Thursday, March 15, 2012

Mr. McGregor's Vegetable Garden Wreath (DIY Coffee Filter Vegetables Tutorial)

Whenever I hear the tale of Peter Rabbit, I always imagine Mr. McGregor's vegetable garden to be lush and filled to the brim with delicious veggies.

Mr. McGregor's Fence
Credit

So this year, for my Easter Display, I wanted to make Mr. McGregor's Vegetable Garden Wreath to hang over my mischievous little Easter Bunnies!
BUT...have you seen the prices of those cute artificial cabbages, lettuces & carrots?  Sheesh!  I'm not going to pay that...I'll just have to make my own Fake Veggies!  After a little experimentation, I discovered a way to make them using Coffee Filters & Food Coloring!

Fake Lettuce/Cabbage:

First, grab your bag of Cone Coffee Filters, Green Food Coloring & a Spray Bottle.



Next, lay out a few garbage bags on your counter-top.  Cut the ridged end of the coffee filters so they will lay flat.  I used about 24 filters to make 3 cabbages.

 
Add a few drops of green food coloring to about 1/3 Cup of Water in your spray bottle.  Spray Away!


This step requires a little experimentation.  I added a bit more green color and sprayed haphazardly on the filters.  I was going for the "natural leaf" look.



Now, take an uncut coffee filter, turn it inside out so you can see the seam, and stuff it with a couple of paper towels.  Give it a light misting of your color.  This will make the center of the lettuce.


Let all of this dry for a few hours to overnight.  They must be totally dry for the next step.


First, take two of the lighter shade filters and crumple them up into a ball.  Straighen them out and, using a glue gun, glue the two straight sides together.



Next, take your lettuce center and glue it directly into the middle of your lettuce leaf circle.


Flip the whole thing over and begin gluing more crumpled leaves on the back.  Glue them 1/2 inch from the center so they will show as the next layer.  Continue to build leaves on the back, going from lighter colors to darker ones.  I used 6-7 leaves per lettuce head.


When you've built your leaves up to your liking, gather the head together and tie the back with a piece of raffia or string.  This will keep the leaves sturdy.


Flip it over, fluff it up and there you have a nice head of lettuce!



Fake Carrots:

For the carrots, fold the ruffled end of the coffee filter over as shown:



From the opposite end of the fold, roll the filter into a small cone and glue under the fold.


When you've made as many carrots as you'd like, paint them with a mixture of orange food coloring (red + yellow) and a few drops of water.


Let them dry completely for several hours or overnight.


Glue a green coffee filter (leftover from the lettuces) into the top of your carrot cone.  (Sorry I did't get a good picture of this step.)

Now you're ready to use your homemade lettuce & carrots however you wish!  I made myself a great wreath using my veggies, a Dollar Tree Wreath & Silk Flowers, and some burlap.  What do you think?



All ready for Easter (and Peter Rabbit)!



The Fake-It Yourself Breakdown:

Fake Lettuce/Cabbage & Carrots (Coffee Filters $0.005 & Food Color $0.005)

Total Fake-It Cost:  $0.01 for 3 Lettuce Heads & 6 Carrots

Compare to Craft Store Faux Vegetables (Cabbage $15 each, Carrots $7.99, set of 6)

Total Fake-It Savings:  $52.98


Linking Up at Tip Junkie, Today's Creative Blog, The Frugal GirlsFunky Junk Interiors and these other Great Parties! 

12 comments:

  1. This is adorable! You would never know those veggies are made of filters! Great idea!

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  2. Beatrix would be proud. Very cute!

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  3. Your version is so much cuter than something made with those fakey-fake veggies! Really adorable

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  4. I think the lettuce is amazing. What a neat trick!

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  5. This is a really cute idea. It turns out so amazingly well.
    I would love it if you would come link it up at my Pinworthy Projects Link Party.

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  6. What do I think? Well, I think you're a hoppin' genius! Love this wreath!

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  7. I love it. You are just so clever. Did you major in frugal in college.? love it !!!

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  8. okay, you got me, I am gonna go get some coffee filters and plug in my glue gun!!!!buni

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  9. love it bet Peter Cotantail wants to be up there as well come see me at http://shopannies.blogspot.com

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  10. Oh, thank you! I've been looking for fruits and vegetable crafts to do with my kids at school, and this is perfect! THanks so much!

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Compliments and Frugal Tips Only, Please!

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