How to Make Pickle Dish Garden Flowers

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Written by empressofdirt
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Turn Old Dishes into Little Fabulous Flowers

Making garden art flowers from repurposed dishes is quite popular right now. These pickle dish flowers are simply a smaller version and quite fast and easy to make.  

Gather up some old pickle dishes (or other serving plates), glass craft paints and a few other supplies and you've got yourself some adorable, decorative flowers. 

I'll show you which supplies you'll need and how to make them.
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Supplies

You'll want dishes that are fairly lightweight so the flower is not too heavy on the stem. 
  • Pickle dishes or other small glass serving dishes for the flower petals.
  • You'll want clear glass if you're going to paint them like I did.
  • You could also use coloured glass for a neat effect.
  • Tiny vases, shot glasses, sherry glasses, salt and pepper shakers for inside of flower.
  • Shish kebab skewers (or other similar metal or wood  item) for the stem.
  • Ballpoint pen lid (for the stem holder).
  • Make sure it fits over the tip of the shish kebab skewer.
  • Leaves (optional). You could use synthetic, decorative plant leaves, metal wire, or small cutlery items including forks and spoons.
  • Craft paints suitable for glass surfaces.
  • I use Martha Stewart® Crafts Glass Paint and Folk Art® Enamels for glass and ceramics.
  • Craft pens suitable for glass surfaces.
  • I use Craftsmart® paint pens.
  • Small paint brushes.
  • Adhesive: I use GE Silicone II silicone sealant (clear, waterproof, made for gutters and flashing) for all of my outdoor garden art projects.
  • Some crafters also use E6000.
  • Clean, protected work surface, soapy water for brushes, rag.
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Step 1: Arrange the Pieces

Decide how you want to arrange the flowers. I use one clear plate for the flower petals and a little vase (or sherry glass or salt shaker) for the centre stamen. You can always change your mind before you glue them together.  

If it helps, browse images of actual flowers to get ideas for colours and design. 

Before assembling them, you will paint the separate pieces.
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Step 2: Paint the Glass Plates

Glass craft paint dries to a really tough finish but it does need time to 'cure'. Read the directions on the product you are using. 

I like to paint the back side of clear plates because I really like how it looks when you view it from the front. You'd obviously need to paint opaque dishes from the front. 

You can make the flowers as simple or elaborate as you like. I'm fond of very basic designs and paint  simple flower petals all around the glass, leaving the centre area for a different colour.
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Step 3: Paint the Glass Vases

To make the centre pieces look like flower stamens, I used lines of black craft markers (made for glass) with little circles at the top. The circles are filled in with yellow paint. 

If you want more ideas, do browse images of flowers. There's so many possible variations.
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Step 4: Wait for the Paint to Dry

This step is really fun, isn't it?  

Actually, glass craft paints feel dry very quickly (in under 30 minutes) but they need much longer to set before exposing them to the weather outdoors.  

If your paint instructions say to bake them, do this before applying any glue.  I don't bake mine and they hold up just fine outdoors.
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Step 5: Glue Pieces Together

I use GE II Silicone sealant in a caulking gun. It also comes in squeeze tubes. Check the date on the container to make sure the product is fresh. Old sealant is runny and won't dry properly or form a bond. 

Apply the glue (sealant) to the bottom of the vase and press firmly onto the clear plate. Hold in place for a minute. Carefully remove any excess (I use an old butter knife). 

Read the directions on the sealant for required drying time.
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Step 6: Glue the Stem Holder

I use lids from ballpoint pens as mounts for the stems. Apply a liberal amount of GE II Silicone sealant to the pen cap and press firmly against the back of the flower dish. 

Allow to dry thoroughly.
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Step 7: Put it all Together

When the silicone sealant has thoroughly set and the paint has cured, you're ready to display the flowers.  

You can place them right in the garden or put them in flower pots. I fill flower pots with stones which hold the stems nice and steady.
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Step 8: Leaves (optional)

If you would like leaves, there's several options:
  • Leaves from artificial plants. Attach with tape to match the stem.
  • Create your own leaves with wire. Attach with tape or wire.
  • Tiny forks and spoons. Attach with tape, wire, or clear adhesive.
All done!  

Now go get some pickle dishes!

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Pickle Dish Flower Supply List

See suggested items here:    Supplies for DIY Pickle Dish Garden Flowers
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More Creative Gardening Ideas



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Smart Gardening Tip

Great idea for tiny seeds!
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