From Trash to Treasure…Stacked Glass Fun in the Garden

 

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Winter is a wonderful time to dream up craft projects for the garden. Get together with other gardeners who are having a touch of spring fever and there is no telling what you can come up with.

I started collecting glass pieces for this project a while back by placing a box in the garage and adding cool glass dishes, vases, lamp parts, candle holders and whatever else was interesting when the opportunity presented itself. Like at the flea market or garage sales or thrift stores or when I had to get rid of a few treasures from my cupboards because the doors no longer could close.

Find glass at yard sales and good will stores

Find glass at yard sales and good will stores

I had seen some towers in a garden a while back and thought I could make those… So when my husband announced he was taking that box of junk in the garage to thDSC_0354e thrift store I knew it was time to actually do something with them.

 

 

 

Find an artsy friend to help

Find an artsy friend to help

 

 

I invited my friend Diane over to play and explained my vision with her…vintage, elegant, colorful and somewhat useful art for the garden.  It is always a good idea to have a really creative, artsy person to work with on any garden craft project. We drank tea, looked through my box of goodies, admired each piece, reflected on where I found it or which great aunt passed it on to me and declared it would be better to make something pretty for the garden with some of the more memorable pieces then to let them sit around the house and collect dust.

We sorted the items according to color, size, compatibility (how the pieces would fit together for stability) and appeal. We ended up with five piles. We started the ‘playing process’ of stacking things and stand-DSC_0024 copying back and evaluating. We both weighed in then made a few changes before un-stacking and wishing we had taken a picture so we could remember the order we had come up with.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Materials: Glass items of various sizes, textures and colors

Glue: We used 2 different kinds –

E 6000, craft glue readily available in craft section of stores or

Stik ‘n Seal, outdoor adhesive by Loctite.

Both dry clear, hold glass together and are weather proof.

Follow directions on tube. Takes a day or two to really set up.

These are very

both of these glue products worked well

both of these glue products worked well

easy to make and lots of fun, here are the basic instructions. Just remember you are only limited by your imagination and well maybe gravity.

This is a job to do inside on a cold winters day where the temperature is warm (60 degrees or so) so the glue will dry and bond (ventilate room) After sorting glass pieces into piles, play with them by carefully stacking to get a pattern for your tower. Careful, don’t stack too high without glue. ***Take a picture on your phone so you can recreate your idea.

  1. Make sure your glass pieces are clean and very dry, use a blow dryer if you just washed and dried them.
  2. Start the tower with a strong, sturdy base, an old microwave turn-table or a large glass plate flipped over.
  3. Using a sharpie, mark out where the bead of glue will need to go (just dots or corners for a guide).
  4. Run a bead of glue (see materials) to both pieces; wait until glue gets tacky 2-5 minutes (read instructions) before putting them together. Press and hold for a couple of minutes.
  5. Continue building up until you run out of pieces or get tired of gluing or are afraid it’s too tippy. We used a pattern with a glass plate in between each segment for eye appeal and stability.
  6. We thought no tower was complete without some kind of nob or unique piece on the top. You can do whatever you like.
Use a permanent marker to outline for glue placement

Use a permanent marker to outline for glue placement

large plates make nice bases for stability

large plates make nice bases for stability

Let them sit indoors where it is warm for a day or two until the glue is fully dry

Let them sit indoors where it is warm for a day or two until the glue is fully dry

These garden towers are a great way to re-purpose glass into funky and somewhat functional pieces of art that add color and elegance to any garden.

By adding pieces

Use passalong dishes that would just sit in the cupboard and never be seen

Use passalong dishes that would just sit in the cupboard and never be seen

that double to hold birdseed or water for our friends who flutter and fly we know these towers will be doubly appreciated.

These towers help to add color to the garden and double as a bird feeder

These towers help to add color to the garden and double as a bird feeder

Add a 'shiny' piece to the top like this stainless steel tea pot for reflections

Add a ‘shiny’ piece to the top like this stainless steel tea pot for reflections

A large decorative plate makes the perfect top for a bird bath

A large decorative plate makes the perfect top for a bird bath