Wednesday, July 11, 2012

DIY Seashell Topiary

NEWS FLASH-- Item #157 on my “love-love-LOVE” list: topiaries! Whether made of moss, ivy, eucalyptus, wire… you name it, I love it!  So while I was racking my brain to think of a creative way to display seashells, I decided that what else I COULD do but make them into a topiary!?!

I picked up this topiary—covered with tacky Styrofoam “candies” (NOT on my “love” list)—at a thrift store or garage sale some time ago, and decided to use its “guts”  form for my seashell topiary.  All I had to do was strip all of the Styrofoam “candy” off to reveal the foam cone underneath!  If you do not already have a ready-made form, you will need a pot heavy enough to balance the weight of your finished topiary, a piece of foam large enough to fit snugly in your pot, a dowel (or other rod) for the stem, and a foam cone for the upper part. Begin by putting glue on the upper half of the dowel rod, then inserting it into the bottom of the foam cone, at least halfway up inside the cone. Glue the foam base inside the pot, then insert the bottom part of the dowel in the center of the foam base.  It should now look something like this:

(minus the yellow spots where the previous "toppings" were glued)

I then used my trusty hot glue gun to cover the cone with burlap, not only because I didn’t want the Styrofoam showing between the shells, but also to give the shells something to stick to (the foam is made up of those little balls that I was afraid would start falling off!)

Then I started assembling the shell “jigsaw puzzle”! Starting from the top down, I ran a bead of hot glue around the back edge of each shell and stuck it in place, as snugly against the previous one as possible :) (Sorry, I can’t make it any more complicated for you… it really was that simple!) When I reached the bottom, I went back around and filled in any small gaps with the tiniest shells. A couple dozen seashells (and a couple burnt fingers) later:

I glued some larger shells around the base of the topiary “trunk” to hide the Styrofoam at the bottom.

I also glued a strip of burlap around the pot, to add a rustic contrast against the silver.

A simple project with a lovely result!  I love the beachy touch it brings to my “mantel”!

P.S. I have now added another favorite to my “love-love-LOVE” list—my hi-temp glue gun!

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  1. Sooo cool!!! I LOVE the sea theme...*sigh*

  2. Oh how I love this! Thanks so much for sharing on Marvelous Mondays! :)


  3. Thanks for linking up, I'm sorry you're having difficulty. Please use this link

    cool topiary! :)


  4. What a fabulous redo! Love the beachy theme! Thank you so much for sharing at Uncommon! :) Bonnie

  5. Oh my gosh! I LOVE this! In just a couple weeks I'm having a nautical themed bday party for my son and if I can get my hands on some shells, I am so making this!


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