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Mid-Century Modern Planter – a West Elm Knock Off

I’ve been looking for a planter for my front porch for quite some time now. It’s not that there aren’t plenty of options out there, it’s just that I wanted to find the right shape at the right price. I wanted something like this or a mid-century modern planter like this from West Elm, but the price was out of my budget. So my search continued until one day I was browsing through Marshall’s and found this beauty:

Mid-Century Modern Planter

And at a great price:

I liked that it was tall enough to look intentional on my porch. Unlike a small pot that can sometimes look like an afterthought.

But once I got it home and placed it on the porch I realized that it was the exact same color as the house. It looked dull and boring. My first thought was to white wash it. This would have been okay, but I felt like it would still blend in too much with the house. I needed contrast and something bolder. So I decided on black.

We had some leftover black chalkboard paint in our garage and it turned out to be the perfect product for this project. I didn’t want a shiny finish and chalkboard paint sticks really well to most surfaces.

So I simply brushed a couple of coats on, making sure to keep the legs clean of any paint. You’ll notice in the picture that little flecks of the original color still come through. This didn’t bother me, but had it, I could have gone back and dabbed each fleck. I also painted about 3 inches down on the inside of the planter so that way, if my dirt didn’t reach the top edge (which in most cases it won’t) you wouldn’t see the original color.

Then I had my husband drill a drainage hole using different sized drill bits. It’s not perfectly uniform, but it does the job! 😉 I probably should have had him do this before painting but thankfully it didn’t scratch the finish (the scuffs you see in the pictures easily wiped off).

Drilling a drainage hole
Paint a few inches down on the inside of your planter

I was super happy with the outcome and now needed to find the right plant. Looking around I realized that I had a succulent called Firesticks that we purchased some time ago from the clearance shelf at Lowe’s. We didn’t have a place or need for it at the time, but it was so cool and cheap, we bought it anyway. It sat in its original pot for over a year so it was definitely time to replant it!

“Firesticks” Succulent

My front porch is quite tricky in terms of light. During winter and spring, it gets virtually no direct sun, but during the summertime, it’s blasted with heat. I’m unsure of how this succulent will stand up to those conditions. But I’m unaware of any plants that can take such extremes, so I figured I’d give it a try. Here’s to hoping it lasts!

Since the planter is quite deep, I added some plastic containers to the bottom to take up some volume. Then I added one bag of cactus mix with some regular soil and placed the succulent in it’s new home.

Use plastic bottles to take up volume in a deep planter

When I stepped back and looked at the finished product, I loved everything about it!

As mentioned in a previous post, we are renters, so there are limits to what we can do to our place. Hence the stained concrete and unpainted door. However, little additions like this mid-century modern planter make the things we can’t change, a bit more bearable.

What “knock offs” have you found lately?

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