Tuesday, October 8, 2013

DIY Painted Acorns.

One of my favorite DIY projects I tackled when getting our house ready for the amazing Modern & Fresh Fall series, was painting acorns to use as vase/tray filler.


I simply headed out the back door of our house and collected acorns of all shapes and sizes.


Then I hopped onto the computer and Google'ed the best way to kill any bugs or creepy crawlies that might live in the acorns.  {Yuck.}  I came across a couple different ways to make the acorns "indoor-safe"...the two most common were baking and freezing.

I opted for baking.  There were many opinions on the best amount of time and temperature to bake at. Some of the higher temperature/shorter time methods seemed to have issues with exploding or burning acorns.  I definitely didn't want to have either of those issues, but I also wanted to make sure that anything that could possibly be living in the acorns were gone-zo...so I decided to go with a lower temperature/longer baking time method.

I placed all my acorns in a single layer on a cookie sheet.  I pre-heated my oven to 200 degrees, and then I let the acorns bake for two hours.


After the first hour, I took the sheet out and gently shook things around so the acorns moved around a bit.  I wanted to make sure nothing was burning to the pan.  Then after the second hour, I took the pan out and let them cool.

{FYI - most directions talk about washing the acorns off and cleaning them thoroughly before baking them. I did this with a handful of acorns {see the couple clean ones in the lower right-hand corner of the photo above}, and then realized how ridiculously tedious of a process it'd be.  Since I wasn't eating the acorns, I did not deal with washing them.  I will admit that the ones I did wash were very pretty and polished.  So if you are going for a "natural" look with your acorns, definitely do this step!!!}

Once the acorns were cool, I got out my hot glue gun and glued the tops on all the acorns.  Most of them didn't have tops on already, so I just used a mix-and-match approach to this.  Again, this step is tedious, but super easy.  One dab of glue on the top of the acorn, and then put a top on it.  It helps to try a top before you put the glue on to make sure it "fits" the acorn.

After all my acorns had tops securely glued to them, it was time to paint!  I knew I wanted mustard, plum and teal acorns, so I separated my acorns into three equal piles.  For the teal and mustard colors, I used craft paint from my supplies, and for the plum I used Rustoleum's Aubergine spray paint.  To get it "paintable", I just sprayed a generous amount into a paper cup, and then dipped my paint brush into the cup.

WARNING - do not use a cheap plastic cup to spray into.  The spray paint will eat through the bottom of it and then you'll have spray paint EVERYWHERE.  This may or may not have happened to me while painting my acorns and pumpkins. Eeeeek!  Also, just to be safe, put a drop cloth or something similar under whatever cup you are using. :)

I held the acorns by the tops while I painted, and luckily the paint dried pretty fast on these guys.  I tried to prop them up by their tops, so none of the painted surface touched anything while they dried, but not all of them would stay standing. For those who fell over, and then had some of the paint come off, I simply touched up those spots and let them dry on the side that was already dried.

The painting was pretty tedious, but nothing terrible...just a few seconds per acorn.  And I think the results are totally worth it! :)





33 comments:

  1. Gabbi...this is hilarious...I have had the same thing happen to me with the plastic cup! lol! I loved these acorns you did and like I said, I'm totally copying it with black, white and gold for my office! Thanks, girl!

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    1. Haha...it was pure PANIC when I realized what happened. Thankfully, nothing bad happened and I could clean it up ASAP. PHEW!!! Thanks, Jesse! :)

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  2. Love those acorns! I noticed them in your fall tour and was hoping you would post a little about them! If it wasn't a tutorial I was going to buy them immediately! Lol! Love this project and still going ga ga over your fall-tastic home.

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  3. Well how cute are those?! Glad you didn't have any exploding acorns even though you had an exploding cup. And I've never heard of decontaminating acorns...I learned something new. ;)

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    1. I'm glad I could teach a little lesson to you. ;)

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  4. those are awesome! and thanks for the info on making them indoor safe. :) so is it my imagination or did your blog get a new look?

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    1. Thanks Cassie!

      Yuppers, it did. And today I put the finishing touches on it. :)

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  5. I wish I had acorns in my back yard! I would love to give this a go =)
    I love the new look on the blog!!

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    1. Oh man, Kelly....if only we could share ours with you. We have a bagillion in our yard!!

      Thank you! :)

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  6. Is it bad that I would not have thought about stuff living in acorns? Don't answer that.

    These are super petty! As is your new blog design!

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  7. Hi gabbi! New design!! Love it. The acorns are super cute but I love most that they pull together your color scheme! They look like you could eat them... But not after I read how you cooked the bugs out:) lol!

    Laura
    House envy

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    1. Thank you, Laura! You aren't the first one to say they look like candy...that'd be quite a surprise if someone popped one in their mouth haha. ;)

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  8. Gabbi...love this idea. We usually end up raking our acorns into the fire pit. I might be salvaging a few for a copy cat project.

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    1. Yes, dooo it!! We have so many in our yard...I was determined to use them for a project this year. :)

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  9. Love the acorns and the colors you chose.

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  10. those were my fave too :) Super cute!!! xo Kristin

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  11. These are so fun! I love your collection method. I may have to steal some from my neighbors!

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  12. Oo I love this project! Those colors look awesome together :)

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  13. These are so cute!! And I love that table runner!!

    xo, amy

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    1. Thank you, Amy! I really love the fabric I used for that runner. :)

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  14. This was one of the first things I spied in your feature - and I LOVE them!!! Pinning! :)

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  15. Beautiful room - love the mix of old and new and it's also well balanced :)

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  16. These are so stinking cute! Totally pinning these! Love the idea of painting them.

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  17. Linked YOU up here http://objectofmayaffection.blogspot.com/2014/10/try-it-thursdaypainted-acorns.html

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