Gold Leaf Concrete Planters & Candles

It’s not common that I find people that like to craft as much as I do, and I would have never guessed that I would find someone in Switzerland of all places. But I did, and she might actually like to craft more than I do, which I didn’t really know was possible!

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Betty and I have a standing monthly craft date and I always look forward to it. She has a craft room that one can only dream about. Two sewing machines, a large standing work table, shelves filled with fabric, papers, and all the craft supplies one might need. 

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Not only does she have a craft room, she has a backyard! I love my balcony and all, but it does not give me the room I need for a big project. Lately, Betty has gotten into cement crafting. She has been collecting molds from thrift stores around town and making all sorts of concrete creations. Pick a mold, any mold…

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For our last craft date, we put on our work clothes and got down and dirty with the cement. I wanted to make a planter and she planned on making some candles, so I jumped on that as well. It’s a rather quick and easy project, you just really have to be completely ready before you get started. Once the cement is mixed, you need to move fast before it dries on you! For the planter, we used two bowls, one smaller than the other to make room for plants. For the candles, we used some plastic cups and tea-lights. 

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Materials:

  • Fast-setting cement mix
  • Water
  • Large spoon for stirring
  • Your choice of molds (preferably plastic)
  • Silicone spray
  • Gloves
  • Tea-lights
  • Gold Leaf with adhesive (optional)

concrete mixing

First things first: put on your gloves. Spray the molds with silicone spray in all the places where the concrete will touch the molds. Mix the concrete with a little bit of water at a time, stirring with each pour, until you have a yogurt-like consistency. Once it is ready, move fast! Pour the concrete into your mold, and put your second mold on top. To keep the mold in place, I recommend some heavy rocks as weights. 

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Let your cement dry at least an hour before you take them out of the molds. You might have to jiggle them a bit to release from the plastic. For the plastic cups, you can always just cut those off if you don’t care about re-using them. 

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Before you do any decorating, give them a full day to dry. From here, you can get out your inner artist and do whatever you please. I had some gold leaf that I have been dying to use, so I gilded my concrete. To use the gold leaf, you need to first apply the adhesive and then place the gold leaf on. This is my first time using gold leaf and I learned that you have to let go of control. Let the gold leaf guide you, because the gold leaf won’t let you guide it! It looks beautiful no matter how it’s placed on, so don’t fret if you were trying to make a certain pattern.

gold leaf planter

Lastly, cover the gold leaf with the sealant. Now our masterpieces are ready to put to use!

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I’m really happy with how these turned out, and now I’m trying to figure out what to make next! Maybe a new spice rack, coasters, stepping stones, letters, or even this cute honey bear. Anyone else into concrete crafting?

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6 Comments
  1. Hi Caitlin,
    We had soooo much fun that day…and it all turned out well. I like your latest post very much 🙂
    Let’s do it again and I have some more ideas on my mind and you for sure as well.
    Thanks for being my monthly crafting friend

    Betty

  2. Oh, I am so jealous of your craft dates (and ESPECIALLY her craft room!). I am a huge crafter and I’ve belonged to a few different crafting circles over the years, and I always so enjoy crafting with friends. The planter turned out SO gorgeous!

    1. i want a crafting circle! that sounds awesome. if we dream big, we will too have our own craft rooms one day 🙂

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