How To Make a Plaster Townhouse Planter

How To Make a Plaster Townhouse Planter

Katie Steuernagle
Apr 29, 2011

With all our recent talk about plants in the nursery, we thought it would be fun to come up with a DIY planter to hold your leafy, air-filtering friends. This version is made of plaster, and it's urban chic form is perfect for a modern nursery. We made the mold out of foam core and duct tape, and the architectural details are formed by sticking self-adhesive craft foam inside the mold. The process is so fun, easy, and satisfying. Get the full how to below.


plaster of Paris, at least 6 lbs
one sheet of foam core
one sheet of sticky back craft foam
duct tape
bucket for mixing
stir stick


Step 1: Cut the foam core.

Cut 4 rectangles that are each 9 inches x 5 inches. Cut one square for the bottom that is 5.25 inches by 5.25 inches. Also cut four smaller rectangles that are each 8 inches x 3 inches.

Step 2: Cut out small details.
Cut windows, doors, and any other details you want out of the sticky back craft foam. Peel off the backing and stick them to one of the large rectangles.

Step 3: Form two boxes.
Tape the 4 large rectangles together with the edges overlapping. Tape the entire seam closed tightly. Tape the bottom on, too. Make sure that every seam is tightly taped shut so the plaster won't leak out when you pour it in. Also, tape the small rectangles together to form a box. Use duct tape to make a bottom on this smaller box.

Step 4: Fill the mold.
Mix the plaster and pour it into the larger box until it reaches about 3 inches from the top. Drum your fingers against the outside of the box to release any air bubbles. Press the smaller box down into the plaster until it is level with the larger box. Hold until the plaster firms up (about 4 or 5 minutes).

Step 5: Take off the mold.
After the plaster has fully set, peel off the duct tape and carefully remove each section of the mold.

Step 6: Sand your planter.
Sand any rough edges. You can turn the planter upside down and rub it on a sheet of sandpaper to smooth and level out the top surface.

Your planter is all done! Note that when you water a plant, the plaster will absorb some of the water much like a terra cotta flower pot. You can also add a layer of rocks in the bottom to help absorb water. Be sure to protect wood surfaces under the planter.

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