Recycled Chocolate Tin Planter

12 Materials
2 Hours

My idea for this project was to make a fun planter from a recycled chocolate tin. I am really hopeless with watering plants and thanks to my destructive dogs I can not have nice planters in my garden. So my idea was to have an indoor planter with artificial succulents. Because the plants would not need watering, I got the idea to add a secret storage compartment inside the planter. I remember when I was a younger I had something similar to hide my cigarettes from my parents. lol

While I have no use for a planter with a secret compartment, I am sure there are some teenagers out there that would love this idea. Staying with the theme of my website, I also tried to make most of the planter out of recycled materials I had at home. I wanted to create the planter to look like a handbag so that it can be hung on a wall or from a hook in the roof.

I used a recycled quality street chocolate tin. You can use just about any tin, I liked this tin because of the shape. To cut an opening I used a knife to add a hole and used these cutters to cut the tin. I only cut away a gap around the top.

You will end up with some sharp edges which you can fold back using pliers.

You can decorate your tin to suit your decor. If you want to duplicate mine, here is how I made it. I recently made a project where I embossed aluminium soda cans into wall art. The effect was so cool I wanted to see if I could emboss faux leather to cover this planter. I started by adding so cardboard to both sides of the tin to smooth out the surface.

Embossing the faux leather The embossing machine I used is just a cheap and cheerful one that I bought secondhand from Facebook. I have bought a few different embossing folders since my last project which I used in this project. It is as simple as putting the faux leather in the folder and putting it between the plates. The plates are then fed through the machine.

I embossed enough leather to cover the back in the brick design. The leather was attached to the cardboard using “ The ultimate” glue. This is my go-to glue for all my mixed media projects.

To cover the sides of the planter I used thick brown paper which I embossed with a cobblestone design.

If you follow my blog you will know that I am steampunk mad. I was so determined to stay away from steampunk for this planter but I still ended up with steampunk elements to it. The faux leather on the front was embossed with some steampunk designs. To tidy up the edges I used some split conduit from my husbands’ toolbox.

I cut it in half again and glued it around the rim using hot glue.

I make all my own embellishments using moulds and resin. My favourite brand of moulds is the stamperia range because they have the nicest steampunk range. These moulds are all part of that range. I generally use regular resin but I wanted this to be a quick project so I used the UV resin that dries in minutes. You will need a UV light if you buy this resin. I use the UV light from my gel nail kit. I used hot glue to attach the resin mould.

If you still have any gaps you can fill them or paint over them. It does look a mess now, but with mixed media art, you have to try and ignore that for now.

You can paint everything black using gesso or black acrylic paint. To make all the detail stick out I used some copper wax paste. To apply the wax paste you touch the surface of the wax with your finger and rub the wax across the raised surface of your planter.

I was not happy with the look so I added some more embellishments to the front and the back.

The great thing about mixed media is you can always keep adding to the planter at any given time.

You just need to paint it black and start again if you are not happy. My original idea was just to have the copper wax colour, but I felt it looked boring so I added a couple of other colours.

To apply the paint you can use a small makeup sponge and dip the tip into the paint and randomly dabbed some colour all over the planter.

The colours I used is Art alchemy emerald green and deep waters which is blue.

The straps for this project were taken from an old handbag that I had at home. I would usually go to thrift stores or charity shops and buy a cheap one if I did not have one. The straps were screwed in at the top with a stud and the rest was glued using hot glue. I also added some copper wax to the straps so they blended in with the planter.

You can use the foam they use for flower arranging to go inside the planter. I did not have any so I use some old styrofoam packaging. If you want to add the secret storage you only need enough to cover the top gap that you cut out.

I used an old butter knife that was heated up on the stove, the knife literally cuts the styrofoam like butter. I would not recommend using a good knife because it could damage your knife like this one.

The rest of the gap will become the secret compartment. You can paint the styrofoam black for a better cosmetic look. Once the paint is dry you glue the styrofoam inside the tin and put the planter back together.

I used fake succulents for this project so I did not have to look after the planter. You can arrange the succulents by pushing them into the styrofoam, you can also use some hot glue if needed.

Lining the tin You can add some fabric or paper inside the planter to make the secret compartment look more appealing.

Back of planter

Are you looking for ways to entertain the kids indoors? This racing game is a great game you can make.

Don't throw away all your small scraps of wood. This tutorial will show you how to turn them into simple to make wall art for your home.

Resources for this project:

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3 of 28 comments
  • Rose Broadway Rose Broadway on Jul 11, 2021

    Absolutely gorgeous!!!!!!

  • BERT LUCAS BERT LUCAS on Jul 30, 2021

    I have racked my brains trying to find a use for these chocolate boxes but ended up just chucking them in the bin. Now there is a great excuse to buy another box of chockies, just for the container (obvs). Well done you AND I already have the little pots of metallic looking paints, which also, I have never really used. Great!!!!!!!!👍️