Cement Trend Alert
Updated: Aug 14, 2018
We love the cement trend that's breaking the internet right now. Mainly because it's surprisingly easy to use, super cheap, and dries fast; 3 wins! So naturally we're going to make it a DIY project. Check out this awesome DIY geometric planters that Dani made - they work indoors and outdoors and look adorable with succulents in 'em!
With spring in the air, this trendy project is great for owners of small space condo’s or apartments who love to keep plants on their window seals or balconies. In this tutorial, you'll learn how to make your own mold for a faceted planter, using cardboard and tape. It's a fun project involving mixing cement - and at the end you'll have an amazing planter.
Project Cost: $70.00
To see how they made this awesome DIY check out the video below!
Step 1: CREATE YOUR STENCILS
To make your geometric frames, you’re going to start with creating two triangles which will act as your stencils. You will want to draw these on a cardstock paper so you can easily trace them out later. One triangle should be about 2-3 cm larger than the other.
Once your stencils are finished. Cut them out and mark the large triangle as “Large” and the small triangle as “small”.
Step 2: CREATE YOUR FRAME
To make your geometric shaped frame, You’ll want to follow a specific pattern. I tried out a few versions floating around on the internet but this frame worked the best for me and for ease I’ve shared a downloadable version of it below.
Taking your cardboard, you’re going to create two versions of this pattern. Follow the printed template to trace and place all 15 triangles into their correct positions. One will be created using your large triangle and second will be using your small triangle. If you haven’t guess, the large triangle will be your exterior and the small will be used to create the hole inside your planter.
Step 3: CUT IT OUT
Using a metal ruler and a box cutter, cut out the cardboard pattern shape. At this point you want to only remove the excess cardboard around your template. DO NOT cut any of your lines inside. Hold the cutter perpendicular to the cardboard for clean cuts.
** Also, make sure you put down a second piece of cardboard underneath to ensure you protect the table you’re working on.
Step 4: SCORE TIME
Next, use your metal ruler and your box cutter to score all the inner triangles within your template. Remember not to cut all the way through to the bottom. I'm using packaging cardboard that have three layers. The key is to score through two layers but not piercing through the whole thing.
Repeat the same procedure to make an identical pattern in a smaller size.
Step 4: SHAPE YOUR FRAME
Now that you have both your small and large templates scored, bend the creases and begin to see the molds shape before your eyes!
Starting with your large frame, begin to tape the edges together. Using packing tape, make sure to keep the tape on the exterior of your frame. You want to add tape on every folded edge of the mold and continue tapeing until you have secured every surface. You need to do this in order to keep the cement inside the mold, but also to keep the shape in place when the moisture seeps through the cardboard.
Repeat the same process for the smaller frame but this time you want to carefully tape the interior of the mold instead of the exterior. You will be placing this frame inside the cement so you want to be sure that the sides that are exposed to the cement are the cardboard, not the tape.
Step 5: PREP YOUR CEMENT
Place your cement powder in a mixing container and add water. I should note that you want to use a container that you’re not particularly attached to. It’s going to get ruined.
You’re looking at a 3:1 ratio of cement to water. Of course, I would always advise to follow the directions according to the manufacturer's instructions on your cement mix packet.
Once you’ve added the water, you’re looking for a liquidy, goopy texture but stir fast because this stuff dries quickly! Rapid drying cement starts to set in about 10 to 15 minutes.
Step 6: POURING TIME
You’ll want to make sure your frame is secured in some way. I used a small bin I found at the dollar store. When your mixture is ready, pour a small amount into the large mold frame. Don’t fill all the way to the top. Just enough so set the base. Shake the sides to settle the bubbles and make a nice even layer. Within one minute, place your small triangle mold inside and finish pouring the rest of the cement. You may need to push and hold down your mold for a few seconds just to let the cement set.
Again, you’ll want to tap the mold to settle all the air bubbles and smooth out the edges.
Leave the cement to dry for two - three hours. You will know it’s dry when the cement feels hardened.
Step 8: REMOVE THE CARDBOARD
Using scissors, cut away the exterior cardboard and tape. It SHOULD just peel away with ease, but feel free to use your box cutter to help. If you notice any imperfections, don’t worry, you can easily remove layers away using sandpaper later on.
Leave your planter to dry for another hour or until it feels room temperature.
Step 9: IMPERFECTIONS
You will notice that the cement feels cold now. This is because it has retained some moisture inside, making it the perfect time to make the final adjustments and tweaks to the shape. Remove any bumpy edges using sandpaper. Correct any distortions in the planter and sand the cement away to create clean lines and smooth surfaces.
Step 10: ADD A PERSONAL TOUCH
As a final touch, jazz up your planter using some acrylic paint and a small paintbrush. This part is really up to your personal style but have fun!
These DIY Cement Planters are easy to make and once you have all the materials, you really can create a multitude of different projects. I also used my materials to create this amazing cone shaped hanging planter and simple little candle holders for the balcony table. The world is your oyster, so go create magic!