This post is a bit late to the party as we completed this project nearly six months ago – but what can I say, teaching a communications theory course last semester and starting a new job has consumed a bit of my attention for awhile. BUT, I am back and ready to share some fun projects that the husband and I have been working on over the winter. Let’s do this 🙂
Ever since we bought our house, I have been dreaming about the day that we would be able to build a custom window flower box for our main front window. I love the look of the craftsman style modern farmhouses that feature these gorgeous wooden flower boxes and swoon-worthy shutters. So, we decided to build our own! So I will share how we constructed our flower box, what we planted in there during the early fall…and share a quick update on converting the design to winter.
We started with a quick trip to Lowes to get our hands on some pieces of wood. We wanted the flower box to extend the entire length of our window and discovered that we have a fairly standard 6 foot window, which made the build pretty straightforward. I knew that we would be staining and sealing the wood, so all I really kept an eye out for was pretty grain patterns and pieces that were not warped.
We ended up buying three pieces total – one for the front, back, and the bottom. I envisioned a box that included a bit of an overhang on each end instead of a basic rectangle shape for a bit more design interest. So in order to achieve that look, we cut about 8 inches in from each end of one board and nailed them in place as the sides to hold in the dirt and plants.
Stain & Seal
Once the structure was built, I began the staining process. My all-time favorite stain is a dark walnut shade from Minwax. I applied an even coat using a paintbrush and let the stain set in for about five minutes per side before removing the excess with an old rag. For anyone who may be new to stain – I suggest working in an area that you don’t mind getting messy (cue the garage photos with ugly old christmas tarp on the ground!) I also suggest that you wear gloves (I never listen to my own advice on this and ALWAYS end up left with gross, sticky, brown hands!). After the stain was applied and was given a few days to properly dry, I did two coats of Thompson’s Water Seal to make sure this beauty would survive our lovely Michigan elements.
Hanging Our Flower Box
At this point, you will have to bear with me a bit and use your imagination as I describe how we hung our flower box. Cody and I used two ladders to get up to the window and we each lifted one end carefully up to window height. We also benefitted from some additional support from one of my girlfriends who came over to visit – this is what happens when you stop by our house….you get pulled into our projects! After a few minutes of awkwardly holding the box to the side of our house while Cody worked diligently to screw it in – success, the flower box was snug and held in place! I allowed Cody a few additional minutes to inspect our work and ensure that it was going to stay snug and once we got his stamp of approval it was onto the fun part… planting fall foliage! I choose three alternating colors of hardy mums (orange, red, and yellow) to give a nice pop of color from the street.
Man, I love how this project turned out. Throughout the fall season the mums blossomed into huge, lovely flowers that were visible both from the street and from inside our office and it truly gave the front of our house a much-needed pop of curb appeal. Now that we are in entering into the winter season I have since changed the contents to a winter-themed scene. Since we live in a tundra for half of the winter, I decided to opt for fake winter floral instead of real plants. That being said, I hit the 50% off sale at Michael’s and picked up a nice pine garland, several cascading pine accents, and a few taller pine cone accents. I wedged these accents into the dirt inside the flower box and used some hooks to prevent lift-off during our strong lake-effect wind storms.
Here’s a quick look at the flower box decor during the winter months. I decided to use fake pieces from Hobby Lobby that I could firmly attach to the inside since we get SUPER strong winds at our house from the field behind us. Pardon the slightly droopy handing piece in the front.. the wind still has the upper hand! I hope you enjoyed today’s post, I’m looking forward to sharing more soon!