Tuesday, April 7, 2009

White Manzanita Branch Centerpieces

Inspired by the windows at Tiffany and encouraged by a commenter on the post, I set out to make some White Manzanita Branch Centerpieces. Once I got the branches painted, I gussied up the branches a little bit and was quite pleased with the results. 

The primary objective of the project was to see how well the dark Natural Manzanita Branches took white paint, and what types of paint and method of application worked best. We tried flat white spray paint and white primer applied with a brush. 

Long story short, a couple of coats of spray paint is the way to go. Spray paint smells, lots of paint ends up missing the branch, and it makes a mess, but it is a heck of a lot faster and easier than applying paint with a brush, and the final result looks just fine. The branch with the Salal leaves on it in the top picture was spray painted twice, and the branch with the chain was painted with white primer and then spray painted.   

This centerpiece started with an 18-24" Natural Manzanita Branch secured with plaster in a 6 inch clay pot. Before painting, give the plaster and the pot a few days to dry. Once painted, we put some acrylic sea glass from Jamali Garden in the top of the pot (half of a two pound container), and tucked some pieces into the branches (you'll want to secure these with a dab of glue). The final touch was to drape the display with a chain we got from the hardware store. 

This centerpiece also started with  an 18-24" Natural Manzanita Branch, which we covered with a couple of coats of flat white spray paint. We then used hot melt glue to attach Salal leaves to the tips of the branches. Note that the front and back of the leaves have different looks - for some we had the front facing out, and others we had the back facing out, providing a nice subtle variation (my Mom deserves some credit for this idea - a few years ago she created some intriguing collages taking advantage of the contrast between the front and the back of leaves).


The Concrete Commentator said...

I'm sure you've heard of Kryslin designs in L.A. if not, you should check out their website. http://www.krislyndesign.com/

Brittany said...

Your company seems lovely! I just placed my first order to fill some pretty blue antique jars I recently purchased.

Justin said...

Hi The Concrete Commentator - Thanks so much for that link to Krislyn Design - wow! We featured one of their displays on this blog, which we found on another blog, back in October, but never had a chance to see the main site. That is some gorgeous work!

Hello Brittany - Thanks so much for the order! Feel free to follow up at service@nettletonhollow.com if you ever have any questions about what might work with what, need suggestions, etc.

Bessie said...

Justin... I live in a little mountain town in Central, AZ. I use manzanita from my own backyard to make arrangements all the time... possibilities are totally endless, right? OK... for spray painting... totally my preferred method... I just hang the branch from it's stem with a length of twine from my garage ceiling. Total coverage from every direction and no surface contact that leaves spots to be touched up later ;)Any paint that hits the air dries to dust before hitting the floor... sweep up and , viola... finished ;)

Justin said...

Awesome - thanks for the tip!