Hi I am Nithya Rajapandian and this is my first instructable. I am basically an amateur photographer and a very big nature enthusiast. I love gardening, tending plants and stuffs. But this isn't the case with everyone and I really want to promote gardening. So when I was looking at the old dull pots in my garden, I realized that it was missing something.
People tend to develop affection and take good care of things if it was personalized to them. And that's what our old dull pots are missing. I took this idea and built a simple terracotta pot on my own and decided to write an instructable out of it.
Before quickly going to the steps for building it, I must say that my friends loved this idea of personalized pot and want me to make one for them. And one of my friend (She is not into gardening and plants at all) want a pot painted with her name and her "Ken" a pet dog which died months ago. It was pretty touchy and i have agreed to build that for her in the future (first win for my idea).
Just to add, I have tried to make a YouTube video with the making of these Personalized pots which can be viewed in the link
I think it's enough with the story let's get into the steps now.
Step 1: Picking the Materials:
Let's look into the materials required to build this.
For pot making:
- Terracotta Air dry clay - This Clay is very much preferred for beginners in pottery, easy to make and can be dried out in room temperature. Pick out the desired color for you. (White is my choice)
- Knife or cutters - To cut the dough from the cast
- Plastic Sheets - To place it over the cast.
- PVC pipe - for kneading
- Sandpaper - Smoothing the pot surface
- Painting pallette
- Painting brushes
- Acrylic Colors
- Small plastic container with some water
- Grown plant - Pick any plant of your choice :) I have bought the plant saplings and gonna transfer that into this pot once done.
- Soil - Obviously
- Fertilizers - This is really up to you. I have chosen some organic fertilizers for this purpose.
Step 2: Choosing Cast:
Choosing cast might be one of the important step you want to do. And it solely depends upon what sort of plant you are intended to place on it. Also you need to make a fix on the quantity of Terracotta clay needed based on your pot size.
The plant I have chosen is pretty tall for a sapling so I have chosen a plastic container (pot cast) which measures 42 cms in circumference and 20 cms in height.
For this purpose I have bought 4 packs of 150 g white terracotta Air dry natural clay. Could have tried with extra clay for better thickness but overall this quantity sufficed my need for the pot.
Step 3: Preparing and Casting the Dough
Start wrapping the cast with the plastic sheet. This will ease the surface between dough and cast in turn the cast can be pulled out once the clay is dry and ready. Place the wrapped cast in the middle of flattened dough.
Take out the Air dry clay, Knead it, and continue the process until it forms a fine dough. Once the dough is ready flatten it out using a PVC pipe. Smooth surface of the pipe will flatten the dough nicely.
Start by wrapping the dough around the cast and wrap it closely as possible.
Cut out the extra clay by means of cutters and scissors and mend the clay together as shown in the demo video above. Finally the clay dough will be tightly wrapped around the cast as shown in the above image.
Let the clay dry for a day.
Step 4: Personalizing the Pot:
So the pot is dry and ready for personalization. Personalization is more of like setting the wild imaginary horses free. You can draw, write letters, make simple artworks - The possibilities are almost endless.
I want this pot to present it to my dear ones. So I picked a quote to add on the pot with some hearts all over it.,and
And the Quote goes like this:
"We are travelers on a Cosmic journey, dancing in the Whirlpools of Eternity. We have stopped for a moment to encounter each other, to meet, to share and to Love."
To do this I started by coating the pot in white paint as base. Then I wrote the letters on it in black as you can see in the above images.
Then I cut out heart shape in a foam paper painted it and pressed it over the pot.
This helped me to get the shape correctly. Retouched, Added borders and my pot is finally done and ready for plantation.
Step 5: Planting
Now we are into the final step of our project. Prepare the sand by mixing appropriate amount of fertilizer to the soil. Now the sand is ready.
Dig out the sand and carefully place the plants inside the pot. Maintain optimum space between the plant saplings. Water the plant out.
Your personalized theme pot is ready to be gifted!
Hope it will be a useful project to you.I intend to participate in the gardening contest with this Instructable. Kindly vote for this project if it seems useful to you.