Topiary Schmopiary

06 November 2008

I love topiaries. I think they are so pretty, but so blasted expensive! I have never seen a *great* deal on them, so what's a girl to do??

Remember this one from my yard sale treasures a while back?

Well, the only part of her I used was the green styrofoam ball underneath all of the ivy. That's okay though, because these are at least 2 or 3 dollars aren't they? So, it was worth it.
I used this one from Ballard Designs as my inspiration: (I'm basically just a copier, you realize that! I get "inspiration" from real designers and then copy and adapt to my budget)

Price tag: $54.99, plus, tax, plus s&h

I had a real plant on my desk in the kitchen (where I happen to be typing right now), but I have a bit of a brown thumb, and it died. So, I knew I had to go fake. Off to Hobby Lobby we go....

Their faux greenery is 50% off (is it ever not?? lol) and I pick these out. They were much bushier, but I didn't think to take a picture until after I had picked them apart. I buy two, so my total is around $8.00.
I pick off a part, then pick again, then cut those in half to this.

Now the fun part: Stick them all over your green styrofoam ball. This part takes awhile. I would guess 2 hours total? I did it here and there~outside while the kids are playing, watching election coverage, while I'm driving (kidding!!) etc.

When she's all covered, get yourself a nice stick from your backyard (or your neighbors, or the park) I spray painted mine espresso because it wasn't very pretty plain. Get your container:

I spray painted this one WM cream (what else??) and then rubbed some sand paper over it to let the designs show through. Stick some styrofoam in there, (or in my case, newspaper wadded up very tightly because I'm out of styrofoam at the moment...), stick your ball on , cover the base with some moss, leftover greenery from your ball, or what have you, and there you have your beautiful topiary!

My total cost:
ball taken from yard sale topiary: $1.00
greenery from HL: $8.00
stick: free
moss: leftover from another project
container: .25 from a yard sale
Total: $9.25

Not having to worry about watering it, it turning brown and dying: priceless.

I'm on a topiary kick now, so watch out! More coming your way...


  1. SO cute!! Will be adorable with a Christmas ribbon!

  2. That turned out great! Maybe I should rescue the topiary that I put in the garage sale box, it was from my shabby chic single days and pink and off-white don't work with a husband and 2 year old son. I could put in in a new pot and take off the pink roses......hmmmmm.

    BTW...there's nothing wrong with copying their ideas.....that's why we all get Pottery Barn and Ballard catalogs!

  3. Priceless! You got that right! I have all the stuff to do one. Wow thanks for being my inspiration!

  4. I think I made one several years ago..hmmm, I don't know what happened to it. Might be time to make a new one. Yours turned out great!

  5. So much cuter than the ivy, nicely done!

  6. Cute, I am sorry the real plant passed on. You need to do like I do and go ask which plant here can I buy that doesn't need water?:) I got my deal on a topiary at Gardner village because some teenager just guessed at what price it was since it wasn't marked and her boss had left. Gotta love that! YOurs makes me want to redo it though!

  7. Ooohs and aahs from me for such a fantastic job!!! I love how yours turned out! BTW- your boys' room is awesome too!

  8. What a beautiful topiary you just made! I love it! What a great idea. It makes me really want a Hobby Lobby close by. I'll have to write ideas and stock up next time I make it down to one! I love the container you put it in. Beautiful!

  9. Just fantastic! Love it.

    Not having to water it. Lol-I kill everything green.

    Your boys' room looks great. I like the green dresser too. You did a great job on everything.

  10. I love that topiary! Did it take your forever. I am really in love with your green chanding table, I have one just like it that I'm not too crazy about. I think I may need a turtorial on how you did that (hint, hint). Your boys room looks great. Oh, and yes, the hubby will be bleeding red tonight, I hope he doesn't freeze to death!

  11. That's one great looking topiary! Love that you made it yourself! We have the same keyboard and speakers;)

  12. Wow that looks better than I expected and you can't beat the price. Can't wait to see what else is up your sleeve.

  13. Another great job well done! Love every bit of it!

  14. I love topiaries too and yours turned out fabulous! Looks so cute on your desk!

  15. Thanks so much for the tutorial. It turned out so lovely!!
    I just published a post last night about our home office, which features many vintage automobiles, planes, cameras, etc. I noticed you have the same red truck in your boy's room. : )

  16. again.. you are sooooo rad at making cool stuff!!!!!
    hmph... I need to get with the program and be more like the decorator you inspire me to be - LOL!

    ps: I'm totally cool with waiting until your new one arrives to work on a photo :)

  17. I love topiaries, I have 3 in my home right now, but have the perfect container for another one!

  18. You are so creative. It looks great!

  19. Wonderful! I would never have thought it would turn out so well!

  20. Oh my gosh, girl.. your humor KILLS me!!!
    LOVE it!

  21. I love it! I might have to make a trip to Hobby Lobby tomorrow:)

    I have a silly question (if you have time to answer it :). Is the Wal-Mart spray paint you use flat or glossy?

    I went to Wally world to get some and they only had the "almond" in glossy. And I thought, "I should ask Melissa what she gets?" Because you're the one that knows what she's doing! :)

    Just shoot me an e-mail when you get a chance: Thanks!

  22. I absolutely love the topiary! Not sure how I found your blog but can't wait to snoop around!

  23. Thought I commented but I didn't! This is GREAT! I make my own too but your way is SO much easier and looks better. Love it!

  24. Super cute!!! This is my first time visiting your blog and I love it!! I'm on a topiary kick as well. I made a leaf urn is a little small for it, but until I find a bigger one it works.

  25. Melissa,
    Just wanted to know that I followed your tutorial and made myself a topiary.Thanks so much, I love it!

  26. Your topiary turned out great! I have wanted one for so long but I never want to fork of the $$$ for one. I thought about making one but wasn't sure how it would turn out. This little tutorial has inspired me to give it a try!

    Love your blog by the way!!


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