Hanging Out in the Office {a little diy}

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Over the last few weekends, I’ve been deep into spring cleaning. In the process of working on rooms and closets throughout the house – and slightly by surprise – one morning, unplanned, I ended up cleaning out my office and moved a lot of things around, all in effort to pump fresh inspiration into it. My office sits in the back of our house and is also known as the mudroom during the fall, winter and spring; and the sunroom during the summer. The room has a tall slanted ceiling with four skylights, offering a lot of natural light, but the end wall needed something to help break up the space with a little texture.

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I really wanted a hanging basket with vine plants to bring some natural greenery into the space. So during a trip to Ikea, I saw these dark reed, woven hanging baskets and I knew they were just right for the space. I had a bit of silver paint leftover from a previous project and thought it would look pretty against the dark reed and offer a little shine. Once the baskets were in hand, I picked out the plants to make sure they would fit properly.

Materials: 3 hanging baskets, paint brush, paint and a drop cloth. Optional: painters tape and an acrylic topcoat spray.

I used: for the paint: Martha Stewart Crafts’ Multi-Surface Metallic Pure Platinum, 2 fl oz bottle; for the topcoat, Krylon Crystal Clear Acrylic Spray; and three 6″ hoya carnosa plants, aka: hoya/wax flower vines.

Time: less than 30 minutes, hands on, from start to finish. If you do an acrylic topcoat, allow additional time for drying and curing.

hanging-basket-dig-materials-sparrowsoireesBefore I started, I gave the plants a good watering to allow them time to soak and drain in the sink while I worked on the project. I put the paint in a small disposable bowl – easy clean up! – and gave the baskets a quick wipe.

hanging-baskets-diy-painting-sparrowsoireesI loaded my brush with paint and brushed it evenly over the basket, making sure the paint went into the gaps as well. I eye-balled a “straight” line around the two of the baskets. Quick tip: I taped the cords inside the baskets so they would stay out of my way.

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Wanting to give the paint time to dry before applying the topcoat all over, I cleaned my paintbrush and put the other items away, but the paint was dry lickety-split (yay!). I gave them a good spray and let them sit about an hour before placing the plants in them. If you’re able to leave them outside under a protected area or in a well ventilated garage overnight, do it! The topcoat is really stinky. We were expecting rain that night, so I put them into the mudroom and opened the windows for fresh air.

hanging-baskets-diy-plants-sparrowsoireesThese baskets are missing drainage holes (both a blessing and a curse) so I placed a folded paper-towel at the bottom to collect loose dirt and water between waterings. Before hanging the basket, I tested the hanging direction by hanging it on my finger. It can be frustrating to hang anything on a high hook only to realize after climbing down, it’s facing the wrong direction once the cord detwirls (no idea if I made that word up, but it works).

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I think they look really pretty and once I give them a little plant food, I’m sure they’ll take off. Big thanks to The Mister for getting those hooks in the wall, perfectly spaced. I’ve also marked it on my calendar when to water them. According to the plant nursery, I should water every two weeks until the summer hits; then it’s weekly. These would also make a sweet, personal gift for Mother’s Day (yeah – just trying to help you get a jump on that one).

If you have a green thumb, do you have any tips to keep these little guys alive? Or general care tips for indoor or hanging plants?

P.S. - I’ll show more of my office a little later. I’m still in the middle of getting it in order.

Come hang out with this lil’ bird!
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