Tuesday, July 21, 2015

DIY Paper Cactus

I love little plants. Cacti, flowers, succulents, you name it. Problem is, plants aren't the most portable of creatures, and it's a little difficult to move my bedroom plant collection to my dorm on the opposite side of the country. (That and I'm really bad at taking care of plants). Plants instantly brighten up any room, so why not make a few paper plants? It's cheaper and easier than caring for real live growing green things and they add a cute quality to a room. 

Hence, I'm going to teach y'all how to make a paper cactus.

  • White card stock or poster board
  • Brown construction paper
  • Scissors
  • Pencil
  • Water color paint palette (mine was from Michael's)
  • Paint brush
  • Glue stick
  • Little cup with water

Start by painting the card stock in shades of green that you enjoy (I used the darker green, blue-green, and grey). My preferred method of painting was to lightly wet the paper first, then dip a slightly damp brush in the paint and paint it in long layered strokes over the paper, allowing the colors to blend together.

Let the paper dry when you're done painting one side.

Fold the paper in half.

Draw a cactus shape in pencil on the paper so that the bottom of the cactus hits the folded part of the paper.

Cut out the cactus so that you get a reflected two-piece shape. 

Glue the two sides together with a glue stick.

Take the folded cactus piece and use it to trace another version of the main body of the cactus. Repeat this step for tracing the arm of the cactus. Make the arm longer than on the original piece (i.e. so that it would reach the middle of the cactus body).

Cut out the two other cactus parts and glue them together like with the cactus body.

Cut a slit in the top of the main cactus piece that reaches about 2/3 of the way down. Cut a corresponding slit that reaches 1/3 of the way from the bottom of the other cactus piece.

Cut similar slits in the two arms pieces of the cactus.

Put the cactus together. If you need, dab a small amount of tacky glue at the corners where the main body of the cactus meets the other parts.

Shred the brown paper. You can use a shredder if you have one, otherwise cutting long thin strips with scissors works just fine.

Find a small pot or container (I found and empty blueberry container and painted it silver) and fill it with the shredded paper. "Plant" your cactus in the paper and you're done! If your cactus has a hard time establishing roots, cut our a small square out of the painted paper and glue the cactus to painted side of the square so that it can act as a stable platform.

Isn't it so adorable???

Tag your cactus DIYs using #theyouthemisms on social media so I can see your cute cacti and we can create a world of adorable paper cacti!

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