Mothers' Day is not too far away, and although I'm absolutely positive your Mum is worth more than a recycled cardboard container and a few bits of string, this might still be a fun project for the little ones to help with. They can paint a picture or glue sparkles all over the pot and help decorate it with all sorts of treasures. These look cute with a tiny bouquet of flowers or leaves hand picked from the garden (if your kids are anything like mine, they love picking me flowers, twigs and weeds from the yard). Make a whole bunch - Nanna will love them!
The containers I use are strong cardboard ones with plastic lids, the type that generally hold baking powder or gelatine. Ones like this -
They have a sort of tin bottom and a push on plastic lid. Although they are strong and seem to be water resistant on the inside, I would not feel confident about filling it with water or damp soil. You would have to put a small jar, or perhaps cut the bottom of a small plastic bottle and pop it inside if you were using it for flowers or plants. Anyway....
What you need
-Strong cylindrical cardboard container. The type shown are ideal.
-2.7 m cord, ribbon, thick cotton yarn, baker's twine etc.
-White paper or cardstock (enough to fit around the pot)
-Poster paint, washi tape, sticky dots, fancy paper or whatever you'd like to use to decorate the pot.
-Clear acrylic gloss or clear varnish (optional)
-Small metal ring (the type used on keyrings)
-Needles or skewers of graduating thicknesses (to pierce wholes in the pot for the string to go
-Stuff to decorate - I used big jingle bells on the bottom of mine, and hung pompoms on the side, but beads, ribbon tassels, sequins, etc. Go wild.
Clean your container out with a damp cloth and dry. Cut the white paper or cardstock, to fit around container. Tape or glue in place.
Decorate the pot using paints with whatever design you like (wtih the one shown here, I've sort of dabbed on white poster paint roughly and then used the end of an old pencil to stamp on black spots). Or use washi tape to create horizontal or vertical stripes on the cardboard, or sticky dots for a polkadot effect. Whatever you like.
Measure around the top of your container and mark in thirds. Create holes to insert the hanging cords through. Do this by first piercing with a thin needle or pin, then re-piercing that point with something thicker like a skewer, then maybe a knitting needle. The hole needs to be wide enough to thread a double thickness of your chosen cord through.
At this point, you can spray or brush with acrylic spray or varnish to create a glossy finish, if you so desire and you have some handy. If not, it doens't matter.
Cut three lengths of cord, each 90 centimetres long. Line them up all together and fold in half, as shown.
Loop and knot the centre of the cords through the metal ring, using a girth hitch (I googled that).
You'll have three pairs of cord to thread through the holes in your pot. Pull each pair through on hole to the inside of the pot (you can do this with a yarn needle, or perhaps form a hook from a paperclip or pipecleaner and use that to pull them through). Now getting the lengths of the cords even so that the pot hangs straight can be a bit tricky, so loosely knot and adjust until each pair of cords is pretty much even. If there is too much slack in one cord, you will be able to tell when you hold it up. It will sort of hang funny. Keep adjusting until it hangs pretty well even, and tighten the knots (Wow! - this is a hard step to explain - trust me, when you are doing it, it will become clear what I mean. I hope).
You are basically done.
Just for fun and a bit of added interest, I used the lid of the container as a base, and threaded a jingle bell on it. I heated a large needle over a flame and used it to melt a couple of holes either side of the centre of the lid.
Then the big jingle bell was sewn to to the bottom using thick cotton thread and then the lid was glued to the base and left to dry.
Instead of a bell, you could use a string of beads or a tassel or hang some pompoms from the bottom. But of course, you don't have to do this and can leave the pot exactly as it is.
You can further decorate it with anything else you fancy. I hung some pompoms on the edge of my spotty one, because it still looked a bit boring. The beads on the one with the triangles were threaded onto the cord before pulling the ends through and knotting them inside the pot. Added sparkles are always welcome.
Don't forget, these aren't waterproof! Slide in a small jar or cut the bottom of a small plastic bottle to serve as a barrier. Pop in a bunch of flowers (or, as in our case, leaves, as it's autumn here, and all my flowers are gone, or nearly gone).
I know it's early, but best wishes to all Mums everywhere! You rock!