I began by cutting two pieces of wood that fit snugly into an old egg white carton. You could use a milk carton or juice carton as well. I liked the egg white carton for this project because it was a bit thinner than the others. The first piece was a chunk of 2x12. It will go on the bottom of the carton.
Concrete and Wood Vase or Pencil Holder
I've found that mixing materials is a fun way to get creative and spice up your DIY projects. In a cold climate, without a ton of space to work in indoors, I was looking to make something small, simple and versatile. This creation came out of a desire to create a desktop gift for coworkers and use materials I already had on hand. These instructions will walk you through how to make exactly what I did, but with a few modifications you can create a vase that is totally custom and unique to you.
For this project you'll need:
- egg white carton
- staple gun
- toilet paper roll
- clear lacquer
Cut the Wood
The second piece was a thin strip of cedar with 45-degree angle cuts on the end.
I roughed up the lager piece by cutting notches with a Dremel tool.
I also partially inserted screws on both the inside and top of the wood block. This was to ensure the concrete had something to "latch onto."
Insert into the Egg White Carton
Next, I inserted the wood pieces into the empty egg white carton. I used a staple gun to staple the carton to the wood pieces so they would stay in place.
Once the form is ready, mix your concrete in a small bucket or bowl. I used concrete countertop mix and poured it into the carton with a small paper cup.
Create a Hole for the Pens
To make the hole in the center of the vase/pen holder, use the cardboard from a toilet paper or paper towel roll. Tape off one end, making sure there are no holes that the liquid cement can enter the cylinder. I recommend having your roll ready to go before you pour in the cement so you can push it down into the center of your carton before the concrete begins to harden. Once the carton was half full, I actually held the roll in place and poured the concrete around it.
Tape it Down
Tape the cylinder down so it stays inserted in the wet cement and doesn't rise out of the carton. Let the cement dry for at least 24 hours. Then, peel away the cardboard from the edges and rip the cardboard cylinder out of the middle.
The cardboard tube will create a nice hole for your pens, pencils or flowers.
The larger wood block creates partial wood bottom to the vase.
The block will be visible on three sides.
Chip Away Concrete if Needed and Spray with Lacquer
The cedar strip will be visible on the 4th side. I did have to chip/peel a bit of cement away from the wood with my fingers because the staples didn't seal the wood to the carton completely. But, I actually liked how it turned out and give the vase a bit more of a "rustic" look. I also sanded down the wood and a bit of the concrete where the materials met which created the chipped or porous concrete look in this photo. To complete the project, I sprayed the entire vase with two coats of a clear lacquer.
The project makes a great vase....
or a great pen/pencil holder for a desk. Follow me on Instagram at @woodyworking for more simple woodworking DIY or home improvement projects. If you give this project a shot, I'd love to see your variations with different kinds and shapes of wood. Shoot me some photos!