I saw these vases on Anthropologie’s site, and have been waiting to make my own. I couldn’t be happier with the results!
Here’s what you need: polymer clay (I like Fimo Soft), clear clay glaze, strong adhesive (I used Liquid Nails), a clear glass vase, paint (I used Martha Stewart’s Multi-surface craft paint), rubbing alcohol, and a foam brush or two.
A note on these paints: you’ll need at least 2 coats with 24hrs of drying time in between! I used a hair dryer to speed up the process, but the paint still took forever to dry completely. If you have the patience, it’s worth it. But if not, check out other options at your local craft store.
What I like about Martha Stewart’s paint is the color selection and the fact that after 21 days, your piece is dishwasher safe (except for this project, because of the clay). To copy Anthropologie’s mint vase, Cloud is a nice color. I went with Beach Glass, because I preferred a more turquoise hue instead of mint green.
1. Wash and dry your vase thoroughly.
2. Pour in some rubbing alcohol and swirl it around to coat the inside of the vase, or use a cotton ball soaked with rubbing alcohol to “wash” the inside of the vase.
3. Turn your vase over onto some paper towels and let dry. The alcohol will ensure that the craft paint will adhere nicely.
4. Using a foam brush, coat the inside of the vase with craft paint. It will be streaky, but a second coat will get rid of most of the visible brush strokes.
5. Allow to dry for 24 hrs before adding a second coat. If you hold your vase up to a light, you can see where you may need extra paint.
6. Sculpt yourself a polymer clay flower. Like I said earlier, I prefer Fimo Soft to other brands. Sculpey is easy to work with but very fragile once baked, whereas Fimo and Primo brands are much more durable but take more time to soften by hand. Fimo Soft is perfect, because it’s durable and easier to work with than the original Fimo.
7. Bake sculpted flower according to instructions on the clay’s package.
8. Finish off the flower with a coat of clear gloss (optional).
9. Glue your flower to the glass vase. I used Liquid Nails, but you may have another favorite adhesive that would work just as well.
Once you’ve applied your first coat of paint on your vase, it’s time to sculpt your flower. For the red chrysanthemum: working in a gradient circle, roll clay into “snakes”. Slightly flatten each one and gently curl the end in toward itself. Start with longer snakes to create a sunburst shape. Then layer shorter ones over top, gradually making shorter and shorter pieces that curl in a bit toward the center.
For the other flower (no idea what kind it’s supposed to be, haha), roll 4 balls of clay about the diameter of a quarter and one ball the diameter of a nickle. Flatten each and create lines to add texture. I used a thin piece of cardboard from a cookie cutter package I had nearby. A metal ruler might work too. Just look for something thin, and don’t press hard enough to cut through your petals! Shape the petals however you’d like, adding movement. Press them gently together at the center. Make the center by roughly rolling another small ball of clay and gently pressing it into the center of the petals. To create the texture on the center, I used an empty mechanical pencil. The tip is perfect for making this interesting texture. I’ve used this technique on figurines for years. It’s great! It looks a bit like the texture of natural coral.
Of course, you don’t have to stick to these designs or just the ones like the vases from Anthropologie. I think a mint green vase with a gold flower would be amazing! How about a multi-colored vase or one with multiple small flowers? And why stop at flowers? Maybe a heart, a swirly design, coral, or fish would be fun…a cupcake for a cute birthday vase! The options are almost endless!
I hope you enjoyed this post. If so, come back for more DIY and creative inspiration!
Have the most beautiful day ever!