungs!
Here are the urns after one coat of the "faux concrete" spray.
After the second coat.
I finished spraying with the 3rd can and part of the 4th, reserving the latter in case I goofed on the faux painting. I also gathered a huge scoop of potting soil--that's right! Instant patina.
I'd read that Annie Sloan recommended garden soil as a way to age pots, in conjunction with paint,
though I could have easily misunderstood. Perhaps "garden soil" was a paint color!
I was curious, so I decided to give it a go.
I mixed several shades of green and dabbed the urns.
Next, I dipped the brush in soil, scrubbed the bristles in paint, and shook off the excess.
Because of the heat, I had to work fast--the paint kept drying. And I really needed a smaller brush to reach the crevices.
By adding layer upon layer, you can achieve a darker patina, if that's what you want.
Here is a faux copper look-in-progress.
For my house, I wanted lighter-colored urns.
My goal was to make them resemble concrete.
I also used a lighter touch with the faux "moss."
The menfolk came outside to watch.
They were fascinated that I had begun with two perfectly fine urns and was doing my level best to make them look as if they needed to be power-washed.
I continued to layer, ignoring my aching back.
Will the dirt wash off?
Will the paint peel?
A better question might be: Where did I put the Advil?
Next, I touched up two small, white urns with a little off-white spray paint (not the faux concrete).
I put a Hefty bag over the plants, because that's how I roll.
I was tired and grubby, but I dabbed faux "moss" paint onto the urn, concentrating on the indentions.
Every now and then, I rubbed potting soil into the raised decorative areas.
Last night's rain washed away the exterior soil on this pot, but it looks older.
Dirty decorating has taken on new meaning. The urn has aged overnight. It looks like concrete, not resin.
You can see traces of soil on this pot.
After the urns dried, it was time to fill them.
I always use kitty litter in the very bottom for drainage,
then I added potting soil.
The "in progress" mess was horrific.
By the time I was finished, my DIY project certainly didn't feel like
a romance. I was covered with dirt, and my bones were crying out for a hot shower.
I dearly love autumn and couldn't wait to add mums. These were $6 each at Home Depot, Chrysanthemum morifolium or "garden mum." I'd had a mishap the other day after I filled four containers. Take a peek HERE. The photos are pre-mishap. And they lead to a major mishap.
I popped in a flowering vine. The tag says: Evolvulus: zonal geranium, snapdragon, and salvia.
Lemons add a summery vibe.
Later, I'll add small pumpkins.
The tall yellow perennial will eventually be planted near the garden path.
It's a Gaillardia aristata, and it loves heat, humidity, and drought conditions.
Ivy and Mexican heather filled out the little pot.
A mixture of vines were added to the large urns.
The urns are in place, guarded by twin rabbits, which I bought many decades ago in Watertown, Tennessee. They might get a dab or two of "faux" moss tomorrow.
I told you that I'd explain my earlier mishap. It involved a herd of pygmy goats.
Here's what happened. The other day, I filled four urns. You may have already seen the photos; if not, click HERE. Except for one urn, which held a mum and a vine-like lantana, all of those container plants have been consumed and digested by the Galloping Goat Gourmets.
The very next morning, I opened the front door and saw overturned pots, spilled soil, and skeletal plants. Some plants had been plucked out and tossed aside. I'd never seen so much dirt in my life.
One butterfly bush took a hit, too.
After the second attempt to spruce up the porch,
we propped baby gates (which are reinforced by heavy pots, not pictured) in front of the steps.
The barrier worked last night, thankfully.
I made a protected area for the perennials. These are earmarked for the path garden.
The miscreant goats missed this urn.
Or maybe they saved it for a future snack?
The vines have really taken off this week.
A closer look at my experiment with paint and dirt.
Decorating with Dirt was an adventure.
My husband begged me to take down half of these pictures because
of the goat-wrecked porch. The soil was ground-in.
"The porch doesn't need patina," he decreed. "Let's rent a power-washer. Then you
can take pictures."
No, I'm keeping it real. Dirt is part of life--certainly it's part of our lives.
Now, it's part of our urns. :-)
Our next projects:
Power-wash the porch and steps.
Re-pot small lavender plants.
Add patina to a favorite clay pot--then fill with late summer flowers.
Sand front doors. Would you stain or paint them?
Thanks for visiting!
A Metamorphosis Monday contribution.